Inside Track May 2024

inside track on music row by preshias Harris


“I was a different person before I started to write. When I realized I could be a songwriter and that people would listen – that was when I started feeling good in my life.” – Gwen Stafani


“But the word of God grew and multiplied.” – Acts 12:24


Elvie Shane (BBR Music Group/Wheelhouse) picked a unique location for his interview with the iconic music magazine, Rolling Stone, published April 19; read the full interview here. With RS journalist Joseph Hudak riding shotgun, Shane was at the wheel of a $120,000 hybrid 2024 Chevy Corvette E-Ray. He was excited to be laying down some rubber at the NCM Motorsports Park, located at the National Corvette Museum, Bowling Green, KY. Texting his interviewer before test-driving the ‘Vette (top speed: 183 mph) he had written, “I’ll only kill ya once, I swear.” Back in his own Ford Bronco, Shane talked about his scrapes with the law, living a hardscrabble life in Caneyville, KY, and his breakout No. 1 hit, “My Boy” and what led him to the music on his new album, Damascus (listen/stream/buy here). Shane co-wrote all thirteen tracks on the new project, working with collaborator Oscar Charles on the production on tracks that unblinkingly focus on the challenges of working class country people, including opioid addiction (“Pill”) and incarceration (“215634” inspired by a friend’s inmate number). But there’s room for fun and inspiration (“Winning Horse”, “Fan On High”) and a stand-out collaboration with Little Big Town on “First Place.” The album concludes with the redemptive “Does Heaven Have a Creek,” Shane’s solo-write.  More about Elvie Shane on his website and updates on social media. #ElvieShane  


Authentic, original, and genre-bending are three ways to describe TLG/Virgin recording artists Rick Monroe & The Hitmen, who are ‘locked and loaded’ for their first full-length vinyl album Six Gun Soul, as well as their latest single, “Which Way Is Home,” both released April 12. Stream/listen to the album here and the single here.  Recorded over the last couple of years, Six Gun Soul solidifies Rick Monroe & The Hitmen’s signature “Blue Jean Rock” sound with a collection of 11 tracks that push the needle to the edge of format constraints. The album also heralds the addition of Monroe’s now permanent band, Bobby Perkins (guitar), Alan Beeler (bass), and Jason Bohl (drums), also known as The Hitmen. The album contains co-writes by Keesy Timmer, JD Schuff, Beeler, and rock artist Zach Williams. Producers include the renowned Malcolm Springer (The Low-Down Drifters, Nappy Roots, Matchbox Twenty, Collective Soul), Peter Keys (of Lynyrd Skynyrd), Brandon Britton, and Rick Monroe & The Hitmen. Pedal steel legend Dan Dugmore also appears on the album.  As a result, the group has shared the stage with a diverse array of artists, from Queensrӱche and Lynyrd Skynyrd to Dwight Yoakum and Eric Church (just to name a few). Tour dates and more info here


Sturgill Simpson will headline this year’s Outside Lands in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park—the Grammy Award-winner’s first full show in three years. For the performance, Simpson will reunite with bassist Kevin Black, guitarist Laur Joamets and drummer Miles Miller. Tickets for the festival, which will be held August 9-11, are on sale to the general public now exclusively here. The performance comes after the recent confirmation that Simpson’s landmark 2014 album, Metamodern Sounds In Country Music, will be reissued on May 10 in celebration of its ten-year anniversary (pre-order here).  Originally released May 13, 2014, the album marked a career breakthrough for Simpson personally and proved to be a seismic shift-maker within the larger country music genre. The new special edition features a fully reimagined album cover and vinyl package, pressed on 180g Black Vinyl with an “Old-Style” Tip-On Jacket. Full details are available at  Ushering in a new chapter within country music and setting the stage for countless other outsider artists to push the genre forward for years to come, NPR Music called it, “one of the few albums in 2014 that nearly everyone on the team agreed was pure genius.” More info at Sturgill’s website.  


