Platinum Songwriters Showcase

The Saxon Pub's new series

Monte Warden
Monte Warden

Speaking of kids playing music, Monte Warden reminded me the other night that he was 15 when I first wrote about him in 1982. He radiated star quality like a shiny gold halo. Most anyone who saw him would nod after a few minutes, nudge the person next to him, and say, “He’s gonna make it.”

He made it all right, bouncing through the rockabilly revival of the early 1980s with Whoa, Trigger!, then helped get country right with the Wagoneers on A&M Records. Yet his solo career has been just as successful, writing songs for George Jones, Kelly Willis, Bruce Robison, Patty Loveless, and Travis Tritt. Warden and Robison co-wrote Strait's Top 10 hit “Desperately” in 2006. That year, Warden was awarded BMI's “Million-Air” Award to acknowledge over one million radio performances of the song.

Who better, then, to host the new Saxon Pub Songwriter Series? Warden is inviting songwriters with at least one charted single on a major chart (i.e. Billboard, R&R, Mediabase, etc.) or who have earned at least one RIAA platinum record as a composer. That’s gonna separate the wheat from the chaff but it’s also make for prime listening.

Saturday Warden takes the stage at the Saxon at 7pm with Jim Photoglo and Allen Shamblin. Photoglo (love that last name!) wrote the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band’s No. 1 hit “Fishin’ in the Dark” and “Hometown Honeymoon” for Alabama. Shamblin composed “He Walked on Water” for Randy Travis and “I Can’t Make You Love Me” for Bonnie Raitt. It’s a little touch of Nashville that Austin – for once – can use.

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