• The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

  • Gene Watson: 'Real Country Music' (Fourteen Carat Music, 2016)

  • Gene Watson: 'Back in the Fire & At Last' (Morello Records, 2016) / this album was officially released on Friday 11 November 2016

  • Gene Watson's Calendar

  • The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

  • Gene Watson Guitars by Summey

  • The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

  • The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

  • Gene Watson at The Opry in Nashville

  • The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

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Management


Lytle Management Group
P.O. Box 128228
Nashville, TN 37212
Contact Sarah Brosmer
Telephone 615-770-2688

Bookings



Battle Artist Agency
8887 Horton Highway,
College Grove, TN
Contact Rob Battle
office: 615-368-7433
mobile: 615-957-3444

Webster PR



Webster Public Relations
, PO Box 23015, Nashville, TN 37202

Contact Scott Adkins
Telephone 615-777-6995



Gene Watson's Peers within the country music industry believe in the sheer talent of this unassuming man from east Texas, so much so that Gene is regarded by many of them as 'the singer's singer' - and rightly so!

All of Gene Watson's Peers, who were contacted by The Gene Watson Fan Site, during 2017, were most gracious with their time and words.

It is here, within this special part of The Gene Watson Fan Site, that you have an opportunity to read a quote from Hayden Nicholas, which he from Kenyon Lockry, which he submitted to this site on Wednesday 16 August 2017.

Sean Brady would like to take this opportunity to say 'thank you' to Hayden Nicholas who has made a special contribution to a unique part of this online 'celebration of a Lone Star Hero'.

Hayden Nicholas

Hayden Nicholas
This quote was submitted on Wednesday 16 August 2017.

'Thanks, Sean, for your kind words!

Gene was an influence to Clint and myself.

In our early tours, 'Fourteen Carat Mind', by Gene Watson was a regular in our set list.

I met Gene at Mullins Music (recording studio, music store, lessons school) where I worked in the 1970s.  Dale Mullins was a friend of Gene.  Occasionally, Gene would stop by for coffee and I remember him singing a song once.

Dale encouraged me to play a Chet Atkins (Friday 20 June 1924 - Saturday 30 June 2001) song for him, which I did.  I recall at that time he owned a car repair or body shop
'

Thank you, Hayden Nicholas, for your support of Gene Watson.

About Hayden Nicholas...

Hayden Nicholas

Hayden Nicholas 
was born James Hayden Nicholas on Monday 7 May 1956 and is a country music guitarist, songwriter and author.

Hayden Nicholas grew up in the Houston, Texas area, where he taught himself to play guitar at the age of nine.

In the early 1980s, Hayden Nicholas was briefly a member of the band Revolver, headlined by Tim McCrary, which played extensively in Texas.

Clint Black

After a stint living in California, Hayden Nicholas returned to Texas where, in 1987, he met then-struggling country singer Clint Black.  At the time, Hayden Nicholas was a guitarist and songwriter with his own home studio.  The two joined forces to write and record demo versions of songs which Clint Black could use to land a recording deal.

Their first collaboration, 'Nobody's Home' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas), did the trick and, in 1988, Clint Black had his own recording contract.

The partnership between Hayden Nicholas and Clint Black has continued strongly ever since.  Hayden Nicholas serves as Clint Black's bandleader, plays lead guitar and co-writes with Clint Black and others most of the songs which are on Clint Black's albums.

Often Hayden Nicholas and Clint Black would retreat to a cabin in the Colorado mountains to hide out and write songs for the next album.  Over sixty of their collaborations have appeared on Clint Black's albums, with fifteen of them reaching No.1 on the billboard hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart.

Clint Black

Clint Black was born Clint Patrick Black in Long Branch, New Jersey on Sunday 4 February 1962, the youngest of four children.

Clint Black's family moved back to Texas, where his father had been raised, before Clint was one year old.  He was raised in Katy, Texas.

Music was always present in the Black household. Clint Black taught himself to play harmonica before he was thirteen years old; when he was fourteen, he wrote his first song.

When he was fifteen years old, Clint Black learned to play guitar.  As a teenager, Clint Black joined his elder brothers, Mark, Kevin and Brian, in their small band.  On Saturday afternoons, the family would host backyard barbecues and invite the neighbourhood to listen to the boys sing.

Some weekends would attract up to seventy people. Clint Black eventually dropped out of high school to play with his brothers, before he became a solo act.

Clint Black was initially drawn to a variety of musical genres.  He chose to focus on country music in the early 1980s, after singers George Strait and Reba McEntire transformed the genre.

For six years, Clint Black supported himself as a construction worker, bait cutter and fishing guide, while singing at various lounges as a solo singer and guitarist.

At one of the gigs, Clint Black met another guitarist, Hayden Nicholas.  The two men connected musically and began a song-writing partnership that would last decades.

In the late 1980s, Clint Black delivered a demo of their collaboration 'Nobody's Home' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) to record promoter Sammy Alfano.  Within two days of that delivery, Clint Black was invited to a meeting with Bill Ham, who managed ZZ Top.

Clint Black soon signed with RCA Records, at that time considered one of the 'most aggressive' record labels in country music.

