Ross Golan is a multi-platinum songwriter. He's had multiple record deals and developed a one-man musical called, The Wrong Man. It received three Ovation Awards of four Nominations including Best Musical, Best Book and Best Lyrics and Music. The soundtrack will be recorded and released by Interscope Records. He's currently signed to Warner Chappell Music.
The music that our Season 4 finale guest has written, performed, and produced — both as a solo superstar and as founding member of the Fugees — has been consistently powerful and a pop cultural force for over two decades. In 1996, his band the Fugees released their monumental album ‘The Score’. As a solo artist, he has released eight albums that have sold nearly nine million copies worldwide, including his 1997 debut ‘The Carnival’ and 2000’s aptly titled ‘The Eclectic: 2 Sides II a Book’. His album, ‘Carnival III: The Fall and Rise of a Refugee’, was named one of the “25 Most Anticipated Albums” of the fall by Billboard Magazine that year. And his recent release, ‘Wyclef Goes Back To School Volume 1’ is a collaboration with students he met while touring the United States and visiting colleges across the country. He is a 3 time Grammy award winner who has worked with mega stars such as Whitney Huston, Santana, Mary J. Blige, Shakira, Mick Jagger, Paul Simon, Missy Elliott, Destiny’s Child and more. As a highly esteemed musician, he has undoubtedly influenced the artistry of musicians all over the globe. With his ethos centered around nurturing and growth, he has persistently made efforts to make positive changes, whether that be by holding charitable events, running for presidency in Haiti or just using his music to make others aware of actualities that don’t get enough media coverage. Live from South by Southwest, And The Writer Is…Wyclef Jean!
Originally from Buchanan, Virginia our guest is an award winning, multi-platinum artist who moved to Nashville to pursue his passion for songwriting. There he met his future bandmates and together went on to form the band Old Dominion, in which he is the lead singer. He co-wrote the band’s first hit song, "Break Up With Him," which is RIAA certified platinum. Old Dominion’s sophomore album, ‘Happy Endings’, debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart & #7 on the Billboard Top 200. The album produced three platinum, #1 singles, “Written In The Sand,” “No Such Thing As A Broken Heart” and “Hotel Key,” all of which our guest co-wrote. He also co-wrote the band’s single “Make It Sweet,” which recently hit #1 on the Country charts. In addition to his band, he has written hit songs for other artists such as Kenny Chesney ("Save It for a Rainy Day"), Sam Hunt (“Make You Miss Me”), Dierks Bentley (“Say You Do”), Luke Bryan ("Goodbye Girl") and Tim McGraw (“Kiss A Girl”) among others. He is a three-time winner of the Association of Independent Music Publishers “Artists Writers of the Year” award, a two-time CMA “Triple Play Award” winner and the recipient of the ASCAP “Artist Writer of the Year” award. Additionally, he is a two-time Academy of Country Music Award winner for “Vocal Group of the Year,” and Country Music Award winner for “Vocal Group of the Year” as a part of Old Dominion. And The Writer Is...Matthew Ramsey!
His remarkable story wasn’t the result of any long-term plan, but more a tribute to his hard work and creativity. Recent chart-topping hits include Kehlani’s “Distraction”, The Chainsmokers new single “Who Do you Love?” with 5 Seconds Of Summer, and Demi Lovato’s “Sorry Not Sorry” for which he recently won a BMI Award. He has co-written and co-produced breakout hits for Nicki Minaj, K. Michelle and Alessia Cara and worked with stars like Rihanna and Alicia Keys. He has 5 songs on the new Alessia Cara album and co-wrote and produced 8 records on Kehlani’s 'SweetSexySavage’ album. Our guest has celebrated consecutive #1 Billboard Mainstream Top songs with Alessia Cara’s “Here” and “Scars to Your Beautiful”, and two Grammy Awards for his work on Alicia Keys’ ‘Girl on Fire' (Best R&B Album) and Rihanna’s ‘Unapologetic' (Best Urban Contemporary Album). And The Writer Is… Oak Felder!
She is a multi-platinum, Grammy-nominated artist, songwriter and producer hailing from Rochester, New York. At the age of 15 she signed her first record deal with Columbia Records and released her debut album, ‘Underage Thinking’. The album’s lead single, “For You I Will (Confidence),” quickly found a spot in the Top 40. After a brief stint as a teen pop star, she began to co-write and produce music for other artists. She has written songs for acclaimed artists across the musical spectrum including P!nk, Maroon 5, Anne-Marie, Dej Loaf, Leon Bridges, Christina Aguilera, One Direction, Tiesto, Matoma, Empire of the Sun, Niall Horan, 5 Seconds of Summer, Birdy, DJ Snake and DNCE. Most notably her compositions and productions with Shawn Mendes have earned her multiple #1s and include the 2017 BMI song of the year “Stitches,” hit singles "Treat You Better,” “Mercy,” "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back,” the Grammy nominated “In My Blood,” as well as Shawn’s new single “If I Can’t Have You”. And she played an integral role on the Billboard #1 self-titled Shawn Mendes album producing and co-writing 11 tracks. As an artist, she recently released her new solo album ‘LilyAnna’ under the moniker teddy<3 which features the singles “Body & Soul” and “I Was in a Cult”. And The Writer Is…Teddy Geiger!