Country breakout artist Molly Lovette is surprising fans and releasing a Live Piano Version of her current release “Not Even My Ex”. “Not Even My Ex – Live Piano Version” as well as the original version is available on all social streaming platforms including Spotify, Apple Music, and more.  Molly keeps things refreshingly simple on this track, showcasing the song’s melody and lyrics in a stripped-down, raw piano format. This gives fans a new perspective on the song while highlighting her powerful and strong vocals. Written by Molly, alongside Amy Asher, Julia Larkin, and Megan Wilder and produced by Briana Tyson, this acoustic track showcases the strong emotions that come along with a friendship breakup.  “I’m so excited to drop this version of such an emotional song,” says Molly. “Losing a friend is a whole different kind of heartbreak, and I’m sure we’ve all been there at some point in our lives.”  With well over a million streams just on Spotify, Molly has been featured in numerous TV placements, endless press placements including a Forbes feature under her belt, national and international radio airplay, official music videos airing on The Country Network and Heartland, and more.  More on Molly Lovette, at her website and follow along with her on socials #MollyLovette


As Chris Lane’s current Top 40 single, “Find Another Bar,” rises at Country radio, the multi-Platinum artist put fans first on the social media-driven Find Another Bar Tour: College Edition. With the tour route solely created by suggestions received online of vibrant college towns, Lane rounded out the headlining run at Athens, GA (University of Georgia), Columbia, SC (University of South Carolina), and Gainesville, FL (University of Florida). The tour also brought Lane to Oxford, MS (Ole Miss) and Starkville, MS. In addition to exploring campuses during the day and attending baseball games at both the University of Arkansas (where he threw the first pitch) and Mississippi State, he pumped up the night with high-energy sets to wall-to-wall crowds. Offering a nod to his early days with up close and personal performances, he played his smash hits like #1s: 2X Platinum “Big, Big Plans,” 3X Platinum “I Don’t Know About You,” and Platinum “Fix,” as well as his latest batch of music from EP, From Where I’m Sippin’ (Red Street Records/Voyager Records). Check out a recap video here. #ChrisLaneMusic


A ‘new’ Johnny Cash album! In early 1993, the legendary Johnny Cash found himself between contracts in his then nearly 40-year career and recorded an album’s worth of songwriting demos at LSI Studios in Nashville of songs he’d written over many years. LSI at the time was owned by his son-in-law Mike Daniels and daughter Rosey, and he wanted to help the family financially while also record some songs special to him. Not long after the fruitful session, Johnny met producer Rick Rubin, and the recordings were shelved as the two embarked on an important and prolific musical partnership that revitalized the Man in Black’s career that would last the rest of his life.  Some thirty years later, John Carter Cash, the son of Johnny and June Carter Cash, rediscovered the songs and stripped them back to just Johnny’s powerful, pristine vocals and acoustic guitar. Along with co-producer David “Fergie” Ferguson, the two invited a handpicked group of musicians that played with Johnny, including guitarist Marty Stuart and the late bassist Dave Roe, along with drummer Pete Abbott and several others, to the Cash Cabin, a hallowed space in Hendersonville, Tenn. where Johnny would write, record and relax, to breathe new life into the tracks, taking the sound back to the roots and heart of the songs. Releasing June 28th via Mercury Nashville/UMe, the simply and aptly titled Songwriter,features songs written solely by Johnny Cash. Pre-order Songwriter here


Country icon Terri Clark has introduced the second duet from Terri Clark: Take Two, as she teams up with Platinum-selling singer-songwriter Ben Rector for “Now That I Found You.” Listen here.  The full eight-song project, arriving Friday, May 31, reimagines the Country chart-topper’s biggest hits with new voices including Lauren Alaina, Paul Brandt, Kelly Clarkson, Cody Johnson, Ashley McBryde, Carly Pearce, Ben Rector and Lainey Wilson. “I’ve been a fan of Ben Rector for a while now,” says Clark. “He’s a brilliant singer, songster and musician with a talent truly out of this world. ‘Now That I Found You’ was originally written as a pop song, and when I recorded it in 1998, I hesitated cutting it for that reason. When it became a Country hit, I saw how much it resonated with people and now many years later it’s come full circle as a duet with Ben. Ben’s influence on this track and his astounding vocals are just magic, and to say it was an honor working with him would be an understatement. I really wanted to do this duet with a guy outside of the Country genre and he truly exceeded my expectations. He gave new life to the song with a completely fresh perspective. It feels like it was always meant to be a duet.” Pre-save Terri Clark: Take Two here


