Ginny holds hopes for Stan in States
There's no holding back Kiwi pop stars Stan Walker and Ginny Blackmore.
And now the two chart-toppers have joined forces to record Holding You, a single Blackmore hopes will allow Walker to follow her to the big time in the United States.
Los Angeles-based Blackmore has written songs for superstars Christina Aguilera and Adam Lambert and made a dent in the US charts with her debut single Bones (a No 1 hit in New Zealand).
Walker has already sold more than 200,000 singles in this country.
Blackmore, who met Walker on the set of X-Factor last year, is signed to Sony Music New Zealand, which is releasing Holding You here on iTunes on Friday.
If Holding You does well in New Zealand, Blackmore is expected to release it in the US, which could open the door to Walker. He has already been name-checked to American audiences by Beyonce who was super-impressed when he opened for her Mrs Carter shows in Auckland last year.
"We have loads of mutual friends but had never met until that moment," Blackmore says of her X-Factor introduction to Walker.
"One day hangin' out, we casually mentioned doing a collaboration and both felt equally excited to set it up and make it happen! We have a lot of respect for each other, I love that man's voice!
"I had started writing Holding You by myself a month before I decided to take the idea to Stan, just in case he liked it. And he did! So we finished it together. It's a co-write."
After performing at the Parachute music festival in January, the pair recorded Holding You before Blackmore headed back to the US.
A video for the single has already been shot and will be released within the next fortnight. A publicity photograph of the pair "holding on to each other" has already drawn envious comments from Walker's legions of Facebook fans.
"Strangely enough it was the part we were most comfortable with," Blackmore says. "We're both super romantic people so it was really fun to act out. Although, I've never been that close to a guy I am just friends with, so after every take I kind of had to crack up and shake it off before the next round."
Walker displayed a chest tattoo during a break in filming the video for Holding You.
Walker and Blackmore spent almost 16 hours on the set and forfeited their lunch break for photographer Bas van Est, who snapped publicity shots of the pair.
They pulled their hoodies down below their shoulders, revealing Walker's inspirational artwork. The chest tattoo is a verse from Jeremiah in the Old Testament: "Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you the great and mighty things, which you do not know."