|Birth name||Hunter Easton Hayes|
|Born||September 9, 1991|
Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, U.S.
Hayes released his self-titled debut album in 2011. It reached number seven on the Billboard 200 and number one on the Top Country Albums, and sold over 1.1 million copies. Its most successful single, "Wanted", sold over 3.5 million copies and made Hayes the youngest male act to ever top the Billboard Hot Country Songs.
Hayes' commercial success and his talent both as a songwriter and instrumentalist prompted Billboard to call him the leader of "Country Music's Youth Revolution" in 2014. He has been nominated for five Grammy Awards including Best New Artist, and won the 2012 CMA Award for New Artist of the Year and three BMI Awards.
Life and career
Hayes was born on September 9, 1991, at Larniurg Hospital in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana; he is an only child. His parents both have Cajun ancestry, along with English, Scots-Irish, and German. He grew up Catholic, singing songs in both English and French.
Hayes started performing when he was 2. At 4, he began making appearances locally and on national television, including Maury, Rosie O'Donnell Show, and the Nickelodeon game show Figure It Out, where he performed "Jambalaya (On the Bayou)". American Songwriter writes that "Hayes received his first guitar from actor Robert Duvall at age 6" At age 7, he was invited to perform for President Bill Clinton for a White House lawn party. At 13, he appeared on America's Most Talented Kids, a show hosted by Dave Coulier; he performed the hit Hank Williams song, "Hey Good Lookin'". At age 9, Hunter released his debut independent studio album "Through My Eyes" on October 8, 2000, under Suagartown Records and Louisiana Red Hot Records. He released several more independent albums: Make a Wish in 2001, Holidays with Hunter in 2003, Honoring our French Heritage in 2006, and Songs About Nothing in 2008.
In 2008, he moved from Breaux Bridge to Nashville, Tennessee, and signed with Universal Music Publishing Group as a songwriter. In 2010, Hayes co-wrote "Play" for the Rascal Flatts album Nothing Like This. In September, he was signed to Atlantic Records Nashville and began working on what would become his major-label debut.
Hayes appeared as the opening act of 10 dates of country star Taylor Swift's Speak Now World Tour throughout the summer of 2011 and concluded his leg of the tour in St. Louis, Missouri. In April 2011, he had gone on his own radio tour where he debuted songs that would appear on his debut album. His debut headlining tour was the Most Wanted Tour; the first leg of the tour began on October 8, 2011, in Beaumont, Texas, and ended on December 4, 2011, in San Bernardino, California.
Hayes and singer Victoria Justice contributed a duet to the soundtrack of 2011's Footloose remake, recording a cover of Mike Reno's and Ann Wilson's 1984 hit "Almost Paradise" from the original film. From January to February 2012, Hayes was the opening act on the Rascal Flatts "Thaw Out" tour.
During the 2012 O Music Awards, The Flaming Lips broke a Guinness World Record (previously held by Jay-Z) for most concerts played in multiple cities in a 24-hr. period. Hayes was the opening act for them at the Hattiesburg stop.
In May 2012, Martin Guitars named Hayes as C.F. Martin & Co.'s newest brand ambassador. American Songwriter quoted Hayes on the subject: "It is an absolute honor to be named an official Martin Ambassador and to be recognized by the Martin family."
2011–2014: Hunter Hayes and Storyline
Hayes's debut single, "Storm Warning", released to radio on May 16, 2011. His self-titled major-label debut album was released on October 11, 2011. He co-wrote every song, played every instrument, and along with Dann Huff, produced the album. "Wanted", the second single, was released to radio on March 5, 2012.
On July 24, 2012, he appeared on the CBS's The Talk, where he was then given an RIAA Gold Certification plaque for "Wanted". Just shy of two months since "Wanted" went gold, the song was certified Platinum by RIAA on August 23, 2012.
"Wanted" became his first No. 1 single, making him the youngest solo male act to top Hot Country Songs, breaking the record set in 1973 by Johnny Rodriguez. Twenty weeks after first appearing in the top spot and under a new chart format, "Wanted" returned to the top spot. "Somebody's Heartbreak", the album's third single, went to No. 1 on the Country Airplay chart.
