With his simple yet poignant way of capturing universal feelings, Cole Taylor has quickly become an in-demand country songwriter, with Florida Georgia Line, Rodney Atkins, Chase Rice and others lining up to record his songs. But since no one can truly sing a Cole Taylor song quite like he can, the Georgia native has developed a reputation as an artist with a unique knack for singing timeless truths with a fresh melodic twist.
Indeed, the Georgia music industry named him Georgia Artist of the Year and Male Artist of the Year at the 2012 GeorgiaCountry.com awards following the release of his two acclaimed albums-- 2009’s That Will Always Be Home to Me and 2011’s Cab of My Chevy. “It was awesome getting the recognition for that. That’s what made me think it could happen for a living,” says Taylor, who began songwriting at 14 and performing shows at 16. “I got to working on that and really busted my butt and played a lot shows.”
Nine months after moving from Cuthbert, Ga., to Music City, Taylor signed a publishing deal with Universal Music Publishing Nashville in November 2013. He had set a goal of landing a deal within a year, so he achieved his dream with three months to spare.
Since then, Florida Georgia Line cut his song “Sippin’ On Fire,” Rodney Atkins cut “It’s Your World”, and Chase Rice recorded “Look At My Truck.” He’s written with top songwriters such as Jimmy Robbins, Rodney Clawson, Ryan Hurd, Matt Dragstrem and Andrew Dorff.
His melodies and phrasings simultaneously fit in and stand apart from what is topping the country charts today. Like many in his generation, the 23 year old was raised on Garth Brooks and Maroon 5, Travis Tritt and Usher. Therefore, his melodies and rhythms defy traditional boundaries and expectations, but still rest comfortably within the edgier pop-leaning sound that dominates the genre.
He couples those irresistible melodies with brilliantly simple lyrics. “It’s not really like this big, complicated way of saying things,” he says. “It’s how a small-town guy would say it, and that’s what reaches people. I grew up with this natural, conversational way of saying stuff that works, where people don’t have to think about it.
“I want to be honest with people,” he says. “I don’t just sit and write for myself; I write for my fans and try to touch them with the songs, because some people don’t know how to say what they want to say. I observe other people and write about those situations they’re in so that maybe it can change somebody. Music has a powerful message in people’s lives. I know listening to Garth Brooks’ ‘The River’ and ‘The Dance’ pulled me into being a country music fan.” In line with this tradition of cutting edge Country, Cole has seen his songs on Luke Bryan record and recently enjoyed a #1 smash by writing Flordia-Georgia Line's hit, "Sippin' on Fire."
As he’s crossing things off of his bucket list after accomplishes them at such a young age, he’s having to quickly come up with new goals. “Having a publishing deal and getting songs on other people’s albums has been something I have dreamed of forever,” he says. “Now the next goal is to land a record deal somewhere and get on the road touring and keep building that fan base and writing greater songs. I want to take advantage of the opportunities when they call me and not let them slip by.”