Ashley Gorley was named songwriter of the year for an eighth time as the ASCAP Country Awards unveiled its annual list of winners Monday. Song of the year went to the Old Dominion hit “One Man Band,” written by songwriter Josh Osborne with band members Matthew Ramsey, Trevor Rosen and Brad Tursi.
Warner Chappell won publisher of the year for the eighth consecutive year. The publisher’s “One Man Band” was among the songs being acclaimed by ASCAP as among the 50 most-played of the year. Warner Chappell also won the same award in honors announced by BMI on Monday.
As with most of the publishing rights organization’s other awards so far in 2020, like its pop and film/TV kudos, ASCAP replaced the usual ceremony that would be taking place at Nashville’s Music City Center with a four-day rollout of virtual programming celebrating the winners. The online festivities are taking place on ASCAP’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts as well as at the web page unveiling the winners, which can be found here.
Gorley had seven songs reach No. 1 during the period — “Catch,” “Good Vibes,” “I Don’t Know About You,” “Living,” “One Big Country Song,” “Remember You Young” and “Ridin’ Roads.” Getting a head start on possibly reclaiming the award yet again next year at this time, Gorley recently had his 51st song go No. 1, Lee Brice’s “One of Them Girls,” a record number of chart-toppers for a writer in any genre.
“It’s been an insane year, and this is a much-needed bright spot for me,” said Gorley. “Thank you to ASCAP for taking care of me as a writer for many years, and for taking care of my family. We have felt your love through this pandemic and are grateful to be able to celebrate with you all virtually.”
Warner Chappell Music Nashville president Ben Vaughn turned in a video acceptance speech from his car, parked in front of ASCAP’s Nashville offices.
Said ASCAP chairman and president Paul Williams in an introductory video, “So many of our greatest country songs deal with struggle, loss and heartbreak. But they also give us messages of hope, resilience, joy and the happiness we find in our everyday lives through our loved ones, friends and community. This past year the world needed your music more than ever. And you delivered the goods… Your songs lifted our spirits, brought meaning to our lives and inspired us to keep going.”
The ASCAP rollout will include Carly Pearce doing an acoustic version of “I Hope You’re Happy Now,” the song she’ll also sing on Wednesday’s CMA Awards as a best new artist nominee.