Just when you thought Julia Michaels‘s single with Niall Horan, “What A Time,” would be her most emotional duet of the year, she’s managed to one-up herself. The collaboration queen — who’s also teamed up with Selena Gomez and 5 Seconds of Summer recently — has lent her signature flair to “Peer Pressure,” a tender new tune from James Bay.
Beginning as an acoustic ballad before building into a pounding, passionate anthem, “Peer Pressure” is all about allowing yourself to fall for someone new, impenetrable defenses be damned. “Put your hands on my body just like you think you know me,” Bay and Michaels sing on the chorus. “Want your heart beating on me, don’t leave me hot and lonely / I don’t usually give in to peer pressure / But I’ll give in to yours.”
In a statement about the new song, Bay said, “I think it can be easy to stay very guarded in life, and not let anybody in, past your personal armor. These guards we all put up every day for different reasons. In writing ‘Peer Pressure,’ Julia and I wanted to talk about how, when the right person comes along, they can break through any armor and with love, get straight to you. It’s about that person who, no matter how much of a guard you hold up, finds their way through to you.”
Michaels added, “Writing ‘Peer Pressure’ was a great collaborative experience because we had so much fun in the studio and the song came from a place we could both relate to. I love the song so much and I hope fans connect to it as much as we do.”
Both singer-songwriters kick off their respective U.S. headlining treks in March, with each one also opening on high-profile world tours later this year — Bay on Ed Sheeran’s, and Michaels on P!nk’s. Here’s hoping their busy touring schedules overlap at some point or another for the first joint live performance of “Peer Pressure.”