Rising country singer/songwriter Maddye Trew is celebrating her introduction to radio as “Long Gone John,” her first single to be sent to radio, was greeted as the fifth most added release among MusicRow stations across the country in its first week. Mike Thomas, program director for KFAV-FM in Warrenton, MO, was quick to offer his praise for the refreshing new tune. “Maddye offers up a great debut single that’s got the sass of a Loretta Lynn classic with a catchy and cool hook for today’s country radio fans,” said Thomas. Written by Trew along with the song’s producer, Troy Castellano, and Jeff McMahon (Tim McGraw/Chris Cagle), the song was always intended as an ode to friendship, specifically to the girls she grew up with – the ones that were always there for each other when the boys fell short. “I was always a shoulder to cry on for my friends,” said Trew, reflectively. “I love that; I LOVE my friends. And I love when they’ve been there for me. That’s what this song is about for me ­— and Jeff and Troy really helped me nail that message.” The accompanying music video which premiered on CMT, a Grease-inspired homage to the Pink Ladies “Sandra Dee” scene, highlights the spirited charm that Maddye carries onstage and is the essence of her intent for the song.  Listen to “Long Gone John” and watch the video at Maddye’s website here.  #MaddyeTrew


Big Loud’s Country songstress Ashley Cooke secured her first-ever CMT Music Award win for Breakthrough Female Video of the Year with her Top 15 and climbing radio hit “your place.” The achievement serves as both her first award nomination and first major award win, marking a significant milestone in the “promising Nashville up-and-comer’s” (Los Angeles Times) burgeoning career.  “I’m just taking a minute to soak this in because I have dreamed of winning an award like a CMT Award for so long,” shares Cooke from the stage. “This is my very first CMT Award, and award in general, so thank you so much. Thank you, Lord. Thank you so much to the fans. This was a fully fan and friend voted award, and I would not be on this stage or any stage without you guys, and I know that damn well, so thank you so much.” The music video for “your place,” released earlier this year, takes home the fan-voted award thanks to Cooke’s rapidly-growing fanbase of over 1M+ strong.  The single “your place” continues its upward trajectory at Country radio now, already finding its place in the Top 15 in just 15 weeks. More about Ashley at her website and socials @theashleycooke.


Josh Bleidt, founder of 501c3 organization Concerts 4 A Cause, Taylor Stanford, and Ron Allan, Brand Manager of Y’all 106.7, presented a check to Holly Singletary on behalf of the Daryle Singletary Memorial Trust from money raised during the 6th annual Daryle Singletary Keepin’ It Country Jam.  The even took place on Feb 13, 2024. The event, hosted by WKRN’s Neil Orne and Bobby Johnson, included performances by Neal McCoy, Tyler Farr, Lee Greenwood, The Malpass Brothers, Andy Griggs, Craig Campbell, Jenna LaMaster, John Morgan, Duke Henry, Robert Bacon, along with a surprise “OOM PAW PA MOW MOW” performance of “Elvira” by Richard Sterban of The Oak Ridge Boys. The event also featured an impromptu performance by Collin Raye, who was in the audience enjoying the concert. The event raised a total of $88,597.06. “I can’t thank all the artists, managers, sponsors, and fans that came out to support what Daryle loved so much – traditional country music,” says Holly Singletary. “Each year, it seems that more and more people learn about what we are doing in Daryle’s honor and want to help. This can only continue with everyone’s support. Next year, we have already set the date for February 11th at the Nashville Palace, so I hope everyone plans to come out!” to make a donation, or to be notified of upcoming events, please visit here