Clint Black: 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989)

On Tuesday 2 May 1989, Clint Black saw the release of his debut album, 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989), which included five tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:


'A Better Man' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in June 1989) / this single marked the first time in fourteen years that a debut single by a male artist had peaked at the top of the Billboard country music singles chart / Hayden Nicholas was nominated for the Country Music Association (CMA) 'Song of the Year', in 1989, for 'A Better Man'


'Killin' Time' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in October 1989) / Hayden Nicholas was nominated for the Country Music Association (CMA) 'Song of the Year', in 1990 for 'Killin' Time'
'Nobody's Home' (written by Clint Black) (No.1 for two weeks in January / February 1990)
'Walkin' Away' (written by Clint Black, Hayden Nicholas and Dick Gay) (No.1 for one week in May 1990)
'Nothing's News' (written by Clint Black(No.3, 1990)

With a total of four singles reaching No.1 on the Billboard country music singles chart, Clint Black's 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989) was the first time any country music artist had accomplished this feat.

Clint Black's debut album, 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989), also included the following tracks:

'Straight From The Factory' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'You're Gonna Leave Me Again' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'I'll Be Gone' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Winding Down' (written by Clint Black)
'Live & Learn' (written by Clint Black)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's debut album, 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989), included the following:

Clint Black (acoustic guitar, harmonica, lead vocals, background vocals)
Dick Gay (drums)
Rob HajacosMark O'Connor and John Permenter (fiddle)
Jana King, Craig Morris, Jim Photoglo, Donna Rhodes, Harry Stinson and Wendy Waldman (background vocals)
Randy McCormick (keyboards)
Hayden Nicholas (acoustic guitar, electric guitar, background vocals)
Jeff Peterson (Dobro, steel guitar)
Brent Rowan and Reggie Young (electric guitar)
Jake Willemain (bass guitar)

In a departure from most other country music albums, Clint Black used his road band instead of session musicians to record 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989).

Clint Black's 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989) was a critical and commercial success, reaching No.1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1990, and was certified 'Platinum' by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in 1990.

In 1989, Clint Black swept the Country Music Association (CMA) Awards, winning in six different categories, including the 'Horizon Award' for best newcomer.  At the end of 1989, his singles, 'A Better Man' and 'Killin' Time' were the No.1 and No.2 songs on the year-end Billboard country music singles chart.  It had been thirty-six years since another artist had claimed both top spots in a single year.

In 1990, Clint Black became known as one of Nashville's 'hat acts'; like other country music artists such as Garth Brooks, Alan Jackson and Mark Chesnutt, Clint Black was a relative newcomer who wore a hat and had a 'clean, neo-traditional sound with pop appeal'.

Clint Black: 'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990)

On Tuesday 27 November 1990, Clint Black saw the release of 'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990), which included four tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart:

'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (written by Clint Black, Hayden Nicholas and Shake Russell) (No.4, 1990)
'Loving Blind' (written by Clint Black) (No.1 for one week in March 1991)
'One More Payment' (written by Clint Black, Hayden Nicholas and Shake Russell) (No.7, 1991)
'Where Are You Now' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in September / October 1991)

The track 'This Nightlife' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) also charted on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart at No.61 as a result of unsolicited airplay.

Clint Black's 'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990) also included the following tracks:

'The Gulf of Mexico' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'The Old Man' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'This Nightlife' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Muddy Water' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'A Heart Like Mine' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'The Goodnight-Loving' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's 'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990), included the following:

Clint Black's Band
Clint Black (acoustic guitar, electric guitar, harmonica, lead vocals)
Dick Gay (drums, percussion)
Jeff Huskins (fiddle, keyboards, background vocals)
Hayden Nicholas (acoustic guitar, electric guitar, background vocals)
Jeff Peterson (pedal steel guitar, Dobro, background vocals)
Jake Willemain (bass guitar, background vocals)
Martin Young (acoustic guitar, background vocals)

Additional musicians
Michael Black, Jana King, Randy McCormick and Curtis Young (background vocals)
Brent Rowan (electric guitar)

It was also at this time, in 1990, when Clint Black began touring with the country music super group Alabama.

Clint Black's 'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990) reached No.2 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1990, and reached the Top 20 of the Billboard American Top 200 pop music album chart.

Clint Black: 'Killin' Time & Put Yourself in My Shoes' (Hux Records, 2006)

On Monday 9 October 2006, England's Hux Records released Clint Black's 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989), along with 'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990), as a special '2-on-1' CD set (HUX 080).

Clint Black: 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989) Clint Black: 'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990)

By mid-1992, Clint Black's first two albums, 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989) and 'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990), had sold a combined five million copies.

Clint Black: 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992)

On Tuesday 14 July 1992, Clint Black saw the release of 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992), which had been expected to be released the year previously.

During the delay, the country music scene had altered.  Both Alan Jackson and Travis Tritt had achieved greater success and Billy Ray Cyrus had become a teen idol.  The competition which Clint Black faced was now much stiffer than with his earlier albums.

