BMI Nashville and EMI Music Publishing co-hosted a celebration at the Bound'ry in honor of songwriter Shaye Smith, who posted her fourth #1 single, "There Is No Arizona," recently nominated for an Academy of Country Music award for Single of the Year. The song is the debut single from Mercury Nashville artist Jamie O'Neal from the album Shiver (Smith co-wrote the tune with O'Neal and Lisa Drew, in addition to the title track).
photo by Tony Phipps
During the presentation of plaques and commemorative cups, EMI's Gary Overton said Smith's songs have shown up in five single records so far, four of which reached the top of the country chart. Her other #1 titles are "Single White Female" (Chely Wright), "One Boy, One Girl" (Collin Raye) and "That's Why I'm Here" (Kenny Chesney). Smith's songs are co-published by Mark Alan Springer Music. Pinpointed for special praise during the party were album producer Keith Stegall and Luke Lewis, president of Mercury Records/Nashville, who signed her to the label.
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photo by Larry Hill
During O'Neal's recent CRS "Class of 2001" performance at the Wildhorse Saloon, she was suprised by longtime friend Russell Crowe. Nominated for a "Best Actor" Academy Award for the second consecutive year, Crowe was in Nashville to pick up a motorcycle, and was literally walking down the street when he saw O'Neal's name on the Wildhorse marquee. O'Neal and Crowe performed together in musical theater when they both lived in Australia several years ago. Crowe's group, 30 Odd Feet of Grunts, just released their own recorded-in-Austin album, Bastard Life Or Clarity, in Australia and New Zealand.
Shaye Smith and Gary Overton