Five Country Stars That Had More Hits As A Songwriter Than As An Artist
In Nashville, sometimes it’s more profitable to be at the end of a pen rather than the end of a microphone. It just doesn’t pack the same adoration being a songwriter. Many of the writers eventually try to be an artist, but find better luck sticking to writing. Here are five guys and their awesome videos, that led to only one or two hits, but scored big when other artists got a hold of their songs.
1. David Lee Murphy
While most people know David for his hit, “Dust on The Bottle,” or his handful of other hits, what you may not know is that he was behind many of your favorite country songs. He had a hand in Kenny Chesney’s ‘Livin’ In Fast Forward’ and ‘Live A Little,’ plus Blake Shelton’s ‘The More I Drink,’ Thompson Square’s ‘Are You Gonna Kiss Me Or Not,’ and Jason Aldean’s ‘Big Green Tractor’ to name a few.
2. Rhett Akins
In the mid 90′s Rhett Akins had a string of great singles, but only one or two true “hits.” Good tunes as they were, they were out-charted by many of Akins’ later songs, performed by others. Akins has co-written hits like ‘Put A Girl In It’ from Brooks and Dunn. He’s also had success with Blake Shelton’s ‘All About Tonight’ and ‘Honey Bee.’ ‘Farmer’s Daughter’ and ‘Take A Back Road’ did well for Rodney Atkins, along with big hits for Josh Turner and Joe Nichols.
3. Jefferey Steele
Jefferey Steele started his career in a band called Boy Howdy. The short lived group did manage to get a couple songs on the radio. Jefferey later went on his own to put out singles, most notably, ‘Somethin’ In The Water.’ His songwriting and producing success is probably the thing that’s bringing in the cash for him these days. Rascal Flatts has contributed, big time, to it with songs like ‘These Days,’ ‘My Wish’ and ‘What Hurts The Most.’ Jefferey also struck gold with Tim McGraw’s number one, ‘The Cowboy In Me.’ Another number one for Steele was cut by Steve Holy in ‘Brand New Girlfriend.’
4. Anthony Smith
When I saw him in a showcase of new talent in 2002, I thought Smith had the biggest career future of the three artists in the show. Those other dudes were David Nail and James Otto. We can’t be right every time. Anthony’s debut (and for all intents and purposes, farewell) single, was the fun ‘If That Ain’t Country.’ While you may not recall that one, you might remember George Strait’s ‘Cowboy’s Like Us,’ Chris Young’s ‘Tomorrow,’ or ‘I’m Tryin” and ‘Chrome’ from Trace Adkins. All of those were written by Smith.
5. Shane Minor
I have to admit, I was a pretty big fan of Shane Minor when he came out with ‘Slave To The Habit’ (which oddly enough was written by Toby Keith). I thought he might do more as an artist, but I’m sure he’s okay having written songs like ‘International Harvester’ and ‘Beautiful Mess.’ He also teamed up with the above songwriters, Steele on ‘Brand New Girlfriend’ and Murphy on ‘Live A Little.’ Those pairings were nothing, of course next to the pairing of Minor and a Fem-bot thing in this video.