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Music News (9/15/21)

[ 0 ] September 15, 2021 | |

NSAI Virtually Honors 2021 Nashville Songwriter Awards Winners

The Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) has announced the winners of the 4th annual Nashville Songwriter Awards. The winners were honored by NSAI and presenting partner City National Bank through an online presentation Tuesday afternoon (Sept. 14).

The Song of the Year honor was awarded to Luke Dick, Natalie Hemby and Miranda Lambert for their song “Bluebird.” This hopeful tune was nominated for Song of the Year at the 54th CMA Awards, the 56th ACM Awards, and for Best Country Solo Performance and Best Country Song at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards.

Ethan Hulse, a three-time Grammy nominated and Dove Award winning songwriter, was honored with Songwriter of the Year. Hulse, who wrote the recent Christian hits “Rescue Story,” “Stand In Your Love” and “The Father’s House,” also recently took home Songwriter of the Year at the BMI Christian Awards.

Country hitmaker Luke Combs was awarded with Songwriter-Artist of the Year. Combs achieved his eleventh consecutive No. 1 hit, “Forever After All,” this year and was recently revealed as a nominee for Entertainer of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year and Song of the Year (“Forever After All”) for the upcoming 55th CMA Awards.

NSAI also honored many songwriters in the highly-coveted ’10 Songs I Wish I’d Written’ category, which are voted on by Professional Songwriter Members of NSAI honoring the work of their songwriter peers. Songs eligible for the award have at least one Nashville-based writer and charted in the Top 20 of Billboard Airplay chart in the Christian, country, mainstream top 40, and/or rock genres during the eligible period. The NSAI Song Of The Year is the highest vote-getter.

The ’10 Songs I Wish I’d Written’ winners include:

“7 Summers” – Written by: Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne, Morgan Wallen

“Ain’t Always The Cowboy” – Written by: Brandon Kinney, Josh Thompson

“Chasin’ You” – Written by: Jamie Moore, Morgan Wallen, Craig Wiseman

“Die From A Broken Heart” – Written by: Taylor Dye, Maddie Marlow, Deric Ruttan, Jonathan Singleton

“Hell Of A View” – Written by: Casey Beathard, Eric Church, Monty Criswell

“I Called Mama” – Written by: Marv Green, Lance Miller, Jimmy Yeary

“I Hope” – Written by: Gabby Barrett, Zachary Kale, Jon Nite

“I Hope You’re Happy Now” – Written by: Luke Combs, Randy Montana, Carly Pearce, Jonathan Singleton

“One Night Standards” – Written by: Nicolette Hayford, Shane McAnally, Ashley McBryde

“Starting Over” – Written by: Mike Henderson, Chris Stapleton

Viewers who missed the premiere have the opportunity to revisit the awards on the Bluebird Cafe’s official YouTube channel or NSAI’s official Facebook page.

BMI Grows Revenue, Distributions To Record Levels In 2021 Fiscal Year

BMI has closed out its full 2021 fiscal year. The company has distributed and administered a record $1.335 billion to its songwriters, composers and publishers, marking its highest distribution ever, up $102 million or 8% over last year.

Through growth in the digital sector, BMI’s total domestic licensing revenue exceeded $1 billion for the first time, reporting a total of $1.361 billion.

“In a year marked by incredible challenges, the power of music is stronger than ever,” says Mike O’Neill, President & CEO, BMI. “BMI was once again able to demonstrate record growth, both in revenue and with the largest royalty distributions in our history. I am very proud of the team at BMI who, throughout the year, continued to focus on our top priority of mitigating the financial impact of the pandemic on our creative community. We are very pleased to not only provide this stability to our songwriters, composers and publishers, but also to grow the value of the BMI repertoire now and into the future.”

BMI’s total distributions of $1.335 billion include domestic and international royalties as well as distributions from direct deals that BMI administers. Those direct deals, which make up approximately 6% of BMI’s distribution, totaled $85 million which is a $14 million increase over the previous year.

BMI’s record performance in total domestic revenue, comprised of the digital, media and general licensing categories, was driven by a 47% increase in digital licensing revenue, which closed the year at $423 million. Digital audiovisual services contributed greatly to the increase, due to new agreements with several free ad supported TV services, strong growth from subscription video-on-demand services (Disney+, Hulu, Netflix), and direct-to-streaming film premieres (Apple, Amazon, YouTube, Fandango NOW).

Total domestic media licensing revenue, comprised of cable and satellite, broadcast radio and television, posted an 11% decline from last year to $472 million. Cable and satellite derived revenues remained the largest contributor, coming in essentially flat to last year at $269 million. Radio posted a $50 million decline year-to-year. Broadcast television came in at $95 million, down 6% from last year.

Meanwhile, the general licensing sector, consisting of live concert venues, bars, restaurants, fitness centers, along with other income, was down 2% year-to-year for a total of $127 million.

BMI’s international revenue grew to $339 million this year, a $15 million or 4% increase over last year. Additionally, affiliate membership grew 11% this year to 1.2 million, with nearly 120,000 new songwriters, composers and publishers joining the organization.

The company processed 1.98 trillion performances, up 13% from last year. Of that, 1.95 trillion were digital plays. BMI’s number of licensed musical works increased by 10%, now totaling 18.7 million.

Relative Music Group & Sony Music Publishing Sign Nick Donley

Pictured (L-R): Dennis Matkosky, Michael Hardy, Nick Donley, Jesse Matkosky

Relative Music Group, in partnership with Sony Music Publishing, have signed country songwriter Nick Donley to a worldwide publishing agreement.

Originally from Ohio, Donley began writing songs in college and started his career writing commercials for radio. He moved to Nashville in 2006 to pursue his career as a professional songwriter.

Since then Donley has written popular songs including “Sittin’ Pretty” by Florida Georgia Line; “Unapologetically Country” and “4×4” by Hardy; “That Ain’t Me No More” by Matt Stell; “Mama Got The Chair” by Chevel Shepherd; and many more.

“We’ve been wanting to work with Nick for quite a while now, and I am so excited it finally happened. Nick is a perfect fit for Relative—he brings great ideas and a work ethic that won’t quit, and he is a great hang. We have an amazing team between Relative and our Sony Family and we can’t wait to get to work,” says Founder of Relative Music Group, Dennis Matkosky.

Relative Music Group Partner, Hardy, adds: “I’m so excited to start working with Nick Donley. I’ve heard and have been a fan of his songs for a long time and I’m happy that he is finally a part of this team. Nick is a hardworking, positive guy with a ‘go get it’ attitude, which is exactly what we need here at Relative. Nick is also one of the first people I ever met in this town, and after 11 years, I’m proud to see such a full circle moment come together. Welcome to the family, Nick.”

Donley sums, “Relative Music is a small family with a big vision and I’m grateful to call it my songwriting home. I couldn’t be more excited to work with this driven creative tight-knit group of people.”

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