2016 Artist Line-up
Alan Rhody | Austin Burke | Bat | Bill Whyte | Bo & Lauren Spring | Brett Jones | Brian White | Charlie & Dana Black | Christina Taylor | The Currys | Danny Myrick | Danny Wells | Dean Alexander | Earl Bud Lee | Edward Hartline | Helen Darling | Jean Nolan | Jesse Rice | Jillia Jackson | Karen Waldrup | Kendell Marvel | The Krickets | Megan Linville | Pete Sallis | Steve Dean | Steve Williams | Susan Ruth | Thom Shepherd | Tim Buppert | Troy Jones | Victoria Venier | Walt Aldridge | Wil Nance | Will Rambeaux | Wynn Varble
Kentucky-born Alan Rhody is an award-winning performing songwriter and has just released his 9th album, “Led by Love”. He has recorded with such greats as John Prine, the late John Hartford, Sam Bush, Maura O’Connell and Mike Henderson. His songs have been recorded by a diverse list of artists that includes Del McCoury, George Jones, The Oak Ridge Boys, Lorrie Morgan, Toby Keith, Suzie Boggus, Ricky Van Shelton, Billy ‘Crash’ Craddock, Barbara Fairchild, John Schneider, Lynn Anderson, Atlanta Rhythm Section, T. G. Sheppard, Ronnie McDowell, Ronnie Prophet and Michael Martin Murphey. Known for his easy-going stage presence, poetic ballads, stories and high energy forays into rock and blues, he is also a fine harmonica player. And although his songs have earned him many honors and platinum and gold record awards, what he loves best is connecting with an audience and having a great time!
Austin Burke could write the book on being a millennial. Growing up in the 1990’s in Phoenix, Arizona, Austin was a huge country music fan and began singing as soon as he could walk. At the tender age of of 3 he sang the national anthem for both the Phoenix Suns and Arizona Diamondbacks and at a chance meeting with his hero Garth Brooks at a Padre’s spring training game his destiny was set. He soon won a coveted spot singing “Friends In Low Places” on the Rosie O’Donell show, not once but twice and when Rosie asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up he said a “singing baseball player”. Such are the early experiences that dreams are made of.
But like so many Americans his family was hit hard by the great recession of 2008. He had been on course to play baseball in college in Arizona but when his family moved to the west coast to try and make a new start Austin was thrown into a whole new world of eye-popping, fast lane, ethnically diverse San Diego culture. Suddenly surrounded by surfers, hippies and hip-hop music Austin made the most of his new life. When the culture shock wore off, he continued playing baseball and began combining the country music he was raised on with the new sounds in the air in southern California. But after a year of playing college ball he was side-lined with a rib injury and it was during his recuperation that he realized that his happiest days were those singing country music back in Arizona. So as soon as he was well he made a bee-line for Nashville to do the thing he was always meant to do.
Austin is currently making words rhyme and serving his time waiting on tables (and waiting on the tables to turn.) He’s singing at writer’s nights and tearing up the honky-tonks, paying his dues and livin’ the dream in Tennessee. To quote his grandmother and the title of one of his own songs, Austin says it’s his job these days to just “Suit Up Show Up Shut Up And Get The Job Done”.
Amazing Guitar, Incredible Voice, Absolutely Delightful Music.
Bat’s songs range in style from one to another; he uses his knack for versatility generously, covering ground from Big Band Jazz to Country, Doo Wop to Rock. He does not like to have two songs of a similar style on a CD, and is always searching for a melody better than the one before it. The lyrics are intelligent and sometimes silly, but always poetic & thoughtful. The guitar arrangements, while obviously very difficult to compose and perform, flow beautifully from his fingers and paint a rich atmosphere of sound and impression.
Amazing Guitar, Incredible Voice, Absolutely Delightful Music.
Bill’s unique presentation of funny and twisted songs makes him a favorite everywhere he entertains. His tribute to AARP “Retired” was recorded by Ray Stevens and is always a crowd favorite. “I’m Goin’ Ugly Early Tonight” was recorded by Cledus T. Judd and is the perfect howling climax to for any show. However, there’s also a serious side to his writing that has landed him the current title track on the Joe Nichols album “Crickets.” as well as having he has a song on the new Hillary Scott & Scott Family inspirational album “Love Remains.” His songs have been recorded by Linda Davis, Brady Seals, Darin and Brooke Aldridge and others. Bill also just happens to have had a very successful career as popular radio personality, winning numerous broadcast awards including the CMA “Broadcast Personality of the Year and in 2012 her received country radio’s highest honor when he was inducted into the Country Radio Broadcast Hall of Fame. You now hear him on 650 AM WSM…the radio home of the Grand Ole Opry.
Songwriting duo Lauren and Bo Spring met while performing with The Lost Trailers when they opened for Willie Nelson in 2001. Marrying and moving to Port St Joe in 2005, they formed The Bo Spring Band with Randon Hick and Tim Dutrow and now spend weekends performing along the gulf coast from Destin to Apalachicola.
Recently stretching their songwriting wings, Lauren and Bo have enjoyed playing songwriter rounds with Nashville’s Jerry Salley and Port St Joe’s own Charlie Black and Dana Hunt Black. Playing with Charlie and Dana led to a co-right with the Blacks in 2013 called “Laying Low.”
They released their single, “To & Fro”, that same year featuring famed Nashville pedal steel player Bruce Bouton (Garth Brooks’ Band) and soon signed the song with True Fangled Music out of Nashville. “To & Fro” secured a Semi-Finalist slot in the 2013 International Song Competition and it is currently on hold for a TV/Film project with Mach 1 Entertainment.