The 11th Annual K-LOVE Fan Awards weekend hits Nashville May 24-26.   Joining MercyMe, CAIN and Consumed by Fire during the Friday night kick-off concert will be Andrew Ripp, with Tauren Wells added to speak during the Sunday morning worship service led by Elevation Worship. Newly announced events include Saturday morning’s Worship In The Round event, showcasing Jon Reddick, Matt Maher, Jenn Johnson, Mike Weaver and Shane & Shane. The annual Emerging Artist Showcase will take place Saturday afternoon, hosted by Brandon Heath and featuring Josiah Queen, Caleb & John, Terrian, Stephen McWhirter and Seph Schlueter.  Steven Curtis Chapman will once again host the Songwriter’s Showcase and be joined by Jeremy Camp, Josh Baldwin, Rachael Lampa, David Leonard. Saturday morning’s Worship InThe Round event line-up: Jon Reddick, Matt Maher, Jenn Johnson, Mike Weaver and Shane & Shane. The weekend concludes as Brandon Lake and Sadie Robertson Huff host the 11th annual K-LOVE Fan Awards on May 26, 2024 at Nashville’s iconic Opry House, TBN will air the show on Friday, May 31st at 7pm (CT) 8pm (EST), while Coca-Cola Consolidated will once again serve as sponsor. Tickets for the 2024 K-LOVE Fan Awards Weekend are on sale with travel packages still available here


Big Loud’s esteemed visionary ERNEST’s sophomore album, Nashville, Tennessee, was released April 12. On the heels of his 2024 ACM Award nominations for New Male Artist of the Year and Artist-Songwriter of the Year, ERNEST released his 26-track project that pays tribute to his hometown, and the creatives that make up the fabric of Music City, to rave reviews. Billboard noted ERNEST’s “songwriting acumen has become a not-so-secret hitmaking weapon in Nashville’s songwriting circles, stealthily helping to fashion the sound of modern-day country music” and The Tennessean echoed “more than any performer, ERNEST best represents how, in the next decade, the communal spirit driving country music in Nashville will likely redefine popular culture worldwide.”  Produced by Joey Moi, the project brings to life the musical vision of one the modern era’s most impactful country hitmakers, and has resonated equally with fans – with more than 5,000 people at his album release show in Nashville, breaking the attendance record at 6th & Peabody home of Ole Smoky Moonshine and Yee-Haw Brewing Co.  With over a billion global on-demand streams, the Pollstar cover star proves to be more than just a game changing behind-the-scenes force who helped define a generation.  Nashville, Tennessee is the follow up to ERNEST’s 2021 debut album, Flower Shops (The Album).  More about ERNEST and listen to Nashville, Tennessee here


The Prine Family will present the third annual You Got Gold: Celebrating the Songs of John Prine this October in Nashville, with shows at the historic Ryman Auditorium (October 9), The Basement East (October 10, Prine’s birthday) and the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s CMA Theater (October 11). The three nights of shows will be followed by John Prine Community Day on October 12, which will feature a variety of community-focused activities (more details to come). The celebration will once again benefit The Hello in There Foundation and feature performances by an array of surprise artists, honoring not only Prine’sesteemed career, but also the beloved community he built over the past 50 years.  Tickets for the three shows are available Full details can be found here.  Of the celebration, Fiona Prineshares, “It is such an uplifting experience to witness the ways that fans and the music community come together annually to celebrate John’s legacy, and to support the work of The Hello in There Foundation. We are excited this year to introduce some new ways for people to get involved through community volunteer projects and unique daytime activities over the four days in Nashville.” Last year’s “You Got Gold” tribute raised over $200,000 for the Hello in There Foundation that aims to identify and collaborate with individuals and communities where people are marginalized, discriminated against or, for any reason, are otherwise forgotten.


As part of the ‘Country Legends Live’ series, StarVista Music has released Chart Toppers, an eleven-track compilation of songs, all of which peaked at number one on the Billboard Country charts. These live recordings, the second release in the three-part series, were recorded in 2015 at the Wildhorse Saloon and are available now on all digital platforms.  “The 70s and 80s were a great time in Country music. It was the beginning of the urban cowboy era with lots of great honky-tonk songs,” says LMA Productions president Frank Matassa. “Bringing all of these chart-topping artists together in one place to record these songs was something really special. Now, we are so thrilled to be able to share these songs with fans who loved that era of Country music.” Stream Country Legends Live Chart Toppers here. Artists on the album include The Oak Ridge Boys, The Bellamy Brothers, Johnny Lee, Marty Raybon, Eddie Raven, Exile and many more.


