I'll be honest, I never was a big Hunter Hayes fan. I always thought he was cheesy. I mean, I would see him every now and then over the years at State Fairs or festivals, and he would be up on stage with his cheesy blond bowl cut, his cheesy undersized accordian, with his cheesy guitar solos, and cheesy songs. Pure cheese.

That's why when I heard his new single, "Storm Warning" come on the radio, I braced for the cheesiest worst. But much to my surprise, and believe me, I was surprised, I actually liked it. I really liked it.

Mr. Hayes has come a long way since his early days singing duets with Hank Williams Jr. He's matured into the fully rounded artist that everyone thought the young prodigy would eventually become. He can do it all. He writes his own music, he plays every instrument, and he does it all with a legitimate authenticity rarely seen in an artist so young. The guy is the real deal.

I realize its still early in his career, and he is still riding the success of his first single, but I have little trepidation in predicting the young Prince of Breaux Bridge will not be leaving the spotlight anytime soon. He is St. Martinville's latest national export. The next big thing.

So while the memories of the once uber-cheesy child prodigy slowly fade, I look forward to following the young musician's career for a long time to come. If you haven't yet, do yourself a favor and take some time to rediscover Hunter Hayes, before the rest of the world beats you to him.