In the summer they penned the song “Love Notes” for Mexico Beach’s national advertising campaign and recorded the project in Destin’s Neptone Records Studio. Jerry Salley lent his vocals in to their song “Gethsemane” which was tapped by Sonorous Entertainment in March of 2015 for a gospel project to be released by Universal Records.
Bo’s song “Wait a While” was put on hold while under consideration for HBO TV series in August of 2015 and most recently, #1 iTunes podcast Women of Substance Radio spotlighted Lauren’s adult contemporary song ‘Better’ for their 9/7/15 program
Originally from Warm Springs, Georgia, Brett moved to Nashville 22 years ago, and signed a publishing deal songwriting for famous country singer Ronnie Millsaps’ company. His first hit in the U.S. country market was a 1993 top twenty hit, Confederate Railroad’s “When and Where.” Since then he has had over 100 major recordings, and 14 top 10 records, including seven number one records. His most recent hits have been: Billy Currington’s “That’s How Country Boys Roll”, Jason Aldean’s July 2010 chart topper, “Crazytown” and Justin Moore’s #1 single, “If Heaven Wasn’t So Far Away”. He recently achieved rare status in country music by having number one records in each of the past three decades.
In addition to his acclaimed songwriting, Brett is also a captivating stage performer. He’s opened up for such acts as: Tracy Byrd, Little Texas, Andy Griggs, Confederate Railroad, Billy Currington, Michael McDonald, Darryl Worley and many more.
Touring Artist , #1 Song Writer, Producer, Recording Artist, Award Winner. These are just a few of the words that describe Brian White. One of Nashville’s most sought after hit makers, White has been on every side of the microphone during his career. He recorded 5 ablums as the lead singer of the Christian rock band Brian White and Justice over a 14 year period and as a writer he has penned hits for such Christian artist as Mandisa, 7th Time Down, Avalon, Kutless, 4 Him, Point of Grace, 33 Miles, Brian Littrell, Selah, The Crabb Family, All Star United, Greg Long, Larnelle Harris, Jaci Velasquez, Cliff Richard, Karyn Williams, 16 Cities, Me In Motion, and many others. His writing has earned him fourteen number 1 songs as well as 2 Dove Awards, one for Inspirational Song of the Year in 1994 for “Holding Out Hope to You”, recorded by Michael English and the other for Southern Gospel Song of the Year in 2004 for “The Promise” recorded by the Martins.
In recent years Brian expanded his writing into the country market and has found success there as well. His songs have been recorded by country super stars Rascal Flatts, Jason Aldean, Trace Adkins, Gary Allan, Neal McCoy, The Swon Brothers, Earl Scruggs, Kix Brooks, Charley Pride, Matt Kennon, Terri Clark, Blackhawk, Chad Brownlee, High Valley, Brett Kissel, Tim Hicks and the multi-week 1 Smash, “Watching You” for Rodney Atkins which was named SESAC Country Song of the Year in 2007. The song continues to be a fan favorite and a radio smash as it earned the title of Billboard Magazines “Most Played Country Song of 2007” as well as just being nominated for SONG OF THE YEAR honors at the 2008 Academy of Country Music Awards.
Brian continues to be a writer whose songs cross the lines that so many tend to draw in todays music. A man of Faith and conviction , White currently lives in Nashville with his wife , Christian Recording artist Karyn Williams and writes and produces for SB21 Music Publishing.
One of the most recorded Nashville songwriters ever, Charlie Black has been named Songwriter of The Year three times and was elected to the NSAI Songwriter Hall Of Fame in 1991.
Beginning with his first hit “I Don’t Know You Anymore”, recorded by Tommy Overstreet, Charlie has written 15 #1 songs including “Shadows In The Moonlight” by Anne Murray, “Right On The Money” by Alan Jackson”, “You Lie” by Reba McEntire, 100% Chance Of Rain by Gary Morris, and the Grammy nominated songs “A Little Good News” by Anne Murray and “Come Next Monday” by K.T.Oslin. Charlie Black songs have been recorded by such legendary artists as Roy Orbison, Charlie Rich, Don Williams, Paul Anka, Crystal Gayle, Tanya Tucker, Faron Young, Marty Robbins, and George Strait. His song “Goodbye Says It All” was Blackhawk’s first big hit, and he helped launch Phil Vassar’s amazing career with “Carlene”, and “Six-Pack Summer.”
A North Carolina native, Dana moved to Nashville in 1993. She signed her first publishing deal with Double J Music in 1994 and had her first Number One song in 1995 with GEORGE STRAIT’S “CHECK YES OR NO” which went on to win the SONG OF THE YEAR. While at Double J, Dana also landed cuts on CLAY WALKER, PERFECT STRANGER and JAMES BONAMY.
Upon signing with Neon Sky Music in 1996, Dana landed GARY ALLAN’S top five debut single “IT WOULD BE YOU” co-written with Kent Robbins and “YOU HAVEN’T LEFT ME YET” on GEORGE STRAIT’S “One Step At A Time” album. In 1999 her song “WRITE THIS DOWN” proved to be another big hit for George staying at Number One for four weeks and once again winning SONG OF THE YEAR. Some of her other cuts include “I KNOW WHAT I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS” and “SOMEWHERE DOWN IN TEXAS” by GEORGE STRAIT, two cuts on George’s self-titled album “WHICH SIDE OF THE GLASS” and “HOME IMPROVEMENT”, “GOODNIGHT” recorded by SUZY BOGGUS, “WHOLE NIGHT TONIGHT” cut by CLAY WALKER, “WHAT DO I DO NOW” recorded by TRACY BYRD and “THE THRILL IS BACK” cut by ALAN JACKSON.
