When he is not guiding his Sea Captain Coaching clients on a path toward quantum growth for their businesses, John Wilson is pursuing his lifelong passion for songwriting. After emerging as a nationally recognized new songwriter in 2019, John’s songs were named semi-finalists out of thousands of entries in the Nashville Music City SongStar Songwriting contest and International Songwriting contest.
His dual inspiration of contemporary and classic country music has been captured in his work with producer Stacy Hogan, of A Writer’s Paradise Studios in Nashville, TN, with vocals provided by great Nashville studio veterans Mike Lusk, also of Loretta Lynn’s band, and Deb Thomas. John’s song “Always Looking” was recognized in early March of this year as being a Top Five Song of the Month by SongWriter Universe.
We caught up with John away from his busy schedule and asked him about how his love of country music helped him ignite his songwriting hobby, propelling it to a new level.
How did you get into songwriting?
“I’ve had song melodies in my head my entire life. I understood song structure, lyrics and hooks from a wide range of music genres that have always influenced me – country, rock, pop, R&B and soul. I seemed to never have time to put my ideas down and create lyrics. Finally, I made the leap and decided to get after it. Literally, years of ideas came pouring out of me.”
What inspires you?
“I love all kinds of music. I hear a melody in my head, and then try to relate it to universal themes we all experience. YouTube is also a major source of inspiration. It is a fantastic platform for fueling creativity. The huge variety of incredible performers and playlists is seemingly endless.”
What is your process for writing songs?
“I write the songs mainly on piano, or desktop keyboards. Sometimes lyrics are written, and then a melody might match it. Or the melody comes with an idea, and it creates the lyrics. Some songs come out in 30 minutes; some take a year. I love to create a song from scratch. You can take it any direction you want. No boundaries. What you can imagine in your mind can be brought to life.”
Are any of your songs being published now?
“Yes, I have a publishing deal for several of my songs, and numerous tracks in music libraries. I also have songs that have been used in TV shows, films and advertising.”
What’s your favorite part of songwriting?
“It’s fun! No matter what your goals. When you hear a song you wrote, starting with it being a rough or raw demo, then finally getting it produced as a radio-ready, pro demo. It’s amazing. You sit and think, ‘I can’t believe I wrote that!’ “
Where can people go to listen to your music?
“The demos I have produced are done with some of Nashville’s best A-list session players and vocalists. They bring them to life! I’m on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Music, Twitter. Look for John Kelly Wilson. The Nashville Sessions.”
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John Kelly Wilson | Free Listening on SoundCloud