Clint Black's 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992), which was Clint Black's first album which he co-produced with James Stroud, included three tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart:

'We Tell Ourselves' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.2, 1992)
'Burn One Down' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Frankie Miller) (No.4, 1992)
'When My Ship Comes In' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in March / April 1993)

Clint Black's 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992) also included the following tracks:

'The Hard Way' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Something to Cry About' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Buying Time' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'A Woman Has Her Way' (written by Clint BlackDavid Bellamy and Jerry Lynn Williams)
'There Was Never a Train' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'The Good Old Days' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Wake Up Yesterday' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992) included the following:

Eddie Bayers and Dick Gay (drums)
Clint Black (harmonica, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, lead vocals, background vocals)
Larry Byrom, Don Potter and Martin Young (acoustic guitar)
Lenny Castro and Eric Darken (percussion)
Jerry Douglas (Dobro)
Sonny Garrish and Jeff Peterson (steel guitar)
Rob Hajacos, Jeff Huskins and Mark O'Connor (fiddle)
Dann Huff and Reggie Young (electric guitar)
Jana King, Liana Manis, Dennis Wilson and Curtis Young (background vocals)
Hayden Nicholas (electric guitar, electric sitar)
Matt Rollings (piano)
Leland Sklar and Jake Willemain (bass guitar)

On Friday 26 June 1992, in order to promote 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992), Clint Black launched 'The Hard Way Tour', a tour which ran for eleven months.

Clint Black's 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992) reached No.2 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1992.

Clint Black: 'No Time to Kill' (RCA Records, 1993)

On Tuesday 13 July 1993, Clint Black saw the release of 'No Time to Kill' (RCA Records, 1993), which included five tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart:

'A Bad Goodbye' (written by Clint Black) (No.2, 1993) / this track was a duet with Wynonna Judd
'No Time to Kill' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.3, 1993)
'State of Mind' (written by Clint Black) (No.2, 1993)


'A Good Run of Bad Luck' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in May 1994) / this track was also featured on the 1994 movie soundtrack 'Maverick'; Clint Black was offered a bit part in the star-studded comedy, which starred Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster and James Garner (Saturday 7 April 1928 - Saturday 19 July 2014)
'Half The Man' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.4, 1994)

The track, 'Tuckered Out', which was written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas, reached No.74 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart as a result of unsolicited airplay.

Clint Black's 'No Time To Kill' (RCA Records, 1993) reached No.2 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1993.

Clint Black: 'One Emotion' (RCA Records, 1994)

On Tuesday 4 October 1994, Clint Black saw the release of 'One Emotion' (RCA Records, 1994), which included five tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart:

'Untanglin' My Mind', which was written by Clint Black and Merle Haggard (Tuesday 6 April 1937 - Wednesday 6 April 2016) (No.4, 1994)
'Wherever You Go' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.3, 1995)
'Summer's Coming' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for two weeks in June 1995)
'One Emotion' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.2, 1995) / this track was No.1 in Canada in 1995
'Life Gets Away' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Thom Schuyler) (No.4, 1995) / this track was No.1 in Canada in 1995

Clint Black's 'One Emotion' (RCA Records, 1994) also included the following tracks:

'A Change in The Air' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'I Can Get By' (written by Clint Black)
'Hey Hot Rod' (written by Clint Black and Shake Russell)
'You Walked By' (written by Clint Black)
'You Made Me Feel' (written by Clint Black and Michael McDonald)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's 'One Emotion' (RCA Records, 1994) included the following:

Clint Black (acoustic guitar, electric guitar, harmonica, lead vocals, background vocals, 12-string guitar)
Hayden Nicholas (acoustic guitar, electric guitar, electric sitar, baritone guitar)
Eddie Bayers and Dick Gay (drums)
Dane Bryant (piano)
Thom Flora, John Wesley Ryles and Curtis Young (background vocals)
Aubrey Haynie (fiddle)
Dann Huff and Brent Mason (electric guitar)
Jeff Peterson (Dobro, acoustic guitar, steel guitar, melobar)
Biff Watson and Martin Young (acoustic guitar)
Jake Willemain and Glenn Worf (bass guitar)

Clint Black's 'One Emotion' (RCA Records, 1994) reached No.8 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1994.

Clint Black: 'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995)

On Tuesday 17 October 1995, Clint Black saw the release of his first album of Christmas material, 'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995); one of the tracks, 'Til Santa's Gone (I Just Can't Wait)' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Shake Russell), charted on several occasions on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart, reaching as high as No.34 in 2000 as a result of Christmas airplay.

