Three days after his triumphant sell-out show at New York’s Madison Square Garden, Jason
Aldean took time Tuesday afternoon (March 5) to celebrate his two latest No. 1 singles at two separate parties.
first revel — honoring the writers of “Take a Little Ride,”
Aldean’s hit from last fall — was held at the Nashville headquarters of BMI, while the second — which saluted the writers
of “The Only Way I Know” — took place at the ASCAP building just across the street from BMI.
ASCAP and BMI are performance
rights organizations that collect royalties for songwriters and music publishers from radio airplay and other public performances
of their songs.
After guests had rushed in out of the cold wet wind and made their way through the buffet line, BMI’s
Clay Bradley began the first awards presentations by summoning “Take a Little Ride” writers Jim McCormick, Dylan Altman and
Rodney Clawson to the stage.
Aldean, wearing glasses and a baseball cap pulled low, and producer Michael Knox then
came forward to join them.
“Take a Little Ride,” Bradley observed, is Altman’s third No. 1, McCormick’s second and
The song was Aldean’s 10th chart-topper.
Watching the proceedings from the rear of the crowd
were Florida Georgia Line‘s Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard.
congratulating the writers, publisher Craig Wiseman described Knox as “the man that makes Jason Aldean sound so damn good
on the radio.” Of the Aldean-Knox team, he added, “You guys make records that make people get speeding tickets.”
Loba, senior vice president of Broken Bow Records, Aldean’s label, noted it had taken only 11 weeks from the time “Take a
Little Ride” debuted on the charts for it to reach No. 1, a feat that made it the artist’s fastest rising single to date.
all three writers took the microphone to thank their friends, family and business supporters, Altman seemed especially ecstatic
over his achievement.
“I’ll take No. 1 with David Duke and Joseph Goebbels,” he joked. And when he got no discernible
crowd response from name-dropping these two notorious anti-Semites, he added, “I’m Jewish.”
Then addressing everyone
who had anything at all to do with the song’s success, Altman continued, “My child thanks you, Carmax thanks you, the Italian
Cheese Club of the Month thanks you, and there’s a lady I can’t name who also thanks you. But she’s very grateful.”
presented Broken Bow owner Benny Brown with a photo from his Madison Square Garden performance.
Songwriters Ben Hayslip
and David Lee Murphy took the spotlight at the ASCAP party that
began virtually as soon as the BMI festivities ended.
Hayslip is ASCAP’s reigning songwriter of the year (for the
second year) and the winner of the Country Music Association’s Triple Play honor for having had three No. 1 songs within a
Murphy co-wrote Aldean’s 2009 hit, “Big
Green Tractor.” “The Only Way I Know” is his eighth No. 1.
Before focusing his attention on songwriting, ASCAP’s
Ryan Beuschel pointed out that Murphy distinguished himself as a recording artist via such hits as “Dust
on the Bottle” and “Party Crowd.”
Aldean, Knox and Hayslip all said they had been Murphy admirers since early in
“The first time I wrote with him,” Hayslip recalled, “I didn’t even open my mouth for an hour.”
told the crowd he and Hayslip had Aldean in mind when they wrote the song.
“I’ve got a whole catalog of songs he didn’t
cut,” Hayslip remarked later, eliciting a grin from Aldean who stood beside him.
Publisher Rusty Gaston, who represents
Hayslip’s catalog, was eloquent in his praise of the two songwriters and their willingness to risk everything for their art.
all making a living [doing something] that somebody told them, ‘This might not work out,’” he said.
To Aldean and
Knox, he added, “You guys have had a hard time, but you’ve built an empire.”
Gaston quoted from the up-by-the-bootstraps
song being celebrated, noting the lyrics were applicable to all involved: “That old red dirt the first thing you learn/You
don’t get nothing that you don’t earn/Humble pride that I grew up on/You find out just how bad you want it.”
“There’s three of us on the record, and you can see I’m the only one who’s here today,” Aldean said in