If you’ve ever wanted to write your own commercial song, take your songwriting skills to the next level or even build your own brand, American Songwriter is announcing its partnership with hit songwriters Bonnie Baker (“Invisible,” “Play”) and Forest Glen Whitehead (“Peter Pan,” “Yeah Boy”) to bring songwriting workshops and free tutorials to the masses.
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“Our goal is to provide as much information and education as possible to our songwriters, musicians and artists to help them better their craft,” says American Songwriter’s Chief Operating Officer, Dan Wise. “These new workshops are designed to help songwriters expand their skills and give them access to top industry professionals. We couldn’t be more thrilled to connect our community with these workshops and tutorials.”
Forest Glen Whitehead – “Music City Playbook” Workshop
Grammy nominated producer/songwriter and No. 1 songwriter Forest Glen Whitehead will helm the live workshop, “Music City Playbook,” an online platform educating the next generation of songwriters and producers through music production and songwriting advice/tutorials and courses from current professionals in the Nashville music industry.
Whitehead signed his first publishing deal with Black River Publishing in 2011. He creatively hit it off with country artist Kelsea Ballerini and has co-written several of her No. 1 hits, including “Love Me Like You Mean It,” “Peter Pan,”and “Legends.” Whitehead co-produced Kelsea’s gold-certified debut album, The First Time, as well as her Grammy-nominated follow up album, Unapologetically.
With 4 No. 1 hits as a songwriter and 5 No. 1 hits as a producer under his belt, Whitehead has received his second Grammy nomination for co-producing “Black Like Me” by Mickey Guyton, who is nominated for Best Vocal Performance at this year’s Grammy awards.
The 2x Grammy nominee began working with the Nashville Songwriters Association International to bring attention in Washington, D.C., to the need for copyright reform. He started recruiting new, independent acts, helping them hone their craft in the same way that others assisted him, and giving them a kick start with SiriusXM and the growing streaming business.
In addition, Whitehead has written songs for Brandy Clark, Brantley Gilbert, Maddie & Tae, Dylan Scott and Catherine McGrath, among others.
“I’m so excited to announce my new venture, ‘Music City Playbook,’ in partnership with American Songwriter,” says Whitehead. “We will be bringing only the best livestreams, workshops and courses through our partnership with American Songwriter. I’m so passionate about bringing the best education there is on songwriting and leveling up your productions.”
Whitehead will hold two free “Music City Playbook” live workshops on February 15 and February 22. His first ticketed workshop will premiere on February 24, 2021.
To purchase tickets and be a part of Forest’s workshop, sign up here.
Bonnie Baker – “Expanding Your Songwriting Skills” Workshop
Grammy-award nominee and No. 1 songwriter Bonnie Baker will lead the live workshop “Expanding Your Songwriting Skills,” offering advice and tools for songwriters looking to build their brand, make their work stand out and find out what it takes to write a commercial song.
Baker signed her first publishing deal in 1997 with a small boutique publishing company, McSpadden-Smith. She landed her first cut in 1998, “Ordinary Life,” which became a single for Chad Brock and consequently reached No. 1 on the country charts. Baker received her first of three ASCAP awards the following year. Other award winning singles include “This Woman Needs” by SheDaisy and “My Sister” by Reba McEntire. Baker has three cuts on the Hunter Hayes’ self-titled debut album for Warner Bros., which sold over two million copies worldwide. She wrote the song “Invisible” featured on Hayes’ second album.
In November of 2019, Baker began an adjunct position at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) in the Recording Industry department. Commercial Songwriting: Gender & Identity is the class topic and has grown 120% since inception. Baker is leading workshops for songwriters from all over the world and has developed relationships with adjuncts from The Institute of Contemporary Music Performance in London as well as the University of Ottawa, Ontario.
Baker has written songs with artists as diverse as Rachel Platten, Zella Day, Rascal Flatts, Hunter Hayes, Chely Wright, The Static Shift, Reba, Brantley Gilbert, Sara Evans, Emerson Drive. Currently, she has a small creative writing/production space on the east side of Nashville.
“The history of this magazine and this creative community is deep and long. It feels important to be standing strong in this moment of world wide challenges,” says Baker. “I want to help our next generation of artists and songwriters in a meaningful way. Partnering with American Songwriter is such an incredible honor, one that I don’t take lightly.”
The first installation of Baker’s “Expanding Your Songwriting Skills” workshop under the new partnership is scheduled for February 20, 2021 at 11 a.m. CT.
To purchase tickets and be a part of Bonnie’s workshop, sign up here.