Logan Mize is a Country music artist/songwriter from Clearwater, Kansas. In April of 2009, Logan signed a publishing/record deal with Big Yellow Dog Music and a booking deal with William Morris Endeavor followed in August of 2010. In 2012, Logan’s second album, Nobody in Nashville (released on Big Yellow Dog Music),
charted to No. 49 on Billboard Country Albums and No. 15 on Billboard Heatseekers Albums. Mize has opened for multiple headlining acts including Lady Antebellum, The Band Perry, Eric Church, Dierks Bentley, Charlie Daniels Band, Blake Shelton (on the Blake Shelton Country Cruise), Stoney LaRue, Hank Williams and a special tribute with Merle Haggard. Logan has also experienced success as a songwriter, notably when country music singer Bucky Covington recorded his song “Mexicoma” on his album Good Guys, which charted to No. 30 on Billboard Country Albums and No.43 on Billboard Independent Albums.

Logan Mize weaves yarn with equal measures elegance (“Sunflowers”) and energy (“I Remember Everything”). Evidence: The Music City resident’s buoyant Nobody in Nashville. Mize’s fiery new collection backs earthy (“Good Life”) and ethereal narratives (“The State of Your Heart”) and with richly detailed storytelling (“Hey Carolina”). At peaks, the 26-year-old balances heartache (“High-N-Dry”) and hope (“Rock and Roll Band”) with insightful wisdom gained through personal experience. “I got married about a year and a half ago,” Mize says. “So, pre-marriage heartbreak songs and post-marriage happy songs are mixed together. I wanted them to have a timeless feel.”

The rapidly rising songwriter undoubtedly has succeeded. Nobody in Nashville fuels both punchy country (“I Give In”) and raw rock and roll (“Ball and Chain”) with an intangible everyman appeal. “Logan has that great gift of authenticity,” says Daniel Tashian, who co-wrote four songs and co-produced the new album (due March 13). “Like those poets of the heartland that came before him – Dylan, Petty, Mellencamp – his images are real and hard-won. He's not making up words; these are the pictures of his life.” One legend particularly helps the Kansas native craft his singular story.

“Tom Petty’s my favorite songwriter both melodically and lyrically,” Mize admits. “There’s a lot of times I’m listening to Echo or the Wildflowers record and go, ‘I want something that sounds like that.’ So, I pull from places like that, but I definitely don’t want to try to think about anybody else when I’m writing. I want to pull straight from my own head. I keep it my own for sure.” His mission statement emerges in the seamless title track. “I’m just three chords and twelve hundred miles,” he sings defiantly as mushrooming drums and spiky guitars punctuate his point, “from telling the whole world the honest truth.”

Mize’s lofty aim pays high dividends: The singer-songwriter has shared stages with boldfaced names like Lady Antebellum, Eric Church, The Band Perry, Billy Currington, Pat Green, Stoney LaRue and the Charlie Daniels Band. In fact, his high-octane live show, infectious melodies and distinctive vocals have turned heads throughout Nashville and beyond. “You know it’s Logan on a song,” says celebrated songwriter Liz Rose (Taylor Swift’s Grammy-winning “White Horse”), who co-wrote “I Remember Everything” with Mize and Tashian. “Nobody sounds like him, so real and so much grit!” Bucky Covington was so taken by Mize’s song “Mexicoma” that he recorded it on his album Live from Rockingham and frequently anchors shows around the boozy border travelogue.

Mize takes such achievements in even stride. He’s far more concerned about more artistically fulfilling goals. “Oh, sure, it’d be great to get a Tim McGraw cut,” says the staff writer for Nashville powerhouse Big Yellow Dog. “But I just want to write good songs and I hope people like them. I like to paint a picture that’s easy to look at and is just something that feels good and has vivid imagery.” Stellar song craft runs deep in his blood: Logan counts Billy Mize, longtime Merle Haggard steel guitarist and pioneer of the Bakersfield sound, as kin. The connection once landed him onstage before The Hag himself. “They called me to come out and play a couple songs at my uncle Billy’s 80th birthday party at Buck Owens Crystal Palace in Bakersfield,” Logan Mize recalls. “I was getting ready to go up and play and there was this interview playing with Haggard talking about Billy Mize’s songwriting. He said that his favorite Billy Mize song was called ‘Who Will Buy the Wine’ and that’s the song I had to play. It was a once in a lifetime experience. Afterward, Haggard gave me the nod like, ‘You don’t suck that bad.’”