Clint Black's first album of Christmas material, 'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995) also included the following tracks:

'The Finest Gift' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Under The Mistletoe' (written by Clint Black)
'The Kid', which was written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Merle Haggard (Tuesday 6 April 1937 - Wednesday 6 April 2016)
'The Coolest Pair' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Looking For Christmas' (written by Clint Black)
'Christmas For Every Boy & Girl' (written by Clint Black)
'Slow As Christmas' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'The Birth of The King' (written by Clint Black)
'Looking For Christmas' (reprise) (written by Clint Black)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's first album of Christmas material, 'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995), included the following:

Sam Bacco and Tom Roady (percussion)
Eddie Bayers, Dick Gay and John 'J.R.' Robinson (drums)
Clint Black (harmonica, lead vocals)
Robbie Buchanan (keyboards, piano)
Jerry Douglas (Dobro)
Stuart Duncan and Jeff Huskins (fiddle)
Pat Enright, Hayden Nicholas and Fred Tackett (acoustic guitar)
Warren Hill (saxophone)
Dann Huff (electric guitar)
Ronn Huff (string conductor)
Sam Levine (recorder)
Gene Libbea (bass flute)
The London Session Orchestra (strings)
Alan O'Bryant (banjo)
Jeff Peterson (steel guitar)
Leland Sklar and Jake Willemain (bass guitar)
George Tidwell (flugelhorn)
Cindy Richardson Walker and Curtis Young (background vocals)
Roland White (mandolin)

Clint Black's first album of Christmas material, 'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995), reached No.25 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1995.

Clint Black: 'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995) Clint Black: 'Christmas With You' (Equity Music Group, 2004)

On Tuesday 14 September 2004, Clint Black's 'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995) was re-issued as 'Christmas With You' (Equity Music Group, 2004), with two newly recorded tracks, 'Christmas With You' (No.54, 2005) and 'Santa's Holiday Song'.

In 1996, Clint Black became the fourth country music artist to earn a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Clint Black: 'The Greatest Hits' (RCA Records, 1996) Various Artists: 'Common Thread: The Songs of The Eagles' (Giant Records, 1993)

On Tuesday 24 September 1996, Clint Black saw the release of his first 'greatest hits' collection, 'The Greatest Hits' (RCA Records, 1996), which included the following tracks:

'Like The Rain' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) / (No.1 for two weeks in October / November 1996) / this was a newly recorded track
'Summer's Coming' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for two weeks in June 1995)
'A Good Run of Bad Luck' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in May 1994)
'State of Mind' (written by Clint Black) (No.2, 1993)
'A Bad Goodbye' (written by Clint Black) (No.2, 1993) / this track was a duet with Wynonna Judd
'A Better Man' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in June 1989)
'Killin' Time' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in October 1989)
'We Tell Ourselves' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.2, 1992)
'Half Way Up' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas(No.6, 1997) / this was a newly recorded track
'Burn One Down' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Frankie Miller) (No.4, 1992)
'Cadillac Jack Favor' / this track was based on rodeo star Jack Graves Favor, who was known as Cadillac Jack Favor (30 November 1911 - Tuesday 27 December 1988) / this was a newly recorded track
'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Shake Russell) (No.4, 1990)
'Wherever You Go' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.3, 1995)
'Life Gets Away' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Thom Schuyler) (No.4, 1995)
'No Time to Kill' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.3, 1993)
'Desperado', which was written by Glenn Frey (Saturday 6 November 1948 - Tuesday 19 January 2016) and Don Henley / this track was newly recorded 'live' in San Antonio, Texas / Clint Black originally covered this song in 1993 for the album 'Common Thread: The Songs of The Eagles' (Giant Records, 1993)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's 'The Greatest Hits' (RCA Records, 1996) included the following:

Eddie Bayers and Ed Greene (drums)
Clint Black (12-string guitar, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, harmonica, lead vocals, background vocals)
Michael Black, Thom Flora, Tommy Funderbunk, Lisa Hartman-Black, Jana King, Kenny Loggins, Liana Manis, Craig Morris, Jim Photogolo, Steve Real, John Wesley Ryles, Timothy B. Schmit, Harry Stinson, Wendy Waldman, Dennis Wilson and Curtis Young (background vocals)
Dane Bryant (piano, background vocals)
Larry Byrom, Don Potter, Biff Watson and Martin Young (acoustic guitar)
Lenny Castro, Eric Darken and James Stroud (percussion)
Larry Corbett, Dennis Karmazyn and Jan Kelley (cello)
Brian Dembov, Harry Shirinian, Ray Tisher and Mihail Zinovyev (viola)
Steve Dorff (string arrangements)
Bonnie Douglas, Berj Garabedian, James Getzoff, Ezra Kliger, Brian Leonard, Joy Lyle, Maria Newman, Barbara Porter, Paul Shure, Spiro Stamos, John Wittenberg and Tibor Zelig (violin)
Jerry Douglas (Dobro)
Stuart Duncan, Rob Hajacos, Aubrey Haynie, Mark O'Connor and John Permenter (fiddle)
Paul Franklin and Sonny Garrish (steel guitar)
Dick Gay (drums, percussion)
John Hobbs and Mitch Humphries (piano)
Dann Huff, Brent Rowan and Reggie Young (electric guitar)
Jeff Huskins (fiddle, keyboards)
Wynonna Judd (vocals on 'A Bad Goodbye')
Shane Keister (keyboards, piano)
Randy McCormick (keyboards)
Buell Neidlinger, Michael Rhodes, Leland Sklar, Jake Willemain and Glenn Worf (bass guitar)
Hayden Nicholas (acoustic guitar, electric guitar, sitar, background vocals)
Jeff Peterson (Dobro, steel guitar)
Matt Rollings (keyboards, piano)
Harry Schultz (cello)

