Sometimes I wonder-- was I raised in the mountains, or did the mountains raise me? I was dipped and stewed in rich roots and my music and writing reflects that very image. Both of my papaws were coal miners, and my great-papaw drove a train. I spent my summers living beside a catfish farmer, running trotlines, fishing with my father and trying to stay out of trouble with my mother, which hails my nickname, “IODINE”.
Growing up in the heart of the VA/TN Mountains, it is no wonder that I ended up writing and singing about things I was exposed to. I was a very observant kid with radar like ears, out for stories, stories that I lived, not learned. My mother is from Big Stone Gap, VA and my father is from Appalachia, VA. I was an only child looking for endless ways to entertain myself. If I was in my element, I was good and I mean real good at what I was conjuring up.
I moved to Nashville, TN in 1998. By 2001, I landed my first publishing deal with Sony Music. In 2005, I was sitting in front of major label executives whaling my heart out. Since then I have had cuts by The Del McCoury Band, 3 Fox Drive, The Grascals, and a song on the MUSIC OF COAL CD/Book Project. Just recently the most important co-written song of my life came along entitled “I am Strong”. This song was written for the kids of St Jude and has an all-star cast of country artist including, The Grascals, Joe Nichols, Darryl Worley, Oak Ridge Boys, Randy Owen, Charlie Daniels, Tom T. Hall, Steven Seagal, Terri Clark and Dolly Parton. This song will be on The “Grascals and Friends” CD available in Cracker Barrel stores January 3, 2011.
This spring I called a fellow artist singer/songwriter named Shawn Byrne and asked him to produce my record, and thank God he said yes. I am about to release my singer/songwriter record I have always imagined. I wrote and co-wrote most of the songs, cut the majority of it live and had a blast. I hope everyone loves it like I do.
Currently I write for Asheville Forrest Music. I have a new record coming out on http://organic-records.com/ We are super excited!