Jill Martin

Jill is a country singer from Andale, Kansas, who now lives in Nashville and says she’ll always remember her last conversation with her grandfather. His advice: “If you keep singing Patsy Cline, music is going to take you somewhere.” So she makes a point of singing a Patsy Cline song whenever she performs. Her own favorite performer: Loretta Lynn. Jill describes herself as a normal, hard-working young woman she thinks people can relate to.

Singer-songwriter Randy Montana's self-titled debut album clings to the rough edges of country's musical highway with its compelling storytelling and vivid imagery combined with a raw but rocking guitar-driven sound.
He makes a powerful statement with his debut project, and critics have quickly taken notice. Southern Living named Montana as one of five "Best New Artists" in its Best of the South issue, stating, "The raspy-voiced Montana, a standout among his 'I'm more country than you peers,' breaks the genre's mold but respects its heritage." USA Today's Brian Mansfield called Montana's "1,000 Faces" his first favorite song of 2011, while People calls him "a must-hear artist."
Roughstock.com says "1,000 Faces" is "an ethereal experience of epic proportions," adding, "…Montana has a song that is a once-in-a-career kind of song, the kind of obvious, star-making or career-defining hit that every singer is looking for (and many never find.)" Music Row calls "1,000 Faces" "a sonic masterpiece" and says, "…this ultra-melodic outing is the kind of single that makes a star."
He spent much of 2010 on the road, touring the nation with artists such as Sugarland and Little Big Town. "It was quite a learning experience, being a part of something where they put 12,000 – 14,000 people in seats a night," he says of touring with Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush. "Kristian said one of the coolest things at the end of the tour. He said, 'Thanks for keeping the musical integrity of this tour.' That meant a lot coming from a guy like that."
It was on this tour that Montana saw firsthand the strong and immediate connection people have to "1,000 Faces," and this was months before it was played on country radio. "It's incredible to play that song live," says Montana, who wrote it with Tom Douglas. "People come up and say, '1,000 Faces' was my favorite song of the night.' It's fun to play it live because you get this whole burst of energy yourself."
Montana's boundary-free music captures the yearning of restless young men who are in a hurry to take life as far as they can, men who are sometimes too caught up in the moments of passion to have thoughts of regret. His gravelly voice, which sounds older than his years, tells of temptation and consequences while painting musical portraits of wheels turning, fires burning and women scribbling phone numbers on matchbooks.
"With a debut record, you've got to come out and be like, 'Man, this is me. Here are the things that I want to say through a song that hopefully will let others get to know me as a person, where I stand on things and experiences I have gone through,'" he says. "There are heartache songs, those love-lost songs, but there are some that are just good-feeling songs that just feel right. With this album I would like to give people a little glimpse into my life."
Montana is a songwriter's son who has found his own voice and quickly earned respect as a tunesmith on Music Row. He co-wrote nine songs on his eponymous album, and Montgomery Gentry recorded the Montana-penned "Can't Feel the Pain." Emmylou Harris was so impressed by Montana's talent that she harmonizes with him on "Last Horse."
His father is Billy Montana, whose hits include Garth Brooks' "More Than a Memory," Sara Evans' "Suds in the Bucket" and the Grammy-nominated Jo Dee Messina hit "Bring on the Rain." "Growing up around it, it took me awhile to come into my own," he says. "I never worried about being in a shadow or anything like that. But I also wanted to achieve that same kind of songwriting level that my dad achieved."
Montana was born in Albany, N.Y., and moved with his family to Nashville in 1988 when Billy signed a record deal with Warner Bros. He started playing guitar at age 10, writing songs at age 16 and performed his first song publicly at one of his father's writers' nights at age 17. "I always grew up around music, watching him do it," says Montana, who listened to Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty and Jackson Browne on family road trips. "I kind of grew up next to a stage. Anytime the family got together, the guitars came out."
