The music on RaeLynn’s spirited debut WildHorse wouldn’t be what it is without the love and support of some strong women in her life. Before competing on Blake Shelton’s team on The Voice season two, she was raised in a musical family in East Texas and surrounded by relatives who all could write, sing and perform.
Co-written with Blair Daly and Hillary Lindsey, the title track is an anthem about independence based on a poem RaeLynn’s grandmother (her “memaw”) wrote for her mother. In the song, the lead character shoots it straight with a love interest saying that she’s the kind of woman who won’t put her dreams on hold for anyone or anything — even love.
She sings, “I don’t want no fences around, nobody blocking me in/Can’t saddle me up because I’m the kind of girl that needs the wind/Riding with that fire in my eyes/Flying straight through the open wide ’cause baby I’m a wild horse.”
“My memaw used to call my mom her wild horse and she wrote a poem about my mom being a wild horse but in a good way,” RaeLynn tells CMT.com, “like her crazy little girl is going to do so much for the world. And I’m just like my mom in so many ways I want to write a song called “Wild Horse” for them about carrying on a lineage.”
The world probably wouldn’t have gotten to know RaeLynn on The Voice without WildHorse co-producer Nicolle Galyon, the hit-maker behind Miranda Lambert’s “Automatic” and Keith Urban’s “We Were Us.” When RaeLynn first came to Nashville to write music at age 17, one of her first co-writing appointments in town was with Galyon and she offered RaeLynn her audition The Voice season two.
“I was singing, and she said, ‘You have such a unique voice. You should audition for The Voice,'” RaeLynn recalled. “And I was like, ‘I don’t think that I have a really crazy range. Those competing shows aren’t meant for a singer-songwriter type of artist.’ And she was like, ‘No, that’s the whole point of The Voice. They like any kind of voices.'”
Galyon ended up getting another audition and went on to compete on Adam Levine’s team that season.
“Funny story — after The Voice was over with and I turned 18, I didn’t have my license yet,” RaeLynn added. “So Nicolle took me to all my writing appointments in Nashville, and we just started writing together. We had this special bond and this chemistry like any other. Her lyrics and melodies are so incredible. She just helped me piece my story together. It’s important to find that person that you click with in Nashville and she was that first person that I clicked with.”
Available Friday (March 24), WildHorse is also co-produced by CMA Triple Play award winner and hit-maker Jimmy Robbins (Thomas Rhett’s “It Goes Like This” and Maren Morris’ “I Could Use a Love Song”).