Dana and her songwriter husband Charlie Black have recently released their new album “THE THING TO DO” on Double Dog Records. Check it out at charlieanddanahuntblack.com
“Stop. That’s what Christina’s voice makes you do, you hear her and you just stop. You have to listen to her, the power of her vocals commands your attention. We are sharpening her writing, performing and artist skills, but all since we first started working with her, you could just tell that she has that special something!” – Sherrie Austin, Vice President of Artist Development at Go Long Entertainment, LLC
Heaping even more praise towards this up and coming artist, Jeff Hahne of Creative Loafing Charlotte recently said, “She could put Charlotte on the map. She is on a clear path to becoming a household name in short order.” That’s what Christina Taylor has been doing at shows throughout the Southeast. She has been making her presence known, each and every time she takes the mic. As an example, Christina just won the opportunity to open for Keith Urban on June 10, 2016. She fought it out with a stellar group of competitors and won the Battle to the Beach competition to win the honor to perform alongside this country music icon.
She grew up in Florida, but is now a resident of both Charlotte, North Carolina and Nashville, Tennessee. She began dreaming of a career in music at a very early age. Her musical influences span several different genres and you can hear those influences (R&B, Pop and Soul) accumulated in her country sound.
Christina is part of the family at Go Long Entertainment, LLC, an Artist Development Company based in Nashville, TN and led by VP’s of Artist Development, Sherrie Austin and Will Rambeax. The song writing collaboration with Sherrie and Will has already produced some incredible new songs and Christina is itching to get into the studio to lay them down very soon. In the mean time, those living in the Charlotte and Nashville areas should take every opportunity to get out and see this rising star live.
She is playing her new material regularly at shows, along with covers of influential music that is at the core of who she is as an artist. When asked what inspires her and her direction as an artist, Christina says, “I feel that I have a responsibility to write and sing about what its like to grow up in today’s world. There is so much going on every day to draw from, those feelings, emotions and experiences show up in my music. I want to connect, in a very real way with my peers and fans, giving country music a path forward for me and for those I want to touch through my music.”
When you listen to Christina’s music, you clearly feel that connection. Follow Christina on all her social media platforms and watch her grow, take hold and make a difference in today’s country music scene!
Brought together by family ties and a shared appreciation for folk, pop-rock, and roots music, The Currys are an Americana trio featuring Jimmy, Tommy, and Galen Curry. They’re relatives — two brothers and one cousin, to be exact — and like many family groups, their songs are anchored by the sort of elastic, entwined harmonies that only seem to exist among kin. On their second record, West of Here, their songwriting chops match those interlocking voices, with all three members contributing songs to an album that deals with the constant search for one’s home.
It’s an album that was born on the road. Following the release of the band’s official debut, Follow, The Currys packed up their van and spent nearly two years on tour, playing everywhere from Los Angeles to a string of oysters bars in the Florida panhandle. Those shows tightened up the band’s melody-driven sound — a sound captured by producers Chris Keup and Stewart Myers (Lifehouse, Jason Mraz) on West of Here‘s 13 songs — but it also found them questioning their roots. Brothers Tommy and Jimmy Curry had grown up in the Sunshine State, after all, while Galen spent his childhood in upstate New York. Years later, all three relocated to the Appalachian town of Charlottesville, Virginia, where the band’s audience began to swell. Yet here they were, traveling across the country for months at a time, asking themselves where their home base really was.
West of Here doesn’t give any easy answers, but it does offer up plenty of warm, wistful songs whose influences are just as wide-ranging as The Currys’ travels. Tracks like “Restless” and “Hold Me Here” swirl piano, mandolin, bass, guitar and light percussion into the same package, with hooks and harmonies leading the charge. Like the Avett Brothers, The Currys know when to crank up their rootsy stomp. Their music reaches far beyond that genre, though, taking cues from the epic sweep of Bruce Springsteen, the song-based storytelling of Ray LaMontagne and Bob Schneider, the rhythmic soul of Marvin Gaye, and even the poppy punch of Justin Timberlake. The result is an album that ebbs and flows, with The Currys mixing up their sound out of multiple ingredients.
It’s been years since The Currys played their first songs together as teenage boys, swapping tunes during a series of annual family reunions. West of Here pays tribute to that history, but it pushes the band forward, too, with one foot in the folksy sound of The Currys’ influence and the other pointing toward something new. Like its title suggests, West of Here is the sound of a band on the move.
A little bit muddy water Mississippi, a little bit California beach bum, Danny grew up playing, singing and writing for his family gospel band while being consumed with 70’s FM radio. He achieved his first #1 gospel song as a writer at age 17 before moving to Nashville and spending the 90’s singing lead in country rock band, Western Flyer. After Western Flyer disbanded, Danny’s vocal talent lead to singing 100’s of songwriter demos as well as adding background vocals to numerous albums by the likes of Blake Shelton, Montgomery Gentry and Keith Anderson before focusing on his passion for writing songs. As a writer, Danny’s musical diversity has lead to cuts by artists ranging from Gloriana to Joe Cocker and he has celebrated numerous hit songs, including Craig Morgan’s “International Harvester” Tim McGraw’s “Truck Yeah”, 2009’s most played country song, “She’s Country” by Jason Aldean and the recent Locash hit song “I Love This Life”.
When not working, Danny spends his time being an obsessive sports fan and hanging with his 2 sons.
