Glad You’re Here is a brand new book, out today, and written by country star Walker Hayes and his best friend, Craig Cooper. If you haven’t heard Walker’s song “Craig,” which was released on his 2017 album, Boom and re-worked and re-released on his current, Country Stuff the Album, it’s a tribute the man who helped to save Walker. The song begins with the lyrics:
“I met Craig at a church called Redeeming Grace
It’s like he understood my “I don’t want to be here” face
I felt out of place and I smelled like beer
But he just shook my hand, said “I’m glad you’re here”
The song was the basis for the book. Basically, how the two unlikely friends met, and their journey to a better life. When Walker met Craig he was an alcoholic and an atheist, with a music career that wasn’t happening, and a bank account that couldn’t provide for a large family. Walker was also in need of a vehicle that had seat belts for all of his kids. One day, Craig decided to gift the Hayes family his van. Craig’s show of generosity and altruism helped to break down Walker’s barriers with God and religion. And eventually the hits came. The two are more than neighbors and friends now. They are more like brothers and have co-written their story to share with the world.
Carolyn Kruse chats with both Walker and Craig about their journey, relationship and the book.
Photo credit: Robert Chavers
Photo credit: Jeremy Cowart