Walker Hayes and Ciara join The Kelleigh Bannen Show in studio to share how their collaboration on “Y’all Life” came to be, stemming from the two meeting almost a year ago. Plus, Ciara chats about her love and respect for the country community, making this moment a dream come true for her.
Tune in and listen to the episode anytime on-demand at apple.co/_KelleighBannen.
Ciara on Why Her Country Collaboration with Walker Hayes Isn’t Unlikely
KELLEIGH: Is it fair to call this an unlikely collaboration?
WALKER: Oh yeah. Yeah.
CIARA: I guess so.
WALKER: A little bit.
CIARA: In my mind, no.
WALKER: We became buds first.
CIARA: Yeah, I don’t know. Is it unlikely? In my mind, no, because… I’ll just say this… because I’ve always dreamt of doing something in country and working with a country artist, so it’s just surreal. Do you know what I mean? It’s… unlikely no, because, this is from my perspective, just my thoughts and my love for, and my appreciation for the country community and culture. So this is like a dream come true. But I don’t think we knew that we’d be working together, so that’s pretty cool.
KELLEIGH: Well I’m like it’s a dream come true for country. I think country is going to be losing their minds.
WALKER: Oh exactly. Yeah.
Walker Hayes Explains How His Collaboration with Ciara on “Y’all Life” Came To Be
WALKER: We were filming the-
CIARA: Rockin Eve.
WALKER: Rockin New Year’s Eve. Yes. She was hosting and I could see her and my team was like “Ciara’s over there” and losing their mind and we could talk via ears. We both had ears in and mics and I was singing “AA” and she was like, “Woo.” Getting into it. And I was like, “No way! You dig that?” And so we were talking and then we met and I was like, “Yeah, maybe one…” You know how you meet people and you always like, “Hey, maybe we’ll collab.” And I love just fusing genres together and I love what she does and so on “Y’all Life,” “Y’all Life” had been out for a minute and I just texted her and… I do her like, if her family does a TikTok, [and] I think it’s cool, [my family will] do it. And so I was like, whatever, I’ll give it a shot. So I texted her and was like, “Here’s Y’all Life. What do you think?” And she sent me a voice text back and was like, “Y’all Life. Y’all Life” She was into it. And of course I was like, “No way.” You always think, “Hey, this will be a great collab,” but they don’t always happen. And I’m so glad she was into it.
Walker Hayes and Ciara on Figuring Out How to Make Their Collaboration Happen
CIARA: Like I just think it’s dope that he was really wanting to figure out how we can collaborate. Because when we were on set, I was like, “This would be dope if we could.” And so literally almost a year to the date, we’re getting up into November, which is [when] we met. We did it. We’re doing it. It’s crazy.
WALKER: It’s happening. Yeah, I think a lot of times you meet an artist and it’s like a really, sometimes you’re like, “Who wants it more? Are you going to work on it? Am I going to feature on you? Are you going to feature on me?” And there’s all this political stuff.
KELLEIGH: Well, the politics. Yeah.
WALKER: Right. And there just wasn’t, it was very easy.
Ciara on Why This Collaboration is So Important to Her and What Keeps Her Grounded
Family is so important to me. And I am having a lot of fun working my next record and moments like this. Like, sitting here with Walker, I said the other day, I was like, “This is one of the coolest things I feel I’ve ever done in my career.” In all of my years, to be in this setting, and to have a collaboration like this, is pretty special for me.
So it’s such a blessing to be having moments like this, but I think what’s so important in the midst of it all, is just making sure I’m continuing to stay grounded. That’s the better thing to me because it’s so easy to be so up here, focused on work and all these fun things that are really fun. But then I need like that balance, Mom life, wife life, that life, that y’all life. That is important to me. So that, if I can have the balance there, like I always say, to me, when I have that part of my life right, that’s the definition of success for me. When I’m grounded within myself.