Nashville songwriters were celebrated at the Ryman Auditorium Wednesday night during the first annual Nashville Songwriter Awards. Hosted by Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), the not-for-profit organization recognized some of the most esteemed songwriters in Nashville.
The night began with opening remarks from NSAI president Steve Bogard. In light of the recent passing of the Music Modernization Act, Bogard emphasized the importance of the night and NSAI’s tagline, “It all begins with a song.”
All of the awards, including Song of the Year and Songwriter of the Year, were voted on by winners’ peers. Many of the awards also expanded beyond songwriters, with Rep. Doug Collins receiving The White Hat Award for his advocacy and support for songwriters and the MMA.
One of the ceremony’s highest honors went to Bill Anderson, who received the Kris Kristofferson Lifetime Achievement Award. Given for only the second time in NSAI history, the award honors Anderson’s beloved catalog, which includes songs like “Whiskey Lullaby” and “City Lights.”
Performers included Darius Rucker, Jessi Alexander, Jon Randall, Jamey Johnson, Chris Janson, Thomas Rhett, LANCO, Jewel, Kip Moore, Brantley Gilbert, Travis Denning, Scotty McCreery, Blake Shelton, Brothers Osborne, Jonathan Singleton and Old Dominion.
A full list of winners and awards can be found below.
Kris Kristofferson Lifetime Achievement Award
Song of the Year
“I’ll Name The Dogs” (Matt Dragstrem, Ben Hayslip, Josh Thompson)
Songwriter of the Year
Songwriter/Artist of the Year
Stephen Foster Award
The White Hat Award
Congressman Doug Collins
Ten ‘Songs I Wish I’d Written’ Awards
”Broken Halos” – Mike Henderson, Chris Stapleton
“Every Little Thing” – busbee, Carley Pearce, Emily Shackelton
“Five More Minutes” – Monty Criswell, Scotty McCreery, Frank Rogers
“I Could Use A Love Song” – Maren Morris, Jimmy Robbins, Laura Veltz
“I Lived It” – Rhett Akins, Ross Copperman, Ashley Gorley, Ben Hayslip
“It Ain’t My Fault” – Lee Thomas Miller, John Osborne, T.J. Osborne
“Marry Me” – Jesse Frasure, Ashley Gorley, Shane McAnally, Thomas Rhett
“Most People Are Good” – David Fraiser, Ed Hill, Josh Kear
“Written In The Sand” – Shane McAnally, Matthew Ramsey, Trevor Rosen, Brad Tursi
“Yours If You Want It” – Andrew Dorff, Jonathan Singleton