Angel Studios announced that Atlantic Recording Artist Colton Dixon has released the title track for the upcoming feature film Sight. “Rest of My Life (From the Original Motion Picture SIGHT)” is available now on all major music platforms here, through Atlantic Records. “When I first heard “Rest of My Life,” I instantly knew it was a fit for the film’s epilogue,” shares Ryan Svendsen, Angel Studios Head of Music. “It is extremely rare for the spirit and lyrics of a song to be an uncanny match for a scene but the stars aligned beautifully with Colton’s track for Sight.” “Sometimes when you write a song, it takes on a life of its own,” said Dixon. “After I experienced the film and got to meet Dr. Wang in person, the lyrics and cadence of the song took on a whole new meaning.”Sight comes to theaters Memorial Day weekend, 2024.  Starring Greg Kinnear and Terry Chen, the film follows the true story of Dr. Ming Wang, a Chinese American who defies all odds to become a world-renowned eye surgeon in the United States. Drawing upon the grit and determination he gained from a turbulent uprising in his youth in China, Dr. Wang sets out to restore the sight of a blind orphan. Colton Dixon finished in the top seven on Season 11 of American Idol and has collected a pair of Dove Awards. #ColtonDixon


Grammy nominated, CMA Award-winner, and soon-to-be newest member of the Grand Ole Opry, T. Graham Brown, has announced a brand new studio album titled From Memphis to Muscle Shoals, which is set to drop on Friday, August 2nd via Warner Music Group-ADA. The album is available for pre-order now and is packed with legendary collaborations, including Bettye LaVette, Sam Moore, Delbert McClinton, Dwight Yoakam, Eddie Floyd, Little Anthony, Randy Houser, Sammy Hagar, Tanya Tucker, Wynonna, and Zach Williams. The first single off the new album, “The Dark End of the Street,” featuring Country Music Hall of Famer and Grammy Award-winning artist Tanya Tucker, was exclusively premiered by Whiskey Riff and is available now. Pre-order/pre-save ‘From Memphis to Muscle Shoals’ here, and listen to “The Dark End of the Street” w/ Tanya Tucker here.  “I had the idea to do a soul tribute album for probably the last twenty years,” shares Brown. “When the opportunity came up, we jumped on it. We went down to Muscle Shoals, the heartbeat of soul music. Billy Lawson (co-producer) and I cut fourteen tracks and I started asking friends to sing on it with me. We made ten duets in total. This album was a lot of fun. We cut it to be authentic to the mid-60s. We used the same instrumentation, the horn sections, and we even used some of the instruments and equipment that were used on the original tracks at the historic Fame Studios. I think this is the “truest” album possible.”


Singer-songwriter and outlaw original Lacy J. Dalton has released the third single, “What Don’t Kill Ya,” from her upcoming For The Black Sheep album, due out June 21st. Mixing a combination of country and blues, Dalton brings to life the difficulties in the world, from breakups to life in general, that will help each of us become stronger individuals. With lyrics such as “sometimes you’re right, sometimes you’re wrong, you make mistakes, but you go on – and somehow life just rolls along and what don’t kill ya makes you strong,” Dalton has created a song that everyone can relate to. “What Don’t Kill Ya” was premiered by Cowboys & Indians and can be seen here.  Listen/stream “What Don’t Kill Ya” here.  The country icon continues to tour year-round and has recently been added to the 2025 Country Music Cruise lineup, which sails from January 19-26, 2025, with Dalton, John Michael Montgomery, Deana Carter, The Bellamy Brothers, and many more.  Dalton is a 2017 inductee of the North American Country Music Association International Hall of Fame, and most recently, she received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Josie Awards – the largest independent music awards show in the country. Updates at Lacy’s website.


