Hunter Hayes and CMT are gearing up for his first headlining tour -- CMT on Tour: Let's Be Crazy -- and the young star took a moment during pre-tour rehearsals Monday (Oct. 7) to celebrate how far he's come.
"I'm trying to contain it and be cool about it, but that's unbelievable," Hayes told CMT Hot 20 Countdown. "That's hard for me to believe, actually.
"I feel guilty anytime anybody calls anything that we do work, at least on my end," he continued. "There's a lot of pieces of the puzzle, but at the end of the day, it's still all very fun, and I think that's the most important thing. If anybody asked me 'What have you learned the most in the last year?' I think my favorite thing to say is, 'Hey, you know what's really cool about having dreams? When they come true, it's still that much fun.' It's pretty magical, and it hasn't lost its magic."
Hayes says fans can expect that magic and so much more when the tour kicks off Thursday (Oct. 10) in Knoxville, Tenn.
"There's no containing that feeling," he said. "There's no measuring it, there's no explaining it, there's no way for me to put it into words. It just happens. It happens not only when we start the show, it happens several times during the show. And then you have the coffeehouse meet-and-greets where you just get to talk to the fans. It's really special."
And while Hayes maintains nothing feels like work to him, he's excited to show off all the behind-the-scenes details to make the tour a hit.
"The band and crew have worked really hard on this show," Hayes said. "We've put a lot of thought, a lot of heart and soul into this, and this will be our first time getting to design a show from top to bottom. ... Here's our first chance to actually have those moments."
Get tickets to CMT on Tour: Let's Be Crazy with Hunter Hayes at CMT.com now. For more country music news, watch CMT Hot 20 Countdown on Saturday and Sunday (Oct. 12-13) at 11 a.m. ET/PT.
View photos from Hunter Hayes' tour rehearsal.