IEBA Board; Tin Pan Passes; CRS Rates

The International Entertainment Buyers Association has elected several new board members and a new executive committee. The organization is also busy planning its 40th anniversary conference, set for October 3-5 in Nashville.

IEBA Executive Committee
Chairman: Barry Jeffrey, William Morris Endeavor Entertainment
Outgoing Chairman: Randy Wright, Integrity Events
President: Linda Smith, Glenn Smith Presents
VP: Rick Murray, Greylock Entertainment
Treasurer: Karen Clark, Pinnacle Financial Partners
Secretary: Larry Werner, Panhandle Productions

Newly-elected IEBA Board members— Todd Boltin, Variety Attractions; Christy Bowen, Star of Texas Fair and Rodeo; Jim Carter, Murray State University; Charlie Davis, Paradise Artists; Jeff Hill, CAA; Greg Janese, Paradigm Agency; Scott Morris, ICM; Lori Otelsberg, Signature Entertainment and Promotions; Huston Powell, C3 Presents; Brenda Tinnen, AEG Kansas City.

Watkins College of Art, Design & Film student Michael Korfhage created the Tin Pan South logo.

Among the local board members in the middle of 3-year terms are Steve Lassiter, APA; Fran Romeo, Romeo Entertainment Group; Clarence Spalding, Spalding Entertainment; Sally Williams, Ryman Auditorium; and Philip Lyon, Lyon & Phillips, PLLC – legal counsel. The IEBA staff consists of executive director Tiffany Davis and assistant Andrew Farwell.

The 18th Annual Tin Pan South Songwriters Festival presented by Regions Bank will be held Tuesday, March 30 – Saturday, April 3, in Nashville. Produced by NSAI, the world’s largest all-songwriter festival features seasoned pros and new faces performing in some of Music City’s best listening rooms. Fast Access Passes, which provides preferred access to all the shows, go on sale Wednesday, March 10 at Proceeds from the festival benefit the NSAI Legislative Fund.


Country Radio Broadcasters, Inc. has extended its first ever $99 Unemployment Rate and approved the on-site sale of single-day passes for CRS 2010, to be held Feb. 24-26, 2010.

The $99 Unemployment Rate offers a financial break to those currently without work but still wanting to attend Country Radio Seminar. The new deadline to apply for the Unemployment Rate is Feb. 15, 2010.  This registration provides attendees access to educational events and songwriter showcases only. Tickets to the Music City Jam™, New Faces of Country Music Show® and daily luncheons must be purchased separately.

Sanford And Nichols At Sound Kitchen; Celeb Softball

Chas Sandford

Tim Nichols

Chas Sandford, Tim Nichols and friends will perform at Strings and Stories: A Night of Songwriter’s Tales on Feb. 20 at the Sound Kitchen in Franklin. The event will benefit the children of High Hopes Inclusive Preschool and Pediatric Therapy Clinic, and in addition to the performances, will include a “Meet the Artist” session with wine, beer and hors d’oeuvres. To make reservations please send a check for $125 per person payable to High Hopes, Inc., c/o High Hopes Fund Development, 1647 Mallory Lane, Suite 103, Brentwood, TN 37027.  You may also make reservations by phone at (615) 522-5611.


The 20th annual City of Hope Celebrity Softball Challenge is set for June 7 at Greer Stadium in Nashville. Considered as an unofficial kickoff to the CMA Music Festival, this high-profile game features country stars, athletes and celebrities taking the field to represent team sponsors Grand Ole Opry Live and After MidNite with Blair Garner. Carrie Underwood, Vince Gill, Clint Black and many others have all stepped up to the plate in past years to help raise funds and awareness for City of Hope’s lifesaving mission.

Carrie Underwood at a past Celebrity Softball Challenge.

Gill’s “Love Songs,” Urban/Mayer “Crossroads,” More

vinceVince Gill’s love songs have been compiled into a new album being released today (1/26). Love Songs is out via MCA Nashville. The Country Music Hall of Famer personally selected and sequenced his favorites for the 14-track compilation that spans his most popular albums released from 1991 to 2006. Among his numerous hits on the project are “Whenever You Come Around,” “Love Finds You,” and “The Rock Of Your Love” (with Bonnie Raitt).


Keith Urban will pair with hit rocker John Mayer for tonight’s taping of CMT Crossroads. The show is set to air at a later date. Mayer was on a previous episode with Brad Paisley, and Urban has joined John Fogerty for an installment.


bookThe second book in Tim McGraw and songwriter Tom Douglas’s My Little Girl series will be released Feb. 16. Love Your Heart again focuses on Katie and her dad, this time the story is about her school’s talent show, where she learns kindness is the best talent of all.


The star packed line-up for this year’s Gift of Music concert benefiting W.O. Smith Music School caused tickets to sell out in about 20 minutes. Rascal Flatts, Kellie Pickler, Jason Michael Carroll, Keith Anderson, Little Big Town and surprise guests are set for the concert on Feb. 22 at the Wildhorse Saloon. VIP packages are still available for $500 by calling 615–371-8878.