Our guest is a three-time Grammy Award-winning songwriter and producer who has earned 40 No. 1 singles to date. He was named Songwriter of the Year by the Academy of Country Music in 2014 and 2019. Hot Country Songwriter of the Year by Billboard in 2015. This writer co-produced Kacey Musgraves' 2012 award-winning debut album, ‘Same Trailer Different Park,’ which earned him the Grammy for Best Country Album, and her 2015 follow-up, ‘Pageant Material.’ He's also produced debut albums for Sam Hunt (‘Montevallo’), Old Dominion (‘Meat and Candy’), Midland (‘On the Rocks’), Walker Hayes (‘boom.’) and more. In 2016, he arranged and produced "Forever Country," a collaborative song featuring Luke Bryan, Faith Hill, Miranda Lambert, Tim McGraw, Willie Nelson, Dolly Parton, Blake Shelton, Carrie Underwood and more to commemorate the CMA's 50th anniversary celebration. "Forever Country" debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart, making it the third song to debut at No. 1 on the chart since it began in 1958. He earned a five-times-platinum No. 1 co-writing "Body Like a Back Road," by Sam Hunt, which was the longest-reigning No. 1 on the Billboard Hot Country Song chart by a solo artist, spending 34 weeks atop the chart. Last year, our guest announced his co-presidency of Monument Records (with industry veteran Jason Owen) in conjunction with Sony Records, adding "label head" to his impressive list of accomplishments. He earned his latest No. 1 song with Old Dominion's “Make It Sweet“ and was named to Billboard's 2018 Country Power Players list. He also co-wrote Kacey Musgraves' "Space Cowboy," which recently won Best Country Song at the Grammys. This summer he will serve as a producer on NBC’s new musical competition series “Songland.” And The Writer Is…Shane McAnally!
He's written 35 #1 singles and had more than 300 songs recorded by artists such as Luke Bryan, Carrie Underwood, Florida Georgia Line, Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Jason Aldean, and Darius Rucker. He was named the ASCAP Country Songwriter of the Year in 2009, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017, Billboard Country Songwriter of the Year 2013 and 2016, the NSAI Songwriter of the Year 2013 and 2016, and has received the CMA Triple Play Award nine times in his career (presented to a songwriter who has penned three #1 singles in 12 months). In 2011, he partnered with Combustion Music and Warner Chappell Music to begin his own publishing venture, Tape Room Music. And The Writer Is...This Year's ASCAP Country Songwriter of The Year Ashley Gorley!
This writer has not only been a successful solo artist, with his #1 hit “Don’t Get Me Started” but has also written chart toppers for some of country music’s biggest names. He’s had 28 #1 singles (and counting), was named the #4 Billboard Country Songwriter, and has earned BMI’s Songwriter of the Year award twice. He co-wrote Blake Shelton’s “Honey Bee,” which became the highest selling digital debut by a country male solo artist. He’s won six CMA Triple Play Awards (presented to a songwriter who has penned three #1 singles in 12 months) and this year it was announced that he’s had at least one song in the Country Airplay charts every week for the past seven years straight. And The Writer Is… Rhett Akins!
If you’re currently a professional songwriter or if you’re working to become one, our next episode is required listening. Our guest is unlike any of our previous, in that he’s not a songwriter, but works tirelessly on behalf of ALL songwriters. He’s been the CEO and President of the National Music Publishers’ Association for the past 13 years, where he implemented landmark legal successes for publisher and songwriter royalty rate agreements and continues to work on increasing the value of intellectual property. Named to Billboard’s Power 100 multiple times, this overachiever serves on several boards including the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and has previously served in senior positions within the U.S. Government. This honorable guest certainly has a colorful background of proven success no matter where he is and man are we grateful to have him as the backbone standing up for songwriter rights and compensation. And The Writers Is… songwriter advocate and one mean poker player, David Israelite!
Born and raised in New York, New York, this songwriter caught the music bug early on, being introduced to a wide variety of music styles by his Jamaican-born mother at a young age. That passion eventually led him to enroll at Berklee College of Music in Boston where he went on to collaborate with notable artists such Whitney Houston, Faith Evans, Christina Aguilera, and John Legend, proving this icon is truly a source of inspiration for all. He is now a four time Grammy Nominee and has penned chart topping hits throughout the last two decades such as Britney Spears's “Circus," Bruno Mars’s “Grenade,” and Miley Cyrus’s “Party In The U.S.A." And The Writer Is... The Studio Beast himself...Claude Kelly!
This week's songwriter is defining the game as we know it and she's only 23! She's currently still celebrating the release of her debut mini album "Nervous System." The album's first single "Issues," has gone 6x Platinum worldwide! Moreover, she's regularly collaborating with some of pop music's biggest names, having co-written Justin Bieber's smash hit "Sorry," Selena Gomez's "Good For You," and Nick Jonas' "Close feat. Tove Lo". Quite a resume from one of the industry's best and brightest. And The Writer Is...Julia Michaels!