I was a junior in high school sitting at Cold Stone eating my favorite cookie-dough ice cream with my friend Clinton Zehr. Clinton is notoriously good at coming up with hooks for songs. He’s always got something good. So were eating ice cream, and out of the blue he says “Blacktop Ballroom. That’s the title of your next country song.”
Immediately I was inspired. I went home and wrote a classic country go-out-to-the-fields-and-slow-dance-under-the-stars type of love song. We recorded it, and my awesome filmmaker brother (who was only 16 at the time) made us our first music video!
That song ended up being a top-10 finalist in the annual NSAI Listener's Choice Competition presented by CMT. Because of that contest it played on 92.3 WCOL, the country radio station in Columbus. It also won fan favorite at Festival Miami’s annual Songwriter Showcase.