Rusty Wier Songwriting Contest, Week 2 of the first round, Sunday (12/9/12) brought a great variety of music from the 12 who performed for the crowd and for judges Brett Dillon (KHYI 95.3) and Chip Campbell (ChippyFest and Honky Tonk Hearts & Renegade Nights).
First up was Shannon Choate, who sang, among his three songs, one he wrote about his mother, and used his harmonica to accent the guitar and vocals.
Cole Risner followed also with a personal song, this one about the death of his grandfather that included the lyrics “his heart couldn’t stay broken any more” after Cole’s grandmother passed away.
Adrianna Marie, with a voice unique among most women’s voices, was next, the only woman in this week’s line-up.
Big John Mills, who perhaps came the farthest to enter the contest, being from San Marcos, sang about “going coastal” and about missing Texas.
Matt Nix wrote for his family, including one with solid advice for his children, “be slow to anger,” Be loyal to a fault,” and “find the grace to stand with the one that holds your hand.”
Greg Schroeder had some original songs with mindful lyrics as well, including one about taking wooden nickels. “They say It’s easier to forgive than forget, I say that’s candy cigarettes.”
Zach Hendricks, whose little girl in the crowd kept her eyes glued to him while he sang, sang his songs about hurricanes and one his band does, “I Got The Road.”
Danny Zagotta, performer as well as singer/songwriter, presented three originals with positive messages.
David Byboth presented as one of his three songs one he said he made up about a beggar on the street. Loosely quoted, “Give him a dollar when you pass, it won’t hurt you so bad… he was fighting … he gave up most of what he had.”
Tyler Rogers complimented all those before him, and the entire Rusty Wier concept, saying, “Nowhere in the U.S. are you going to find such a concentration of good musicians.” He said of troubadours and neon nights.
Bryan Adam Joyner, among the songs he presented, say what calls a medley of his hit, “I Drink Whiskey All the time,” a song of losing a loved one.
Lastly, Jake Bays sang one he co-wrote with an unnamed “really good friend,” and two others after giving the crowd a laugh by saying he appreciated everybody staying for the headliner.
The winners of the first two Rusty Wier Songwriting Contest years were, respectively, Michael Prysock and Guthrie Kennard.
The Round One winners, those 18 who will move into Round Two, will be announced after Round One is concluded next Sunday (Dec. 16), and then everyone will take a Christmas break and Round Two begins on Dec. 30. The contests begin at 4 p.m. each applicable Sunday and there is no cover charge to attend. Love & War (Plano) is on the northeast corner of the U.S. 75/Plano Parkway intersection in Plano.