Danielle Bradbery’s ‘Never Have I Ever’ Experiments and Expands Her Sound [Listen]
Danielle Bradbery is getting braver by the song. To hear the 23-year-old Texas native tell it, her new single "Never Have I Ever" embraces more of the sounds that make up her own personal tapestry of musical tastes.
"For sure, "Never Have I Ever" is a bit different from what I've done," Bradbery tells Taste of Country. "It still has a little bit of the sound that I've always had, but I was a little bit braver this time. It has a touch of almost that R&B feel to it as much as the country part."
"Never Have I Ever" had its genesis about two years ago, when Bradbery co-wrote the song with Laura Veltz (Maren Morris, Dan + Shay) and David Hodges (Christina Aguilera, Blake Shelton). After their writing session, Bradbery took the tune to Dann Huff, who produced the song to its appropriately epic potential.
"I look up to them when it comes to music in general," Bradbery says of the two tunesmiths. "And they're magicians when it comes to writing a song."
"Never Have I Ever" features a relatable theme hooked around the popular party game of the same name, in which participants test each other's sordid pasts by calling out actions to ask others to publicly admit if they've done that particular thing or not. The song takes the concept to a romantic place, however.
"It's about getting in a relationship and feeling all these things you've never felt before, like, 'Who the heck am I? I've never felt this way,'" Bradbery says. "It can be a song about anybody."
The former The Voice winner is currently quarantining at her boyfriend's family ranch in Utah. She's been doing her best to keep up with all of the new music coming out and using social media to stay in touch with fans and friends.
"I've been listening to music and seeing what's coming out during all of this, and, you know, I haven't watched much TV," Bradbery admits with a laugh. "I'm just trying to be outside whenever I can. I've been trying to listen to everything, and my list of music is very all over the place."
She has also been lending her talents to plenty of collaborations since her 2017 album I Don't Believe We've Met. She recently joined Zac Brown for a feature on EDM star Diplo's much-anticipated country-leaning project, due on May 29.
"I'm a huge Diplo fan," Bradbery says. "When I got that email or call or whatever it was through management, I was like, 'Um, yeah I will definitely do that.'"
Bradbery and her friend, songwriter Emily Weisband, made a week of it in L.A., participating in some writing sessions, performing at Stagecoach and recording vocals for the Diplo song. "I haven't done many recordings like that in L.A. It was really fun, but I was a little nervous, I will say," the singer confesses.
Bradbery didn't exactly plan to put out new songs amid a global pandemic, but at some point, you've just got to release music and hope it connects with people when they need it most. "I think if there wasn't a virus, it would've been earlier or maybe a little bit later, but we just decided to do it in the middle of all this, and hopefully music brings healing to everybody just staying at home trying to survive all of this," she says.
Currently, Bradbery's tour plans for this summer are still on, but those plans could change. One thing is certain, though: She has her sights set on continuing to sonically develop.
"I think it is leading up to something bigger, and I'm continuing to really work on this new project," Bradbery says. "I told a lot of fans I want to sprinkle hints of my Texas country influence in there, either lyrics or melody or even the sound. I'm trying to experiment a little bit.
"It won't be too, too crazy," she adds. "I just want to be a little bit brave."
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