for KING & COUNTRY says they “cold-called” Jordin Sparks for “Love Me Like I Am”

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for KING & COUNTRY‘s latest hit “Love Me Like I Am” is a collaboration with Jordin Sparks. How’d they get her on the track? The Australian duo’s Joel Smallbone says they just picked up the phone.

“We’ve always been, I mean, the whole world’s a Jordin Sparks fan, right?” says Joel. “I mean, ‘No Air’ — come on, what a song! And so we kind of cold-called her.”

“We’re like, ‘Hey Jordin, we’re fans of you,’ and so she called back, and she’s like, ‘I would be super-honored,'” he continues.

They performed the song live together at the San Diego State Fair, and recorded it the next day, and Joel’s band mate and brother Luke Smallbone considers that version to be vastly superior to the original version, which is on their 2022 album What Are We Waiting For.

“We’re brothers, right? People attribute us to almost being one voice,” Luke explains. “When you add Jordin, a female vocalist…and she comes in, I think it makes the lyrical depth sink in just a little bit more, because it feels like we’re singing to her and I think it feels like she’s singing to us.”

In fact, the guys think the Jordin version of the track is the definitive one.  Luke notes, “Joel and I have kind of joked that the version with Jordin is the way it was always meant to be.”

As a bonus, Luke says having Jordin on the track expands both their audiences.

“If one artist kind of joins with another artist that’s more prominent in another genre, you listen a little bit closer,” he says. “I think she’s introduced us to a lot of her people and hopefully we’ve introduced her to a lot of our people. I think that’s actually what makes collaborations so special.”

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