He was an award-winning high school quarterback, earning All-State honors for leading the state in passing yards and touchdowns his junior and senior years. He now applies that same dedication and discipline to the music industry. "On the football field, all 11 of us on offense have to work together at the same time to make a play work," he says. "It's just like that with the music industry, between your band, your label, management and booking agency. But knowing that at the end of the day, it is my career and I'm in control, I take a lot from my football experience because I grew up in that position on teams. I was always the quarterback; it was all in my hands."
But he declined several football scholarships and instead opted to play college soccer at Nashville's Trevecca Nazarene University before transferring to Middle Tennessee State University for two years, until music beckoned. During college he played in a band called Homestead that was frequently booked at fraternity parties and Middle Tennessee bars. "That was a great way to just get your chops up and understand how a crowd works and how to keep them entertained," he says.
He worked odd jobs, including roofing houses, waiting tables and bartending, while writing songs in hopes of landing a publishing deal. Inspired by the music of Steve Earle, Chris Knight, Hank Williams, Jr., Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, The Wallflowers and Counting Crows, he eventually came into his own with a sound that's a little left of country's center.
He signed with Sony Music Publishing in 2008 and began writing with its team of established writers. His burgeoning catalog caught the attention of Universal Music Group Nashville's Joe Fisher, and he soon signed with Universal's Mercury Nashville and began creating his debut album.
In addition to "1,000 Faces" and the debut single, "Ain't Much Left Of Lovin' You," the Jay Joyce-produced album's stand-outs include "Goodbye Rain," in which he takes a one-way fast train out of town in search of a second chance and relief from his rear-view heartache, and "Like a Cowboy," which describes a modern-day cowboy who has leaving in his DNA and constant disappointment in his wake. "Girl, I will love you the best that I can, but you need to know I am what I am," he sings. "I'm not a bad guy, but I'm not a good guy at heart."
"Last Horse," which he wrote with his father, is about a man clinging to a dying relationship. "I don't want to be the last horse left in this one-horse town," Randy sings with Emmylou Harris. "When you hear a legendary voice like that singing along with your own voice, it's a little surreal," he says. "At the time, it's kind of tough to realize the magnitude of what just went down. But then once it does sink in, it's like, 'This is going to be a tough thing to top.'"
"Assembly Line" depicts the daily existence of a manufacturing employee whose life is marked by numbers – production steps, unused vacation days, hourly rates and punched timecards. "It's a job for the diligent heart and I'm just one of a thousand parts," he sings. "You might think I've got it rough, but I don't mind working on the assembly line."
He co-wrote "Back of My Heart" and the high-energy "Reckless" with his father and Brian Maher. "Sonically, there's definitely a theme," he says. "We're using 12-string all over the record, which is kind of Tom Petty-ish. It's also B-3 heavy and has a very roomy drum sound, kind of like the Wallflowers."
Randy's goal is to have enough success that he can keep doing this. "I just love this," he says. "I wouldn't have it any other way – performing live, songwriting, being in the studio. I truly love it all."
"Like they always say, 'Find something that you love to do and you'll never work a day in your life.' So far, I feel that way. There's nothing I would rather do. I want to take it as far as it can go."

Turnback Creek

$20.00 - $25.00

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All seating is general admission. A limited number of advance table reservations are available at The Cotillion or by calling 316.722.4201. Nancy's Amazing Sandwiches will be here serving her Famous #8 and more! Coat Check will be available.

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Logan Mize with Jill Martin, Randy Montana, Turnback Creek

Tuesday, December 31 · Doors 7:45 PM / Show 8:00 PM at The Cotillion Ballroom

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