Join us for an evening of song and symphony on Cheekwood’s gorgeous Swan Lawn featuring top hitmakers Brett James, Hillary Lindsey and Cary Barlowe performing with the critically acclaimed Music City Symphony. This one-of-a-kind gathering highlights the songwriters and stories behind their chart-topping hits. Bring a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy craft cocktails, food trucks and more.
Member Tickets | $55
Not-yet Member Tickets | $65
For over a decade, Grammy Award-winning songwriter and producer Brett James has been one of the most prolific and versatile songwriters in Nashville having had more than three hundred of his songs recorded by major label recording artists. James has become a fixture on the Billboard Country chart with thirteen #1 songs and scores of top 20 singles to his credit.
In 2009, Brett achieved the Music Row “Triple Play,” an award for three #1 songs in a single chart year, not once, but twice! These six #1‘s; ‘It’s America,’ Rodney Atkins, ‘Out Last Night,’ Kenny Chesney, ‘Cowboy Cassanova,’ Carrie Underwood, ‘Summer Nights,’ Rascal Flatts, ‘The Truth’ Jason Aldean, and ‘The Man I Want To Be’ Chris Young earned James ASCAP Songwriter of the Year for a second time in October 2010.
A native of Oklahoma City, Brett attended Baylor University where he completed two years of medical school before moving to Nashville to pursue his dream of becoming a country star. In 1995, Brett James was signed to the Arista subsidiary Career Records and subsequently released his self-titled debut album. Career Records was later dissolved in consolidation and with it, James’s recording artist aspirations. Brett persevered as a writer at Patrick Joseph Publishing which fostered the relationships that destined him for success.
In the year 2000, James received his first major album cut with the song ‘Love Is A Sweet Thing,’ recorded by Faith Hill followed by a top 20 single ‘You Won’t Be Lonely Now,’ with Billy Ray Cyrus. It wasn’t long before Brett reached the benchmark that all songwriters and artists alike strive for, the coveted #1 song. In April of 2001, then break out artist Jessica Andrews landed James his first #1 with the song ‘Who I Am.’ He returned to the top of the chart in 2002, this time with country superstar Martina McBride and the song ‘Blessed.’
As his chart success continued, Brett appeared on Billboard Magazine’s top-ten country songwriters list for five consecutive years, the only writer to do so, and in 2006 reached yet another musical milestone winning ASCAP Songwriter of the Year. In 2007, Brett received the music industry’s highest honor winning the Grammy Award for Best Country Song ‘Jesus Take The Wheel,’ recorded by Carrie Underwood.
The list of artists that have recorded songs penned by Brett James resembles a who’s who in country music list, but also straddles genre lines into American and world pop music. Some notable pop artists to record James’ songs include Kelly Clarkson, Jon Bon Jovi, Daughtry, The Backstreet Boys, Chicago, and Leona Lewis. Brett has also scored #1 songs in Europe and a worldwide top 5 Latin hit with the song ‘Todo Mi Amor’ recorded by Paulina Rubio. Outside the writer’s room, Brett’s talents have earned production credits that include Taylor Swift, Jessica Simpson, Josh Gracin and MCA recording artist Kip Moore who’s single “Somethin’ ‘Bout a Truck” was a breakthrough smash in 2012!
Brett has toured with the CMA Songwriters series since 2010 sharing the stage with some of country music’s biggest stars; Kenny Chesney, Carrie Underwood, Chris Young, Martina McBride and many more! James current has four Top 20 songs climbing the Country charts with Dierks Bentley, Brantley Gilbert, Thompson Square and Danielle Bradbery.
Growing up in the small town of Washington, GA, Hillary began writing songs at the age of 10. After moving to Nashville, attending Belmont University, and quickly being offered a publishing deal, she had eight cuts in her first year as a songwriter.
Today, artists such as Faith Hill, Tim McGraw, Martina McBride, Trisha Yearwood, Sara Evans, Lee Ann Womack, Jessica Andrews, and Lindsey Lohan perform Hillary’s songs. In 2002 Hillary enjoyed her first Number One single, ‘Blessed’, which was recorded by Martina McBride and spent two weeks at Number One. Now, Hillary can add Carrie Underwood’s debut single, ‘Jesus, Take the Wheel’, to her list of hit songs. The song not only spent six weeks in 2006 at Number One, but it also received Single Of The Year at the ACM Awards, ASCAP’s Song of the Year as well as a Grammy Award in 2007. ‘Jesus, Take the Wheel’ also earned Hillary and her co-writers the 2006 CCMA/SOCAN award. Other hit songs by Hillary include Sara Evan’s ‘Backseat of a Greyhound Bus’ (top 15), Martina McBride’s ‘This One’s For the Girls’ (top 5), and Belgium recording artist Sarah’s ‘Very Last Moment’ (No.1 on Pop Charts). She has further been nominated for an Oscar in 2011 in the category ‘Best Original Song’. 2016 was especially noteworthy for Lindsey; she won a Grammy in the category Best Country Song for ‘Girl Crush’ as well as the Country Music Awards’ Triple Play Award for having written three chart-topping songs within a year.
Cary Barlowe has had success in a multitude of genres including Pop , Rock , Country, and Christian Music. The Virginia-born, North Carolina-raised, writer has written four number one songs in the Country genre including “American Honey” by Lady Antebellum, “Where It’s At” by Dustin Lynch, “Sun Daze” by Florida Georgia Line and “It Don’t Hurt Like It Used To” by Billy Currington.
His first cut in the country genre was “Untouchable” by Taylor Swift on her multiplatinum album Fearless. Barlowe has also had nine number one songs with CCM artist TobyMac including “Made to Love,” “I’m For You,” “Tonight,” City On Our Knees,” “Hold On,” “Christmas This Year,” “One World,” “Get Back Up” and “Feel It” as well as three Grammy nominations for Contemporary/Gospel song of the year with Toby. Barlowe also had a number one (“Good Morning”) with the American Idol alum/Christian Artist Mandisa.
His cuts with leading stars of country and pop music include Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift, Lady Antebellum, Little Big Town, Cody Simpson, Dierks Bentley, Rascal Flatts, Chris Young, Easton Corbin, Dustin Lynch, Florida Georgia Line, Tim McGraw, Billy Currington, Martina McBride, Steven Tyler , Gary Alan, Chris Lane and many more. From his rock background in the Rick Rubin-produced, American Recordings/Columbia-signed band Luna Halo, to his featured music on ABC’s Nashville…Cary Barlowe is truly a diverse songwriter.
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