Originally from Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, Danny Wells graduated high school in 1978. Upon graduation he moved to Oklahoma City and earned his A.A. degree in Music from Southwestern College. Wells then headed out to Music City in 1980. He landed his first job on Music Row with Town and Country Productions where he mailed records for the Warner Brothers label. In 1983, Wells graduated from Belmont University with a B.M. in Commercial Music. Immediately after graduation, he began working as a song plugger for a music publishing company. He also spent much of his time playing in various bands, writing songs, and working in sales. In January of 1992 Wells began to concentrate on what he loved most—songwriting.
In December of 1994, he wrote the George Strait hit, Check Yes Or No. The song would become a number one hit for four weeks for Strait. Some of the awards Check Yes Or No has received include 1996 CMA Single of the Year . Also the 1996 ACM Single of the Year, and Video of the Year, Entertainment Radio Network’s Song of the Year, Country Weekly Magazine’s 1996 Golden Pick Award for Song of the Year and Country Weekly magazine’s 1997 Golden Pick Award for Video of the Year. The song was also featured in the 1995-97 ad campaign for Wrangler Jeans. Check Yes Or No to date has received over 5 million spins on the radio making it George Strait’s top played song .
Some of Danny’s other hits include This Everyday Love and While You Loved Me, both recorded by Rascal Flatts, Craig Morgan’s Little Bit of Life and Hello L-O-V-E, a hit single for John Michael Montgomery. He has also had cuts by numerous other artists, including JoDee Messina, Joe Diffie, Scotty McCreery, Crystal Gayle, Sara Evans, Tracy Byrd, Trent Tomlinson, James Bonamy, Billy Ray Cyrus, Chris Young, Julie Roberts, Wade Hayes and Confederate Railroad.
Wells currently serves on the Executive Board for the Nashville Songwriters Association International as well as their Board of Directors. His songs have received BMI’s certification for over 14 million radio airplays.
Dean Alexander moved to Nashville with a dream and a hundred dollars in his pocket. Finding work landscaping during the day, he started playing Layla’s on lower Broadway at night. He enhanced his live performance playing classic country covers as well as originals and was soon discovered and offered a publishing deal by the late Barbara Orbison, the widow of American musician Roy Orbison.
A year later, Dean began working as a touring guitarist for a number of artists. This put the wheels in motion towards a recording contract with Electra/Warner Brothers in 2012. Dean has opened for acts like Little Big Town, Dwight Yoakam, John Fogerty and Blake Shelton to name a few. He’s had a Billboard TOP 40 song called “Live A Little”, “Life Ain’t Fair” hit #13 featuring Sheryl Crow on Sirius XM ‘The Highway’, his song “If Your Heart Can Handle It” was featured on the hit television show Nashville, “Dangerous” on the television series Good Christian Belles, and “Black Crow” has been recorded by Brent Cobb for his upcoming debut record.
Currently, as an Independent artist, he is creating a new path with producer and writer Danny Myrick (She’s Country, International Harvester, I Love This Life) for Dean’s new project with an original darker, edgier sound with his band The Voo Doo Revival.
“I know its pushing the limits of Country but I’m trying to make music without boundaries and keep the voice of my artistry true. No one ever made a true mark on history by being the same as everyone else”.
“Friends in Low Places” was recorded by Garth Brooks (1991) and Co-written with Dewayne Blackwell. It was one of the top five country songs of all time! It is still enjoying regular radio play over twenty years later. “One Night at a Time” was also recorded by George Strait (1998) and Co-written with Roger Cook and Eddie Kilgallon. Both of these smashes were ASCAP Song of the Year award winners. “Who Are You When I’m Not Looking” was recorded by Blake Shelton (2011) (co-written with John Wiggins) and became another Number One Hit in March of 2011. Numerous other cuts, beautiful story songs, and funny anecdotes. You will enjoy your time with Earl Bud as much as he will with you.
20 year old Alabama native Edward Hartline has been writing songs since he was 11. He taught himself to play guitar and piano, and played tenors, bass drum, xylophone, bells, and trumpet in school band. He is currently teaching himself violin.
Edward grew up in a household that listened to everything from Jimmy Buffett to Vivaldi, but the music that caught his imagination early on came from Don McLean and The Monkees, and later, Elliott Smith and Janis Ian. At 13, a video of Edward playing a cover of a Bobby Long song was spotted by the artist, who tweeted about it. That push into the spotlight was the encouragement Edward needed, and within six months, he began playing local coffeehouses and released a home-recorded EP, Lagniappe ( lan’-yap). FearlessRadio.com in Chicago put several of his songs in rotation, and two of his demos went to number 2 before he entered high school. They remained in the top 25 for over six months. His debut CD, Candy for Bread Map, was released in 2011, and the first single went to number 1 on Fearless in six weeks.
In 2011, he toured the southern US, played the second annual BAAMFest in Birmingham, AL, and had a song featured on the soundtrack of an indie film.
In 2013, he released 2 more EPs: hartline., a limited release available only at shows, and Lost, a preview of the capabilities of his new home studio, built with the support he received from an Indiegogo campaign. He also performed for Only About the Music – Artists for Autism music festival in Fairfax, VA, helping raise over $2000 for music therapy materials for Grafton School.
He performed on Callow’s showcase at SXSW2014, and has played several Songs From A Room (Sofar Sounds) shows. His second home studio CD, Human Nature, released October 2014.
He won 1st place at WorkPlay Theater’s Singer-Songwriter Series 2 competition in 2014, the Emerging Talent Showcase at Blast on the Bay 2015, and Moonlight on the Mountain’s Winter 2016 Open Mic Contest. A digital-only EP, Estrangement, was released in February, 2016.
Edward has performed with many artists, including Von Grey, Bobby Long, Northern National, Jessica Meuse, Shannon LaBrie, Dylan Taylor, Sam Bradley, Surviving Allison, The Kalob Griffin Band, and Hope Cassity.
