For those in Nashville on Saturday night, the Listening Room Cafe was the place to be. The intimate venue featured an all-star cast of songwriting talent, sharing their songs and the stories behind them. Led by Josh Kerr, the round also included Jordan Minton, Nick Wayne, and a surprise appearance by Parker Welling.
While these names may not be familiar to you, we can guarantee that their songs are. Kerr is the most well-known of the group, having written the likes of Kelsea Ballerini’s hits “Love Me Like You Mean It” and “Dibs” and Dylan Scott’s “My Girl.” However, Minton has had cuts by Dan + Shay (“What Keeps You Up at Night” and Keith Urban (“Never Coming Down”), while Nick Wayne is poised to become one of country music’s next big superstars, having just released his own Two Sides EP.
A highlight of the night came in the form of a guest appearance by Parker Welling, who has had two huge hits with one of NYCountrySwag’s favorites, Russell Dickerson. Welling performed “Blue Tacoma” and “Yours,” eliciting some of the night’s biggest cheers.
Another highlight of the night was Minton revealing the story behind “What Keeps You Up at Night,” which appears on Dan + Shay’s latest self-titled album. The songwriter revealed that the track was originally on hold by Blake Shelton, who then decided not to record it. It was immediately snatched up by Keith Urban, but when Dan Smyers and Shay Mooney heard the song, they just had to have it, calling Urban and asking to record it. He obliged, and it became Minton’s first album cut.
Kerr also played a song that was recently cut by a mystery artist he revealed to be named “Enny Esney,” as to not jinx the song. Hopefully, everyone will get to hear this song soon. Kerr also played “Backburner,” one of his older songs, admitting that he “felt a lot of things in 2016” when the song was written.
Wayne was the true revelation of the night, his soulful voice and unique style truly lighting up the room. We fully expect big things from him, and can’t wait to see what’s in store for his future. If you haven’t heard of him yet, run (don’t walk!) to Spotify or iTunes, and take a listen to “If You Wanna” and “How Do I Get Close.” You will not be disappointed.
During the incredible round, the writers revealed that they perform together monthly, usually joined by Jordan Reynolds (Dan + Shay’s “Tequila.”) If you happen to live in Nashville or be visiting, make sure to get down to the Listening Room for a future round. It’s one not to be missed.
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