Clint Black's 'The Greatest Hits' (RCA Records, 1996) reached No.2 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1996; the album was a commercial and critical success, and was certified 'Double Platinum' by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

 Martina McBride: 'Evolution' (RCA Records, 1997)

On Tuesday 29 July 1997, Clint Black saw the release of 'Nothin' But The Taillights' (RCA Records, 1997), which included six tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart:

'Still Holding On' (written by Matraca Berg, Clint Black and Marty Stuart) (No.11, 1997) / this track was a duet with Martina McBride and was also included on Martina McBride's 'Evolution' (RCA Records, 1997)
'Something That We Do' (written by Clint Black and Skip Ewing) (No.2, 1997)
'Nothin' But The Taillights' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner) (No.1 for one week in March 1998)
'The Shoes You're Wearing' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in July 1998)
'Loosen Up My Strings' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.12, 1998)
'You Don't Need Me Now' (written by Clint Black and Shake Russell) (No.29, 1999)

Clint Black's 'Nothin' But The Taillights' (RCA Records, 1997) also included the following tracks:

'That Something in My Life' (written by Clint Black and Kostas)
'Our Kind of Love' (written by Clint Black and Shake Russell) / this track featured guest vocals from Alison Krauss & Union Station
'What I Feel Inside' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'You Know It All' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner)
'Ode to Chet' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) / this track was an ode to guitar player Chet Atkins (Friday 20 June 1924 - Saturday 30 June 2001) and featured Steve Wariner, Larry Carlton, Dann Huff, Hayden Nicholas and Mark Knopfler, along with Chet Atkins (Friday 20 June 1924 - Saturday 30 June 2001) and Clint Black on guitar
'Bitter Side of Sweet' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's 'Nothin' But The Taillights' (RCA Records, 1997) included the following:

Clint Black (acoustic guitar, harmonica, electric guitar, lead vocals, background vocals)
Chet Atkins (Friday 20 June 1924 - Saturday 30 June 2001) (electric guitar on 'Ode to Chet')
Barry Bales (acoustic bass on 'Our Kind of Love')
Eddie Bayers and John 'J.R.' Robinson (drums)
Ron Block (acoustic guitar on 'Our Kind of Love')
Mike Brignardello, Michael Rhodes and Leland Sklar (bass guitar)
Robbie Buchanan (piano, keyboards)
Larry Byrom, Skip Ewing, Dean Parks and Fred Tackett (acoustic guitar)
Larry Carlton (electric guitar on 'Ode to Chet')
Stuart Duncan (fiddle, mandolin)
Paul Franklin (steel guitar)
Dann Huff, Mark Knopfler and Steve Wariner (electric guitar on 'Ode to Chet')
Alison Krauss (fiddle, viola, background vocals on 'Our Kind of Love')
The London Session Orchestra (strings)
Martina McBride (duet vocals on 'Still Holding On')
Hayden Nicholas (electric guitar)
Steve Real (background vocals)
Matt Rollings (piano)
Adam Steffey (mandolin on 'Our Kind of Love')
Dan Tyminski (acoustic guitar, background vocals on 'Our Kind of Love')
Julianna Waller (fiddle)

Clint Black's 'Nothin' But The Taillights' (RCA Records, 1997) reached No.4 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1997.

Vince Gill: 'The Key' (MCA Records, 1998)

Vince Gill recorded Hayden Nicholas' 'I'll Take Texas' (co-written with Clint Black) and included the track on 'The Key' (MCA Records, 1998).

Clint Black: 'D'lectrified' (RCA Records, 1999)

On Tuesday 28 September 1999, Clint Black saw the release of 'D'lectrified' (RCA Records, 1999), an album which relied completely on acoustic instruments; the album was also the first album in Clint Black's career which he produced by himself.

Clint Black's 'D'lectrified' (RCA Records, 1999) included three tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart:


'When I Said I Do' (written by Clint Black) (No.1 for one week in December 1999) / this track was a duet with Lisa Hartman Black
'Been There' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner) (No.5, 2000) / this track was a duet with Steve Wariner
'Love She Can't Live Without' (written by Clint Black and Skip Ewing) (No.30, 2000)

Clint Black's 'D'lectrified' (RCA Records, 1999) also included the following tracks:

'Bob Away My Blues' (written by Toy Caldwell)
'Are You Sure Waylon Done It This Way', which was written by Waylon Jennings (Tuesday 15 June 1937 - Wednesday 13 February 2002) / this track was a duet with Waylon Jennings
'Hand in The Fire' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Outside Intro (to Galaxy Song)' (written by Clint Black and Eric Idle) / this track featured guest vocals from Eric Idle
'Galaxy Song' (written by Eric Idle and John DuPrez)
'Dixie Lullaby' (written by Leon Russell and Chris Stainton) / this track was a duet with Bruce Hornsby
'Where Your Love Won't Go' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner)
'Burn One Down' (written by Clint Black, Frankie Miller and Hayden Nicholas) / this track was a 'rethink' of the song from Clint Black's 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992)
'Who I Use to Be' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Harmony' (written by Clint Black, Kenny Loggins and Hayden Nicholas) / this track was a duet with Kenny Loggins
'No Time to Kill' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) / this track was a 'rethink' of the song from Clint Black's 'No Time to Kill' (RCA Records, 1993)
'Something That We Do' (instrumental) (written by Clint Black and Skip Ewing) / this track is an instrumental version of the song from Clint Black's 'Nothin' But The Taillights' (RCA Records, 1997)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's 'D'lectrified' (RCA Records, 1999) included the following:

