Playing With Fire

Album: Tangled Up (2015)

Songfacts®:

  • Thomas Rhett wrote this ballad with Rhett Akins and Ashley Gorley as a duet. The trio didn't have anyone specific in mind, but the singer's goal was to match the impact of Jason Aldean and Kelly Clarkson's 2010 pairing "Don't You Wanna Stay."

    Knowing his artist Thomas Rhett was looking for a big name to cut this song with, Big Machine Label Group president Scott Borchetta put the singer in touch with pop/R&B songstress Jordin Sparks. "Literally 24 hours later she responded back and had booked a flight to Nashville," Rhett told Taste of Country. "She came in and was just an immediate glow to the room."
  • Rhett told Taste of Country Nights that he was really impressed with Sparks. "She's great, man," he gushed. "When she came in to sing the song 'Playing With Fire' on the album, it took her like 10 minutes to sing the song. She's just a really talented human being and as sweet as she can be. I couldn't be happier to have Jordin featured on my album."
  • Sparks told Entertainment Weekly that while she was in the Nashville studio with Rhett a legendary country songstress made a surprise visit. "Reba [McEntire] walked in when I was doing my part! She listened to it-that was actually pretty nerve-wrecking, having someone like her listen to your song when it isn't even finished-but she loved it."
  • Thomas Rhett explained the song's meaning to the Las Vegas Review Journal: "'Playing with Fire' is about a guy and a girl who are in a relationship together and they know that it's toxic, but basically, they love this kind of pain that they both make each other feel," he said. "Hence, they love playing with fire, and the fire being both of them together."

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