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Kimberly wrote a verse for her ALL THAT DRAMA book of poems entitled “Haters”.   She really  wanted me to write a song about haters.  I had an issue with how direct this subject was.  To hate someone is a strong negative statement.  To be a “Hater” is a horrible characterization.  However, after taking part in several focus groups with teenagers, it became abundantly clear that Haters was a part of most teenagers’ vocabulary and they took it very seriously. 


I didn’t want to make the mood of the song too dark, so I decided to throw a little country shuffle at the theme.  I was looking for something lively and upbeat, and this genre and beat gave it to me.  The verses came quickly and the chorus followed suit.  Joe Carter, our producer, locked into the concept and started on the instrumental track the same day he heard my scratch.  We had a basic recording of the song the next day!


A few years ago I had the opportunity to work with a young vocalist in Nashville who had been a student in a summer camp called NOISE.  Her name is Mignon Grabois and just last year she made an appearance on the Country Music Awards show.  I’ve always been extremely impressed with Mignon’s strong country voice and range.  We sent the instrumental track of What Haters Do to a studio in Nashville and they recorded Mignon’s vocals in no time.  We then brought vocalists Quentin Bethea and Robyn Springer into Joe’s studio to sing the background parts, giving it a soulful country feel. 


Anytime I need a steel guitar player, Tony Prior of Charlotte is my man.  I made the call and the man laid it down good!  Joe mixed it all together and before we knew it our What Haters Do was in the can.



as told by composer Bruce McKagan

Mignon Grabois

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