Nashville Hitmakers’ Big Night of Music at Indian Lake High School
If professional music songwriters had the equivalent of an All-Star game in baseball, it was held last night with the Nashville Hitmakers at Indian Lake High School.
The evening of original hit songs, performed live with the men and women who wrote them, was a spectacular moment of fantastic music, fun stories and interesting details about the song’s origins.
The show was a fundraising event for the Indian Lake Watershed Project.
The headliner was multi-talented musical artist Even Stevens. He’s an award-winning songwriter who grew up in Lewistown, Ohio. Stevens graduated from Indian Lake High School. A longtime conservationist, Even has always appreciated the history of the area and spent time on Indian Lake whenever he could return home.
The list of stars who have recorded songs by Even Stevens includes: Joe Cocker, Tim McGraw, Eddie Rabbitt, Martina McBride, George Jones, Julio Iglesias, Kenny Chesney, Conway Twitty, Elvis Costello, JD Souther, Sammie Smith, BJ Thomas , Brenda Lee, Engelbert Humperdinck, Blake Shelton, Marilyn McCoo, Tom Jones, Shel Silverstein, Mac Davis, Roger Miller, The Oak Ridge Boys, Steel Pulse, Mickey Gilley, Lacy J. Dalton, Ricky Skaggs, Crystal Gayle, Trace Adkins, Glen Campbell, Alabama, Kim Carnes, Paul Davis, Kenny Rogers and Dr. Hook.
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“When you are in love with a beautiful woman”
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“I like a rainy night”
Stevens was joined last night by impressive fellow songwriters and performers including Mike Loudermilk, Big Al Anderson, Rebecca Lynn Howard, Elisha Hoffman and Wynn Varble.
Songwriter, musician and singer Rebecca Lynn Howard began receiving a major country radio track with “Forgive,” the first single from her second album of the same name. The recording established her as the heir to the younger generation of country pop artists like Faith Hill and Shania Twain due to Howard’s physical appeal and ability to record songs that blur the distinctions between country and country. pop. His crossover success, however, also reveals a skill for writing strong songs that challenge the easy distinctions between hardcore country, pop, new country, and gospel. Possessing a powerful voice, she has been compared to Trisha Yearwood and Patty Loveless, Howard also writes songs which have been recorded by Yearwood, John Michael Montgomery, Lila McCann and Jessica Andrews.
Howard has shown this powerful voice in several new songs she performed last night. She was joined on stage by Elisha Hoffman.
Hoffman has been a part of the Nashville music scene for over 15 years, first as a drummer and session player, then as a producer and songwriter. Hoffman began producing the remix of Shania Twain’s “She’s All Right” and house music for the second half of Dixie Chick’s “Fly” tour. Faith Hill recorded her song “Give In To Me” for the soundtrack album for the great movie Country Strong. Leighton Meester and Garrett Hedlund also sing the song in several on-screen visual performances, and their version has climbed to No.2 in iTunes’ Best Songs from the Soundtrack chart and second in Best Songs from the Soundtrack. country albums from Billboard.
Here is a video clip of Hoffman and Howard during their performance:
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Mike Loudermilk has made music most of his life. He began his musical career when his first song, an instrumental, was recorded by guitar legend Chet Atkins, who invited him to Nashville to participate in the session. Atkins then offered to sponsor him to Nashville, but approved Mike’s decision to return to Louisiana and complete his studies in music theory and guitar. Son of John D. Loudermilk, Mike returned to Nashville where he began playing music full time. He has toured, recorded and / or written songs with artists from John Schneider to Crystal Gayle, and from Tracy Lawrence to Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown. As an artist he has recorded several albums internationally, including a duet record, “Wildwood Flower”, with bluegrass violin legend Buddy Spicher.
There is no doubt that Loudermilk is one of the best guitarists on the planet. The following video clip will show this:
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In recent years, Big Al Anderson has grown into one of Nashville’s most trusted music lovers. “Powerful Thing”), LeAnn Rimes (“Big Deal”), Diamond Rio (“Unbelievable”), Carlene Carter (“Every Little Thing”) and Hal Ketchum (“Fall In Love Again”). Indeed, Anderson’s compositions have been recorded by an impressive number of artists, including Tim McGraw, Alabama, Wynonna, Deana Carter, Lonestar, Shenandoah, Jerry Lee Lewis, Aaron Tippin, Neal McCoy, Asleep at the Wheel, Etta James, KT Oslin, Sara Evans, Charlie Daniels, Tanya Tucker, Chris LeDoux, Deborah Allen, Ty England, Sammy Kershaw, Billy Ray Cyrus, Confederate Railroad, T. Graham Brown, Joe Diffie, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Neal McCoy, Rhonda Vincent, Stacy Dean Campbell, Lari White, Jason Sellers, Robbie Fulks and Olivia Newton-John
Here’s an excerpt from a funny song Anderson performed last night:
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“Then I woke up”
Wynn Varble admits it must have been destined for a career in country music. Wynn grew up in Ellenwood, Georgia, where music was at the heart of his life. He remembers his father’s collection of country records and the hours he spent listening to legends: Merle Haggard, Hank Williams, Bob Wills and Jimmie Rodgers, whom Wynn considers his main musical influences. He says he did just about anything to hear the latest country record – even if that meant swapping out his big brother’s rock albums and getting into trouble afterwards! Wynn first picked up a guitar at the age of 15 and learned to play on his own. Creative sparks began to fly, and Wynn formed a bluegrass band at the age of 16. After graduating from high school, Wynn began on the path to musical success playing in the club circuit. His talent for playing bluegrass has earned him concerts from Austin to Fort. Lauderdale. During this time, he perfected his style, not only as a country artist but also as a songwriter.
When it comes to bass guitar, Alison Prestwood has been a session musician in Nashville for over twenty years. She has played bass on numerous records by artists such as Blake Shelton, Trace Adkins, Little Richard, Brooks & Dunn, Peter Frampton, Olivia Newton-John and Buddy Miller. The first number one song she performed on was “Austin” by Blake Shelton.
Prestwood was the bassist on almost all of the songs played at last night’s gala.
During the intermission, two guitars were auctioned for a total of approximately $ 4,000.
The Nashville Hitmakers last night awarded a $ 1,000 scholarship to deserving Indian Lake students. This was in addition to a contribution to the Indian Lake music department at the school.
Nashville Hitmakers has been running this event to benefit the Indian Lake Wastershed Project since 2012. The next one is scheduled for July 23, 2022, at Indian Lake High School.
Frank Giannola on the destination of the event’s profits:
The Indian Lake Watershed Project (ILWP) is a nationally recognized project that has significantly improved water quality over its more than 30 years of existence. It is managed by a local board of directors made up of watershed residents, district soil and water conservation supervisors, businessmen and women, and elected officials. In 1998, they applied for and received the 501 (c) 3 designation. Since then, a foundation for improving water quality has been established.
The watershed project has been successful in reducing diffuse source issues over many areas of agricultural land, but there are still issues requiring the attention of lake users, businesses and stakeholders with properties adjacent to the lake and to the streams that feed the lake. The best way to continue to further reduce sedimentation in Indian Lake is to reduce bank and shoreline erosion. It would also continue to reduce the need for dredging and save taxpayer dollars. As a result, a healthy and viable tourism-based economy has emerged just behind agriculture in west-central Ohio and the Indian Lake region in particular.
To donate, you can send a check or money order payable to Indian Lake Watershed Project, 324 CR 11, Bellefontaine, Ohio, 43311.