Clint Black (lead vocals, background vocals, acoustic guitar, harmonica, bass harmonica, recorder)
Lisa Hartman-Black (vocals on 'When I Said I Do')
Lenny Castro (percussion, tambourine, washboard)
Steve Dorff (string arrangements, choir arrangements)
Jerry Douglas (Dobro)
Stuart Duncan (fiddle)
Skip Ewing (acoustic guitar)
Gary Grant and Jerry Hey (trumpet)
Larry Herbstritt (conductor)
Dan Higgins (baritone saxophone)
Bruce Hornsby (grand piano on 'Dixie Lullaby' and 'No Time to Kill', vocals on 'Dixie Lullaby')
Eric Idle (vocals on 'Outside Intro (to Galaxy Song)')
Waylon Jennings (Tuesday 15 June 1937 - Wednesday 13 February 2002) (vocals on 'Are You Sure Waylon Done It This Way')
Abraham Laboriel (acoustic bass)
Kenny Loggins (vocals on 'Harmony')
Kevin Nealon (banjo, 5-string banjo)
Hayden Nicholas (12-string guitar, 12-string bass guitar)
Bobbi Page and Steve Real (background vocals)
Dean Parks (acoustic guitar, slide guitar, classical guitar, resonator guitar)
Joel Peskin (clarinet, tenor saxophone)
Bill Reichenbach Junior (trombone)
John 'J.R.' Robinson (drums)
Ray Rogers (tenor banjo)
Matt Rollings (piano, grand piano)
Marty Stuart (mandolin)
Steve Wariner (acoustic guitar and vocals on 'Been There' and 'Where Your Love Won't Go')
Lawrence L. Williams (baritone saxophone)
Edgar Winter (alto saxophone)

Clint Black's 'D'lectrified' (RCA Records, 1999) reached No.7 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1999.

Clint Black: 'Greatest Hits II' (RCA Records, 2001)

On Tuesday 30 October 2001, Clint Black saw the release of his second compilation album, 'Greatest Hits II' (RCA Records, 2001), which included the following tracks:

'The Shoes You're Wearing' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in July 1998)
'Nothin' But The Taillights' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner) (No.1 for one week in March 1998)
'Nothing's News' (written by Clint Black(No.3, 1990)
'Walkin' Away' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Dick Gay) (No.1 for one week in May 1990)
'When My Ship Comes In' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.1 for one week in March / April 1993)
'Something That We Do' (written by Clint Black and Skip Ewing) (No.2, 1997)
'When I Said I Do' (written by Clint Black) (No.1 for one week in December 1999) / this track was a duet with Lisa Hartman Black
'Been There' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner) (No.5, 2000) / this track was a duet with Steve Wariner
'Still Holding On' (written by Matraca Berg, Clint Black and Marty Stuart) (No.11, 1997) / this track was a duet with Martina McBride, which was also included on Martina McBride's 'Evolution' (RCA Records, 1997)
'Nobody's Home' (written by Clint Black) (No.1 for two weeks in January / February 1990)
'One More Payment' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Shake Russell) (No.7, 1991)
'One Emotion' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.2, 1995)
'Easy For Me to Say' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.27, 2001) / this track was a duet with Lisa Hartman-Black / this track was newly recorded
'Little Pearl & Lily's Lullaby' (written by Clint Black) / this track was newly recorded
'Money or Love' (written by Clint Black) (No.50, 2002) / this track was newly recorded
'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Shake Russell) / this track was a newly recorded Blues version of the song from Clint Black's 'Put Yourself in My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's second compilation album, 'Greatest Hits II' (RCA Records, 2001), included the following:

Clint Black (classical guitar, electric guitar, lead vocals, background vocals)
Lily Pearl Black (animal sounds)
Lisa Hartman-Black (vocals on 'When I Said I Do' and 'Easy for Me to Say')
Lenny Castro (percussion)
Steve Dorff (string arrangements, conductor)
Wendell Kelley (trombone)
Randy Kerber (music box, piano)
Abe Laboriel Senior and Leland Sklar (bass guitar)
Martina McBride (vocals on 'Still Holding On')
Hayden Nicholas (electric guitar)
Dean Parks (acoustic guitar)
Thomas R. Peterson (saxophone)
Steve Real (background vocals)
John 'J.R.' Robinson (drums)
Matt Rollings (piano, Wurlitzer)
Shari Sutcliffe (string contractor)
Lee Thornburg (horn arrangements, trumpet)
Steve Wariner (acoustic guitar and vocals on 'Been There')

Clint Black's 'Greatest Hits II' (RCA Records, 2001) reached No.8 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 2001 and was his last release for RCA Records.

