Josh Osborne has picked up his first win as ASCAP Country Music Songwriter of the Year.
Osborne, who has written 23 No. 1 hits to date, was honored during the 59th Annual ASCAP Country Music Awards, which kicked off today and will run through Nov. 10, for his eight top-charted songs released during the eligibility period, including Carly Pearce’s “Next Girl,” “Breaking Up Was Easy in the 90’s” and “Hard to Forget” by Sam Hunt, Blake Shelton’s “Happy Anywhere” and “Nobody But You,” Darius Rucker’s “Beers and Sunshine,” “How They Remember You” by Rascal Flatts, and “7 Summers” by Morgan Wallen.
“It’s pretty mind-blowing,” Osborne tells American Songwriter. “I’m not really an award-driven person. I just love the chase every day of showing up and trying to see what we can come up with, or if we can do something different. If I’m getting opportunities to write with artists, those are the things that motivate me and drive me.”
The songwriter joins other ASCAP Country Music Award winners including Ashley Gorley, whose “One of Them Girls,” recorded by Lee Brice, was named ASCAP Country Music Song of the Year, and Sony Music Publishing, named Publisher of the Year for the first time since 2012.
Now with 35 ASCAP awards to his credit, including Song of the Year wins in 2015, 2018, and 2020, Osborne had the added pleasure of learning about his win by his biggest hero George Strait, who revealed the songwriter’s win on a video shared on ASCAP social media.
“ASCAP went above and beyond on that,” says Osborne, still in awe of Strait announcing his win. “Beth Brinker [associate creative director, ASCAP], who sent me the video to watch, knows how important George is to me. He’s my favorite country singer of all time. Part of that was driven by the fact that he was a songwriter’s dream stream. He was the pinnacle, and so he’s just always been my favorite.”
He adds, “Anytime the king blesses you with any kind of grace like that, it’s pretty amazing.”
However awards-driven he’s felt, throughout his career, Osborne admits that he’s always been vocal about wanting to win an ASCAP Country Songwriter of the Year award.
“It’s an award based on your work and not only how hard you worked, but everything lining up,” says Osborne. “It takes a lot of miracles for these songs to fall the way they fall and I’m blessed to write at a time with so many really talented, prolific writers like Ashley Gorley, Shane McAnally, that sort of dominate the charts.”
Today, Osborne says he’s simply grateful for his spot as a songwriter. “The success I’ve had is beyond anything I ever could have dreamed,” he says. “When something like this happens, it’s literally like icing on the cake.”