He is a member of the Montgomery Area Musicians Association (MAMA).
Helen Darling is best known for her crossover #1 hit song “Bring On The Rain” recorded by Jo Dee Messina and Tim McGraw. This song was subsequently nominated for a Grammy, an ACM and a CMA award. In 2002 and 2003, Darling was honored by BMI with a citation of achievement award for “Bring On The Rain”. This one song has achieved over 2 million airplays.
Darling started her career as a Chicago jingle singer on television and radio commercials for such clients as McDonald’s and 7-up. Her voice sang the familiar query, Have you driven a Ford lately? After moving to Nashville in 1993, Darling began singing song demos and back-up for such artists as Garth Brooks who asked Darling to sing on The Red Strokes on his In Pieces album. When Darling signed with MCA/Decca Records, Brooks returned the favor by singing on “Even God Must Get The Blues”. Delbert McClinton and Lee Roy Parnell also made prominent cameo appearances on this freshman effort.
Darling’s song writing career shifted into high gear after her first notable cut with Reba McEntire on a Christmas album, then came JoDee Messina and Tim McGraw. Since then more artists such as Little Big Town and Sir Clif Richard have also become part of Darling’s discography.
In 1998 Darling moved back to Austin, Texas to pursue family and songwriting. She currently divides her time between Montana and Texas with her husband Dennis and two sons Cameron (16 years) and Carson (15 years).
Did you ever wonder what a country artist from Austria,EU might sound like?
Jean Nolan from Austria, EU, is country musics newest face and his accent is nothing like Arnold Schwarzenegger’s.
“When Jean sings one starts guessing whether he is from Georgia or Texas“, his Nashville based hit producer Ray Barnette says half-jokingly. The Austrian native moved to Nashville, TN in 2015, after releasing his critically acclaimed self-written debut album Born Ready and 3 hit singles to mainstream radio and playing multiple tours in his home country.
“I’m very grateful for my success in Austria. Winning the Austrian Newcomer Award and having my songs played on radio stations around the country, as well as playing some of the most prestigious venues was truly a dream come true. But Nashville is really where I always wanted to be”, Jean says.
Jean started playing Nashville’s writers rounds on a regular basis soon after arriving in town, and his skills didn’t stay unnoticed by award winning hit writers like Will Rambeaux, Sherrie Austin, Gary Loyd, Dan Demay, Kris Bergsens, Sandy Ramos, George Cocchini and many others whom Jean writes with on a regular basis now.
Since arriving in Nashville in February of 2015, Jean has written close to 80 songs, played approximately 120 shows, has been selected as part of the starring cast for the new reality TV show Another Country, was a two time finalist at Nashville Rising Star (songwriting competition) is a 2016 Smoky Mountain Songwriter Festival Songwriting Competition finalist (top 3 out of over 400 entries) and had 8 songs picked up by some of Nashville’s most prestigious song pluggers to be pitched to major artists.
Jesse Rice is a multi-platinum selling and award-winning singer-songwriter and producer in Nashville, TN. Originally from low-country South Carolina, Rice moved to Nashville in 2002, where he began working for EMI Music Publishing. Since 2007, Rice has been a staff songwriter at Artist Revolution Publishing.
In the fall of 2012 he achieved his first #1 hit as a songwriter, with the song “Cruise” by Florida- Georgia Line. “Cruise” then went on to become the longest-running #1 country music song of all time, spending an unprecedented 25 weeks at the top of the Billboard charts. To date, “Cruise” has sold 6 million downloads, the second most ever by a country song behind Lady Antebellum’s “Need You Now”. In addition, “Cruise” was remixed and re-released on the pop charts by the rap artist Nelly, going on to spend a crossover -record 42 weeks in the Top-10 on the Billboard Hot 100, and reaching a peak of #4 in August 2013.
As a songwriter he has written songs with artists such as Lady Antebellum, Shawn Mullins, Cole Swindell, Tyler Farr, Jon Pardi, Brett Eldredge, Love & Theft, Florida-Georgia Line, and Chase Rice… As well as producing Chase Rice’s debut EP “Country As Me”, his second record “Dirt Road Communion” as well as co-writing all the songs on those records, including the singles “Buzz Back”.
As an artist Rice also tours around the South playing his own shows, promoting his new act that is his passion- THE PIRATE SESSIONS, whose 2 volumes of that record each debuted in the Top 20 on the iTunes Country Album Charts.
The Pirate Sessions are a collection of beach country rock songs that feature artists such as Florida- Georgia Line, Chase Rice, and Love & Theft… Rice is currently recording ” Pirate Sessions III”, due out in spring of 2014.
Jillia Jackson spends her days writing songs, recording, and performing live. Blending traditional country, bluegrass, and commercial songwriting with a modern eclectic edge, Jillia Jackson has quickly found her place in Nashville, TN. This stunning red headed country vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter consistently deliver the energy of a trained professional in her live show while managing to harness an organic creativity in the recording studio.
New Orleans native, Karen Waldrup, is a triple threat musician, songwriter and recording artist known for her thrilling performances and “in your face” style of country music.
She has spent the last few years touring the world performing thousands of shows everywhere from Memphis, TN to Dublin, Ireland and has shared the stage with Josh Thompson, Clay Walker, Sara Evans, Rodney Atkins, Gloriana and Terri Clark.
