Little Big Town collaborated with an unexpected producer for their upcoming album, Wanderlust. The Voice coach Pharrell Williams began writing with the country group and one session turned into an entire “uplifting and hopeful” album.
Little Big Town announced their new album and partnership with Pharrell Williams on their official website Tuesday. Little Big Town’s Karen Fairchild explained that Wonderlust came about through the “incredible friendship and chemistry” the band developed with Pharrell Williams. However, the collaboration even took them by surprise.
“Wanderlust is the result of an incredible friendship and chemistry we have with Pharrell Williams. What started out as one writing session a few months ago turned into multiple writing sessions, as well as back and forth trips from Nashville to Los Angeles. When the songs started coming together, we realized it was too special to not share with our fans. Pharrell loves country music and is a huge fan of harmony. That shared passion and appreciation took us on a creative journey we had no idea would happen. The music feels like our worlds have collided in the best possible way — his infectious grooves paired with our layered vocals and harmonies. This music is meant to be danced to, sung along with and turned up loud. It’s uplifting and hopeful. We’ve been a band for a long time and have had the pleasure of collaborating with so many people, and it’s been a complete joy to make music with Pharrell!”
Pharrell Williams stated that Wonderlust was a fun album to work on with Little Big Town. He said many of the songs were based on experiences Little Big Town members were going through at that particular time.
“We had a great time working together because we all love harmonies and that’s a really fun way to make a record. A lot of the songs were based on what the group were going through at the time and creating good feelings around those experiences.”
Little Big Town told Billboard they don’t really know what genre this project falls into. The one thing they know the feel-good album is not, however, is country. Karen Fairchild said the new music has given them a lot of joy, so they wanted to share that with their fans without a lot of overthinking.
“And it’s not like anything we’ve ever done. It’s fun to be spontaneous and put it out there to the fans, because we want to, and not to overthink it, but just because it has brought us a lot of joy, and we think it will for them as well. So why not? We’re going with our gut and putting it out there. It’s just music, you know?”
Fairchild goes on to explain that the partnership between Little Big Town and Pharrell Williams really isn’t as strange as it may sound. She said being from Virginia, Williams shares a love of country music and southern harmonies. She admitted to being “a little nervous” about their first writing session with Williams because they respect him so much. Despite the initial nerves, the result is “fun and inspiring” music that Little Big Town hopes will bring joy to many.
“He loves southern harmonies — he’s from Virginia — and is a big fan of country music. He’s good at anything, and such a joy to be around. This music is fun and inspiring, and very hopeful for what’s going on in our crazy world these days. Hopefully, it’ll bring a lot of smiles and dancing to people.”
Country fans shouldn’t panic. Wanderlust isn’t an indication that Little Big Town is planning a crossover to pop music. In fact, they have also been in the studio with Jay Joyce creating another country record. Joyce produced the band’s 2012 Tornado and 2014 Pain Killer.
Wanderlust is due for release June 10. Little Big Town will debut their first single from the album, “One of Those Days,” Tuesday on NBC’s The Voice season finale.
[Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]