4 Songs You Didn’t Know Ashley Monroe Wrote For Other Artists

Ashley Monroe is a critically acclaimed, Grammy-nominated country artist who possesses just as much power as a songwriter. In the midst of launching a solo career in the mid-2000s, Monroe was actively writing attention-grabbing songs for other artists in the country realm, including famous friends like Miranda Lambert and Vince Gill.

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“Songwriting is a gift,” Monroe has described her craft to American Songwriter. “I’m not in control of it at all. I get a feeling, and suddenly I have all these ideas I didn’t have three seconds before.” Below, we look at four well-known songs Monroe has penned that were cut by other artists.

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1. “The Truth” by Jason Aldean

Written by Ashley Monroe and Brett James

Though Trent Willmon originally recorded “The Truth” in 2008, it was Aldean who turned it into a chart-topping hit with his cover, released a year later. Written by Monroe and fellow hit songwriter Brett James, “The Truth” was released as the third single off Aldean’s 2009 album, Wide Open. It reached the top of the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, becoming his fourth single to do so.

Sharing a manager, Monroe said in a 2009 interview with CMT that she got an advanced copy of Wide Open and loved Aldean’s version of the song—in fact, she almost forgot that she wrote it when she heard his interpretation. “I listen to it all the time and forget that I wrote it,” she said at the time (quote via The Boot).” I literally just listen to the song and listen to him sing it, realizing, ‘Oh, my gosh, I’m a part of this?’ He’s an amazing singer.”

Just don’t tell ’em I’ve gone crazy
That I’m still strung out over you
Tell ’em anything you want to
Just don’t tell ’em all the truth
Yeah, don’t tell ’em all the truth

2. “Heart Like Mine” by Miranda Lambert

Written by Ashley Monroe, Miranda Lambert and Travis Howard

Lambert and Monroe have been longtime friends and collaborators. But before they formed the trio Pistol Annies with Angaleena Presley, they worked together as songwriters. Over the years, Monroe has had several cuts by Lambert, with “Heart Like Mine” being among her first. The two wrote it with Travis Howard. The song was released in 2011 as the last single off her album, Revolution, and became her second No. 1 hit on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart.

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“Heart Like Mine” came together during a trip to Monroe’s native East Tennessee when she took Lambert to Dollywood. They rented a cabin near the park and were sitting outside while writing, which had the singer a little on edge.

“We got a little cabin in Gatlinburg, and we were sitting on the porch there picking on the guitar, and I kept hearing things,” Monroe recalled. “[Lambert] said, ‘Oh, my God, bring me a steak knife so you’ll shut up.’ She’s tougher than I am. She had a steak knife next to her. We were saying, ‘Let’s write something really honest.’ All of it’s true to her life.” Monroe also had a hand in writing “Me and Your Cigarettes” which is featured on Revolution.

‘Cause I heard Jesus he drank wine
And I bet we’d get along just fine
He could calm a storm and heal the blind
And I bet he’d understand a heart like mine

3. “Flat on the Floor” by Carrie Underwood

Written by Ashley Monroe and Brett James

Monroe and James proved to be a dynamic duo, as they are also behind Underwood’s “Flat on the Floor.This foot-stomping, fiddle, and banjo-heavy tune opens her 2007 album Carnival Ride with a force of energy. Carnival Ride topped both the Billboard 200 and Top Country Albums charts, becoming Underwood’s first No. 1 album on the former all-genre chart. Monroe cites James as a songwriter who mentored her early on in her career. “He was one of the first people in Nashville to take me under his wing,” she recalls to Atwood Magazine. “We wrote ‘The Truth’ together for Jason Aldean, just he and I, ‘Flat on the Floor’ for Carrie [Underwood]. We’ve had such a history with writing.”

‘Cause I’m flat on the floor with my head down low
Where the sky can’t rain on me anymore
Don’t knock on my door ’cause I won’t come
I’m hidin’ from the storm ’til the damage gets done

4. “My Favorite Movie” by Vince Gill

Written by Vince Gill and Ashley Monroe

Gill and Monroe are no strangers to collaboration, writing songs together for many years. In fact, Gill was one of her earliest champions when she moved to Nashville from her native Knoxville, Tennessee when she was just a teenager. Three years prior to “My Favorite Movie” being released, Gill helped write two songs that appeared on Monroe’s 2013 album, Like a Rose. He also co-produced the album and her 2015 effort, The Blade.

With “My Favorite Movie,” the two swapped roles, with Gill recording it for his 2016 album, Down to My Last Bad Habit. “Vince has kept a watchful eye over me since he first heard me when I was 15,” Monroe shared with American Songwriter in 2018. “He’d always been one of my musical heroes, and then he became a friend. He always saw something in me that he believed in.”

“I love what she does,” Gill praised of Monroe to The Boot in 2015, calling her “refreshing.” “She writes great songs and sings like a bird—that’s all I ever have had much interest in musically, is that —so she epitomizes what I try to be and what I like and what I’m most drawn to.”

As we’re dancing slow
The credits will roll
You’re my best friend
Is how our story ends

Whey you’re in my arms
And you’re in my bed
You’re my favorite movie

Photo by Erika Goldring/WireImage

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