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A New Writer...An Aussie Christmas Writer..."Say Yes" Thing Writer

May 3 | Posted by: Bill Whyte |

Monday…in the month of May. And the first Monday brought storms and rain. Looks like rain and thunderstorms for most of the day here. Mississippi had multiple tornadoes last night. So at least we didn’t have to do a “duck and cover” thing here…so far.



This one started with a songwriting session at Wil Nance’s writing cabin a few miles from me and the two of us welcomed Erin Kinsey who’s a new young artist in town making her way. Erin moved from just North of Dallas shortly after High School and just turned 21. How do they get that good so young? I’ll never know. But we just had the best time writing a fun up-tempo song with her from a little thought she brought with her. We’ll be writing again for sure.



Then Saturday evening dinner time while it was breakfast time the next morning in Australia when I hooked back up with one of my Aussie co-writers Angus Gill to write a funny Christmas song idea he had and wanted to write. And it was a really funny idea about folks who don’t spend much at Christmas, or even about those who wrap something up in their house they no longer want and regift it. Yes…there are some Grinches who do that. Angus had found this VIDEO that inspired the idea. He’s going to do a Christmas album this year and I’d bet that this funny tune will be on it.


He also made me happy when he told me he was going to release a bluegrass song that we wrote together titled “Scrapbook” which is all about his Grandmother who is now in care because she has Alzheimer’s. His grandmother has been putting together a scrapbook for a long while about Angus. Cutting clippings from is career, everything she can find on him and putting it in a scrapbook. He sent me a picture of his Grandmother in her facility sitting in a chair and holding up that scrapbook that she titled “His Story” all about her grandson. Pretty much made me tear up a bit. So, this will be something special in a couple of different way when he releases it. She honored him with the scrapbook…he’ll honor her with this song.



To my friend and frequent co-writer Jenny Tolman who officially announced that she’s going to be on that TV show “Say Yes to The Dress”. She’s flying into NYC with her Mom and model sister who lives in Miami to start filming. Jenny will marry our co-writer and HER fiancé’ Dave Brainard later this year out in beautiful Jackson Hole, and now she gets the chance to choose a beautiful wedding dress on TV and we can all watch. It will be some great exposure for Jenny and should highlight some of her music I would think so it can’t be a bad thing. And I’m betting a lot of the country will fall in love with her personality.


If you’re a wanna be music star these days, you must be creative to get enough exposure for folks to check out your music. And nothing is guaranteed. Consider this. “The Voice” has been on TV for 10 years now. 10 TV winners, and NONE have yet to become a star. So, I’m glad my friend Jenny is going to get national exposure in a little different kind of way.



A hopeful sign for a baseball nut like me. Our minor league ball teams the Nashville Sounds announced this weekend that they will be allowed to increase their capacity for baseball games. The season was to have started in April…got pushed back until this month of May. It’s going to make it a little easier I hope to now get a ticket or two for a game this year.


NYC is reporting that they have less Covid cases now since last October. On the other side of that, Arizona has the highest number of cases they’ve had in the last three weeks BUT they are also reporting that the death rate trend from Covid is going in the right direction…down.


The New York Times this morning reported that according to multiple health experts that they don’t think we’ll ever reach “herd immunity”. But Covid will instead become a “manageable” threat.



Grammy winning artist Kacey Musgraves did a very fun thing. She worked in a shaved ice truck handing out the sweet treat for hours for those who wanted one. She loves the stuff so much she sent out a social request note asking if anyone who sold the stuff wanted to help. A food truck responded…Kacey showed up and went to work. Why? She said, “It’s fun and it makes people happy”. Pretty good answer. She also claimed it was the most fun thing she’s done since the pandemic began.



I read a listing of the top rides at Disney World in the Magic Kingdom this week. That piqued my interest as I’m a huge Disney World fan. Their Top 5 rides in reverse order were, The Dwarfs Mine Train, Thunder Mountain Railroad, Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean and their NUMBER ONE favorite ride in the Magic Kingdom?  Splash Mountain.


You might make 100 lists and they’d all come out different. I think they missed on Space Mountain. They put that one at 6.  I would choose that for my favorite followed by The Haunted Mansion at 2.


Because of being in radio I got to go there a lot and do our radio show. We had the run of the place and that was truly incredible. On a couple of those trips, they assigned us a guide who would give us private tours, behind the scenes stuff AND a back door entry where the guide could put us in the front of the line for whatever we wanted to ride or see. They of course knew we’d talk about that on the air helping to advertise Disney World.


And maybe one of the most special things about it was because our radio show was early morning, we’d enter the park while it was dark and not open for several hours. Our broadcast table one time was set up right in front of the Castle. And there wasn’t a soul in the place except for the workers getting the park ready to open. It was a different way to see the park for sure…and memorable.



Chauffeurs hear some interesting conversations from the back seat from the wealthy folks who ride back there. And I’m talking rich. Like the guy who got in one limousine and told the chauffeur that he hated all the new homes they were building so he decided to by a castle in Scotland, had it disassembled then flown to the states where they reassembled it for him. Now, that would have COMPLETELY blown me away had I not heard this story when I was in College Station, Texas once to play a concert to help raise money for the Texas A&M Equestrian team there with Linda Davis and Lang Scott…our “Evening in the Round” show. Linda’s sister and husband live in College Station, so we got in a day early to see them and attend a gathering of folks in a house on a golf course owned by the couple who helped foot the bill for the event.


Couple of unforgettable memories of that. One, Johnny Manziel’s parents were there. They were running high school highlights of the young QB on the Big Screen as Johnny was just getting ready to start and unforgettable career for the Aggies. The SECOND stand out thing was that you could not help but notice the beautiful tile roof on this incredible home that sat on the golf course. We were later told that when they were building it the wife (who’s picky) could not decide on the roof she wanted. While they were building it, she and her husband were in Italy and drove by a house where the wife saw this beautiful Italian tiled roof and she said, “that’s it”. Apparently, they talked to the owners and made them an offer they could not refuse and bought the roof of the house, had it dismantled and flown to College Station where it is now their roof. When I hear stories like this, I realize that these folks must have NOT been entertainers or songwriters.



It is Mother’s Day weekend coming up. Don’t forget. Since it is Mom’s week I’m going to try and remember to drop some fun quotes from some Mom’s you’ll know. And I’ll start with this one today from actress Jennifer Lopez who said, “I used to give my friends who have kids’ advice all the time, and they would look at me like I had three heads. And then, when I had two, I literally apologized to all of my friends.”



Did you see this guy in Charlotte break the Guinness Record for most pushups in 1 hour? TShane Johnson, a former vet shattered the old record with 3,050 pushups in one hour! I can’t do 3 pushups in 1 minute. Wonder if there’s a Guinness Record for drinking the most Guinness in one hour?



I’m writing this morning with my friend Irene Kelley who’s got a new cabin she’s building in Gatlinburg that should be getting close to completion. I’ll be checking on the progress and how long it might be before she and some of her co-writers (like me) might start writing on that deck overlooking the Smoky Mountains.


Have a great Monday!



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