The 58th Annual ASCAP Country Music Awards wrapped up this week, with a diverse mix of songwriters receiving honors, including Ashley Gorley, Old Dominion, Carly Pearce, Jason “Poo Bear” Boyd and Brett Young.
Gorley was recognized as ASCAP’s Country Songwriter of the Year for a phenomenal seven #1 songs this years, and the eighth time he’s received the honors. He shared a video while quarantining in Florida, stating, “Thank you to my co-writers on the seven songs being honored this year; these songs wouldn’t get written without you; I lean on you so heavy as friends and co-creators… Thank you to the artists… Brett Young, Chris Janson, Chris Lane, Dierks Bentley, Dustin Lynch, LOCASH and Thomas Rhett.”
Old Dominion members Matthew Ramsey, Trevor Rosen and Brad Tursi performed an intimate acoustic version of “One Man Band,” ASCAP’s Country Song of the Year, while Carly Pearce performed her CMA Award-winning hit, “I Hope You’re Happy Now.” “I never in a million years thought that this song that I wrote as an apology was going to kind of change my whole world this year,” she said.
American Songwriter chatted with Ashley Gorley, Old Dominion and Carly Pearce earlier this week about how ASCAP has helped further their careers. You can read their comments here.
A complete list of winners can be found on the ASCAP website: https://www.ascap.com/countryawards20
Other highlights from the ASCAP Country Music Awards included:
Brett Young shared a message of thanks for his award, saying “What’s up ASCAP family… Thank you so much for all the incredible support that you always give, especially this year to ‘Catch’ to help make it one of the most-performed songs of the year… and a big congratulations to my buddy and co-writer on this song, Ashley Gorley… you’re gonna run out of wall space pretty soon, buddy!”
Garth Brooks, this year’s Billboard ICON recipient, was an ASCAP winner for “Dive Bar,” along with songwriter Bryan Kennedy. Kennedy expressed his thanks: “I’m very blessed to have written this with Mitch Rossell and Garth Brooks… us songwriters know we’re nothing without the studio musicians, the producers and of course the artists, the record labels, all the radio stations, but especially tonight, thank you ASCAP for being in my corner for so many years and continuing to fight for the songwriter.”
Hit writer Jason “Poo Bear” Boyd shared that this is his first ASCAP Country Award, for Dan + Shay/Justin Bieber’s “10,000 Hours,” a hit he co-wrote with Bieber, Dan Smyers and Jordan Reynolds.
Dan Smyers of Dan + Shay posted on @dansmyers, “I just wanted to say thank you so much for the two ASCAP awards this year, ‘10,000 Hours’ and ‘All to Myself.’ None of these awards would be possible without you guys, the fans, listening to these songs, the radio stations playing them… y’all are incredible man, thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts, we love you.”
Justin Weaver reminded us that “2020’s been a crazy year, but this was a good highlight” as he accepted his award for the #1 hit, “After a Few.”
Matt Stell turned in a special acoustic performance of his hit, “Prayed for You.”
Warner Chappell Music Nashville President Ben Vaughn accepted the ASCAP Country Music Publisher of the Year award on video from his car in front of ASCAP Nashville headquarters. “We wanted to say thanks to ASCAP, thanks to Guy [Moot] and Carianne [Marshall] for all their support, thank you to our songwriters for being amazing and also our team wants to say thanks to everyone.”
Endurance Music Group’s President Michael Martin accepted their award for Jimmie Allen’s “Make Me Want To,” saying, “Hey ASCAP Nashville…I just want to say on behalf of Endurance Music Group thank you for all the extra work you guys have done to make the awards happen this year. I want to also say congrats to Paul Sikes, Matt Stell, Jimmie Allen and producer Ash Bowers, it’s pretty cool for us to be part of this journey with them…. Hopefully we can celebrate in person soon.”
ASCAP also celebrated its CMA Awards winners on social media, including country music legend Charley Pride, who received the Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award. Other ASCAP CMA winners include Old Dominion (Vocal Group of the Year), Dan + Shay (Vocal Duo of the Year), Carly Pearce (Musical Event of the Year – “I Hope You’re Happy Now”), Jimmy Robbins (Song of the Year co-writer – “The Bones”) and Greg Kurstin (Single of the Year producer/mix engineer – “The Bones”).