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"I don't honestly know why I have my hands on that song, because it seems to me Garth Brooks could have got his hands on it," he told The Boot and other reporters at a recent media event. "Anybody in the world would have recorded that song. I somehow got my hands on it first. The first time I heard it, it really broke me down, and I had to listen to it over and over again. When I went into the studio, I remembered how (the demo) made me feel, so when I was singing it, I wanted to make sure I didn't screw that up ... that I made that feeling come across with my recording of it the same as the demo. The songwriters, when they recorded that song, they did it right. I wanted to make sure I honored them and was putting forth the kind of emotions they wanted to come across."
Lee's debut single from Hard 2 Love, "A Woman Like You," soared quickly to the top of the charts. Even though Lee, a celebrated songwriter himself, didn't pen that song, he says he had a feeling that it would become a career changer.
"[Songwriter] Jon Stone came over to the house. We hang out all the time," he recalls. "We're buddies. I went to his truck. He said, 'I wrote a song today. You should hear it.' Really, he was just trying to make me jealous, because we do that to each other. If we don't write something together, we go, 'Hey man, look what I wrote the other day.' Just trying to tick each other off. He played me that song, and I immediately said, 'Dude, let's run into the house right now and put down a guitar, let me sing it.' And the next day we recorded the version that you hear on the radio. We had been looking for that. Even as big as 'Love Like Crazy' was, I still felt like we hadn't hit this thing that would catapult it to a direction that we needed to go. I didn't feel like we had gotten there yet, and I felt like the song would do that ... and it did."
Lee will spend most of the rest of the year on the road, including a show tomorrow night (Nov. 15) in Lake City, Fla. He will also head out in 2013 as the opening act on a major tour that remains top-secret. Keep track of his schedule here.