Per a press release, incorporating a new voice from outside his usual sphere of influence freshened up Chesney's creative process.
"The way creativity works in creative people is so different, but it's always exciting," he says. "As a co-write with a new writer, it's one of the most fun sessions I've done in a long time. I get why people love working with him. With all the great songs that have been written in this town, I think you always want to do something a little different."
Chesney adds that the new songwriting team constructed a melody that "feels like what's going on lyrically. The music matches the words, and you can just drift in it."
The same press release describes the song as having a "sweeping groove and an almost humid melody lift," a "quiet, almost watery open" and "a full-bodied chorus with layered vocals, muted bass, keyboards and a rhythm track."
That reads like an ideal Chesney single: the kind that crosses seaside escapism with reality-based country storytelling. The song arrives July 12, kicking off the veteran hit-maker's first album cycle for Blue Chair/Warner Music Nashville.
As for Sheeran, it's not his first rodeo in country music. He first made a name for himself as a Taylor Swift collaborator. Since then, he's written songs recorded by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill, Kelsea Ballerini, Keith Urban and others.