Country music artists often have a favorite songwriter whose songs they record whenever they get the chance. As Jason Aldean was working on crafting his album My Kinda Party, he found himself drawn to two songs written by the same songwriter. That songwriter was just a songwriter at the time, but he was looking to break into the country music scene as an artist himself.
That guy was Brantley Gilbert, who wrote Aldean’s Top Ten hit “My Kinda Party” and co-wrote his number one hit “Dirt Road Anthem.” Gilbert also recorded each of the songs himself, releasing one on his independent album Modern Day Prodigal Son in 2009 and the other on his second album Halfway to Heaven in 2010. So even though Aldean had recorded the songs as well, Gilbert was the first one to release them.
Aldean released his album My Kinda Party months after Gilbert had released Halfway to Heaven. When Gilbert’s fans heard Aldean’s takes on “My Kinda Party” and “Dirt Road Anthem” there was a lot of backlash. As Aldean told Rolling Stone, many of Gilbert’s fans accused him of stealing his songs.
“When that album came out, a lot of his fans were like, ‘You’re stealing Brantley’s song!’” he said, adding that Gilbert had to go on social media to make everything right. “It’s funny now. He went on Twitter or something and was like, ‘Hey, everybody, chill out.’”
Aldean said that when he recorded the songs, he didn’t have any idea who Gilbert was. He didn’t have a record deal at the time, and was still waiting for his big break.
The two finally met when Gilbert stopped by the studio to listen to Aldean record his songs. That first meeting kicked off what is now a good friendship and a great respect for one another as artists.
Just as Gilbert’s own career as an artist took off, his songwriting talents were rewarded when Aldean’s recordings became popular. Thanks to Aldean for using his songs, Gilbert was finally able to build the house of his dreams.
“I just saw him; he had shown me his house he just built,” Aldean said in his interview. “I said, ‘How long did you have that?’ He said, ‘I built it about the time ‘Dirt Road Anthem’ became a hit.’ So it worked out pretty good.”
We would sure say so!
In 2011, Aldean and Gilbert joined “Dirt Road Anthem” co-writer Colt Ford to perform the song at a benefit concert for injured and fallen police officers. You’re in for a real treat, because we’ve got that performance for you in the clip below. Go ahead and check it out!
We think Aldean and Gilbert make a pretty good team, don’t you? Maybe they should consider recording a song together!