Former American Idol finalist Gabby Barrett is a rising country star thanks to her hit “I Hope,” which topped the country charts before being remixed into a hit pop duet with Charlie Puth. Gabby says she wrote “I Hope” after rejecting her co-writers’ initial idea, which she didn’t think was realistic enough for a woman to sing.
Gabby tells ABC Audio that when she sat down to write with her two male co-writers, “They had come in and said, ‘Well, we have this idea. Let’s write a song about where a guy does a girl wrong. The worst happens. But the girl still kind of like wishes the guy well in the end, like, ‘Take care. I’m fine. Everything’s fine.'”
But Gabby rejected that out of hand.
She laughs, “I was like, ‘That’s not gonna work, because women aren’t like that most of the time!'”
So instead, Gabby thought back to one of her own romances.
“I just kind of wrote from the perspective of one of my first boyfriends that I had had in high school,” she recalls. “And just how I felt when something tragic happened.”
That ended up as “I Hope,” in which a woman wishes her ex and his new girlfriend the very worst.
Gabby explains, “I just hoped with this song that people could hear it, and kind of it could help them through whatever they’re going through, you know, badly with relationships. Because I feel like everybody goes through bad relationships.”
Gabby is now in a good relationship, though: She married fellow Idol contestant Cade Foehner in October of last year. During a Billboard Live-At-Home performance on Wednesday, she even brought him out to sing and play along with her.
By Andrea Dresdale
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