Dan Smyers & Shay Mooney Reveal Dan+Shay Nearly Broke Up Last Year – Billboard
Written by GRB on 10/07/2023
Duo Dan+Shay‘s Dan Smyers and Shay Mooney have worked together for over a decade, notching Grammy-winning, chart-topping hits such as “Tequila.” But in 2022, the duo nearly broke up.
In an Instagram video titled “The Drive,” the duo’s Dan Smyers and Shay Mooney take viewers deep into their interpersonal relationship, as they take a drive and recall a pivotal moment in December 2021 when they were struggling with burnout and dissatisfaction following the conclusion of their (Arena) tour. Even though the duo had won Grammy honors and were headlining a huge tour, the constant pace and career demands led to burnout.
“I was in, like, the lowest low of my entire life,” Smyers says in the video. “Came off the road and I was like, ‘Man, I f–king hate music. I’m ready to quit.’”
Mooney agreed, adding that the frustrations within the duo impacted their respective marriages and personal lives. “I could feel the separation, and I think there was little things between you and I that we never talked about. It was affecting everything. Not just our band. Like, my marriage, everything. I was in a really dark place.” He later added, “Especially at that point, I was drinking a lot. So those highs became really high, and the lows became really, really low.”
Following the tour’s conclusion, the bandmates didn’t speak to each other for four months — until they came together in March 2022 to take a stark look at the duo’s future, including whether they wanted to quit performing together.
The conversation proved to be a moment that “changed it all,” and led the two to determine they wanted to continue recording together as a duo, and that they were committed to healthier communication.
“The thing that filled my cup the most was being in a room with you, making music together,” Smyers tells Mooney in the video clip. “One of the most important things that’s ever happened in my life was Dan + Shay. If we’re gonna keep going forever, let’s get ourselves right. Let’s have a gut check.”
“I can feel the closeness of our relationship and our friendship when I listen back to the music,” Smyers adds. “We are by far, a million times, the closest we’ve ever been. For so many reasons. But because we worked at it. That makes what we’re doing now infinitely sustainable. I could do this the rest of my life with you.”
The duo also revealed they have new music on the way (coming July 14), and recently told fans they will be joining The Voice as a coaching duo next year.