Single Review: Hunter Hayes, “Tattoo”

Hunter Hayes TattooI want to preface this by saying, as I’ve said before, that Hunter Hayes is tremendously talented.

“Tattoo” is further evidence that he can assemble all of the necessary components for an entertaining record, and I guess it is a pretty entertaining record.

But all I could think about while listening to it was, “This sounds like Kids Bop Keith Urban.”

Written by Barry Dean, Hunter Hayes, and Troy Verges

Grade: B




  1. “Kids Bop Keith Urban”.

    Yes, it is. But I have a serious weakness for Disney-ish pop music and this is right in that sweet spot.

  2. His singing and speaking voice, both, get on my nerves. He’s so girly acting to me.

    What does Kids Bop Keith Urban mean? Hope you are not hating on Keith Urban because to me, he runs rings around this little twerp.

  3. …try to eat a burger and fries with this – you end up chewing faster and faster and desperately hopin’ someone would change the channel. tooth ache or hunter hayes? I’d go for tooth ache any day.

  4. Much of what Hunter Hayes does reminds me of the instrumentation of Keith Urban mixed with the agreeable blandness of Rascal Flatts.

    For me, the biggest issue with him is that his handlers so obviously believe his audience is 12-17-year-old females. Everything about his brand seems targeted at them. He has the talent to do so much more.

    This song, like just about all of his stuff, isn’t exactly bad, but isn’t something I would choose to listen to.

    I’m curious to see how this does on radio since his last two singles stalled. He doesn’t exactly fit in with what’s on radio because he isn’t “bro” and I think that’s made it a little difficult for him to get big airplay lately.

  5. He’s got talent, along with one of the worst live voices I’ve ever heard. He should be lead guitarist/instrumentalist in a band, but leave the vocals to those with the chops to pull it off.

  6. Gloria,

    Kidz Bop is a series of CDs that consist of kids covering pop songs, usually “cleaning them up” in the process.

    This sounds like a Keith Urban track to me, but with a kid singing it. Not a criticism of Keith Urban, or Hunter Hayes, necessarily.

    Just the way the voice and music match up to me on this one.

  7. Six String Richie,

    Couldn’t agree with you more about his image. The kid’s written some pretty good songs, but only the syrupy sweet ones get released. I wish they would present him more as a young, pop-country singer-songwriter. Kind of a male Taylor Swift, but with mad guitar skills.

  8. Hunter Hayes, like a million and one other artists needs to give up the background banjo and just go straight pop. His style, his voice, his everything is suited for it. Leave country music to the Jason Eady’s, Josh Turner’s and Easton Corbin’s of the world.

  9. I tend to agree with Leeann and Richie. Hayes is obviously a talented musician, and that counts for something. But I haven’t been the least bit impressed by his songwriting from either a lyrical or construction standpoint, and I think his singing is just wretched. He apes Gary LeVox’s vocal style– which is a pretty damning indictment of his taste in influences– but with an even shakier sense of pitch and more adenoidal tone. He seems to be, by all accounts, a really likeable, pleasant kid, but I’m just not at all on board with his music.

    This one doesn’t have me reaching for the insulin the way “Invisible” did, but I’ll be curious to see if it’s enough to get him back into heavy rotation at radio.

  10. I can definitely respect Hunter Hayes’ talent as a musician, but like some others here, I can’t get into his voice. To me it seems average at best, and the adenoidal tone that Jonathan mentioned doesn’t help either.

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