FEBRUARY 20th, 2020 ARTIST'S BIOS
RICHIE MCDONALD OF LONESTAR
RICHIE MCDONALD of LONESTAR - has long been one of music's most accomplished and wide-ranging talents. Recognized as one of country's best singers and a polished and engaging entertainer, McDonald is the face and voice of Lonestar, ranked among the genre's preeminent groups. As one of the industry's most successful songwriters, he has penned some of the era's most memorable songs and earned a mantle full of awards and nominations.
The list of accomplishments McDonald brings is among music's most noteworthy. His is the voice behind songs like "Amazed," "Smile" and "No News" and the pen behind songs like "My Front Porch Looking In" and "Let Them Be Little." He has earned six gold and platinum albums, several CMA and ACM awards as well as BMI awards for songwriting. In writing and singing "I'm Already There," he was responsible for a song embraced so warmly by the military and their families it became an unofficial anthem for U.S. troops serving the Middle East.
"That has to be the most rewarding part about writing songs," he says, "when you can actually see the effect it has had on other people's lives."
He has also written songs recorded by John Michael Montgomery, Clay Walker, Billy Dean, Sara Evans and the Wilkinsons, among others.
I feel like I have reached a crossroads in my personal and professional life," he says. "I want to have a better balance and spend more time with my family and yet keep being an artist, hopefully making music that can really make a difference in people's lives."
Richie also released a Christian record ("something I always wanted to do and another side of me the fans get to hear").
McDonald is embracing as strongly as ever the wide-ranging nature of his musical talents.
"Songwriting, recording and live performance are all connected for me," he says. "My passion is writing, but when I write a song and get to record it myself, it means that much more to me because then I get to perform it. I think they're all intertwined and I don't think I could do one without the other. Still, I feel like it all starts with the song, and the rest will take care of itself."
"Nobody said it was going to be easy," he says with a characteristic smile. I think the great thing is I do have relationships I've built over the years. It's nice to go into a radio station and see familiar faces and not feel like a total stranger."
He is renewing those relationships as an artist extending his impact on the musical genre he loves, and a family man deepening his ties at home. As he carves out the proper balance between home and road, he is looking forward to the joys and thrills of that connection with his audience.
Being on stage is a thrill that never gets old for any performer, and for Richie McDonald, it is one he can see both through his windshield and in his rear-view mirror.
"I'm grateful every day," he says, "for the chance to continue to do something I love so much."
MARK NARMORE - was raised and still resides in Center Star, Alabama, in the shadow of the music mecca of Muscle Shoals. He grew up loving and emulating the sounds from those Shoals studios and has had a 33 year career as a songwriter. He graduated from Brooks High in 1983, then attended the University Of North Alabama where he received a degree in commercial music in 1988.
Mark also worked locally as a radio announcer. With over 80 cuts to his credit, he has had songs recorded by Josh Turner, Brandy Clark, Reba, Alabama, John Michael Montgomery, Shenandoah, Blackhawk, Terri Clark, Craig Morgan and many others. His song "That's What I Love About Sunday" was the most performed song at country radio in 2005 according to Billboard magazine and spent five weeks at number one. Also, it was the #8 Billboard country song of the 2000's decade and achieved gold sales status.
His first cut was on the Shoals supergroup Shenandoah--the solely penned "Moon Over Georgia" became a top five hit nationally. Mark was also co-writer along with Walt Aldridge on the number two country hit by Blackhawk, "Like There Ain't No Yesterday". Mark was awarded a bronze star for his musical achievements which is on permanent display in the lobby of the Alabama Music Hall Of Fame. His songs have appeared on nine gold or platinum albums. Mark has been a staff songwriter for FAME, Jody Williams Music, Reba McEntire's Starstruck Music Group, March Music, Sony ATV Tree and currently for Noble Vision Music Group in Nashville. Mark has had 14 songs co-written with and recorded by Josh Turner.
In 2016, Mark appeared as a songwriter on records by Brandy Clark and Shenandoah respectively that were nominated for both Grammy and Dove awards.
MIKE REID - An NCAA All-American and All-Pro NFL defensive lineman, Mike Reid was as dominant a force in commercial country music of the 1980s and early '90s as he was on the gridiron in the 1960s and '70s. Reid penned 12 #1 country hits, including one as a solo artist (1990's "Walk on Faith"), and he provided hit vehicles for Ronnie Milsap, Conway Twitty, Don Williams, Wynonna, Tim McGraw and others. Yet his best-known composition may be the pop hit "I Can't Make You Love Me," a stirring ballad of resignation that Bonnie Raitt took into the pop Top 20 in 1991 and that has since been re-recorded dozens of times.
A serious-minded piano player even during his time playing football at Penn State University and with the Cincinnati Bengals, Reid devoted himself completely to music upon his 1975 retirement from sports. He moved to Nashville in 1980 and signed with Milsap's publishing firm in 1982. Milsap quickly began recording Reid's songs. "Inside" hit #1 on the country chart in early 1983, and "Stranger in My House" (which won Reid a Grammy for Best Country Song) went to #5 later that year. In 1985, Milsap's recording of Reid's "Lost in the Fifties Tonight" was a #1 country hit and a #8 adult contemporary record, and it was the most-played country song of the year. "Lost in the Fifties Tonight" was named ASCAP's Country Song of the Year in 1986.
By the mid-1980s, Reid songs were radio staples, and he notched hits with Milsap ("She Keeps the Home Fires Burning," "In Love," "How Do I Turn You On," Conway Twitty ("Fallin' for You for Years"), Don Williams ("I Wouldn't Be a Man") and more. A soulful vocalist, Reid was featured as Milsap's duet partner for 1988's "Old Folks," and Reid's recording-artist deal with Columbia Records resulted in the chart-topper "Walk on Faith."
Three other Top 20 solo hits followed for Reid, but his prime mark on popular music would be as a songwriter. More than two decades after its creation, "I Can't Make You Love Me" remains in Raitt's set list at every concert, and it has been recorded by George Michael, Kenny Rogers, Nancy Wilson, Kelly Clarkson, Adele and others. Continuing his renaissance ways, Reid went on to compose theatrical and operatic works, winning a Richard Rodgers Development Award from the Academy of Arts and Letters for 1997's The Ballad of Little Jo. Inducted into Nashville Songwriter’s Hall of Fame 2005.