Marina Gopodze told the Nashville Night’s performers Sunday that their efforts to assist the Buchanan Area Ministerial Association (BAMA) Food Pantry enabled the organization to send $25,000 in relief aid to the Texas Presbyterian Church assistance fund following Hurricane Harvey.
The aid was in recognition of two of the songwriters who hail from Texas — Matt Jenkins and Shane McAnally — for their support of the food pantry.
That wasn’t the only news during Sunday night’s annual “songwriters round” at James River High School where fellow songwriter and Old Dominion member Matt Ramsey spent his high school years.
Ramsey, who started the Nashville Night in 2011 with the help of his parents Tom and Peggy Ramsey to help raise money for the food pantry, told the full house in the JRHS auditorium there are plans for an even bigger event in 2019.
“I don’t know exactly what next year’s going to be, but I do know that the next year, in 2019, we’re going to have something really big and it’s going to help a lot of people in this area and hopefully, eventually a lot of people in the world; and I know you’ll show up for it like you always have,” Ramsey told the crowd to loud applause.
While the lid’s pretty tight on what that 2019 event will be, there’s been interest in having Ramsey’s band Old Dominion perform locally.
The band’s popularity has soared the past couple of years with No. 1 songs and a second album while Ramsey and fellow band member and Nashville Night regular Trevor Rosen have continued to write songs that have been recorded by other country music artists.
Old Dominion has been nominated for two Country Music Association (CMA) awards— New Artist of the Year and Vocal Group of the Year— that will be presented November 8 in Nashville.
Ramsey and Rosen weren’t the only CMA nominees on the JRHS stage Sunday night. Josh Osborne and McAnally are nominees for Song of the Year with Zach Crowell and Sam Hunt who together wrote “Body Like A Back Road,” which has been the No. 1 country song for a record-setting 34 weeks.
The James River High School Key Club sponsored the concert in conjunction with the BAMA Food Pantry. The Key Club members again helped sell chances on a variety of goodies the songwriters brought from Nashville, including a couple of guitars, Old Dominion shirts and CDs, and tickets and backstage passes to Kenny Chesney and Old Dominion concerts.
The group of songwriters noted that when they decided to join Ramsey for the first Nashville Night seven years ago, they had a few songs that had made it to country music albums, but no breakouts.
That quickly changed over the course of the next couple of years, so much so that Sunday night’s song list was a collection of No. 1 hits.
Each of the songwriters thanked the audience for making their sojourn to Buchanan enjoyable, and obviously the audience enjoyed the songs and camaraderie among the songwriters just as much.
All the No. 1’s were popular with the audience, but it was Ramsey’s No. 1 song for Old Dominion, “No Such Thing As A Broken Heart,” that closed the show that had a special meaning for Ramsey.
He said the tragedy at the country music concert in Las Vegas earlier in the month impacted their fans. He said it was a “strange and eerie thing to step out on stage for the first time after all that happened. But, it turned into a really beautiful thing because music is healing. This song in particular helps me every night because thousands of people sing it with me— and with us— and it’s an unbelievable gift if nothing else ever happens with music…. It’s an unbelievable gift to feel people heal through the words we created.”