MusicRowPics: Getting To Know Clayton Anderson

Clayton Anderson with MusicRow owner/publisher Sherod Robertson.

Clayton Anderson is set to add his own name to the list of successful musicians with Indiana roots, one that includes artists John Mellencamp, Steve Wariner, Guns N’ Roses’ Axl Rose, Van Halen’s David Lee Roth, and Janie Fricke, among many others.

Anderson, who has since teamed with Borman Entertainment and Marbaloo Marketing, as well as with WME for booking, says his strategy for building a fan base began with colleges.

“I figured out if you went to these sororities, girls would show up to watch your show, and all the dudes would follow. Depending on the size of the school, you can get up to 500 girls a night to come to the show. They are the ones on their phones, listening and buying music. I still do it. I was just in Arizona and we played some sororities. It’s worked well for us.”

Anderson’s hard-earned success also comes from shows that have not been so easy, such as his stints when he arrived in Music City four years ago at Demonbreun’s Tin Roof.

“When I first got to town, before there were apartments across from the Tin Roof, I would play there,” recalls Anderson. “I had my car, my amps and my guitar and I had this Pontiac. I would play at the Tin Roof and hang out and if nobody invited me to sleep on their couch, I’d go across the street and sleep in my car. I had a strategy worked out where I’d scrap up tip money and go take a shower at the Best Western.”

He would later put out two independent albums, the latter of which reached No. 2 on iTunes and produced a song that garnered more than 2 million streams on Spotify.

During his visit to the MusicRow office, Anderson performed the tracks “In The Dark,” “All Over The Map,” and “Only To Borrow,” the title track of his latest EP.

“Being from Indiana and loving John Mellencamp’s music, I wanted to have a song in my arsenal that spoke about young love and those small-town values,” he says of “Only To Borrow,” which Anderson co-wrote with Travis Hill. “I felt like Mellencamp was able to just draw those kinds of pictures so clearly that you could just see them.”

Clayton Anderson with MusicRow staffers

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Category: Artist, Featured

About the Author

Jessica Nicholson serves as the Managing Editor for MusicRow magazine. Her previous music journalism experience includes work with Country Weekly magazine and Contemporary Christian Music (CCM) magazine. She holds a BBA degree in Music Business and Marketing from Belmont University. She welcomes your feedback at jnicholson@musicrow.com.

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