How to Be a Songwriter in Nashville with Hit Songwriter Tony Wood

Is it possible to learn how to be a songwriter in Nashville? Absolutely. Though there’s no one set path to songwriting success, hit songwriter Tony Wood proves that it’s possible to follow your dreams and see them come true if you’re willing to persevere through time, trials, and setbacks.

At the time he and I sat down to chat, Tony had over 700 songs recorded with twenty-nine #1 hits and counting.

With songs recorded by a very long list of top Christian artists like Mandisa, Philips, Craig, and Dean, Ricky Skaggs, Kari Jobe, Meredith Andrews (and about 695 others) Tony is one of the most successful christian songwriters in history, though it wasn’t something that would happen for him overnight.

In this informal and often inspiring conversation, we talk about how he came to Nashville from a small town long before there were online songwriting courses or guarantees, leaning only on his faith that God had called him to be here.

Success wasn’t instantaneous, though, and he had to persevere through almost ten years of living into his faith and obedience before the doors began to open to him to the career he enjoys today. Tony shares candidly about his long journey through trials and setbacks that required tremendous tenacity for him to “make it” years after he settled here, as well as his uncertainty to this day that the “next song will ever come.”

We cover a lot of inspirational ground in this episode discussing why spiritual disciplines are critical to the christian songwriting process, our favorite theologians, favorite artists and songs, some funny music business stories, overcoming “the second verse curse,” and why “the big idea” is so important in Tony’s own songwriting process.

If you want to learn more about how to be a songwriter in Nashville, you don’t want to skip this great episode with hit songwriter Tony Wood!

You can read more about Tony Wood on his website at and follow him on Twitter and Instagram @tonywood_exit71.

John Chisum

John Chisum is a pioneer in the Christian music business, serving alongside people such as Bill & Gloria Gaither, Twila Paris, Paul Baloche, Don Moen, and many more. As Managing Partner of Nashville Christian Songwriters, John seeks to empower Christian songwriters worldwide to discover and fulfill their call to write.

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