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Drew Michael Blake

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"If you come from West Virginia, you got it in you." The sun was low on the horizon. Earl kept his mirrored sunglasses on, and stared straight ahead into the evening sky. Nashville is the kind of town where you can walk over to your neighbor's backyard bbq, and pull up a lawn chair next to Earl Bud Lee, the man who wrote "Friends in Low Places." When I left that night, Earl stood and shook my hand. His parting words were, "keep swinging."

I grew up in West Virginia, where country music is everywhere. I can remember my grandfather playing Jimmie Rodgers tunes on his porch when I was a kid. Later, I learned how to play fiddle in his kitchen. I caught the music bug early, and I've spent more than half my life writing songs, and putting bands together. After 6 years in Nashville, two solo records, and three co-writes on a release by Island/Chop Shop records, I've figured out that I like writing songs better than about anything else.