BMI recently visited Windswept Pacific Music in Nashville for lunch and a sampling of songs from its top writers. Among those attending the luncheon were BMI writers Jeffrey Steele, Sherri� Austin, Bobby Bare Jr., John Hobbs, and Al Anderson (2000 BMI Country Songwriter of the Year.)
Jeffrey Steele fronted the band Boy Howdy and wrote the popular "She'd Give Anything" with band producer Chris Farren. Steele has been prolific: he co-wrote the title track for Diamond Rio's album Unbelievable; wrote three songs on Kevin Sharp's gold Measure Of a Man; Aaron Tippin recorded "Her"; Paul Brandt sung Steele's "It's a Beautiful Thing"; LeAnn Rimes belted "Big Deal"; Collin Raye professed he "Couldn't Last a Moment"; and Randy Travis crooned "I'll Be Right Here Lovin' You." "Couldn't Last a Moment" earned Steele and co-writer Danny Wells a 2001 BMI Country Award. Steele's next full-length release, Something In the Water, is due in early 2002.
Writer/producer/keyboardist John Hobbs wrote and played on all three of Collin Raye's platinum albums and produced Extremes and The Best of Collin Raye: Direct Hits. In addition to Raye's smash "If I Were You," his writing credits include "That's All She Wrote" for Reba McEntire and "She's Gone" for Ricochet. Hobbs recently played on Trace Adkins' Chrome and is currently involved in an album and accompanying video project titled "The Players," honoring Nashville's finest session players. Hobbs was also nominated for 2001 CMA Musician of the Year.
A longtime member of the influential band N.R.B.Q., Al Anderson's songs have been covered by a variety of recording greats, ranging from the Allman Brothers to the Fabulous Thunderbirds. Since relocating to Nashville, Al Anderson has had hits with a variety of acts, including "All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down" recorded by the Mavericks, "Unbelievable" recorded by Diamond Rio, "Powerful Thing" by Trisha Yearwood, and "Big Deal" by Le Ann Rimes, to name a few. Anderson continues to write, with up-coming releases by Diamond Rio, Alabama, Tim McGraw, Lonestar, Jolie, and The Wanted, among others.
Bobby Bare, Jr. fronts the Nashville-based group Bare Jr. Son of the legendary country singer, Bobby Jr. was reared on a healthy diet of touring and musical stardom, and he regularly appeared with his father on television. Even with country music in his blood, Bobby Jr.'s music is better suited in the alt-country or Southern-rock genres. Acting as vocalist/guitarist, Bobby Bare Jr. formed his band in the mid-'90s, recruiting bassist Dean Tomasek and drummer Keith Brogdon to join him. After a few gigs, they were approached by dulcimer player Tracy Hackney who brought his instrument to a jam session. The combination worked, and with the addition of pajama-clad guitarist Mike "Grimey" Grimes, the lineup was complete.