The Nashville songwriting community is reeling after the arrival of a peculiar man with a bold new approach to songwriting that does not involve conferences, coffee shop chats, or slumber parties. In fact, Stan Hill claims that he writes best when left to quiet self-reflection. Word around town is that he’s up to something, though nobody knows what it is just yet.
Hill first came to the attention of the community when he auditioned for one of the Sunday Writers’ Nights at the famous Bluebird Cafe. After performing a verse and chorus of an original song titled “On the Tram to Alabam” for the panel, he was complimented on the song and asked who had helped him write it. When he claimed to have written it without the aid of any other tunesmiths, he got laughed off the stage. The incident quickly became something of a running joke among members of the town’s well-connected songwriting community.
After weeks of seeing Hill walking around town by himself, apparently deep in thought, many came to believe his story. Around the same time, patrons of several downtown bars reported watching him take a table by himself, remove a blank sheet of paper from his bag, and fill the sheet with lyrics without ever conversing with other customers or communicating through any sort of concealed earpiece.
“You mean he has to, like, start his own thoughts and complete them?” marveled popular committee tunesmith Aimee Mayo. “I don’t even see how that’s possib…” Mayo stopped to receive a text message on her phone. “Sorry, that was Kellie. We’re writing a new song together while she’s out on tour. I can’t say too much yet, but it’s about keeping a positive attitude in the face of adversity. Anyway, what was I saying again?”
Mayo remains skeptical of the solo approach: “I had this great idea about a red umbrella one time, but I knew that it was such a brilliant thought that I wouldn’t be able to manage it on my own. Without the help of my three cowriters, that song never would have come to fruition. And where would the world be then? My point is that there’s only so much you can do by yourself. All the best songs are written by committee these days.”
When it was mentioned that Merle Haggard, Loretta Lynn, and Kris Kristofferson penned most of their famous songs by themselves, Mayo flashed a baffled expression and resumed texting with Kellie.