Karen appeared on Bravo TV’s Platinum Hit with hosts Jewel & Kara Diaguardi, and has music featured on Bravo TV’s reality series My Fab 40. She was a contestant on Season 3 of The Voice, a Nashville Rising Star finalist in 2015 and was previously named a GAC Top 25 Songwriter. Karen has been featured on NASCAR ESPN LIVE, the NFL Experience Superbowl XLVII and hundreds of other outlets world wide.
The video for her hit song “Trashy Crashed the Party” premiered on CMT at #3 and stayed in the Top 3 on CMT Pure Pack for 5 weeks straight.
Look for Karen’s newest release, “I Got That Kind Of Time”, with a music video coming soon.
“Every once in a while an artist and songwriter comes along that needs no coaching or advice, the world just needs to hear and see them. That is Karen.” – Bart Heribson, Executive Director, NSAI
Kendell Marvel wrote “Twang” for superstar George Strait and landed seven songs on Jake Owen’s first two albums including the hits “Yee Haw,” “Startin With Me,” and “Don’t Think I Can’t Love You.” He co-wrote “Right Where I Need To Be” for Gary Allan, “That Lonesome Song,” the title cut on Jamey Johnson’s GRAMMY-nominated album and has had songs recorded by Trace Adkins, Blake Shelton, Joe Diffie, Josh Turner, Randy Houser, Lee Ann Womack, Colt Ford and more.
Melissa Bowman (vocals, guitar, banjo), Emily Stuckey (vocals, guitar, percussion, mandolin), Lauren Spring (vocals, guitar, fiddle, mandolin) and Katrina Kolb (bass)
Megan surely is living proof of that old adage, ”the acorn doesn’t fall far from the tree”, as she has found her path following in the footsteps of her late grandfather, who made his living crafting songs for many of Nashville’s notables. She is no newcomer to Nashville’s music scene as evidenced by her first, “self-penned” album recorded at age 19 under the production of Grammy winning John Carter Cash.
Some of her past performances have included; The Cincinnati Reds, The Indy 500, Atlanta Braves, Watkins Glen International NASCAR, Daytona Coke Zero 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, The Allstate Brickyard 400 Sprint Cup Series, The Kentucky Derby, The Kansas City Royals, Tioga Downs Resort and Casino, The Chicago White Sox and The Nashville Superspeedway, and Songwriters’ Festivals, such as Blast on Bay, The Panama City Songwriters’ Festival, The Smoky Mountain Songwriters’ Festival, The Endless Summer Music Series in Destin, Florida, and most notably, The Key West Songwriters’ Festival for a 6th consecutive year. Megan’s rendition of “Wrapped up in Love” was featured in Snow Bride, Hallmark’s most-watched “made for television movie”, that aired in both 2013 and 2014.
Megan delivers spirited, dynamically-packed performances while showcasing her strong vocals and captivating audiences with self-penned lyrics that are relatable whether it be a performance for a group of as few as 30 people to over 17 million televised viewers.
Pete writes for Demolition Music/Shakes Spear Music. He is a songwriter who’s had cuts across the genres. The pop of American Idol winner Phillip Phillips, David Archuletta, and RCA Records Betty Who , the 3x Grammy winner Blues/Americana artist Keb Mo, and in country by Ronnie Dunn, Bucky Covington, and the single “Shut Up & Fish” by Maddie & Tae.
Steve Dean has written seven #1 hits in his storied career including 2007’s most played song “Watching You” for Rodney Atkins. “Round About Way” for George Strait, “Walk On” for Reba McEntire, “Southern Star” for Alabama, “It Takes A Little Rain” for The Oak Ridge Boys, and “Hearts Aren’t Made To Break” for Lee Greenwood round out the other five. He was raised in Little Rock Arkansas on a steady diet of The Beatles, Byrds and Eagles, with early Buck Owens, Rodger Miller and Johnny Cash influences as well. After earning a degree in advertising, he moved to Nashville to pursue his songwriting dreams. He also spent several years as a touring artist in a duo called “James/Dean”. Steve has also written hit songs for Dierks Bentley, Joe Nichols, The Roys, LoCash Cowboys, Craig Morgan, John Michael Montgomery and LeAnn Womack. To date, he has earned 10 BMI songwriting awards.
Steve Williams’ songs are featured on 3 gold records. “Where Have I Been All My Life” recorded by George Strait has been heralded as one of the most poignant songs of Strait’s career and is featured on “Twang” (2009 release). “Redneck Yacht Club” (recorded by Craig Morgan), went to #1 in 2005 and became one of the most downloaded songs of the year. ASCAP called it “The summer song of the year.” It’s popularity spawned several businesses and the official website RedneckYachtClub.com. Buddy Jewell’s debut album also went gold and features Williams’ song, “O’Reilly Luck”. His Grammy nominated song, “I Get To” (Oak Ridge Boys 2012) flew to #1 on the Christian Music Charts years earlier for Blue County and has been recorded by several artists, including Jeff & Cherrie Easter. And on the opposite side of the songwriting spectrum, “I Didn’t”, recorded by Trick Pony, Kristin Chenoweth and numerous others, is a hilarious look into a dysfunctional rel tionship.
“A Fathers Love (the Only Way He Knew How)”, recorded by Bucky Covington, received rave reviews from country radio. And when recorded by Canadian artists High Valley a short time later, it was awarded “Song & Video of the Year” at the 2011 GMA Awards. The Oak Ridge Boys, released “What’cha Gonna Do” in 2011 as a single (It’s only Natural album) and the video is a popular hit on YouTube.com.
As a performer, Steve has worked with Kenny Chesney, Tanya Tucker. Visit SteveWilliamsSongs.com for more on his music and career.