Country star Clay Walker is now a ‘Pandora Billionaire’. Walker, who’s achievements include 11 number one singles, 40 charted singles, and 6 platinum and gold records, was presented with a Pandora’s Billionaire’s plaque by SiriusXM Pandora’s Associate Director of Talent & Industry Relations Bekah Digby during his SiriusXM Prime Country music event at SiriusXM’s new Nashville studios. The plaque commemorates Walker’s music having been streamed over 1 billion times on Pandora. During the event, Walker performed “Live Until I Die,” “What’s It ToYou” and more hits in front of an excited audience full of fans and chatted with SiriusXM’s Mike Terry about his life, career, what’s next and the streaming milestone. You can listen to Clay Walker on Pandora’s Country Billionaires station here. In April, Walker released his new song, “I Know She Hung The Moon,”which was written by his close friend the late Toby Keith and Scotty Emerick. He recorded the country ballad in December and with Toby’s passing he hopes to honor his legacy by bringing this song to life. You can hear “I Know She Hung TheMoon” during the forthcoming SiriusXM Prime Country event airing on the channel on May 10th. Walker is currently on his Country Side Tour and will make his Red Rocks debut on September 23 when he supports country music artist Cole Swindell. Find Clay Walker tour updates here


Sony Music Publishing Nashville has signed West Texas native Randall King, celebrated by Holler as “the genre’s neo-traditional figurehead,” to a global publishing agreement.  King has emerged as one of today’s most promising new voices in country music, amassing over 300 million streams with singles like “You In A Honky Tonk,” “Hey Cowgirl” and “Mirror, Mirror.” He’s kept the twang alive in country’s mainstream while also earning acclaim through deeply personal EPs like 2020’s Leanna, and his 2022 major label album debut, Shot Glass.  King released his sophomore major-label album Into The Neon earlier this year, with inspiration drawn from the hues of neon that backlit his budding career – inclusive of the glowing skies in the plains of West Texas where he was raised and the radiant signs of the nearly 150 honky tonks he performs in each year. King said, “Can’t begin to say how excited I am to be joining Sony Music Publishing! It’s a new era of writing for me and I couldn’t have joined a better team!”  Check out Into The Neon here.  #RandallKing


Big Machine Records proudly announces the signing of “The World’s Most Notorious Rock Band,” Mötley Crüe. Marking the start of a brand-new chapter for the superstar Crüe, their debut Big Machine single, “Dogs of War,” is available now. The track is the iconic group’s first new release since 2019. Listen/save here.  “Mötley Crüe on Big Machine! Growing up in Southern California, I was in Hollywood when these new sheriffs showed up and took over the city. It was loud. It was powerful. It was game changing,” says Big Machine Chairman and CEO Scott Borchetta. “Vince, Nikki, and Tommy, along with new guitarist John 5, have reignited the flame with ferocious new Crüe music. Fans will unite… SHOUT!”  “We are thrilled to announce the forthcoming release of our new music through Big Machine Records,” shared Mötley Crüe. “Scott’s been a friend and supporter of the band for a long time, and we loved collaborating on the Nashville Outlaws album in 2014. We’re very happy to know our new music will be in the best of hands with Scott and his exceptional team at Big Machine.” Updates here.  


With an all-new creative chapter ready for launch, LOCASH are counting down the days to their upcoming single, “Hometown Home” – their first release on their newly formed Galaxy Label Group. Co-written by the duo’s Preston Brust and Chris Lucas with Zach Abend and Andy Albert, the nostalgic anthem celebrates the joy in sharing what makes a hometown home– from first dates to family dinners.  Produced by Jacob Rice, this mid-tempo tribute to small-town settle downers and the adventure of true love is now available across streaming platforms and officially impact Country radio on May 13 – just as they settle into a new home themselves. Play/stream “Hometown Home” here.  Distributed by BBR Music Group/BMG Nashville and featuring LOCASH as the first act signed, the new Galaxy Label Group was created by the duo and revealed (via Billboard exclusive) during the 2024 Country Radio Seminar, named for the infinite possibilities the pair envision. In anticipation of that long-held dream coming true, LOCASH has been in the studio hard at work on their next recording project, with more info coming soon. Meanwhile, LOCASH’s spring tour schedule features a mix of festival and standalone dates, before joining Kane Brown for select stadiums on his In The Air Tour starting July 20 at Boston’s Fenway Park. Keep up with LOCASH on the road here. #LOCASH


