Like several new songwriters and rising artists, newcomer Jameson Rodgers has found a champion in headliner Luke Combs. In January, Rodgers signed a joint deal, Sony Music Nashville and River House, which is also Combs’ label home.
Rodgers has spent much of 2019 opening more than 30 shows on Combs’ Beer Never Broke My Heart Tour, and will be out on the road opening more concerts for the superstar, including two shows at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena.
“It’s been a crazy few months,” Rodgers said during a recent visit to the MusicRow offices. “Going from songwriter rooms to playing arena stages has been a change.”
Similar to the streaming success that kicked off Combs’ early career, a track from Rodgers’ 2016 EP, “Midnight Daydream,” began gaining traction on streaming platforms. The song also caught the ear of Combs’ now-fiancée Nicole Hocking.
“She sent my music to Luke and it’s funny, he tells the story that was like somewhere out west, like in a hot tub with his tour manager and like four other guys. She sent them a song called ‘Midnight Daydream.’ He said they all listened to it like 10 times and loved it. Luke sent me an Instagram message and I didn’t know who he was—this was before ‘Hurricane’ hit. He wanted to co-write and of course I said yes.
“A year later, I had another EP out and he called me and said ‘You’re great, the songs are great.’ Then it was like three months of silence, before he texted me randomly at like 8 in the morning and was like ‘Call Me.” So I did and he said, ‘I’m doing 30 arenas next year, you want to come?’ We got to play Red Rocks, and the arena in Memphis I grew up going to. It’s been unreal. I’m trying not to mess it all up.”
It’s a heady season in his career for Batesville, Mississippi native Rodgers, who moved to Nashville in 2010. He spent the next few years working at FedEx by day and playing songwriter rounds at night. Along the way, he became friends with fellow rising writers and artists such as Hardy, who wrote two of the tracks on Rodgers’ project, including “Like You’ve Been There Before” and the debut single “Some Girls.”
“I fell in love with the demo like five years ago and I always told them I wanted to cut it,” he says of “Some Girls.” “I think every artist in town had ‘Some Girls’ on hold at some point. When you are coming up with those guys over the years, in the trenches and nobody even has a publishing deal, you’re just writing songs together and you’re sharing these demos. I would hear these songs and think ‘How has nobody cut this song?’ So I asked if I could cut them.”
A songwriter with Combustion Music, Rodgers has earned a few top-shelf songwriter credits of his own, penning Florida Georgia Line’s “Talk You Out Of It,” and Chris Lane’s “I Don’t Know About You.”
Between tour dates, Rodgers is working on his full-length debut major label album alongside Chris Farren, Mickey Jack Cones and Jake Mitchell.
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