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Exclusive: Colbie Caillat talks 'Try,' Hilary Duff, working with Babyface & tour

Singer and songwriter Colbie Caillat stopped by Z100 Studios today on July 24, 2014. Z100 has helped launched the careers of many artists and continually supports them as they have grown and established themselves within the music industry. Elvis Duran and his crew were excited to have Colbie back on their show to speak about her new music and perform.

Singer-songwriter Colbie Caillat visits at Z100 Studio on July 24, 2014 in New York City
Photo by Ben Gabbe/Getty Images

After her appearance, had the opportunity to interview Colbie exclusively in the Z100 building about her powerful new single "Try," working with Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds on her new "Gypsy Heart" EP and her upcoming tour. You can see her upcoming show dates here.

So congrats on "Try" and the tremendous success that has achieved! It has continued the conversation on the pressures that women face, so can you reflect on that and what inspired the song, and why this might be your most important song to date?

Colbie Caillat: Well, this is the most important song for me because it's the one that has most helped me change. Like, my every day I really learned from this song once I wrote it with Babyface, Jason Reeves, and Tony Dixon. They inspired it out of me because I was going through such a difficult time as a female, especially being in the entertainment industry, the pressures of how you're always supposed to look polished and I was doing it so long that I got caught up and I really didn't like it.

So I was venting to them about how it's so hard, and it's exhausting and we do so much to alter ourselves when really we all have these insecurities and imperfections and if we just show it, we would all feel better. And so, Kenny was like, you know what, let's write about it. Let's write about all the things you ladies do and really just remind you that you don't have to try. You don't have to be someone that you're not. And so after we wrote that and I started living with it and people were reacting to it and it actually... hit home more intensely and it really changed my everyday getting ready and for TV performances, for my shows. Just, when I run out an do errands, I don't care. I don't put on cover-up because I don't really need it. Like, it's fine if people see me that way. And if I feel like getting dolled up another day, then that's fine too.

So how did you come up with the concept for the video?

CC: Well, I really wanted to show the process, like how long it takes and the drastic measures. We look like different people when we're all dolled up to the max. So I wanted it to be like a time lapse, originally it was going to be just me sitting in the makeup chair and then them doing [my makeup] from start to finish and we reverse it. Then we wanted it to have a cleaner look, the white background, add the nine women in it. So we would shoot it -we started out the day, actually, I was bare, nothing on my face. And then we would add cover up and then we blow dry my hair. And then we would add eyeliner and all the eye stuff, and then it just kept going. We would put the extensions in and then shoot that and then we reversed the process.

So you collaborated with Babyface on this EP, how did that come about and what was that like?

CC: Well, it was so funny. About a year and a half ago, I did the Christmas in Washington performance, and Babyface performed at that as well. So we were talking backstage and our managers were like "you guys should write together!" And I was like, "oh my god that would be crazy." Like, yeah right, write with Babyface? That's not gonna happen. And then a few months later we wrote together and then throughout the year we wrote a bunch of songs and the last one that we wrote together was "Try." And that was in December. And I was intimidated, I was nervous, because he's so powerful and talented. But really, he was so sweet, and he's just in the session in work out clothes and a sweatshirt. Not trying! And I'm here in high heels and all dolled up and it's so uncomfortable, and obviously boys have it way easier, but we should take note of that.

So do you think Babyface challenged you at all to explore a different side of yourself as a singer and songwriter?

CC: Absolutely. Because, when I first told him what I was going through, I was contemplating staying. Like, sticking with that whole routine and maybe altering myself. Not like, plastic surgery, but I mean just me not fully being the person that I am. And so, by him encouraging that and inspiring that he really did ... I learned from him and I'm a totally new person. I give him all the credit.

RCA just announced that you co-wrote Hilary Duff's new single on her album "Chasing The Sun," so did you actually work with her in the studio?

CC: No, not at all! It's so funny actually. I wrote it with Jason Reeves and Toby Gad when I was writing for my record a year and a half ago. And we were in Hawaii and we wrote this song there and we recorded it in this house we were renting. And I was going to put it on my record and so I recorded it last summer ... there were just so many songs and I didn't feel like it was right for this record. And then Toby said, like a month ago, Hilary wants it. And I was like, that's rad! Go for it. It'd be perfect for her.

So how do you decide what records you keep for yourself versus give to other artists?

CC: I would love to give more songs to people. I guess it's what I know I want to promote and I want to sing forever and what fits the record, and what is like "Oh, if this song is perfect for that artist." Like there's one I'm contemplating giving to this artist--I don't want to say anything yet but I Iove this song and I already recorded it, I want it for my record. But they might do it better justice, so it's really fun to be able to share that and people like songs you write.

So you're embarking on your own tour! What do you love most about touring?

CC: I love getting to travel and see new places and meet new people and see the different audiences and how they react to songs. It's really fun, especially because I've always had stage fright and to now to go out there and enjoy it. Now, I have my tour bus and I have my band and crew and everyone on my team. We all get along so well - it's work, it's definitely a lot of work, but it's like a mini-vacation together.

A.C. contributed reporting.

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