Maryland native Sam Grow returns with his latest single and official video with fellow singer-songwriter Logan Mize. The single is now available for download and stream on all digital platforms via Average Joes Entertainment. Self-written and produced by Grow, “Yellow Brick Road” showcases his familiar growly vocals complimented by Mize’s modern flow. Using imagery of a yellow brick road to symbolize a desire to return to a simpler life, Grow captures a sense of nostalgia and yearning to return home, where he is most comfortable. The single arrives on the heels of Sam’s latest album, Avalon Avenue, which has garnered over 5 million worldwide streams since its January release. The project was predominantly conceived in Studio A of the iconic Fame Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, and comprises 12 tracks. Purchase and stream Avalon Avenue here.  After the breakout success of his first studio album, 2019’s Love and Whiskey, a lot has changed for Sam Grow. That milestone project followed years of grinding work, writing his own tunes, booking his own shows, and recording his own EPs … but it was all rewarded. Love and Whiskey hit number one on iTunes’ Country Albums chart – doing so with zero radio airplay – and since then he’s only poured more gas on the fire. More information on Sam Grow at his website and on social media #SamGrowMusic


The Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) welcomed songwriters and guests to their annual World’s Largest #1 Party, April 23, alongside presenting partners The Mechanical Licensing Collective (The MLC), The Hutton Hotel, and Analog at the Hutton Hotel. The morning celebration was held to honor all songs with a Nashville-associated writer that reached #1 on the Billboard Airplay, Digital, Hot or Mediabase charts during the period of January – December 2023. In addition to recognizing the songwriters of the chart-topping songs, NSAI honored Sherod Robertson, owner of MusicRow Magazine, with the aptly-named Champion Award for his unwavering support of songwriters, and for acting as a champion for the music industry as a whole.  “Sherod Robertson and MusicRow are champions and appropriately deserve the ‘NSAI Champion Award.’ The Nashville music industry is lucky to have MusicRow and its associated publications. But we are also blessed that Sherod and his team have championed songwriters, females in the industry, and do amazing work on a daily basis,” said Bart Herbison, NSAI Executive Director. #1 awards were presented by NSAI representatives Lyndsie McClure (Director of Development), Bart Herbison (Executive Director), and Jill Moody (Director of Membership) for a total of 21 songs who had writers present.  Attendees of the breakfast event included writers, publishers, artists, and numerous industry guests to support the honorees on their achievements. More about NSAI here


A new version of Flatland Cavalry’s song, “Let It Roll,” is out now featuring special guest Randy Rogers. Listen/share here and watch the official music video here. Of the song, written by the band’s lead singer Cleto Cordero and Randy Rogers, Cordero shares, “Growing up in Texas, we were inspired and influenced by endearing homegrown bands like Randy Rogers Band. We’re honored to collaborate with one of our heroes whom we are now lucky to call a friend and mentor! Take a moment today to celebrate life: kick back, let go, lose control and crank up, ‘Let It Roll’ feat. Randy Rogers!”  The release adds to a landmark year for the band, who is nominated for Group of the Year at the 59th Annual ACM Awards (their first ACM nomination) and released their acclaimed new album, Wandering Star, this past fall via Interscope Records—their first release in partnership with the label. Stream/purchase here.   Furthermore, Flatland Cavalry’s fan-favorite song, “A Life Where We Work Out,” featuring Kaitlin Butts was recently certified RIAA Gold, while their song, “Wool,” was featured on The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes (Music From & Inspired By), the official soundtrack to the new film in Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games saga.  Tour dates and more here. #FlatlandCavalry


Singer-songwriter Thunderstorm Artis, a recent Nashville transplant via the Portland, Ore., music scene, releases a compelling new single, “My Story,” available now via global music giant ONErpm. Listen to the new song here.  Written by Hawaii native Artis, award-winning songwriter Jess Cates and producer, drummer and songwriter Colton Price, both of Nashville, “My Story” offers a story of redemption.  As Artis, who rose to fame in 2020 as a finalist on Season 18 of The Voice, explains it, “This song is about a person who was lost but found love through a relationship with Jesus. It talks about how their life changed for the better and how they feel grateful for the rescue and freedom they experienced.” Our intent, he continues, was for the lyrics to show their journey “from darkness to light, highlighting the love and mercy they receive every day.” Overall, he adds, “the song conveys a message of hope, strength and faith in the power of love and salvation.” After touring with Train last summer and opening for the Zac Brown Band last fall, Artis is currently performing on his own Don’t Let Me Let You Go Tour this spring. For dates and tickets, visit here. #ThunderstormArtis


