The School of Music honored alumnus Danny Wells (’83) with the Curtain Call Award on Thursday evening. During the ceremony, Wells performed a few selections from his significant songwriting catalog. The Curtain Call Award is presented annually to a School of Music alumnus in honor of achievement in the field of commercial and popular music.
“Wells was chosen because of his outstanding achievement in songwriting. Some of his number one hits include George Strait’s ‘Check Yes or No,’ Rascal Flatts’ ‘These Days’ and Craig Morgan’s ‘Little Bit of Life.’ He is a member of BMI’s ultra-exclusive Million-Air Club and has written songs for a long list of artists,” Belmont School of Music Assistant Professor Sandra Dudley said.
A North Carolina native, Wells began his career as a song plugger for a music publishing company. He later moved to Nashville to pursue his songwriting career. One of his biggest hits, “Check Yes Or No,” was awarded the 1996 Country Music Association Single of the Year and the Academy of Country Music Single/Video of the Year, Entertainment Radio Network’s Song of the Year, Country Weekly Magazine’s 1996 Golden Pick Award for Song of the Year and Country Weekly magazine’s 1997 Golden Pick Award for Video of the Year. He has had cuts by numerous artists including Chris Young, JoDee Messina, Sara Evans, Trent Tomlinson, Joe Diffie, Crystal Gayle, Scotty McCreery, Tracy Byrd, James Bonamy, Julie Roberts, Wade Hayes and Confederate Railroad.
Today Wells serves on the board of the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI). He continues to write new songs and work alongside major publishers Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG), Sony Tree and BMI/Chrysalis in an effort to pitch his catalogs and secure recordings by artists on major labels.
Previous Curtain Call Award winners include Russell Terrell, Tad Wilson, Tim Lauer, Josh Turner, Ginny Owens, Chester Thompson, Jill Phillips, Will Denton, Fleming McWilliams, Melodie Crittenden, Jozef Nuyens, Gordon Mote, Tammy Rogers King, Bernie Herms and Chris Rodriguez.