The top honor of the night, ‘Song of the Year,’ was awarded to Chase McGill, Jessie Jo Dillon, and Jon Nite for “Break Up In The End” (recorded by Cole Swindell). To close out the show, Swindell joined Dillon, McGill, and Nite on stage for a breathtaking rendition of the winning song.
The night kicked off with a special performance of “Coal Miner’s Daughter” sung by Tayla Lynn, granddaughter of country music and songwriting legend, Loretta Lynn, the recipient of the 2019 NSAI Kris Kristofferson Lifetime Achievement Award. Also present to honor Lynn was Kellie Pickler who performed “I’m A Honky Tonk Girl” and Reba McEntire who performed “You Ain’t Woman Enough,” for the ultimate Ryman sing-along.
(L-R): BMI’s Josh Tomlinson, Devin Dawson, Michael Hardy, Jeff Middleton, Brad Clawson, BMI’s Spencer Nohe, BMI’s Leslie Roberts, Jessie Jo Dillon, NSAI’s Steve Bogard, BMI’s Mason Hunter, Brandon Kinney, Bobby Pinson, BMI’s David Preston, Josh Thompson, Nicolle Galyon, Ben Burgess, Chris Stevens, Luke Dick, BMI’s MaryAnn Keen, Clint Daniels, Jeff Hyde, Chase McGill, NSAI’s Bart Herbison. (Photo Credit: Libby Oellerich for NSAI)
(L-R): ASCAP’s Mike Sistad, Jordan Schmidt, Josh Osborne, Jon Nite, Kevin Kadish, NSAI’s Bart Herbison, ASCAP’s Beth Brinker, Jordan Reynolds, ASCAP’s John Titta, Scooter Carusoe, NSAI’s Steve Bogard, David Lee Murphy, CJ Solar, ASCAP’s Kele Currier, and ASCAP’s Holly Chester. (Photo Credit: Libby Oellerich for NSAI)
Stories and performances continued throughout the evening as Lee Brice took the stage for “Falling Apart Together,” a song co-written by White Hat Award honoree U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN), and then NSAI President Steve Bogard and Jeff Stevens brought a special medley of “Carried Away” and “Carrying Your Love With Me,” for the President’s Keystone Award recipient George Strait. Strait was also celebrated with performances of “Here For A Good Time” and “The Chair” by longtime friend, songwriter Dean Dillon.
“I believe songwriting is a gift from God, and I think God has truly blessed all of you songwriters in here. I want to thank you all for sharing that talent with me over the years.” — George Strait
Sam Hunt and Michael Ray participated to celebrate Josh Osborne, the NSAI ‘Songwriter of the Year,’ and Luke Combs was recognized as ‘Songwriter/Artist of the Year.’ Non-stop performances continued throughout the rest of the evening as each of the ’10 Songs I Wish I’d Written’ award recipients were recognized as songwriters and artists shared the stage together bringing unforgettable renditions to the mother church of country music.
2019 AWARD WINNERS
SONG OF THE YEAR
“BREAK UP IN THE END” Written by Chase McGill, Jessie Jo Dillon, Jon Nite
SONGWRITER/ARTIST OF THE YEAR
SONGWRITER OF THE YEAR
KRIS KRISTOFFERSON LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
Given in recognition to a songwriter whose works have made a significant contribution to the American songbook and who has inspired the careers of others.
THE WHITE HAT AWARD
Bestowed by the NSAI Board of Directors to an individual who has significantly served the American songwriting community.
U.S. SENATOR LAMAR ALEXANDER (R-TN)
PRESIDENT’S KEYSTONE AWARD
Given in recognition of significant contributions to the betterment of all songwriters, chosen by the current NSAI President.
‘10 SONGS I WISH I’D WRITTEN’ AWARDS
Each year, the highly-coveted '10 Songs I Wish I’d Written' Awards 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.
“Burning Man” – Written by: Bobby Pinson, Luke Dick
“Drowns The Whiskey” – Written by: Brandon Kinney, Jeff Middleton, Josh Thompson
“Drunk Girl” – Written by: Chris Janson, Scooter Carusoe, Tom Douglas
“God’s Country” – Written by: Devin Dawson, Jordan Schmidt, Michael Hardy
“Everything’s Gonna Be Alright” – Written by: Chris Stevens, David Lee Murphy, Jimmy Yeary
“Meant To Be” – Written by: Bebe Rexha, David Garcia, Josh Miller, Tyler Hubbard
“Some Of It” – Written by: Bobby Pinson, Clint Daniels, Eric Church, Jeff Hyde
“Tequila” – Written by: Dan Smyers, Jordan Reynolds, Nicolle Galyon
“Up Down” – Written by: Brad Clawson, CJ Solar, Michael Hardy
“Whiskey Glasses” – Written by: Ben Burgess, Kevin Kadish
The Nashville Songwriter Awards is produced each year by the Nashville Songwriters Association International, the world’s largest not-for-profit songwriters trade organization dedicated to protecting the rights of and serving aspiring and professional songwriters in all genres of music. For more information, visit nashvillesongwriters.com.
Sponsors: Presenting Sponsor - City National Bank. Special thanks to our additional supporting sponsors: Academy of Country Music, Jack Daniels, Loeb & Loeb, National Association of Broadcasters/Tennessee Association of Broadcasters, Recording Industry Association of America, SoundExchange, and Visit Music City.