During his sabbatical, Clint Black spent time reassessing his career.  After deciding he was unwilling to work within the then recording industry system, Clint Black formed his own record label, Equity Music Group.

Clint Black admitted that it was difficult to leave RCA Records; in his fourteen years with the label, he had sold over twelve million records.

The new label, Equity Music Group, operated under very different rules than those Clint Black had begun his own career under.  Artists were guaranteed ownership of their songs and were granted an equity stake in the label.

Clint Black: 'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004)

The first release from the new label, Equity Music Group, was Clint Black's 'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004), which was released on Tuesday 2 March 2004.

The Houston Chronicle called Clint Black's 'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004) 'arguably the most adventurous of his career'.

Clint Black's 'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004) included three tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart:

'Spend My Time' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.16, 2003)
'The Boogie Man' (written by Clint Black and Will Jennings) (No.51, 2004)
'My Imagination' (written by Clint Black and Matt Rollings) (No.42, 2004)

Clint Black's eighth album; 'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004) also included the following tracks:

'We All Fall Down' (written by Clint Black and Matt Rollings)
'She's Leavin' (written by Clint Black)
'Everything I Need' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'What Ever Happened' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'A Mind To' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Just Like You & Me' (written by Clint Black and Steve Dorff)
'Someone Else's Tears' (written by Clint Black and Gerry House)
'Haywire' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'A Lover's Clown' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's 'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004) included the following:

Clint Black (harmonica, electric guitar, lead vocals, background vocals, bass harmonica)
Eddie Bayers and John 'J.R.' Robinson (drums)
Lenny Castro and Eric Darken (percussion)
Lisa Cochran, Wes Hightower, Steve Real, John Wesley Ryles and Russell Terrell (background vocals)
Jerry Douglas (Dobro)
Stuart Duncan and Jonathan Yudkin (fiddle)
Paul Franklin and Sonny Garrish (steel guitar)
Abraham Laboriel and Glenn Worf (bass)
Brent Mason (electric guitar)
Hayden Nicholas (electric guitar, slide guitar)
Dean Parks (banjo, resonator guitar)
Matt Rollings (Hammond organ, Wurlitzer, grand piano)
Steve Wariner (classical guitar)
Biff Watson (acoustic guitar)

Clint Black's 'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004) reached No.3 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 2004.

Clint Black: 'Drinkin' Songs & Other Logic' (Equity Music Group, 2005)

On Tuesday 4 October 2005, Clint Black saw the release of 'Drinkin' Songs & Other Logic' (Equity Music Group, 2005), which included four tracks, which were released as singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart:

'Rainbow in The Rain' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) (No.44, 2005)
'Code of The West' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) / this track was released as a single in 2005, but it did not chart
'Drinkin' Songs & Other Logic' (written by Clint BlackHayden Nicholas and Steve Wariner) (No.54, 2006)
'Heartaches' (written by Clint Black) / this track was released as a single in 2006, but it did not chart

Clint Black's 'Drinkin' Songs & Other Logic' (Equity Music Group, 2005) also included the following tracks:

'Undercover Cowboy' (written by Clint Black)
'Go It Alone' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Too Much Rock' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'A Big One' (written by Clint Black and Tim Nichols)
'I Don't Wanna Tell You' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Back Home in Heaven' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Thinkin' of You' (written by Clint Black)
'Longnecks & Rednecks' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's 'Drinkin' Songs & Other Logic' (Equity Music Group, 2005) included the following:

Clint Black (acoustic guitar, harmonica, percussion, electric guitar, lead vocals, background vocals, bass harp)
Dane Bryant (piano, background vocals, Fender Rhodes)
Dick Gay (drums)
Hayden Nicholas (electric guitar, baritone guitar)
Jeff Peterson (Dobro, steel guitar)
Steve Real, Kimberly Roads and Jimi Westbrook (background vocals)
Steve Wariner (electric guitar)
Jake Willemain (bass guitar)
Martin Young (acoustic guitar)

Clint Black's 'Drinkin' Songs & Other Logic' (Equity Music Group, 2005) reached No.36 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 2005.

Clint Black: 'The Love Songs' (Equity Music Group, 2007)

On Tuesday 30 January 2007, Clint Black saw the release of 'The Love Songs' (Equity Music Group, 2007), which consisted of newly recorded versions of many of Clint Black's love songs, including the following:

'When I Said I Do' (written by Clint Black) / this track was a duet with Lisa Hartman-Black
'You Made Me Feel' (written by Clint Black and Michael McDonald)
'Something That We Do' (written by Clint Black and Skip Ewing)
'Our Kind of Love' (written by Clint Black and Shake Russell) / this track was a duet with Carolyn Dawn Johnson
'My Imagination' (written by Clint Black and Matt Rollings)
'Like The Rain' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'You Know It All' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner)
'That Something in My Life' (written by Clint Black and Kostas)
'One Emotion' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Half The Man' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'Easy For Me to Say' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas) / this track was a duet with Lisa Hartman-Black
'I'll Have to Say I Love You in a Song', which was written by Jim Croce (Sunday 10 January 1943 - Thursday 20 September 1973)