He was also nominated for three Grammys including Best New Artist at the 2013 Grammy Awards; he is the youngest male country artist to be nominated in all three categories for which he was nominated. The album's fourth single, "I Want Crazy", which is from the deluxe Encore edition, was released to country radio on April 7, 2013. It peaked at number two on the Country Airplay chart in August 2013. Following it was "Everybody's Got Somebody but Me", a re-recording of a song from the original press of the album. The re-recorded version features guest vocals from Jason Mraz.
Hunter was one of five country singers who won a CMT Artist of the Year award in 2013. This award is awarded every year to a group of country musicians who have had an outstanding year.
Hayes performed "Invisible", the lead single from his second album, at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards. Storyline was released on May 6, 2014. In an effort to promote his album and to raise awareness to end child hunger, Hunter broke the Guinness World Record for the most concerts played in multiple cities in 24 hours, previously held by The Flaming Lips. The album's second single, "Tattoo" released to country radio on June 16, 2014.
2015–2018: The 21 Project and cancelled album
On May 21, 2015, Hayes released "21", which was the title track for both his EP and third studio album, The 21 Project. He also appeared on the track "I Can Play Guitar" on Brett Kissel's album Pick Me Up.
On November 2, 2016, Hayes performed with four holograms of himself on Jimmy Kimmel Live's after the CMA show.
In March 2017, Hayes performed as part of the C2C: Country to Country festival in the UK where he played alongside Dan + Shay and Darius Rucker supporting Reba McEntire and will return in 2019 with Carly Pearce and Dustin Lynch in support of Lady A. Following "21," Hayes released several songs including “Yesterday’s Song” which were slated to be part of a studio album set to be released in February 2018. Hayes then cancelled the project citing ‘shifted priorities’.
Hayes also appeared as a guest in a Nickelodeon show, Bella and the Bulldogs.
2018–present: Wild Blue and Red Sky
In January 2019, Hayes released his first radio single in three years titled "Heartbreak" which was the lead single for an upcoming album to be released by Warner Music Nashville. Hayes headlined the Closer to You Tour in 2019 with Levi Hummon and Tegan Marie as supporting acts.
In August 2019, Hayes made a surprise announcement on NBC's Today Show revealing his album Wild Blue (Part I) would be released on August 16, 2019. The album is the first part of a three-part ‘trilogy’ of albums.
In April 2020, Hayes competed in the third season of The Masked Singer as "Astronaut". In June 2020, the Saskatchewan-based Hunter Brothers released their single "Hard Dirt", co-written and produced by Hayes. He also co-wrote and produced their 2021 single "Been a Minute".
In October 2021, Hayes released the album Wild Blue Complete an extension of the album Wild Blue (Part I).
- Through My Eyes (2000)
- Make a Wish (2001)
- Holidays with Hunter (2003)
- Honoring Our French Heritage (2006)
- Songs About Nothing (2008)
- Hunter Hayes (2011)
- Storyline (2014)
- The 21 Project (2015)
- Wild Blue (Part I) (2019)
- Red Sky (Part II) (TBA)
- Most Wanted Tour (2011)
- Let's Be Crazy Tour, with Ashley Monroe (2013)
- We're Not Invisible Tour, with Danielle Bradbery and Dan + Shay (2014)
- 24 Hour Road Race to End Child Hunger (2014)
- Tattoo (Your Name) Tour, with Dan + Shay and The Railers (2014)
- Let's Be Crazy / Crazier UK Tour (2015)
- 21 Tour, with Ryan Lafferty and Kelsea Ballerini (2015)
- Closer to You Tour, with Levi Hummon and Tegan Marie (2019)
- Speak Now World Tour – Taylor Swift (2011)
- Blown Away Tour – Carrie Underwood (2012)
- Wheels Up Tour – Lady Antebellum with Sam Hunt and Kelsea Ballerini (2015)
- C2C: Country to Country – Reba McEntire with Dan + Shay and Darius Rucker (2017), Lady Antebellum with Dustin Lynch and Carly Pearce (2019)
|1997||The Apostle||Child Accordionist|
|1998||Figure It Out||Himself/Guest|
|2000||My Dog Skip||Accordion Boy|
|2016||Bella and the Bulldogs||Himself|
|2020||The Masked Singer||Astronaut|
Awards and nominations
Academy of Country Music Awards
The Academy of Country Music Awards, also known as the ACM Awards, were first held in 1966, honoring the industry's accomplishments during the previous year. It was the first country music awards program held by a major organization. The academy's signature "hat" trophy was created in 1968. The awards were first televised in 1972 on ABC.