As a performing artist, Susan Ruth released two critically acclaimed albums, How To Say Goodbye and Surfacing to Breathe (which features many of Peter Gabriel’s key band mates) following her debut album, Horse of a Different Color EP. Her fourth independent studio album, All I Ever Wanted Was Everything, released July 15th, 2014
Co-produced by Susan Ruth and Jim Kimball, the new album includes 13 original songs written or co-written by Susan. The album was created at Hot Closet Studios in Nashville, Tennessee.
This is Susan Ruth’s first studio album in a decade, as she has spent the past nine years in Nashville, TN writing for and with other artists, including “Promise Me Love,” on Reba McEntire’s Love Somebody. She’s had chart success on several acts, including: #13 Eurodisc – “What If” – Ali Isabella, #1 Eurodisc Belgium – “What If” – Ali Isabella, “A Little Love This Christmas” – Ali Isabella debuted at #6 FMQB, Top Ten – “Shine” – Erdem Kinay – Turkey, O’Shea – One + One – debuted at #3 on the ARIA Country Charts and the top 30 on the all genre chart in 2013.
Susan has also had songs placed on MTVs Road Rules, MTVs Real World, and the film After Life.
CMA of Texas Songwriter of the Year Thom Shepherd is an Austin, Texas-based touring artist who spent many years as a songwriter in Nashville. He performs constantly with his band, as a solo acoustic performer, and as a duo with artist Coley McCabe.
Thom and Coley have recently launched their new YouTube channel, “American Dreamers On The Road,” which features videos about the couple moving from a three bedroom house into a 39′ Fleetwood American Dream motorcoach.
Thom, and his Radio Margaritaville hit “Always Saturday Night,” are featured in the upcoming documentary “Parrot Heads: The Movie,” and he won the Radio Show of the Year Award at the 2015 Trop Rock Music Awards for “Live From The Redneck Yacht Club.”
Along with his own radio singles in Texas, Thom is the writer of five #1 singles for other artists – “Redneck Yacht Club,” recorded by Craig Morgan, “Riding with Private Malone” recorded by David Ball, Kyle Park’s “The Night Is Young,” Josh Abbott and Pat Green’s single, “My Texas,” and Kevin Fowler’s “Beer Season.”
In total Thom has had over 10 singles and over 100 songs recorded by artists including Easton Corbin, Pam Tillis, John Anderson, Lorrie Morgan, Colt Ford, Bucky Covington, George Jones, Trailer Choir, Montgomery Gentry, Buddy Jewell, and Cledus T. Judd.
After years of living in Nashville, Thom relocated to Texas in 2011 to pursue a full time touring career. “I’ve always written songs so that I could perform them live on stage,” he says. “It’s always exciting when someone else records one of my songs, but there is no greater feeling than connecting with an audience.“
His music has taken him on 9 tours performing for our military in 17 different countries. “As songwriters, we have no idea how our songs are going to affect people,” says Thom, “I met a soldier in Qatar who was on leave from Baghdad, and he told me he joined the military because of Private Malone. He asked me how that made me felt and I said Responsible! Then when we went to get our picture taken, he showed me the shattered LCD screen of his digital camera – shattered because it was in his shirt pocket behind his flack jacket when he took a round from an AK47. That camera saved his life. That is powerful stuff.”
He was born in St. Louis, Missouri and spent his high school years in Stephens City, Virginia. He graduated from George Mason University and one week later moved to Nashville. He has written for 5 different music publishers over the years and is constantly on the road performing. He is a two time cancer survivor, a father of two, and co-owner of RedneckYachtClub.com.
Since moving to Nashville in July 1991’ Tim has not only become a successful songwriter but he has become one of Nashville’s most sought after session singers. In addition to singing on over 8,000 demos Tim has sung on albums by: Trisha Yearwood, Michael Peterson, Kevin Sharp, Billy Ray Cyrus and Rodney Atkins to name a few and on jingles for: Pepsi, Luvs diapers, TNN and many many more. As a songwriter Tim has had cuts by: Trisha Yearwood, The Wiggins, Continental Divide, Perfect Stranger and Doc Walker as well as the top 10 single by YANKEE GREY “ ANOTHER NINE MINUTES and a #1 single by Kevin Sharp “SHE’S SURE TAKING IT WELL” which is included in ASCAP’s top 50 songs of the 90’s. Tim currently writes for Saddle Blanket Music. Tim also plays drums and sings in 4 of Nashville’s most popular bands. “FAB” a tribute to the BEATLES, “The Consoulers” a premier soul/R&B group, “Vinyl Radio” and “Live From Ventura Blvd.” two great 70’s cover bands.
Troy Jones is a staff songwriter for Carnival Music in Nashville Tennessee. His songs have been recorded by Alan Jackson, George Strait, Kenny Chesney, Billy Currington, Tim McGraw, The Oak Ridge Boys, Jake Owens, and others.
He received a Grammy Nomination in 2009 for his song “People are Crazy” which was number one on the billboard charts for two consecutive weeks and it was nominated for both C.M.A. and A.C.M “Song of the Year”. Troy also had a number one hit with “Pretty Good at Drinking Beer”. His song “Shiftwork” was a #2 song for Kenny Chesney and George Strait in 2008 and was preformed on the C.M.A. awards show by Chesney and Strait.
Troy’s song “Timing is Everything” was included as a major part of the movie “Country Strong” in 2010.
Troy was born in Port St. Joe, Florida in 1955 and graduated from Port St Joe High School in 1974. He and his wife Patsy now live in Fayetville, Alabama on Lay Lake. They have three children and four grandchildren.
