Music has always been in Rhett Akins’ blood. The Valdosta, GA. native grew up in a close-knit family that supported his musical interests and his desire to pursue music as a career.
One of Rhett’s song demo tapes found its way to the reactivated Decca Records label. Impressed by what they heard, they quickly signed Rhett to a recording contract. In 1995 his first album, A Thousand Memories was released to critical acclaim and spawned his first # 1 single and a song he co-wrote “That Ain’t My Truck”. That success was duplicated the following year with his second #1 single, “Don’t Get Me Started”, from his follow up album “Somebody New”.
Rhett has an incredible 29 career number one singles as a songwriter, including: “Dirt On My Boots” by Jon Pardi, “All Over Me” by Josh Turner, “Gimmie That Girl” by Joe Nichols, “Put A Girl In It” by Brooks & Dunn, “Take A Back Road” by Rodney Atkins, “I Don’t What This Night To End” by Luke Bryan, “I Can Take It From There” by Chris Young, “All About Tonight”, “Honey Bee” and “Boys Round Here”, all three by Blake Shelton, “Point At You” by Justin Moore, “Hey Girl” by Billy Currington, “When She Says Baby” by Jason Aldean, “Get Me Some Of That” and “It Goes Like This” by Thomas Rhett and many others.
Akins was named BMI’s songwriter of the year in 2011 and received Triple Play Awards in January 2012, 2014, and 2018 for having three number one singles in a 12 month period. Most recently, he was named 2018 ACM Songwriter of the Year.
Kelley Lovelace was born in Paducah, Kentucky but was primarily raised in Hixson, Tennessee on the outskirts of Chattanooga. He currently lives in Franklin, Tennessee just a few miles south of Nashville.
Upon completion of basic training in the United States ARMY, Kelley received the coveted Distinguished Honor Graduate Award recognizing him as the top soldier in the company. He continued to excel in the military and obtained the rank of specialist (E-4) before receiving an honorable discharge for faithfully completing his two-year term of service at Fort Benning in Columbus, Georgia.
As a cum laude graduate of Belmont University, Kelley began working and writing at Larry Butler’s music publishing company, Perdido Key Music. In just three years he became President of this publishing company, owned by Shug Baggott, and dubbed it Music Alley before choosing to write songs full time and landing a song writing deal with EMI Music Publishing.
Kelley has had 22 top 10 hits, 17 of which have reached #1 on the charts, including songs by Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, Randy Houser, Keith Urban, and Terri Clark. His most recent #1 was Jason Aldean’s “Rearview Town.”
Kelley has also received Song of the Year nominations for “He Didn’t Have To Be,” co-written with and recorded by Brad Paisley, from the Country Music Association (CMA) and the Academy of Country Music. Kelley’s first Grammy nomination came in 2002 in the category of Best Country Song for “The Impossible” recorded by Joe Nichols.
Other artists who have recorded his songs include Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts, Sheryl Crow, Scotty McCreery, Hunter Hayes, Lauren Alaina, Montgomery Gentry and more.
With his unique gift for finding the extraordinary in ordinary life, Chris Wallin has established himself as one of Nashville’s most sought-after songwriters.
For the decade, Wallin has topped the charts with classics-in-the-making for the industry’s biggest stars including, “Love Me If You Can” by Toby Keith, “Don’t Blink” by Kenny Chesney, “I’m Tryin’” for Trace Adkins, “Something To Be Proud Of” and “Speed” by Montgomery Gentry.
Raised in the small town in East Tennessee Wallin was influenced by the likes of Jim Croce, James Taylor and Merle Haggard, as well as his own musical family – especially his mother, a singer herself. She recorded and performed in Nashville for a time, and the experience made an indelible impression on the seven-year-old Chris.
He began writing songs at age 12 and, perhaps inevitably, moved to Music City several years later, making the dues-paying rounds of writer’s nights and songwriting contests. He caught a break when his songs caught the ear of a small publishing company (co-owned by eventual Taylor Swift collaborator Liz Rose), helping to launch him on a professional career that has led to award-winning collaborations with fellow hit-makers like Jim Collins, Craig Wiseman, Tim Nichols and Jeffrey Steele.
Artists who have cut Chris’s songs include Lorrie Morgan, Sammy Kershaw, Trace Adkins, Michael Peterson, Anthony Smith, Jeffrey Steele, Neal McCoy, Brad Paisley, Joe Diffie, Diamond Rio, and many more.