Alex & Sierra (the winners of “The X Factor” U.S. in 2013) unveiled their first single “Scarecrow,” via a lyric video, on May 27, 2014. The single’s official release date is to be announced.
As part of “The X Factor” grand prize, Alex & Sierra won $1 million and a contract with Syco Music/Sony Music.
According to a Sony Music press release, “Scarecrow” was co-written by Alex & Sierra (whose full names are Alex Kinsey and Sierra Deaton), along with Martin Johnson and Sam Hollander. The lyric video was directed by Alex Purifoy. “Scarecrow” will be released to iTunes and the official “Scarecrow” music video is expected to premiere sometime in June 2014.
As previously reported, Alex & Sierra have been in Los Angeles to record their first album, whose title, track listing and release dates are to be announced. The album is expected to be released sometime in 2014.
On May 13, 2014, Alex & Sierra did a Livestream chat and mentioned that they were spending some time in New York City to do advance promotion for “Scarecrow,” by visiting media outlets such as Billboard and Teen Vogue. Deaton also said that they wrote a song with Jason Mraz for Alex & Sierra’s first album. She mentioned that Alex & Sierra have already filmed the “Scarecrow” music video, as well as chosen their debut album’s cover and title.
When answering questions from fans during the chat, Deaton commented on coming up with the title “Scarecrow” and the inspiration behind the song: “It kind of happened naturally. He [Alex Kinsey] is the scarecrow.”
Alex & Sierra also performed a snippet of “Scarecrow” during the Livestream chat, with Kinsey playing acoustic guitar.
As previously reported, One Direction’s Harry Styles and Grammy winner John Legend have written a song for Alex & Sierra, who are boyfriend and girlfriend in real life. According to a Daily Mirror report published on Feb. 23, 2014, the song (whose title has not been made public yet) “is one of more than 18 unheard tracks penned by the 1D star [and] is part of Harry’s personal projects and is unrelated to his work with the boy band.”
The Daily Mirror describes the song as a “heartfelt ballad” with these lyrics: “I saw your face, I heard your name / Felt the blood rushing through my veins / I still remember / How could I forget?”
One Direction came in third place on “The X Factor” U.K. in 2010 and has since gone on to become the world’s biggest-selling act from “The X Factor.” Styles and the other members of One Direction (Liam Payne, Zayn Malik, Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson) have co-written several One Direction songs.
One Direction and Legend are also Sony Music artists.
According to the Daily Mirror, Deaton said of the song written by Styles and Legend: “Our favorite [song] is one that Harry Styles wrote with John Legend, it’s beautiful and lovely. [Harry] is actually an amazing writer, he’s pitched us a few other good ones and they’re really good.”
A source told the Daily Mirror: “It’s a testament to Harry’s talents that he can work alongside John, who is, without doubt, one of the most gifted songwriters of a generation.”
In a Jan. 23, 2014 interview with Yahoo! Music at a pre-Grammy party for New Zealand singer Lorde, Kinsey gave an update on the first Alex & Sierra album: “We got out to L.A. on Jan. 2 [in 2014]. And since then, we’ve written, we’ve got about 30 songs since Jan. 2. So we’ve really been working hard, working with a lot of amazing people [like] Julian Bunetta. We actually went to his house for a week.”
Deaton added, “We had like a writing camp.”
Kinsey also mentioned Sam Watters and Toby Gad as two other songwriters who are collaborating with Alex & Sierra.
Deaton said excitedly, “Tomorrow, we’re writing with John Legend!”
When asked when the album will be released, Kinsey said, “Hopefully, within the next few months.”
“The X Factor” creator/executive producer Simon Cowell was Alex & Sierra’s mentor on the show. Kinsey commented on Cowell’s involvement with the album: “He’s a big part of it. He’s kind of like the overseer.”
Deaton added, “He’s sitting in on every one of our writing sessions. He gives us input and helps us out.”
Alex & Sierra sang mostly ballads and other slow songs on “The X Factor,” but Kinsey promises that their first album will be “a lot happier, more upbeat” than the tempo of the songs that they did on “The X Factor.”
Cowell tweeted on Feb. 20, 2014: “Am listening to the Alex and Sierra demos for their upcoming album. Fantastic. It’s seriously good. I can’t wait for everyone to hear it.”