Grandson of Country Music

MT - Grandson of Country Music
Michael Tyler

It seems proper that Weekly Music Commentary should begin the year 2017 featuring another young, budding singer/songwriter. This week I chose to feature Michael Tyler, a new artist with a pedigree in country music. In fact, he is the descendant of the late, great Jimmie Rodgers, known as “The Father of Country Music,” who learned his craft around the New Orléans and Northeastern Railroad. Now young Tyler is moving closer to a stellar career creating his own style of Country music.

At the age of 13, over a MySpace meeting, Tyler met award-winning producer Michael Knox. After a few years of sending songs and ideas back and forth, Tyler came to Nashville, Tenn. to play a show at Tootsies Orchid Lounge for their first face-to-face meeting. At that time, Knox was hired by peermusic Nashville to help restructure the creative department. After watching Tyler play a few shows, Knox felt it was time for Tyler to make the move to Nashville as a peermusic songwriter. peermusic was founded over 85 years ago by renowned visionary Ralph S. Peer, and is the largest independent music publisher in the world, with 32 offices in 28 countries and over a quarter of a million copyrights.

Working in A&R for the Victor Talking Machine label, Peer discovered Jimmie Rodgers (“Waiting For A Train”) and The Carter Family (“Will The Circle Be Unbroken”), and recorded what became known as the famed “Bristol Sessions.” With the establishment of his publishing company Southern Music, now known as peermusic, Peer acquired standards-to-be “You Are My Sunshine,” “Walk Right In” and “Georgia On My Mind.”

In 1980, Ralph Peer II became peermusic’s third CEO, as he continues to lead the global firm through the transitions of the digital music era. Following in his father’s footsteps, Ralph Peer II continues to be interested in the songs of the next generation of Country music stars. He also gets to make history repeat itself as he now can help the next Jimmie Rodgers find a country music fan base.

The fact that Michael Tyler started as a songwriter first is of interest too. Just about all the new artists in the music industry at least co-write their own material. Of course, when compiling material for an album, record executives many times reach out to songwriters with a history of a few hit songs to give the album a better chance of success. Early in his career, that seems to be Michael Tyler. In his short time at peermusic, Tyler has already penned a Jason Aldean cut (“Laid Back”) on the platinum-selling record Old Boots New Dirt, and two songs on the LOCASH album “The Fighters” (“Shipwrecked” & “Ain’t Startin Tonight”). That would be a great start, but there is more. Tyler recently co-penned Dierks Bentley’s “Somewhere on a Beach.”

Performing rights organization SESAC awarded Song of the Year to hot country newcomer Michael Tyler during its Nashville Music Awards for the smash “Somewhere on a Beach.” Bentley presented the award to Michael Tyler, who co-penned the multi-week No. 1 platinum-selling hit.

“This is awesome and I’m so thankful for this honor! Wow, I can’t believe this has all happened in the last year. I’m so blessed that Dierks decided to record the song and then release it as a single,” Michael Tyler said. MT co-wrote “Somewhere on a Beach” with Jaron Boyer, Alexander Palmer, Dave Kuncio and Josh Mirenda.

Tyler’s story would have a very happy ending if it stopped right there, but the songwriter from Thayer, Missouri is still writing several more chapters that might surely place him on the same career track as his descendant Jimmie Rodgers. The Reviver Records recording artist’s debut single “Crazy Last Night”, which world-premiered on CMT, was selected as Billboard’s Country Songs of the Summer Picks.

Michael Tyler was on the road with Mercury Nashville’s Canaan Smith for the Sundown Ready Tour toward the fall of last year, and is now with Reviver Records label mates LOCASH for Live Nation’s ‘Ones To Watch’ Tour. Fans can purchase tickets at

Tyler is considered by many fans of Country music to be one of the young guns who have brought a resurgence to the genre. Perfectly cast as a gifted songwriter, Tyler is poised to give the industry a very good début album. I had an opportunity to listen to a few other songs by Tyler that may or may not be included on his first album. However, I got a quick understanding appreciation of his songwriting ability. Michael Tyler is an outstanding talent, heritage or not.

I must say that Michael Tyler certainly has a wonderful outlook on the music of today. A few times I’ve been asked about the current state of the music industry, and my stand is that it is not broken, but things have certainly changed. However, music is a mode of communication. That has not changed and Tyler is well aware of that fact.

“Music is difficult in the respect that more people are losing interest in what music stands for. It is a UNIVERSAL language that we can all understand. It says everything that we ourselves cannot always express to one another. Please keep music alive and thanks to all those that are supporting me!” Well said Michael Tyler!

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