“I'll always be a fan of ol' stray dogs and guitars playin'
One-room churches, backroad walks and front porch swingin'
Sunset skies, bonfire nights, I love the simple things
That's how I'll always be”
—Lyrics to “How I’ll Always Be”
by Jeremy Stover, Chris Janson and Jamie Paulin, recorded by Tim McGraw
“It all started with the love of music,” says Jeremy Stover as he looks back on the beginning of a very successful career which has led to hundreds of cuts, and many No. 1 hits as a writer and producer. Today that career continues to grow and is expanding into the next phase, as owner of publishing and entertainment company RED Creative Group.
Stover’s childhood in Ellijay, Georgia provided the inspiration for some of his most personal songs, which also turned out to be some of his biggest hits. He co-wrote “Small Town USA” and “Til My Last Day” with singer Justin Moore, and also produced the tracks. His string of success continues with numerous singles including Tim McGraw’s smash “How I'll Always Be” and Justin Moore’s “The Ones That Didn’t Make It Back Home,” Stover says, “There is so much of me in those songs, how I grew up and what I appreciate.”
As a producer, Stover’s current/past projects include Justin Moore’s latest, as well as established hitmakers Eli Young Band, Travis Denning, Drake White, and newly developing female artist LJ, all of whom Stover discovered and developed.
The first of many milestones in Stover’s success in Nashville came when he graduated from Belmont University. “I’m one of 70-something grandchildren,” he says. “My dad has 14 brothers and sisters. I was the first of all the grandkids to graduate college.”
An early job at Muy Bueno Music, the publishing company owned by George Strait and Erv Woolsey, helped Stover learn the ropes in the recording studio. A longtime songwriter, he kept plugging away at night and by 1999 had saved up $3,500 to record a 10-song demo. Five publishing offers followed and he signed with Starstruck, which was owned by Reba McEntire at the time. By 2004 he was signed to Keith Stegall’s 2820 Music, where he scored his first No. 1 as a writer and producer with “Wherever You Are” recorded by Jack Ingram. The hits kept coming during a six-year run with EMI, which was eventually purchased by Sony/ATV.
When that deal came to an end, Stover sold his most recent catalog to ole Rights Management. He recalls, “That was the first time I started thinking about developing a company of my own and what I would like that to be. I wanted it to be an artist