Signing Story: Cole Swindell--Why He Signed with Warner



Country singer/songwriter Cole Swindell is living the ultimate Nashville success story. The Georgia native came to Nashville peddling songs and landed a publishing deal for three years. He got on at Sony ATV, and wrote for himself while penning for the likes of Thomas Rhett, Florida Georgia Line and Chris Young as well as cuts for touring buddy Luke Bryan’s Spring Break EPs.

And then a year ago, Swindell wrote “Chillin’ It.” The initial single off his upcoming eponymous debut, “Chillin’ It” became the first single in all genres to receive Gold certification in 2014. The song sold over 600,000 copies, rendering it the highest selling debut single last year from a solo male country artist. The track was the catalyst for label options.

“If you’re in Nashville, you don’t have to write songs,

but that’s a good way to get in.”

“We thought we had something big that had to go now,” Swindell says. “Warner just worked out; they had a slot for me.”

Swindell continues, “If you’re trying to get a deal, you have to play and get in front of people. If you’re in Nashville, you don’t have to write songs, but that’s a good way to get in. I wasn’t getting pitched the best songs, but I had a chance to write for three years. Trying to network. Getting to know people. That’s how Nashville works.”

Chances of making it are so slim, Swindell admits. "That’s what keeps me going. So many bands want to be where I am. I’m in Ohio right now on the first big tour of 2014 with Luke Bryan. My album came out February 18th. Last year was definitely the best year of my life; I don’t know how it’s going to get any better.” – Jessica Pace