Jody Williams Launches New Publishing Venture With Warner Chappell Music

Jody Williams. Photo: John Paul-Bruno

Jody Williams has returned to music publishing after a 14-year run as VP, Creative for performing rights organization BMI (his third run at the company).

Williams has launched Jody Williams Songs in partnership with Warner Chappell Music Nashville, to develop writers and artist-writers, secure covers, source legacy catalogs and represent select Warner Chappell Music catalogs for pitching. Jody Williams Songs will represent Ashley McBryde, Nathan Chapman, Jeremy Spillman and Greg Bates, and will also represent Pat McLaughlin in a writer management/publishing role.

Former Curb|Word Music Publishing Creative Director Nina Jenkins will serve as Creative Director for Williams’ new publishing company.

“My time at BMI taught me volumes about the business. I’ve seen how music, consumption, and income streams have changed over the last decade and a half,” said Williams. “Those great publishing catalogs that became the cornerstone of Nashville’s music industry, and those songwriters, provide continual inspiration for me. They are the catalyst for the song-forward nature of Jody Williams Songs. And having Ben Vaughn and the Warner Chappell team as the top publisher supporting us is a game-changer. Our Creative Director, Nina Jenkins, brings energy and an unmatched passion for songwriters. Between our team and theirs, I have very high hopes for the future.”

“It’s a huge honor that Jody chose to make his return to the scene with Warner Chappell Music,” said Ben Vaughn, President & CEO, WCM Nashville. “In his long and storied career, Jody has earned a well-deserved reputation as one of Nashville’s leading industry figures. His commitment to quality is matched only by his unwavering support for the songwriting community. We value Jody’s wisdom and experience and our team looks forward to working alongside he and Nina as an extended part of the WCM family.”

Nashville native Williams has spent more than four decades in Nashville’s music community, including serving as President for MCA Music Publishing Nashville, as well as roles at Tree Publishing, Chappell Music and Screen Gems Music. In 1999, he formed Jody Williams Music, where he worked with Liz Rose, Josh Turner, and McLaughlin. JWM’s catalog was later sold to ole Media Management (now called Anthem) and contained songs recorded by Taylor Swift, Josh Turner, Tim McGraw, Bonnie Raitt, and many others.

Williams is the former Chairman of the Board of Directors of CMA and remains a current board member, and is currently a trustee of the Country Music Hall of Fame.

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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 [email protected]

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