Latest Articles

Brad Paisley Celebrates "The World"

Recently, Brad Paisley, along with songwriters Kelley Lovelace (ASCAP and Lee Thomas Miller (BMI), celebrated the chart-topping success of “The World” at Nashville’s Adventure Science Center. On hand were music industry execs and well-wishers to participate in the celebration. While there, Brad sat down with reporters and talked about the song, his next tour, and practical jokes exchanged

Bobby Bare: The Return Of The Quiet Outlaw

In recent years, there has been growing interest in the iconoclastic group of 1970s Country artists who were loosely collected under the banner of the Outlaw Movement. Current artists release songs that name-check the great artists of that era including Big & Rich's "Rollin'," CMA Female Vocalist of the Year Gretchen Wilson's "Redneck Woman" and Gary Allan's "What Would Willie Do."

She Was Country When Country Wasn't Cool

GAC was filming a press conference in celebration of the release of the Barbara Mandrell tribute album “She Was Country When Country Wasn’t Cool” at the Sony/BMG Headquarters in Nashville on September 15, 2006. With artists like Reba McEntire, Kenny Chesney, Gretchen Wilson, and Brad Paisley and many more singing their versions of the songs that spanned Barbara’s 38 year career.

A Blanket Story... Seriously!

When Music News Nashville contacted me about writing a series of articles on the subject of recording and studio stuff for their website, my initial reaction was “Sure- what about, specifically?”… “Anything” was the answer. Well, this sounded like a recipe for an industry rant (which I’m prone to do from time to time). In order to avoid the temptation of any soap boxing, I thought I’d rather

Thoughts On Being A Better Lead Player

Here are some general ideas that you may find helpful if you are wanting to play along with a songwriter on a song that you are hearing for the FIRST TIME. This is aimed at writers nights or gatherings where charts are not typically used. It is for those who play lead guitar, mandolin, fiddle, etc. I have gathered many of these ideas from 35+ years of intensely listening to and reading

Are You Beating Your Song To Death?

Lately, I’ve met, worked with, and observed a lot of songwriters obsessing over one single song in their catalogue. Some of them have literally spent years re-writing the song and then hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars re-demoing each new version. They’ve meticulously deliberated over individual non- essential words; they’ve changed single passing notes in their melody; and they’ve lost

Are You Ready?

I was attending a music event recently and listening to several performers. I decided to play a little game with myself and pretend that I was an A&R rep for a major label who was looking for new acts to sign. I considered each act through that lens as they performed. All of them had talent and gave good performances, but I was still able to make a distinction between them. Rather than

Antennae Up?

Sun block? Water bottle? Golf clubs? Beach chair? Favorite snacks? Good book? As you head out for your summer vacation, don’t forget to pack your songwriters antennae. Many of us think of summer activities as distractions from creativity and songwriting. But one necessary ingredient for songwriting is new ideas and new perspectives. They can be abundant as you experience new

Bill Anderson and Little Jimmy Dickens Share Insights with Some of Today's Hottest Artists

In 2003, CMA created the Artist Relations Committee as part of an ongoing effort to educate and involve the artists in all that the organization does on behalf of Country Music. Chaired by Kix Brooks of Brooks & Dunn and Co-chaired by ASCAP Senior VP Connie Bradley, the committee agreed that while CMA is rightly concerned with moving forward, it should never lose touch with Country's colorful

Alabama's All-American Soundtrack

Few artists have created a more consistent soundtrack for the lives of America's Country Music fans than Alabama. From working class anthems including "Forty Hour Week (For A Livin')" to smoldering love songs such as "Feels So Right" to the celebration of Southern life in "Dixieland Delight," Alabama's catalog of hits has reflected Country life and values.

About the Ballad

Marc-Alan Barnette here from Nashvegas, with a few words to make your writing, pitching and performing experience more effective. Those of you who know me and have participated in my workshops, tours or shows in Nashville, have heard my diatribes on the phenomenon of ballads in today's songwriters market. Many of you have experienced this first hand and many of you are still to

Aaron Tippin: Family Man And Country Idealist

It's clear where Aaron Tippin stands. Beginning with his breakthrough single, "You've Got to Stand for Something," Tippin's songs have consistently verbalized solid working class values such as belief in God, family and America. While some artists find themselves changing because of record company politics or varying consumer trends, Tippin has built a successful career

21st Century Communication

Communication technology certainly has come a long way in the last fifteen years or so. I mean, think about it - e-mail, cell phones, instant messaging, text messaging - it’s easier and faster to communicate with more and more people every day. Unfortunately, we may actually be communicating less. This became crystal clear to me a couple of weeks ago when I

Protecting Yourself: Copyright Quick Start

Copyright protection is a very hot topic nowadays. Turn on the television and a famous Musician or Actor is talking about it. Open a newspaper and it is often leading the headlines. In this article we will define copyright at its simplest, look at the reasons why creative people would copyright something, list musical work types that can be copyrighted, and finally we will look at some options

Getting Your Songs “Out There”

Boy, if I had nickel for every time I heard a songwriter say “I just wanna get my songs out there! - well, let’s just say my retirement would be all wrapped up by now. If this sounds like something you’ve said and/or wondered before, then my question is what’s stopping you? In today’s indie-friendly climate, you certainly don’t need a major label or even a major publishing company to get you music
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