The ability to tell a story is one of Derrick Southerland's greatest attributes as a songwriter. It's also what landed him and his song "Mexico" on 7 time Grammy Winner Carrie Underwood's platinum album Storyteller.
His colorful and conversational lyrics are balanced with a commercial musicality that easily jumps genres and countries. This is evidenced by radio singles in Canada (Tim Hicks "Forever Rebels"), Australia (Tim Hicks "Young, Alive and in Love"), Asia (The Brummies "Takes Some Time"), and the U.K. (John&Jacob "Be My Girl"), as well as sync placements on ABC and CMT's TV show "Nashville" ("Be My Girl", "Water Rising").
Before his success in Nashville, Southerland's story started in Georgia, where he was born and raised. He gravitated to music in high school, teaching himself how to play guitar and piano, but most of his education about music and it's business was learned after he dropped out of the University of Georgia to work in an Atlanta recording studio alongside 2x Grammy winning producer and artist Timothy Bloom (Chris Brown, Ne-Yo), and 2x Grammy nominated producer Donnie Scantz (Usher, Ludacris). He continued writing songs and recording when he went back to college at UGA, and expanded his eclectic musical background working with producer John Keane (REM, Widespread Panic, The B-52's) in Athens. After graduating from UGA, Southerland learned the importance of writing songs for a live show by touring across the country with Singer-Songwriter Corey Smith.
Now, after having numerous songs recorded, a few singles, millions of streams on Spotify, multiple sync placements, and a platinum record under his belt in his short tenure as a songwriter on music row, Southerland's success story in Nashville is certainly moving at lightning speed. But his craftsmanship of songs suggests this storyline won't be coming to a close any time soon.