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Get to Know Bailey Hefley – The Budding Country Songstress with Powerful and Heartfelt Lyrics

CS Country virtually) sits down with Hefley to talk about her latest single, her songwriting process, and how she’s keeping busy in quarantine. 

Photo Credit: Jack Guy

Bailey Hefley is a one to watch in Country music.

The Arkansas native started her journey in Music City in 2012, sharing her songs at writers’ rounds and opening for artists including Old Dominion, Ashley McBryde, Deana Carter, and fellow Arkansan, Justin Moore. Over the course of eight years with a few singles in between, Hefley has been honing her craft with producers Brian Kennedy (Rihanna, Chris Brown, Natasha Bedingfield/Rascal Flatts) and Davix Foreman (Keyshia Cole, Timbaland, Nicky Jam) for her debut record Forever 20 Something later this year.

Each song on the album was co-written by Bailey and rooted deeply in personal experiences ranging from being bullied as a child, to quite literally finding her voice as a teenager, and of course, the heartbreak that comes with first love. Critics call her lyrics powerful and heartfelt, and we couldn’t agree more.

As she gears up for her debut record this fall, CS Country (virtually) sits down with Hefley to talk about her latest single, her songwriting process, and how she’s keeping busy in quarantine.

Celeb Secrets Country: Can you tell us about your first involvement with music?

Bailey Hefley: “I learned all the verses to Jesus Loves Me before I could even speak in full sentences, so that was the first tip off to my parents that I liked to sing. Then I auditioned for my school talent show when I was 5 and sang Baby Take a Bow by Shirley Temple. That was my first time performing in front of an audience. When the crowd clapped at the end I knew I wanted to keep bowing for the rest of my life.”

CSC: Who are your biggest musical influences?

BH: “I grew up listening to Shawn Mullins, The Dixie Chicks, Shania Twain, Garth Brooks, Christina Aguilera and many more! My mom is a classical pianist and would play all the time. We especially loved when she played ‘Flight of the Bumblebee’ by Nikolai Rimsky -Korsakov. My sister and I would dance by the piano when she played it.”

CSC: Who is your dream collab?

BH: “For sure Ed Sheeran. I love his writing style and his voice. I would absolutely die to perform, record, and/or write a song with him.”

CSC: Can you tell us about the inspiration behind “Doing Time with You?”

BH: “I wrote it about wanting to just be with someone you love. I love a big romantic gesture as much as the next girl, but sometimes you don’t need a fancy date—heck, you don’t even want one. You just want to be at home with that person and be in their space and that’s more than enough. I put Doing Time with You out now because with the quarantine measures many of us are taking, we have more time than ever to just be with someone we love and I wanted to highlight that positive of what we’re going through.”

CSC: You are known for your powerful and heartfelt lyrics. What is your songwriting process like?

BH: “Aw thank you so much for saying that! That is the highest compliment you could ever give me. Above all, I strive to keep my lyrics real. I say, if I’m not being honest, I’m not reaching people, and if I’m not reaching someone with my songs why am I even doing this?  If it’s not honest I don’t want to say it. Of course there’s room for imagination and telling someone else’s story occasionally, but even then I want the song to be based on a real feeling and experience.
One of the things I love about writing songs is it’s different every time.  I keep a list of ideas in my phone, and they hit me at all different times. I’m that crazy person in the middle of the Kroger produce section cupping my mouth to sing a melody into my voice memos app to. Melodies strike all the time, and my brain always has a million things going on at once, so I will almost instantly forget most of the time if I don’t record it immediately so I always try to. When I write with other people, sometimes I bring in just a title or I’ll even bring in a section of a song I’ve been working on. Also, many times it starts out something akin to a girls night where we are just talking very honestly about what we’ve been going through, and then someone may have the perfect title to go with what I’m feeling that day.

I write most of my songs on guitar and record them on voice memo at the end, but sometimes I’ll write to track, which means there’s a drum loop or even more going on in the background on speakers, kind of like having a karaoke track, while we come up with the lyrics and melody.”

Photo Credit: Jack Guy

CSC: What do you want listeners to take away from your music?

BH: “To me all of this begins from a feeling, and if the listener connects in a way that they feel even an ounce of what I felt when I wrote it then I did my job. I hope that if the song healed me when I wrote it, it will help heal them. If it made me happy, the goal is that they will want to roll their windows down in the summer and crank it up. I do this for other people at the end of the day. My writing is a service for others and I’m servicing an emotion. That’s my hope.”

CSC: How have you been spending your time in quarantine and how has it affected you creatively? 

BH: “I have been making sure I get plenty of time outside now that I’m out in the country and it’s safe to do so on the farm. I’ve been riding horses and hanging with my family which has been amazing. I’m really trying to embrace the positives of this time—like wearing less makeup (laughs).

I have been writing a lot over zoom, and am writing some songs I really love!! I can’t wait to share them.”

CSC: What is the first thing you’re going to do once quarantine is over?

BH: “Probably get all the girls together and have dinner at one of our favorite spots. I can’t wait to see everyone.”

CSC: Since we are Celeb Secrets, do you have any secrets about you or your music that you want to share with readers?

BH: “Ooooo I love secrets! I’m not sure this counts as a secret, but I have a huge sweet tooth, so I have been eating a lot of Smart Sweets gummies during the quarantine. It’s a candy sweetened with a non-artificial sweetener called allulose. Eating them makes me feel like I’m eating candy, without the negative affects!”

CSC: Where can readers find you online?

BH: “I LOVE connecting with people on socials. Plz message me! My Instagram and Twitter handles are both @baileyhefley, Facebook is Bailey Hefley, and my website is www.baileyhefley.com

Written by Juliet Schroder

Juliet is the founder and executive producer/host of Celeb Secrets and Celeb Secrets Country. When not reporting on the latest news in pop culture and country music, she enjoys traveling, spending time with friends and family, and exploring the latest fashion trends.

Juliet holds a B.S. in marketing from St. John's University.

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