A Ballad in the Boro

MURFREESBORO, TN – If you’ve listened to songs by Lee Brice, Trace Adkins, or George Strait in the past couple years, you might be surprised to find out they’re written by a man from Murfreesboro.

Tim James has been writing and playing music for years, but it wasn’t until 2002 when he wrote the Toby Keith hit, “My List” which took his career off and never stopped.

“That was a five week number one song,” said James “So I went from having nothing to having credibility, and to having resources.”

This didn’t happen overnight though. James says he went through countless people rejecting his ideas until he finally got someone to say yes.

“You have to really want it,” said James.

Murfreesboro during that time was different compared to today. James says seeing a man from Murfreesboro being nominated for a Grammy was just something you never saw in a small town. Now, people from all over come to Murfreesboro for MTSU’s recording industry program to become musicians and songwriters.

James says the chances of people becoming successful at it are very slim now, but if you’re passionate there is still hope.

Musicians like MTSU student Isaiah Rodriguez know the struggle of it trying to become a reality.

“You have to have a day job,” said Rodriguez

So why continue if the chances are slim? Rodriguez says it’s for the thrill of seeing your ideas affect others.

“To know that you did something that reached someone else is an exhilarating feeling,” said Rodriguez

James says he would like to be a professor at MTSU in the future.

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