Chris Young Taps Gavin DeGraw for ‘Crossroads’ Duet of His Heavy-Hearted Single, ‘Drowning’ [WATCH]
For a recent episode of CMT's Crossroads, a show that pairs two artists of different genres for a collaborative performance, Chris Young teamed up with Gavin DeGraw. The resulting show brought a number of uplifting, up-tempo moments, such as when the two duetted on DeGraw's 2003 hit, "I Don't Want to Be."
However, one of the most powerful moments of the evening took a more somber tone. The two artists performed a duet version of Young's current single, "Drowning," a song that takes an unflinching look at the grieving process after the untimely loss of a friend. Press play to watch DeGraw and Young take on the track.
Young first shared "Drowning" in August of 2019, sending the song to radio that fall. The singer revealed that he wrote the song about his best friend, Adam. Per Billboard, Adam was a close confidant and "informal, unpaid roadie" for Young in the mid-2000s, when he was a contestant on televised singing competition Nashville Star. When the two friends were still in their 20s, Adam died in a car accident.
"It was very heavy and emotional, but in a good way, kind of a cathartic way," Young told Billboard of writing the song with frequent collaborators Corey Crowder and Josh Hoge, who both also channeled their experiences of grief during the process. "And we were putting together a puzzle because we wanted this to be right. Writing a song about people that you've lost, you want it to be, you know, written to the wall."
Over the course of the Crossroads episode, Young and DeGraw performed live renditions of a number of both of their hits. From Young's catalogue, in addition to "Drowning," they included "Raised on Country," "I'm Comin' Over" and "Hangin' On." They also performed DeGraw's "I Don't Want to Be," "Not Over You," "Sweeter" and Soldier," as well as a cover of Paul McCartney's "Maybe I'm Amazed."
DeGraw and Young's Crossroads performance airs on Friday (Dec. 13) at 9PM CT on CMT.