Grammy and ACM Award-winning songwriter Hillary Lindsey began her career as a writer more than a 15 years ago and has since become one of country's most sought after storytellers. She's worked with some of the biggest names in country music and has even collaborated in the pop genre. Lindsey scored her first No. 1 song in 2002 with Martina McBride's "Blessed" and has added numerous hits to her name since then. Here are 5 things you didn't know about Hillary Lindsey
1. She's written over 30 songs Carrie Underwood recorded
Hillary Lindsey is a favorite of Carrie Underwood. She continuously looks into her works for each album since Underwood released her debut album Some Hearts. Even on her latest album Storyteller, Underwood recorded "Clock Don't Stop" and the U.K. single "Chaser." Of Lindsey's ten No. 1 hits, six of them are recorded by Underwood including one of her signature hits, "Jesus Take the Wheel." The other titles include "Wasted," "So Small," "Just a Dream," "Last Name" and "Two Cadillacs." In all, Lindsey has written 33 songs that Carrie Underwood has included on her albums.
2. Hillary Lindsey has two Grammy Awards
As a songwriter, she's entitled to awards as well in the "song" categories. In 2007, Lindsey won her first Grammy Award for Underwood's "Jesus Take the Wheel" for Best Country Song. The track was also nominated for Song of the Year at that ceremony. In 2016, she took home the award for Best Country Song again this time for Little Big Town's "Girl Crush" and that song was also nominated for the high honor of Song of the Year. Her latest nomination came in 2017 with Keith Urban's "Blue Ain't Your Color" in the same category. Along with two Grammy Awards, she has one ACM Award (Song of the Year/"Jesus Take the Wheel") and one CMA (Song of the Year/"Girl Crush").
Hillary Lindsey was chosen as a potential collaborator for Lady Gaga's latest album, Joanne, released in 2016. Lindsey received the call and visit Gaga at her L.A. home. She teamed up with Gaga on the catchy "A-Yo" and single "Million Reasons" rose from conversations the two writers had together. Lindsey has appeared with Lady Gaga to sing on the song on performances such as "Saturday Night Live" and when she embarked on a small dive bar tour. Lindsey lent her voice to the backing vocals on record. Through those conversations and after a few glasses of wine, they also co-wrote the bonus track "Grigio Girls." Hillary Lindsey spoke to Rolling Stone about the experience and she cited Gaga as being "a badass songwriter." "Everything she said, I'm like, 'That's a title! You've gotta either stop talking or you've gotta let me come live here for a month, because everything you say is a song." Instead of the modern day way of jotting down lyrics, Lady Gaga typed her lyrics on a vintage typewriter.
Lindsey became friends with several other prominent songwriters in the business and she, Lori McKenna and Liz Rose joined forces to form what they call Love Junkies. These songwriters write their tunes through organic conversation amongst themselves. They talk as friends, best friends, as mothers and wives and they draw inspiration from their own lives. The trio wrote Little Big Town's "Girl Crush" which became a massive country hit. The ladies meet once a month in Rose's Nashville home.
Writers Steven Lee Olsen and Clint Lagerberg began working on an idea titled "Blue Ain't Your Color." They both knew that Hillary Lindsey needed to have input so Lagerberg texted her asking if she'd be a part of it. She asked what the song was and after knowing the title, she told him, "get your a-- over here!" Not knowing what the song actually meant, she was intrigued. "Blue" was originally intended for Olsen's own record and didn't want his songs to be pitched, but then he decided this song needed to be pitched and it could only be sent to Keith Urban. Urban fell in love with the song and it was fitting for his style which doesn't always happen with songs he didn't write.