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May 13, 2020 | Courtesy of New Country Buzz Podcast - State of the Music Business with Chris Benton

We had a great conversation with Michael Blanton from Songwriting U on our State of the Music Business Podcast. We talked about so many things from the music business side of things. We told stories and just connected on a music level!

State of the Music Business is a podcast where we bring on executives & others from the business side of music to discuss music in general.

Michael Blanton, of Brentwood, Tennessee, has had a celebrated career in the national and Nashville music industry. But today finds him in all kinds of artistic and entertainment development, not limited to just artist management.

A native of Amarillo, Texas, Blanton got his start in music as an A&R representative at Word Records in Waco, Texas, moving to Nashville in 1978 to open the company’s office on Music Row. He and business partner Dan Harrell launched Blanton/Harrell Production and Management in 1980 with Amy Grant as their first client. In 1981 with friend Brown Bannister (’75), they created Reunion Records and Reunion Publishing and soon launched the careers of artists including Michael W. Smith and Rich Mullins and Wayne Kirkpatrick.

Blanton served as executive producer for some of Grant’s biggest hits, including the albums Unguarded (1985), Lead Me On (1988), and the multi-platinum Heart in Motion (1992), which sold more than ten million copies and received five Grammy nominations, including Album of the Year. He also executive produced hits for Smith including his debut, Michael W. Smith Project (1983) featuring the song “Friends,” The Big Picture (1986), i 2 (EYE) (1988) and Change Your World (1992). Blanton and Harrell worked with authors including Frank Peretti, helping him release his multi- million selling This Present Darkness in 1986 and Piercing the Darkness in 1989.

I am Chris Benton Co-Founder of New Country Buzz. We launched New Country Buzz to help spread the word of rising country stars. There is so much talent out there that people need to see & hear! New Country Buzz is the place to experience new country music! Its about the rise of new artists!


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