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Congratulations to country superstar Toby Keith! The Show Dog-Universal artist was presented with a pretty special award this week from BMI – the “Million-Air Award” to celebrate the publishing credits on more than fifteen of his own mega-hit songs. The Broadcast Music, Inc. awarded Toby the special title for his singles “How Do You Like Me Now?”, “Beer For My Horses,” “She Never Cried In Front Of Me,” “God Love Her,” “I Love This Bar,” and “Who’s Your Daddy.”
BMI Vice-President/Writer-Publisher Relations Jody Williams and Assistant Vice President/Writer-Publish Relations Clay Bradley gave Toby the award at a ceremony in Nashville last night. Toby was in-studio on Music Row when he was presented all of the certificates, which you can check out below:
Clay shared why BMI is so excited to give Toby the special title:
“Toby Keith is a stalwart BMI songwriter, who we’ve been honored to work with since early in his career. With these honors, he now stands at over 80 million performances and shows no signs of stopping.”
What’s your favorite Toby Keith song of all time?
Rising star group Eli Young Band were the first artists to receive the brand new CMA Medallion this week. The new Olympics-styled medal replaces the former CMA plaque for writing or performing a number one country song, and was awarded to the group in celebration of their newest chart topper “Even If It Breaks Your Heart.” The party was a standing room only event at the Country Music Association offices on Music Row as supporters and friends of the group overwhelmingly came out to share the love.
Yesterday’s presentation of the new CMA medals was made by BMI’s Jody Williams, ASCAP’s Mike Sistad, Cal IV Entertainment’s Danielle Hill, Big Machine’s Scott Borchetta and Jimmy Harnen, Avenue Bank’s Ron Cox, CMA’s Brandi Simms and CRS’ Bill Mayne.
“Thank you for believing in us and believing in this song,” said Mike Eli. “We fell in love with the song not because we saw, or had any foresight, or thought it was a No. 1. We just loved this song.”
The song was especially personal to writers Eric Paslay and Will Hoge. Will spoke about writing the song together:
“It was so personal for Ericand I, we thought it would never connect because it was so personal. Eli Young took it and truly made it an anthem.”
Congratulations to Eli Young Band! Check out the picture below of the group getting their medals:
Renowned music producer Josh Leo is celebrating twenty-three number one singles this week. He’s personally written six number one singles, and has contributed to multiple gold and platinum selling albums and singles throughout his career – including for The Eagles’ Timothy B. Schmit. He was even the one responsible for the discovery of country superstar Martina McBride.
His latest number one is with RCA Nashville duo Love and Theft. He produced their new album and their number one single “Angel Eyes.” He’s pretty excited about the duo, and shares:
“Love and Theft is a TRUE duo!! Two great singers, songwriters and performers that equally carry the weight! I’m very fortunate to be given the opportunity to work with such talented REAL people!”
Eric Gunderson and Eric Barker Liles were just as excited to be working with Josh:
“Josh Leo is the man! He is a legend and it has been such a pleasure to work with him. We are so honored to be a part of his 23rd #1 song. We look forward to making music with Josh for years to come!” says Eric Gunderson.“Josh Leo!!!! Our other dad!!! I couldn’t be more happy for him to land his 23rd #1 record. We are honored to work with him and blessed to call him our friend. Congrats Josh!” comments Stephen Barker Liles.
Parallel Music Publishing has moved to Music City and, to announce their arrival, they’ve signed their very first songwriter, Blake Chaffin. The folks at PMP know a thing or two about finding talent. Tim Hunze, the brains behind the operation, most recently worked for Stage Three Music where he oversaw the careers of songwriters like Bobby Pinson, the 2009 BMI Songwriter of the Year.
And Hunze sees that same talent in Chaffin saying, “Blake has great ideas, strong melodies and a passion for writing. History has proven that those are the makings of a great songwriter. Parallel is thrilled that we signed him before someone else did.”
PMP, which is one branch of the much larger Parallel Entertainment, a full service talent management and production company, has also recently settled into their new location on Music Row. Look for more from PMP songwriters in the near future.
Country music singer-songwriter Shane Stevens had a lot to celebrate this week. He was given a BMI award for writing Lady Antebellum’s #1 hit “American Honey” in Nashville. Shane co-wrote the single with Carley Barlowe and Hillary Lindsey. Shane, a South Carolina native now living in Music City, has written songs for many of country’s top artists, including: Sara Evans, Kellie Pickler, Montgomery Gentry, and even American Idol Jordin Sparks.
Shane will be releasing his new album “Holy Graffiti” in January. His lead single from the album “Back To Earth” was released today and is available for streaming on his official website. Check out his single HERE. The music video for the single was shot in New York City and will launch next month.
You can catch Shane with fellow songwriter Sherrie Austin on Sundance’s new television show “Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys.” The show was shot in Nashville, and the first episode will air on November 18th on Sundance.
BMI has announced the date for its 59th annual BMI Country Awards this year. The event which celebrates the top songwriters of the year will be held November 9th in Nashville, Tennessee at BMI’s offices. The awards are by invitation only and not open to the public.