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The big city can't drag the country out of David Nail

The Award-winning country music artist David Nail will perform March 18 at The Blue Note.

By Ellen Fike | March 18, 2011

Tags: Concerts Music


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Growing up in Kennett, Mo., David Nail never imagined becoming a country music star or receiving a Grammy nomination. Even after this became a reality, Nail still thinks about being back in Kennett with his family and friends.

“I miss the fact of going out to eat and having the option of Dairy Queen and the two Mexican restaurants,” Nail said.

Nail, who is the son of a former Kennett High School band director, attended college in Nashville with the hopes of playing baseball. But, the transition from small town to big city was a jarring one. He decided to head back home after being in Nashville for a short time and went on to attend Arkansas State University. But Nail dropped out of college during his sophomore year to pursue a career in music.

In 2005, he returned to Nashville to start his newfound career. There, a mutual friend introduced Nail to Brian Wright, who worked for two record labels in Nashville.

They began to work on Nail’s debut album, I’m About to Come Alive, which was released in 2009. Nail wrote one of the songs “Missouri” and co-wrote four others. “Turning Home” and “Red Light,” the two major singles from the album, have garnered Nail quite a bit of radio play and prestige by critics and fans alike.

In 2010, Nail was noticed by the Academy of Country Music for his musical prowess. He was nominated for Single Record of the Year, but ended up losing to country music superstars (and good friends of his) Lady Antebellum.

“I didn’t even bother making a speech for the ACM Awards,” Nail said. “I knew I didn’t have a chance of winning when I was up against them.”

Nail’s Male Country Vocal Performance Grammy nomination for “Turning Home” really surprised him.

“I honestly thought (my manager had) been drinking and was just playing a joke on me,” he said. “After we’d hung up, I turned to my wife and said, ‘Baby, people actually like what I do.’ It was the single most emotional day of my life, apart from getting married.”

Nail lost to Keith Urban at the ceremony.

Filming the video for “Turning Home” was a homecoming in itself for Nail. He returned to his hometown to film at various spots, including the high school and football field.

“It was a very surreal moment,” he said. “I always dreamed of the days that I would have my own bus and step off of it into my own hometown.”

David Nail will perform at 8 p.m Friday at The Blue Note.

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