Gavin DeGraw's new album Make a Move is now in stores, and he says he thinks it's the strongest record he's ever made. Why? Because he says he finally stopped trying to do everything himself, and decided to let other people help him steer the ship.
Gavin's last album, Sweeter, was a big success, and it was also the first album on which he actually co-wrote a few songs with other people, including Ryan Tedder of OneRepublic. So for Make a Move, he decided to co-write every song, working with some of pop's top hitmakers, and bring Ryan back for a second round as well.
"Seeing how well it went working on Sweeter, how it alleviated some of the strain of getting everything done, I told the people I worked, 'I'd really like to just co-write...so that I can worry less about having to do it alone,'" Gavin tells ABC News Radio. "It's the most diverse album I've made, because of the amount of personalities that have made their way onto the album...because of how many different people that I had in the writing room."
Not only did co-writing the songs produce a diverse album and alleviate some of the stress, Gavin says it allowed him to get Make a Move out to his fans much faster, building on the momentum of Sweeter. "I wanted to get the album together as quick as I could and the best that I could, which is why I worked with so many different people," he explains.
Gavin says for him, co-writing songs "allows you to help work your way around any issues you have during the songwriting process." For example, if he's struggling to come up with a word that rhymes, he doesn't have to do it himself: he can just ask his co-writer. "When you're in the room with someone else, it really helps you get there," he explains.
But Gavin's songwriting buddies couldn't help him when it came time to pick out a name for the record, and he said he struggled with that for a while.
"It's funny how, of all the song titles that I had, how hard it was to choose a title," he laughs. "Ultimately I went with Make a Move because I thought it was very easy to remember; I thought it could be interpreted a lot of different ways; I thought it was motivating and also, at the same time, it didn't sound too heavy-handed."
And speaking of hands, Gavin happened to be present during a recent, much-reported incident in which Taylor Swift's buddy Ed Sheeran ended up in the emergency room in Nashville after cutting his hand. It seems that happened after he and Gavin finished a rousing round of karaoke in a bar.
"Ed and I were hangin' out at this, at this great little place, and next thing you know, Ed's on stage singing [my hit] 'I Don't Want to Be' and beckoning me to come on stage with him, and we performed together,'" Gavin recalls. "It was a loose night. And then, Ed cut his hand and we ended up at the hospital."
"I think if you're gonna hurt yourself, Nashville's a good place to hurt yourself 'cause they have very good medical care," Gavin adds.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio