Strangers become friends: Daniel Layus
During 2013, I was just starting to write songs with other people. On our way through Nashville to play a private show with Jamestown Revival in Chattanooga, I stopped into Warner Chappell to write with a gentleman named Daniel Layus. We'd never met, and I was definitely into what he was doing after finding out he was the lead singer of the band Augustana. Remember that song "Going down to Boston". That's Daniel...and four other guys.
We shook hands, sized each other up, then he lead me through a few halls, kitchen, conference room, and finally found one of these mini small rooms that lined the hall where there was a piano, candle (I think?), window, guitar stand and a chair.
We talked for a few minutes, then he said, "I think I've got an idea", and the beginnings of "Let me Lose You" started. Literally one of my favorite songs I've co-written with someone. That was the first time I'd written with someone in Nashville, to my recollection. It might have been the beginning of my love affair with Nashville. All the great music and delicious BBQ that comes out of that town, I'm convinced some of my songwriting and songs have happened there.
While the song really stuck out in our session, at one point, we walked outside to take a smoke break and clear our heads before going back on to finish up the track. Then we basically got locked out. Breaking into Warner Chapel, while it wasn't the highlight of the night, just made for a more memorable experience. If you reply below, I'll tell you how we got back in.
It's easy for me to stick to what I'm comfortable with, but this session was a reminder of that I need to keep pushing to do things that scare me. Writing a song with someone else, letting someone in to what I was thinking and feeling, knowing it could be a total failure. Ugh, it's hard. But, It led to a happy ending and a helluva song... and figuring out a creative way to break into Warner Chappell.