Friday, April 24, 2009
This week was a fun - albeit very busy - week.
Sunday, we got back from the Natalie tour dates at about 8:30am. I got a little sleep that afternoon then had to go to soundcheck for the Songwriter's showcase, which has always been my favorite part of the GMA week. All the biggest songs of the year are performed by their songwriter (s) and each writer tells the story of how the song came about.
Tony Wood and I performed "Empty Me" both telling about how the song came to be.
Monday it was up bright and early. Rough Draft was in town (by the way, if you haven't gotten their album yet, you need to - it really is incredible) all this week and I helped them meet with labels. Anyway, we had a meeting bright and early Monday morning and then I hung out until I had some interviews later in the day.
I had decided a while back that I really want to enjoy GMA week. So many artists you talk to dread this week and think the whole thing is pointless or cheesy. I love it and want to continue to love it. It's a great time to see people you only see once a year a lot of times. So I cut my interviews this year down to just an afternoon. If there's stuff we miss, there's stuff we miss. So we did like 6 hours of interviews on Monday and that was it!
Monday night, we went to the ASCAP dinner. How much fun was that?!! So many big-name artists and writers were there...it was so cool. Sarah and I sat at the table with Sanctus Real and got to hang out with Jeremy Camp, Mac Powell (Sarah and I got a picture with Mac and his wife Amy...so cool!), Matthew West and so many more. Larnelle Harris was there! He sang a tribute to Dave Clark, a writer who just got his 25th number 1! And I thought it was awesome having 1 #1.
Anyway, overall this week it's been really interesting to see the marked difference between last year and this. Last year I felt like the little kid jumping up and down going "Look at me! Look at me!" This year, it's fun to have had some success as an artist that other people seem to have recognized, as well as the Rascal Flatts cut! I mean, so many people who I never would've guessed would've known about the song came up to congratulate - it has been really crazy. I guess I didn't even know what a big deal this has been. I guess it still hasn't really sunk in yet.
Anyway, Tuesday I met with 6 labels with Rough Draft. Some really great meetings, some not so great meetings...but overall a lot of initial interest in the band. The EP turned out so great and I'm so proud of the guys and what they've accomplished. I can't imagine they won't get signed with as hard working as they are and as talented as they are.
My parent came in Tuesday night so we went and got some Red Lobster (my parents favorite restaurant - they don't have it Germany). It was great to spend some time with them!
Wednesday I slept in a little later - I didn't have anything until 2:45pm, when I had to go for the rehearsal/sound check for the Doves. That lasted way too long then it was off to a radio interview with Rough Draft over at Total Axxess. Now that was fun. Wally is seriously one of my favorite people in the business and easily one of my favorite DJs. He is just real and funny and knows what he's talking about.
From there, I went to a Doves party and my place with friends and family and Rough Draft even made an appearance (albeit unplanned). That was fun.
Yesterday was up bright and early to pack for this weekend plus I had to be at the Opry House at 11:00am. And couldn't leave until after the doves...sheesh. All day. But I had so much fun.
Remedy Drive are awesome. We hung out a few times during the long day. I shared a dressing room with the Afters and Tenth Ave North. That was fun. The Tenth Ave North guys are great guys...congrats to them for winning New Artist.
Anyway, that's kinda my week.
Monday, April 13, 2009
Today I turn 31. Wow. 31.
My dad had 2 kids by the time he was 31.
Paul McCartney sold 100 million records and had literally conquered the world by the age of 31. Oh, yeah, and his band had broken up already by the time he was 31.
Bono had made his most successful record (Joshua Tree) and was working on releasing his (and U2's) greatest artistic achievement (Achtung Baby) by the age of 31.
Jimi Hendrix had changed his name, changed the world of music and overdosed before he ever came close to 31.
Stevie Wonder had been signed for almost 20 years by the time he reached 31. The 70's brought Stevie unbelievable success and his albums changed the landscape of R&B music. And he didn't turn 31 until 1981. Sick.
I could continue to go on...but the point is this...I've been incredibly blessed thus far. But I have so much to do! And I'm excited to see what the future holds.
Here's to 31!
Tuesday, April 07, 2009
This week, I'm out in Los Angeles writing. Wrote yesterday with Lindy Robbins and Jess Cates who have written some HUGE songs for people like Nick Lachay, Backstreet Boys, Faith Hill, and many more. We wrote a KILLER song to pitch...I think it'll definitely get cut!
Anyway, the title of the blog...what's that about?
Well, some of you may know that Danny Gokey and I have become friends...not close or anything, but friends via phone calls and texts. When I found out I was coming out to L.A., I let Danny know and we decided to get together if his schedule allowed. American Idol is notorious for not letting the contestants know what's going on till the last minute, so our plans to get together Sunday night were thwarted. But last night, he called me as I was finishing up my writing session and told me he had some time to hang out!
So I went to Rickey Minor's studio and picked him and we headed over to a nice Italian restaurant and ate.
Meanwhile, on the way to pick up Danny, I called Jason Castro to say hello and found out he's living in the L.A. area now working on writing his album. I won't steal his thunder but congrats to Jason on his success. Anyway, he asked if he could join Danny and I and when I asked Danny it was of course okay, so Jason met us at the restaurant.
We spent the next 3 1/2 hours just talking getting to know each other, and building a friendship between the 3 of us. All of us are believers so it was awesome just talking about faith and what God was doing in us and about our experience with Idol.
Seriously - I don't say this lightly - I think God has some big things for Danny. Maybe it's not selling millions and millions of records, maybe it is. But his heart is to use his foundation - Sophia's Heart - to change people's lives is contagious.
Jason is doing great, too. He's writing like crazy and is excited about what's happening for his career. Again, there's not much else I can say at this point, nor should I say...but know that Jason is doing great!
Hopefully I'll get to hang out with the guys again before I leave on Saturday.