Multi-Platinum Country rocker Brantley Gilbert extends his Off The Rails Tour into the fall, announcing 15+ additional dates where he will be joined by special guests Adam Calhoun and Demun Jones. General on-sale begins Friday, May 3 at 10:00A local time.  Purchase tickets and find additional information here.  Since embarking on the Off The Rails Tour in March, Gilbert has delivered an unforgettable experience at each stop, packing as many songs as possible into the setlist and incorporating elevated production elements with pyrotechnics and CO2 cannons. “We’ve had such an amazing time on the Off The Rails Tour, we couldn’t help but decide to keep the party rollin’,” shares Gilbert. “This is my favorite show that we’ve put together, thanks to a talented lineup both in the band and behind the scenes. It’s been incredible seeing BG Nation match that energy every single night, and it only makes us more excited to get to the next city.” Over the last two years, Gilbert has been writing and recording for his seventh studio album and recently delivered a preview with the revelry inducing anthem “Off TheRails” via The Valory Music Co. Listen to “Off The Rails” here. #BrantleyGilbert


CMA and ACM award-winning country music legend Moe Bandy celebrates the 45th anniversary of his hit single “Just Good Ol’ Boys” with Joe Stampley, released in July 1979. Recorded on Columbia Records, “Just Good Ol’ Boys” was the title track on Bandy & Stampley’s first duets project. Penned by Ansley Fleetwood, the single held the top spot for a week and enjoyed an eleven-week stint on the country chart and remains one of Bandy’s most requested songs at every show. Listen here.  Moe Bandy was recently presented with the first-ever “Moe Bandy Icon Award” at the Texas Country Music Awards at Billy Bob’s Texas. “When we recorded ‘Just Good Ol’ Boys,” we never dreamed it would last this long,” smiles Bandy. “This song has had a huge influence on my career and I always enjoy performing it live. One thing is for certain: there must be a lot of good ol’ boys and girls out there, and I truly appreciate each one!” Bandy’s current album, Thank You Lord contains twelve heartfelt tracks and features special guests The Isaacs on “Family Bible” and The Oak Ridge Boys with Nora Lee Allen on “The Lord Is My Shepherd.” The title track, written by Mo Pitney, Bobby Tomberlin, and Cheryl Riddle, offers a true reflection of where Bandy is in his life today. #MoeBandy


Chris Stapleton’s take on Tom Petty’s “I Should Have Known It,” from the forthcoming Petty Country: A Country Music Celebration of Tom Petty, has debuted with an accompanying audio video that features vintage photos of Petty—watch/share here.  The track originally appeared on Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers’ 2010 album, Mojo, and again on the late rocker’s 2019 posthumous greatest hits album, The Best of Everything. Beloved by fans, “I Should Have Known It” became one of the most enduring live songs amongst Petty’s more recent material. The new track comes ahead of Petty Country: A Country Music Celebration of Tom Petty, the country tribute album lovingly curated by some of the late rocker’s closest friends and collaborators. It’s set for release on June 21 via Big Machine Records in partnership with the Tom Petty Estate and is available to pre-order here.  “I Should Have Known It” arrives on the heels of “Southern Accents,” reimagined by Petty’s friend and fellow Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Dolly Parton. The beautifully intimate version of what Petty considered to be one of the best songs he ever wrote has taken on a new life in the world of country music—watch the video directed by Trey Fanjoy, featuring poignant home videos and professional footage of Petty throughout his life, here.  


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 Preshias Harris is a music journalist and music career development consultant with the emphasis on new and aspiring artists and songwriters. Her book, ‘The College of Songology: The Singer/Songwriter’s Need to Know Reference Handbook’ is available at  Follow her blog at #PreshiasHarris

Send me music stuff, I love to get it! /  TN/USA. Google: “Preshias”#PreshiasHarris #nashvillemusicline

1 Comment

  1. I can relate… nothing more freeing than writing a song to let your thoughts n emotions escape

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  1. "Inside Track on Music Row" ready to read now - Nashville Music Line

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