November 10, 2004

Hi Gang:

They call it “Country Music’s Biggest Night,” and last night it certainly lived up to its billing.

I hope all of you were able to see the 38th Annual CMA Awards telecast live from Nashville. It was a lot of fun being there.

The song Jon Randall and I co-wrote, “Whiskey Lullaby,” won in two of the four categories in which it was nominated, and all of us involved are so appreciative and grateful. It won an award for Brad Paisley and Alison Krauss as “Musical Event of the Year,” and for “Video of the Year.” We missed out on “Song of the Year” honors, the award which would have gone to us as the writers, but nobody here is complaining at all. Ours was a song that flew in the face of everything modern country music seems to be about these days, and it did so much better than any of us had dared to hope for. As I told Jon after the show, “We’ve had a heckuva ride!”

Plus, it’s not tough when you lose to a song as great as the one written by two outstanding songwriters, Craig Wiseman and Tim Nichols, who wrote “Live Like You Were Dying.” What an insightful and inspiring piece of work that song is, and I congratulate Craig, Tim, and Tim McGraw who recorded it.

The CMA Awards will look and feel a lot different next year because for the first time in history they’ll be coming from New York instead of Nashville. It’ll be interesting to see how that all works out. As the old saying goes, “Don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it.”

My best to all, and again, thanks for being so good to our song.