Songwriter Dale Dodson Enjoys Roles At Carnival, Sony/ATV

daleSongwriter and country music historian Dale Dodson has a unique new arrangement that allows him to remain as a staff writer for longtime publisher Sony/ATV and also take on a creative services role at Carnival Music.

Dodson is the writer or co-writer of songs including “Look Who’s Back In Town” by George Strait, “Good News, Bad News” and “Everything But Quits” by Strait and Lee Ann Womack, “20 Years and 2 Husbands Ago” by Womack, “Senses” by Reba McEntire and “I Bought The Shoes That Just Walked Out On Me” by Dierks Bentley.

“Not only can Dale write songs that sound like they fell off a 1959 Wurlitzer jukebox,” says Carnival Music’s Frank Liddell, “but he has the ability to go into a catalogue and understand what kind of songs suit specific artists…We were able to work with Sony/ATV’s Troy Tomlinson on creating a place for Dale here where he’s able to work with my writers, set-up co-writes, pitch out songs…and possibly help us become more dynamic, all the time continuing in his relationship with his primary publisher.”

“Dale is an invaluable resource to us,” agrees Tomlinson. “He knows our heritage catalogue better than I’d say anyone in Nashville, and he understands where those songs should find homes, as well as writing classic old school standards, which have found some amazing homes…We are very excited to have this opportunity to see one of our very best grow in new and exciting ways.”

“When you look at the writers who’ve been part of Sony/ATV, that is a lineage I’ve always taken very seriously,” Dodson says. “I am honored to follow in the footsteps of Hank Williams, Bobby Braddock, Willie Nelson, Dean Dillon. And to be able to be a part of watching Carnival Music—a place that’s always signed writers’ writers like Bruce Robeson, Natalie Hemby, Troy Jones and Scooter Carusoe—develop into hopefully the same piece of the same kind country music history is a challenge and a thrill I’m looking forward to.”

Dodson, a native of Berkeley Springs, WV, came to Nashville in 1987 to work in the shows at Opryland, did a short stint with Evelyn Shriver Public Relations and started at Sony/Tree 1992 as a writer who also consulted on catalogue from Hank Cochran, Buck Owens, Harlan Howard and the myriad back catalogues under the Sony/ATV umbrella.

Industry News: Nashville At Sundance, Gospel Honors

leann rimesASCAP is sending Nashville songwriters including LeAnn Rimes, Brendan Benson, Joey+Rory, k.s. Rhoads, and Sam & Ruby to the 2010 Sundance Film Festival, going on Jan. 21-31 in Park City, Utah. Events include the  Sundance ASCAP Music Café and the annual, invitation-only ASCAP Filmmaker & Composer Breakfast.


BMI will honor gospel greats Donnie McClurkin and Andraé Crouch at its 11th Annual Trailblazers of Gospel Music Awards Luncheon, Jan. 15 at Rocketown. Held the day before the 25th Annual Stellar Awards, BMI’s invitation-only ceremony will welcome gospel music’s premier songwriters, recording artists and music industry executives, as well as the genre’s legends.


More details about the Show Dog-Universal Music label will be unveiled Wed., Jan. 13 when Principle Toby Keith and President Mark Wright hold a press conference in Nashville.

Moraine Music Group Canadian singer/songwriter Johnny Reid closed out 2009 as the Top Selling Canadian Artist on the Billboard Country Album chart, selling 300,000 units. Reid also swept the CCMA’s, winning six awards.


Digital Music News reports producer Matt Serletic—known in Nashville most recently for his work with Gloriana—has been at CES in Las Vegas promoting his software company Music Mastermind. The game-like program is designed to make music-making easy regardless of musical background. DMN calls it “ProTools for the masses.”


Longtime Napster CEO Chris Gorog and president Brad Duea are leaving the company; owner Best Buy says both positions are being eliminated. Christopher Allen, previously Napster’s COO, will move to  General Manager.


SXSWeek 2010 will be March 12-21 in Austin. The first headliner announced is Cheap Trick. Other early conference topics include case studies on music from the film Twilight: New Moon, and examining how music makes it way into mass culture via the video game Rock Band.

Steve Seskin Plans Songwriting Seminar

Steve Seskin

Steve Seskin

The 6th annual Steve Seskin Songwriting Seminar will be held January 22 – 24, 2010 in Nashville, with hit writers Allen Shamblin and Gretchen Peters set to participate. There will be two days of lectures, workshops and discussions. Friday night Jan. 22 includes a Steve Seskin concert at Edgehill Studios Cafe. Workshops will follow on Saturday and Sunday at the Bluebird Café, the location of the Saturday night concert to benefit Alive Hospice featuring Steve, Chuck Jones, Jesse Terry and Jamie Floyd.