|2013||New Male Vocalist of the Year||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|Single Record of the Year||"Wanted"||Nominated|
|Song of the Year||Nominated|
|Video of the Year||Nominated|
American Country Awards
The American Country Awards is a country music awards show, entirely voted on by fans. Created by the Fox Network, the awards honor country music artists in music, video, and touring categories. Hayes has won two awards from five nominations.
|Year||Category||Nominee / work||Result|
|2012||New Artist of the Year||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|Single by a New Artist||"Wanted"||Won|
|Music Video by a New Artist||Won|
|2013||Breakthrough Artist of the Year||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|Single by a Breakthrough||"Somebody's Heartbreak"||Nominated|
A Grammy Award (originally called Gramophone Award), or Grammy, is an accolade by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) of the United States to recognize outstanding achievement in the music industry. The annual presentation ceremony features performances by prominent artists, and the presentation of those awards that have a more popular interest.
|Year||Category||Nominee / work||Result|
|2013||Best New Artist||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|Best Country Album||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|Best Country Solo Performance||"Wanted"||Nominated|
|2014||"I Want Crazy"||Nominated|
|Year||Association||Category||Work / Nominee(s)||Result|
|2012||CMT Music Awards||USA Breakthrough Video of the Year||"Storm Warning"||Nominated|
|Teen Choice Awards||Choice Male Country Artist||Hunter Hayes||Won|
|Choice Country Song||"Storm Warning"||Nominated|
|BMI Awards||Award Winning Song (Top 50)||Won|
|Country Music Association Awards||New Artist of the Year||Hunter Hayes||Won|
|Billboard Touring Awards||Top Package||Speak Now, featuring Taylor Swift with Needtobreathe, Hunter Hayes, Danny Gokey, etc.||Nominated|
|2013||Billboard Music Awards||Top Country Artist||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|Top Country Song||"Wanted"||Nominated|
|CMT Music Awards||Video of the Year||Nominated|
|Male Video of the Year||Nominated|
|Nationwide Insurance On Your Side Award||Hunter Hayes||Won|
|Teen Choice Awards||Choice Male Country Artist||Won|
|Choice Country Song||"I Want Crazy"||Nominated|
|BMI Awards||Song of the Year||"Wanted"||Won|
|Award Winning Song (Top 50)||"Storm Warning"||Won|
|American Music Awards||Favorite Country Male Artist||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|2014||World Music Awards||World's Best Song||"I Want Crazy"||Nominated|
|World's Best Video||Nominated|
|World's Best Album||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|World's Best Male Artist||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|World's Best Live Act||Nominated|
|World's Best Entertainer||Nominated|
|CMT Music Awards||Video of the Year||"I Want Crazy"||Nominated|
|Male Video of the Year||Nominated|
|Collaborative Video of the Year||"Everybody's Got Somebody but Me"
(featuring Jason Mraz)
|Teen Choice Awards||Choice Male Country Artist||Hunter Hayes||Won|
|BMI Awards||Top 50 Songs||"I Want Crazy"||Won|
|Music Choice Awards||Social Media Superstar||Hunter Hayes||Won|
|2015||People's Choice Awards||Favorite Male Country Artist||Won|
|Teen Choice Awards||Choice Country Artist||Hunter Hayes||Nominated|
|Choice Country Song||"21"||Nominated|
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