By pretty much any measure imaginable, Hailey Whitters‘ “Everything She Ain’t” is a massive hit.
The song from her incredible 2022 album Raised took off on TikTok with its catchy chorus: For awhile it seemed like I couldn’t open the app without hearing “The whiskey in your soda” as everybody was dancing and clapping along.
The song even became a favorite of the “real men” over on country boy TikTok, who weren’t afraid to admit their love for Hailey’s hit:
I think it’s fair to say that the song has definitely changed Hailey’s career, and rocketed her to the top of the list of up-and-comers in Nashville.
But according to Hailey, “Everything She Ain’t” almost didn’t even make the album.
During an interview with Whiskey Riff ahead of Hailey’s performance celebrating National Bourbon Daywith George Dickel Bourbon, Hailey discussed how her biggest hit to date wasn’t even supposed to be part of Raised:
“This song has surprised me in every single way because I actually didn’t even think it was going to make the record.
I thought Raised was already done, and we went in and played some songs for the label and they were like, ‘Hey, is there anything else that you just think we need to hear?’
And my producer actually played that song and they all flipped out and were like, ‘This has to go on the record.’
So I was like, ‘Ok?’ So it went on the record and it was a very reactive song so then they wanted to take it to radio. And now seeing it work its way up to now being top 20, it’s totally surprised me in every way.”
Well it’s safe to say it’s been quite the pleasant surprise with the song taking on the life it has, especially after she hadn’t even planned on releasing it.
And Hailey said watching it take off like it has taught her something about the creative process:
“The takeaway from me is to just get out of my own way, just create the music and put it out there and let it do its thing.”
Oh, and to all the “real men” who posted videos of themselves singing along to “Everything She Ain’t” on TikTok, Hailey has a message for you all too:
“Shoutout to the blue collar boys of TikTok…It was really sweet.”