Seskin’s cuts include “Grown Men Don’t Cry,” recorded by Tim McGraw, and “Don’t Laugh at Me,” winner of NSAI Song of the Year and MusicRow Magazine Song of the Year, recorded by Mark Wills. Among his other hits are songs by Neal McCoy, John Michael Montgomery, Ricochet, Colin Raye, and Kenny Chesney.

For more information on the songwriting seminar which costs $345, check out Seskin’s website or contact Claudia Young at [email protected] or 615-309-9449.

Ole Signs Chris Wallin

(L-R): ole Chief Creative Officer Gilles Godard, Chris Wallin, and ole’s Shane Barrett

(L-R): ole Chief Creative Officer Gilles Godard, Chris Wallin, and ole’s Shane Barrett

Ole has acquired the catalogue of hit songwriter Chris Wallin and entered a worldwide co-publishing deal with him. Among the No. 1s he has written or co-written are Toby Keith’s “Love Me If You Can,” Kenny Chesney’s “Don’t Blink,” and Montgomery Gentry’s “Something To Be Proud Of.” He brings these and over 100 more songs including hits “I’m Tryin’” (Trace Adkins) and “Speed” (Montgomery Gentry) to ole.

The White Pine, Tennessee native says he was drawn to ole’s international reach—it has offices in Toronto, Nashville and Los Angeles—and development commitment to its writers when deciding to sign with them. He says, “It’s clear that ole is a company that doesn’t stay in the box.”

He moved to Nashville in the 1980s and soon landed his first songwriting deal, garnering cuts by artists such as Lorrie Morgan, Keith Anderson, Anthony Smith, Trace Adkins, Jeffrey Steele, Confederate Railroad, Neal McCoy, Brad Paisley and Diamond Rio. Wallin is also an active advocate for songwriter’s rights and often works with NSAI to protect intellectual property rights.

Tidbits: All Access Ent., Steel Magnolia, Dann Huff, More

all accessScott Edwards and Dee Burgess have formed All Access Entertainment, specializing in public relations, marketing, image consulting, event planning and artist development. Their new offices are located at 7 Music Square West. Former NFL player Kyle Turley is on board as a client, and the firm says it plans to work with artists, non-profits and corporations. With over twenty-five combined years in the industry, Edwards and Burgess have worked on campaigns for such clients as John and June Carter Cash, Willie Nelson, Dolly Parton, and Wynonna Judd, handling public relations, marketing, artist development, journalism, A&R, and production. All Access can be reached here and at (615) 915-3676.


steel magnoliaSteel Magnolia, the Big Machine duo made up of Joshua Scott Jones and Meghan Linsey, have been recording their debut album with Dann Huff in the producer’s chair. They are planning to launch the second leg of their radio tour in January.

Songwriters including Billy Montana are judging a poem contest hosted by The Hermitage Hotel. Romantic poems can be posted to the upscale hotel’s Facebook page to celebrate Valentine’s Day. The winner gets a deluxe romance package for two. The contest runs Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2010 through Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2010.

Alive at The Bluebird Series Returns

Amy Grant

Amy Grant

More than 70 songwriters are set to perform in the 17th annual Alive at The Bluebird concert series this January. Many artists and writers who have long supported the benefit for Alive Hospice are returning in 2010, including Amy Grant, Suzy Bogguss, Doug Crider, Kathy Mattea, Jon Vezner, Kim Carnes, Matraca Berg, Becky Hobbs, Benita Hill, Kent Blazy, Gary Burr, Jim Photoglo, Kasey Jones, and Allen Shamblin.

The series will run Tuesdays through Saturdays in January at the Bluebird Café. Opening night is Jan. 2 at 9:30 p.m. with performances by Tony Arata, Pat Alger, Ralph Murphy and Bat McGrath.

Alive Hospice provides end-of-life care and bereavement support services in 12 Middle Tennessee counties. Funding from this concert series will help the nonprofit agency provide comfort to uninsured and underinsured patients who face life-threatening illnesses and limited life-expectancies.

Admission to most shows will range from about $8-20, depending on the show. Schedule, prices and reservations at or by calling The Bluebird Café at 615-383-1461.

Tin Pan South Kicks Off March 30

tpsThe Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) has announced the dates for the 18th Annual Tin Pan South Songwriters Festival, running March 30 – April 3, 2010 in Nashville. Highlighting songwriters of all genres, the popular event will feature two shows per night at numerous local venues. For the fourth continuous year, Regions Bank will be Tin Pan South’s presenting sponsor.

The Tin Pan South Press Preview Party is set for March 9, 2010 from 3:30 – 5:30 p.m. at The Rutledge (410 4th Avenue South) in Nashville. There, several featured writers will perform and announcements will be made regarding schedules, venues, participating writers and more.

During last year’s event, more than 350 talented songwriters performed over 80 shows at nine Music City venues. Over 9,000 music fans attend the event annually.

Visit or to purchase Fast Access passes and check out Festival updates. Fast Access passes will go on sale March 10, 2010.