On episode #278 of his podcast, the BobbyCast, Bobby Bones chatted with songwriter-turned-artist HARDY about his journey to becoming a hit songwriter in country music as well as his early success as a recording artist of his own. The singer shared a bit about his background, telling Bones that he moved to Nashville over ten years ago at the suggestion of his sister, who was already living in town and pursuing music. HARDY decided to take his sister’s advice and attended Middle Tennessee State University, where he graduated with a commercial songwriting degree. From there, he was signed to a publishing deal, but it took about three years to get one of his songs recorded by an artist.
“I was discouraged for sure,” said HARDY. “I was so mad. I wasn’t bitter and I didn’t blame the industry, I wasn’t that guy, but I was very frustrated. I only got one cut from my first deal. I wasn’t there yet.”
Soon, however, things started improving for HARDY, and he got his first single cut with Tyler Farr’s “I Should Go To Church Sometime,” released in 2017. Then in November 2017, Morgan Wallen released the HARDY-penned hit, “Up Down,” featuring Florida Georgia Line, which confirmed the songwriter’s prominence in the country music community. After “Up Down” soared to the top of the charts, HARDY signed his own artist deal with Big Loud Records and has since released singles “Rednecker,” “One Beer” and “Give Heaven Some Hell.” Although he has taken on the role of recording artist, HARDY told Bones that being on the other side of the song wasn’t his original goal.
“When I was in college I kind of wanted to, and then I signed a pub deal and I was like, ‘This is awesome. All I got to do is write a song every day,’” he says. “I had reached the point where I had zero intentions of being an artist. I had no plans to do it.”
While HARDY is now a recording artist himself, he still writes songs for other artists. Some of these notable hits include Florida Georgia Line’s “Simple,” Chris Lane’s “I Don’t Know About You,” and Blake Shelton’s “God’s Country.” HARDY co-wrote “God’s Country” with Devin Dawson and Jordan Schmidt and originally intended on recording it himself, but shared that having the tune recorded by Shelton was a “dream.”
“I said, ‘Unless somebody like Blake Shelton cuts this in a week, I want this for myself,’ and Blake cut it five days later,” HARDY says of the song.
“It was such a dream of mine to have a Blake cut, and especially one that he was hyped about, so I didn’t even think twice about it,” he continues.
To hear more from HARDY, including details about his latest single, and to hear a conversation between Bones and Barry Gibb of the Bee Gees, listen to episode #278 of the BobbyCast.