Friday, March 4, 2011

God bless local radio

Where else but Martin, Tennessee can you show up at the local radio station with a new song, and have them put it on the air within 30 minutes? I am talking, of course, about WCMT (1410 AM, 100.5 FM) owned and operated by Paul Tinkle who, along with co-DJ Chris Brinkley, bring us the "Good Times in the Morning" radio show. For several years now, they've been including songs from my first album (Til Jesus Is All) on their Sunday morning musical program, and I also stopped by one time with a new track (Lead Me to the Rock) that they played on the air.

Well, I once kidded with Chris that one day I'd write a song about the way the two would talk about anything on the radio. A few months later, the song came along, and I recorded it quickly and stopped by the studio the next morning with a freshly-burned CD-R. Sure enough, within a few minutes we were on the air introducing the new song, "Everything I Know In Life I Learned From Chris and Paul".

Since then, I've done the same with a few other songs -- "I've Died and Gone to Starbucks", "Shut Up and Drive", and "Chris and Paul Save Christmas". Also sang "There's Nothing Like the Bean!" with co-writer Jim Byford; that song has been the official theme song of the TN Soybean Festival (hosted by the city of Martin each year in early September) for about 3 years and counting. Just last Christmas, I showed up to play a few Christmas tunes (Paul also wanted to sing come carols on the air), and I finished up by playing my Christmas song, "More Than a Child".

In this day and age of pre-programmed radio controlled by the big dogs, it sure is nice to have a radio station like WCMT that is in tune to the area it serves, and has time to allow someone like me to share a new song now and then. God bless local radio!

Hunter Hayes singing one of my songs

It was Thanksgiving evening 2010, and for some reason I decided to Google one of my songs, "More Than a Child", probably because Christmas was coming up. To my surprise, in addition to my own YouTube video of the song, I found one posted for a musician named Hunter Hayes. Sure enough, it was my song! Searching around a bit more, I found out that he recorded it on his Christmas album a few years earlier. I was able to get in contact with HH, and he told me how he'd learned the song as part of a Christmas musical at his middle school (around age 12 -- he is 19 now) and wanted to record it on his Christmas album. The YouTube video was from a 2008 performance in Lafayette, Louisiana (HH is from that area) at a program called Festival de Noel. Hunter is a real musical prodigy, performing once at age 4 with Hank, Jr. At this moment he is wrapping up work on his debut album for Atlantic Records in Nashville, and is fixin' to take his new songs on the road (he's also been tapped to open for part of Taylor Swift's 2011 tour, in July/August). Anyhow, it was quite an honor to find out that someone with so much writing and performing talent in their own right, is a fan of my Christmas song. If you want to see/hear his performance on YouTube, I have a link from the song's page at:
Enjoy the song, and keep a look out for Hunter Hayes -- he's just now getting into high gear.