Hunter Hayes has landed a fashion-leaning feature in the pages of the May issue of Esquire, which lands April 23. The stylish singer, dressed in a pricy leather jacket and other snazzy threads, revealed where his comfort zone is and the two things that factor into every song he writes. Both are decidedly country, too!

“The stage is my comfort zone, and playing live is what I’ve always wanted to do," Hayes said with conviction. Clearly, the 'Wanted' singer is not afflicted with any sort of stage fright. In fact, it's quite the opposite.

He continued, "It’s why I want to do 200 dates a year. I wouldn’t feel that way if I were nervous onstage. These days, we play a two-and-a-half-hour headlining show. We have a song with a 20-minute outro on it. Things evolve and I love that."

Hayes is truly passionate about performing, which certainly benefits Hayniacs, since he always wants to put on a good show.

Another thing Hayes loves? The fact that country music does not allow barriers to exist between the artists and the fans, which is due in large part to the storyteller nature of the songs.

"Country music busts the wall between performer and audience," said the country-and-proud singer. "There’s a connection because there’s a vulnerability, a confessional quality, to so much of the songwriting. Those lyrics take you in."

Hayes admitted that he has a specific approach to writing songs that is decidedly country, as well.

'Every demo I do has a mandolin or resonator on it — some element of the bluegrass or classic country world that I grew up listening to and that first drew me in," he said, revealing a little bit of his process. "And then I always try to find somewhere for a bluesy guitar sound, because that’s also what I love. Musically, I’m always finding my way home."



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