Most grooms make a promise to love their brides-to-be, but Belmont alumnus, singer songwriter and recent groom Blane Howard made his promise in a unique way. Just before his wedding, Howard was thinking back to his proposal when “Promise to Love Her” came to mind. From there, a song was born.
Howard scheduled a co-write with 2011 Belmont alum Jordan Kyle Reynolds days after the idea came to him, and the two got started. “I told him we were only going to do it if we could make a monster,” Howard said. “I wasn’t going to give her a dud on our wedding day!” Looking back, Howard remembers the process — it only took two hours to perfect the messaging, write it and create a demo. Even after the song was complete, Howard said he and Reynolds didn’t make a single change. “It did take me a few hours to sing it because it made me so emotional,” he said. “That’s when I knew it had potential.”
The night before his wedding, Howard passed his laptop and a note to his bride-to-be, Megan, telling her to open the letter with her coffee the next morning. The note explained his gift, how she could access the song and that it wasn’t to be shared with anyone else beyond her family. “She didn’t listen to that,” Howard said. “We used it as our first dance just 12 hours later.”
Soon after, a guest posted a short clip of the newlyweds’ first dance and within a few months, the video had more than 500,000 views. That’s when Howard said he decided he should get a studio recording done and shoot a music video. Since then, the video has been played more than two million times online and is currently in rotation on GAC, The Country Network, the Heartland Network and StrykTV. The single is climbing the Music Row: Country Breakout charts, and just last week, it came in at No. 67.
Looking back, Howard sees his time at Belmont as helpful for his career in countless ways — both relationally and musically. “My band members are all guys I went to school with,” Howard said, “but my gratitude to Belmont goes even beyond that. The university helped me by giving me the proper background and technique to sing 2-3 hours every show, night after night and not get worn out and lose my voice. My music degree also gave me a love for other styles of music.”
As an independent artist, Howard is proud of the success this single and others have found in the industry. Even though it’s taken years for him to reach where he is, he’s honored to have stayed the course, perfecting his craft. “I know there are a lot of artists out there struggling to get recognized by people in the industry,” Howard said. “Singing is what I love, and it’s what makes me happy and relieves my stress. If you truly love something, it’s worth it. No matter what.”