Nashville songwriter Rick Carnes is the president of the Songwriters Guild of America (SGA), the nation’s oldest and most active organization run by and for songwriters. For many years prior to his becoming its president, Rick served SGA as an officer and as a member of the Nashville Steering Committee representing SGA on numerous panels regarding legislative, contractual, technological and legal issues affecting songwriters. Over the past decade, he has increasingly become the recognized spokesperson for songwriter issues on Capitol Hill.
A native of Memphis, Tennessee, Carnes and his wife, Janis, moved to Nashville in 1978. Soon after, the duo signed their first record deal with RCA Records, later recording for Elektra Asylum, Warner Bros and MCA Records. In 1983, Carnes wrote Reba McEntire’s first #1 hit “ I Can’t Even Get The Blues No More” and co-wrote with Janis and Chip Harding three top ten hits for the Whites: “You Put The Blues in Me”, “Hanging Around” and “Pins And Needles”.
An exclusive staff writer with peermusic Nashville, recent cuts include: Garth Brooks’ “Longneck Bottle”, included on both Sevens and Double Live and selling in excess of 18 million copies; Steve Wariner’s “Burnin’ The Roadhouse Down” and ”If You Don’t Know it by Now”; and Alabama’s “when it All Goes South”. He has also had success with recordings by Dean Martin, Conway Twitty, Karen Brooks, Loretta Lynn, Lacy J. Dalton, Johnny Rodriguez, Janie Fricke. Ronnie McDowell, T.G. Sheppard, Pam Tillis and many others.
The Songwriters Guild Of America (SGA) knows American music has been the backbone of entertainment exports to the rest of the world, a major foundation of America’s gross national product and, most importantly, a cultural touch stone of our emotions, memories and lives.
Since 1931, the SGA has sought to protect this valuable commodity by ensuring that those who make music, and songwriting, their career are able to do so at a wage that allows them to care for themselves and their families. The Songwriters Guild of America carries out its mission through legislative advocacy, services to professional and developing songwriters and via its non-profit, charitable Foundation.