While she is originally from historic Dixon, Illinois, Victoria now calls Nashville “home”. After graduating Millikin University in Commercial Music, she began further pursuing her dreams of becoming a singer/songwriter. In addition to touring the country with many different shows and bands, she has been a featured artist on the stages of many of Nashville’s hottest music clubs, including the world renowned Bluebird Café. She has been a guest on the Grand Ole Opry and has been a background vocalist for artists such as Sandi Patti, Loretta Lynn, Joe Diffie and Brenda Lee. She has three cuts on the critically acclaimed work “This Is My America” and some of her most recent work “Back To You” landed her on the Grammy-nominated album The Standard by Take 6.
Walt Aldridge, a songwriter, singer, musician, engineer and producer has exercised his musical skills in Muscle Shoals and Nashville for more than thirty years. Billboard magazine named Aldridge one of the Top Ten Country Songwriters of the year twice based on the strength of his chart activity. His song “No Getting Over Me” was named one of ASCAP’s most performed country songs. “Holding Her and Loving You” was named Song of the Year by the Nashville Songwriters’ Association International.
His work spans a wide spectrum of music, including artists as diverse as Lou Reed, Peter Cetera and Blessid Union of Souls. Traditional country acts from Conway Twitty to Reba McEntire have also found success with Aldridge’s songs. Recently he produced and co-wrote “I Loved Her First,” a number one chart topper for Lofton Creek Records act Heartland.
Wil Nance hit the top of R&R and Billboard with his #1 BRAD PAISLEY smash “She’s Everything”, a song on Time Well Wasted, the Multi Platinum 2007 CMA Album of the Year. He also landed on Troubadour, GEORGE STRAIT’S Platinum selling, Grammy Winning, 2008 CMA Album Of The Year with a song called “If Heartaches Were Horses.” In 2009, GEORGE STRAIT cut another Wil Nance song; “Where Have I Been All My Life”, which is on the GEORGE STRAIT Cd Twang.
In 1999, Wil received a BMI award for “Round About Way”, a #1 hit single for GEORGE STRAIT, a song on the Multi Platinum CMA Album Of The Year Carrying Your Love With Me. “Round About Way” is also on GEORGE STRAIT’S Latest Greatest Hits and GEORGE STRAIT’S 50 Number Ones … Over ten million sales and counting.
Wil has received “Million Air” Awards from BMI for GEORGE STRAIT’S “Round About Way” and BRAD PAISLEY’S “She’s Everything”.
In 2004, Wil received another BMI Award for his top ten JOE NICHOLS single “Cool To Be A Fool”.
Other singles include; BLUE COUNTY “I Get To”, JOHN MICHAEL MONTGOMERY “You Are”, GENE WATSON “Next To Nothin”, CHAD BROCK “You Are”, & more.
Plus additional cuts on artists BRAD PAISLEY, TRACY LAWRENCE, JOE NICHOLS, NEAL MCCOY, CRAIG MORGAN, DIAMOND RIO, SAMMY KERSHAW, JEFF & SHEREI EASTER, OAKRIDGE BOYS, and many many others. Wil recently landed cuts on Universal’s EASTON CORBIN and Warner Record’s THE FARM
Will Rambeaux was born in Lafayette, Louisiana in the heart of cajun country. He grew up listening to the classic pop, rock and country music of his day, as well as a healthy dose of the Cajun, Zydeco and New Orleans R&B native to Louisiana. With a degree in Literature under his belt, Will left home on a musical odyssey that took him first to Austin, Texas and then to New York City. On a chance visit to Tennessee in the 1980’s Will managed to get a tape to his boyhood idol, Roy Orbison. Mr. Orbison took note of his talent and offered to bring Will to Nashville where his career as a writer and producer has blossomed. Will fronted his own original roots-rock band for years, but really hit paydirt with his first cut as a songwriter in 1993. Recorded by Warner Bros.artist Faith Hill, “Wild One” took the country charts by storm staying at 1 for four weeks and breaking all records for a new female artist. He then had a pair of back-to-back 1 songs for country crooner John Michael Montgomery, the first one, “How Was I To Know”, followed by “Hold On To Me”. He has also had several other Top 10 singles, including “Nobody Gonna’ Rain On Our Parade” (Kathy Mattea) and “Can’t Get Enough” (Patty Loveless) and his songs have been recorded by such diverse artists as Dolly Parton, Hal Ketchum, Jo Dee Messina, Trick Pony Tammy Cochran, Lee Greenwood, Danielle Peck and Ronnie Milsap. Will’s songs have also garned many BMI “Most Performed Songs of the Year” awards, as well as several BMI “Million-Air” awards. More recently, Will has been dividing his time between songwriting and record producing. He has recorded four albums for singer/songwriter Sherrie’ Austin, “Words”, “Love In The Real World”, “Following A Feeling” and “Streets Of Heaven” which have yielded many chart singles including “Lucky In Love”, “Put Your Heart Into It” and “Never Been Kissed”. He is also currently working on several new artist projects which should see the light of day in the coming months.
Wynn was raised in the small town of Ellenwood, Georgia, where music was a central part of his life. After graduating high school, Wynn started on the path to musical success. His talent playing bluegrass landed him gigs from Austin to Ft. Lauderdale; during this time he was perfecting his style as a country artist and songwriter. Two of his #1 songs “Have You Forgotten” in 2003 and “Waitin’ on a Woman” in 2008 were nominated for SONG OF THE YEAR by the CMA. His most recent #1, “I’m a Little More Country” (Easton Corbin) was nominated by the ACM for SONG OF THE YEAR. Wynn’s songs have been cut by artists, Easton Corbin, Garth Brooks, Lee Ann Womack, Brad Paisley, Darryl Worley, Kellie Pickler, Montgomery Gentry and many more.