Country Music Star Hunter Hayes on Growing Up With Music

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Talking Up Music Education is a podcast from The NAMM Foundation that shares news and stories about music education. Episode 47 features an interview with Hunter Hayes, a multi-instrumentalist and five-time Grammy-nominated Country Music Association (CMA) artist.

Hayes is one of several artists recorded and broadcast live from The 2018 NAMM Show. Interviews include OK Go, Vanessa Carlton and more.

“I'm grateful that I found [music] in elementary school because at that point, it was so ingrained in me,” Said Hayes. “There was nothing that could take me away from it.”

In this episode, Hayes shares his belief that all kids should grow up with music and his hope that nerd culture is more than just a passing fad. Watch the Hunter Hayes podcast interview on YouTube, or download and listen below.

Listen to the Podcast

Sound Bites From the Podcasts

“I got a toy accordion when I was two. My grandmother noticed that I was taking things around the house and making them into instruments, so she was like, ‘well, I'm going to start him on accordion.’” – Hunter Hayes

“I actually just got to work with a really cool, Nashville School of the Arts. It was inspiring because walking through there the first time, we got to be a part of a renovation that happened in their studio/music creative space. We got to be a small part of a renovation there, and walking to the school the first time … was really inspiring because the only thing I kept thinking was, I wish I had this in high school.” – Hunter Hayes

“There's no one road for anybody who discovers music.” – Hunter Hayes

“Any time the words music education come up, I'm pretty passionate about it. For me, it's as much as about finding one’s self as it is about learning music.” – Hunter Hayes

More Podcasts

Are you a fan of country music? Listen to the following episodes:

Sugarland’s Kristian Bush:


Emmy Lou and Vince Gill:


Crystal Gayle:

Talking Up Music Education is a podcast produced by The NAMM Foundation about music education. Host Mary Luehrsen chats with teachers, parents, students and community leaders who share stories about what they are doing to create music learning opportunities. Please download, share and subscribe to keep up with the stories that make a difference in music education advocacy.

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