Hit songwriter Paul Overstreet—who’s written hits for George Jones, Randy Travis, Keith Whitley, and many others—performs a selection of live songs and discusses his decades-long career during this 2016 program, part of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s ongoing Poets and Prophets series.
Overstreet notched his first hit as a songwriter in 1982, when George Jones took his “Same Old Me” to #5 on the country chart. He became a chief source of material for Randy Travis, and building on that success, Overstreet began to score hits of his own, including the #1 country hits “I Won’t Take Less Than Your Love” and “Daddy’s Come Around.”
The singer-songwriter opens his “Poets and Prophets” program by performing “Seein’ My Father in Me,” which appears on his own 1989 album, “Sowin’ Love,” and the song’s subject matter serves as a springboard for Overstreet to talk about his parents and upbringing. Interspersed throughout the program, Overstreet also performs some of his Randy Travis chart-toppers (“On the Other Hand” and “Diggin’ Up Bones”), along with his Don Schlitz co-write “When You Say Nothing at All,” which was recorded to much acclaim by both Keith Whitley and Alison Krauss, and the Blake Shelton hit “Some Beach” (co-written with Rory Feek).
Interview topics include Paul Overstreet’s musical and songwriting beginnings; his first, independent recordings; musical collaborations with Dolly Parton’s family; brief marriage to Freida Parton; overcoming substance abuse and rekindling the Christian faith of his childhood; co-writing hits with Don Schlitz (including descriptions of their working habits and musical chemistry); and forming the 1980s trio SKO with songwriters Thom Schuyler and Fred Knobloch (which scored several country hits, including the #1 “Baby’s Got a New Baby”).
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