Personnel involved in the recording of Clint Black's 'The Love Songs' (Equity Music Group, 2007) included the following:

Bryan Austin (acoustic guitar, background vocals)
Clint Black (acoustic guitar, harmonica, percussion, electric guitar, lead vocals, background vocals, bass harmonica)
Dane Bryant (piano, keyboards, background vocals)
Lenny Castro (percussion)
Perry Coleman and Wes Hightower (background vocals)
Steve Dorff (conductor, orchestral arrangements)
Stuart Duncan (fiddle, mandolin)
Paul Franklin and Jeff Peterson (steel guitar)
Dick Gay and John 'J.R.' Robinson (drums)
Carl Gorodetzky (concert master)
Lisa Hartman-Black (duet vocals on 'When I Said I Do' and 'Easy for Me to Say')
Carolyn Dawn Johnson (duet vocals on 'Our Kind of Love')
Abraham Laboriel and Jake Willemain (bass guitar)
Nashville String Machine (orchestra)
Hayden Nicholas (electric guitar)
Dean Parks and Martin Young (acoustic guitar)
Matt Rollings (grand piano)
Steve Wariner (electric guitar, background vocals)

Clint Black's 'The Love Songs' (Equity Music Group, 2007) reached No.37 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 2007; the album cover was designed by Peter Max and depicted Clint Black with his wife Lisa Hartman Black.

It was also in 2007 when Clint Black saw the release of a single, 'The Strong One', the first original song he had recorded that he did not write.

'The Strong One' was included on Clint Black's first digital extended play (EP) disc, which was released on Tuesday 11 March 2008.  Titled 'The Long Cool EP', the collection featured Clint Black’s single, 'Long Cool Woman', 'The Strong One' and 'You Still Get to Me', which was a duet with his wife Lisa Hartman-Black.

In December 2008, as a result of economic difficulties, Clint Black's Equity Music Group closed its doors.

Clint Black: 'On Purpose' (Thirty Tigers Records / Black Top Records, 2015)

On Friday 25 September 2015, Clint Black saw the release of 'On Purpose' (Thirty Tigers Records / Black Top Records, 2015), which was produced by Clint Black, and included the following tracks:

'Time For That' (written by Clint Black and Frank Rogers)
'Better & Worse' (written by Clint Black)
'Summertime Song' (written by Clint Black)
'One Way to Live' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner)
'Doing it Now For Love' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)
'You Still Get to Me' (written by Clint Black and Victoria Shaw) / this track was a duet with Lisa Hartman-Black
'Right on Time' (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner)
'Still Calling it News (written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner)
'Making You Smile' (written by Clint Black)
'Stay Gone' (written by Clint Black and Phil O'Donnell)
'Breathing Air' (written by Clint Black and Frank Rogers)
'Beer' (written by Clint BlackBill Anderson and Bob DiPiero) / this track featured guest vocals from Big & Rich
'The Trouble' (written by Clint Black)
'The Last Day' (written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas)

Clint Black's 'On Purpose' (Thirty Tigers Records / Black Top Records, 2015) reached No.13 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 2015.

Hayden Nicholas has been twice nominated for the Country Music Association (CMA) 'Song of the Year', in 1989 for 'A Better Man' (No.1 for one week in June 1989), and in 1990 for 'Killin' Time' (No.1 for one week in October 1989), both co-written with, and recorded by, Clint Black.

Hayden Nicholas has also been nominated for several Grammy Awards, and has won over fifty songwriting awards, including three 'Triple Play Awards', which are given to a songwriter who has three works reach No.1 in twelve months.

One of Hayden Nicholas' collaborations with Clint Black, 'The Hard Way', was included in the musical 'Urban Cowboy', which was nominated for a 2003 Tony Award for 'Best Original Score'.

Cooder Graw: 'Cooder Graw' (Three-to-One Records, 1999) Cooder Graw: 'Shifting Gears' (Three-to-One Records, 2001)

Hayden Nicholas has expanded his efforts, co-producing with Ray Benson, the debut album of Texas band Cooder Graw, 'Cooder Graw' (Three-to-One Records, 1999), and serving as sole producer on the Cooder Graw's second attempt, 'Shifting Gears' (Three-to-One Records, 2001).

Ray Benson & Asleep at The Wheel: 'Ride With Bob' (DreamWorks Records, 1999)

Hayden Nicholas also played guitar on the Ray Benson & Asleep at The Wheel album 'Ride With Bob' (DreamWorks Records, 1999), and wrote a novel, 'Hands Treasure', which has been optioned by a motion picture company.

Clint Black: 'Drinkin' Songs & Other Logic' (Equity Music Group, 2005)

Prior to the release of Clint Black's 'Drinkin' Songs & Other Logic' (Equity Music Group, 2005), Hayden Nicholas lost his mother, prompting them to include the song 'Back Home in Heaven' on the album.


On Friday 15 February 2013, Hayden Nicholas' first book, 'Ezekiel's Choice', was released by West Bow Press.Hayden Nicholas

• Visit Hayden Nicholas' official site at haydennicholas.com
• Follow Hayden Nicholas on Facebook

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