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Day 1 In Colorado...A New Show Date...Squeezing Chickens


Wednesday July 6, 2022

Wednesday morning and this is the view outside lodge-room I'm staying in as  I’m waking up with the Colorado mountains just outside my door at the beautiful Bridges Golf and Country Club. It’s just 55 degrees this morning, with a high of just 83 here in the mountains. Feels pretty darned good.




I was half dreading flying from Nashville to Montrose, Colorado for our Freedom Sings USA event with the veterans because of all the horror stories about flight delays and cancellations. We had a FLAWLESS American Airline flight from Nashville to Dallas into Montrose. On time, not a hitch. What a blessing! Four other great writers were onboard with me who have written a ton of hits you’ll know. Bobby Tomberlin “One More Day” for Diamond Rio. Steve Dean, “Watching You” for Rodney Atkins. Wood Newton, “Bobby Sue” for the Oak Ridge Boys. And Wil Nance, “She’s Everything” for Brad Paisley. Made me wonder what the heck I was doing on the dang plane!  Honored to be here.


A Viet Nam vet picked us up at Montrose Airport appropriately, and I got to hear of his amazing service in Viet Nam as part of the First Calvary in the Army. Steve, thank you for your service my friend. He had a lot of buddies who never made it back.


Our group will be here through Friday night.  Tomorrow evening we meet our veterans, two of them women this time. Then each songwriter will be assigned a veteran and will write their story into songs Thursday. Then Friday night we will honor those veterans by singing their songs in a big amphitheater before returning home Saturday. Truly an honor.



I did notice on the ride from the small airport here in Montrose to the golf resort we’re staying at that gas was over $5 a gallon. In Nashville, at the Walmart nearest me, it was $4.17. Little more expensive out west y’all. Steve’s brand new big ole GMC truck that I rode in yesterday has a 50-gallon gas tank…and uses ethel. Do the math yourself.



Steve Dean and I got together and leaned into a “Zoom Meeting” with some other songwriters who are getting ready to do a team building exercise this Monday evening when we’re back in Nashville. This one is sports related because of the company we’re working with. Each songwriter is given 30 or 40 employees to write a song with related to their business and what they do. All the songs are then performed by the teams and winners are named. It’s a very fun interactive experience with folks that for the most part no nothing about songwriting, but they have an absolute blast helping put their songs together. So we’re all set for that.


When that finished Steve and I joined our friends for an incredible dinner here at the Bridges Country Club in front of massive windows with the mountains just outside. Beautiful way to wrap up day 1 here in beautiful Montrose.



Our “Hits & Grins” trio just added a new show at the ListeningRoom Café in Nashville for Saturday night September 3. A 6 pm show. This is a great large venue with a big stage and often on the weekends the place will sell out. Great food too. So if you’re thinking about planning a trip to Nashville, maybe consider that weekend, and come catch our show.



Canada is going to throw away 13.6 million doses of Coronavirus vaccine. They can’t find any takers for it in Canada or abroad.


China has had another COVID outbreak and once again they’ve put millions in a lockdown in China.


A study from the U.S. Veterans Administration suggests the more times you catch COVID the sicker you’re likely to get with each reinfection.



Joey Chestnut wins the hot dog eating championship again. 15th time on the 4th of July.  This time he downed 63 Nathan hotdogs. But the best part was he choked a guy who stormed the stage trying to protest something. Usually it’s the guy eating the hot dog that gets “choked”. Not this time. Never miss with a dude eating a hot dog.



The CDC has now advised us to not snuggle chickens and other backyard animals amid a salmonella outbreak. I think I can do that. To my knowledge, I’ve not once felt the urge to snuggle a chicken. I’ll let you know if that changes in the future.



Get this. A man tweeted, “One Christmas I decided to get my girlfriend jewelry and so I got a necklace and a ring. She opened the ring, burst into tears, and said ‘yes’ and phoned her parents to say we’re engaged. I couldn’t break her heart. Been unintentionally married for 10 years”.




That sort of sums up what me and Lisa Shaffer and Brent Baxter were going for when we wrote this song “Crickets” that Joe Nichols recorded.



A British computational biologist (whatever that is) published a book suggesting a pill is on the way that would eliminate cells in the human body that are responsible for the ageing process that could DOUBLE our lifespan. A bunch of us will have to get jobs again if that turns out to be true.



We have the day off and there’s talk of making a trip to see Telluride which is not far away. A musical friend of mine wrote me and suggested I stop at a cool “speakeasy” here in Montrose called Phelanies, so maybe I’ll try to talk our group into stopping there.


But tonight we will gather to meet with the veterans that we’ll write songs with tomorrow. Each of the songwriters here will get up and perform a song before those veterans, and then we’ll be assigned on to write with. Last year when I was here a veteran requested to write with me and that happens some. The main thing is we want that veteran to be comfortable in the room with whatever songwriter they are paired with so that they feel free to open up and share their personal stories. Looking forward to it.


Have a great Wednesday!








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