Thomas Rhett Signs Exclusive Publishing Deal With Warner Chappell Music

Thomas Rhett
John Shearer

Thomas Rhett

Country radio staple Thomas Rhett has signed an exclusive worldwide publishing pact with Warner Chappell Music. The deal, representing Rhett's new songs going forward, reunites the Georgia native with WCM Nashville president and CEO Ben Vaughn, who a decade ago signed him at EMI Music Publishing (later folded into Sony/ATV).

"Ben has been incredibly instrumental in my career from the very beginning, starting with signing me to my first publishing deal in college," said Rhett. "I'll never forget playing 'Beer with Jesus' for him right after I wrote it and him being the biggest supporter. He's truly one of the most innovative and hardest working guys I've ever had the honor to work with, and am looking forward to this new chapter together."

After establishing himself as a hit songwriter for artists such as Jason Aldean ("1994") and Florida Georgia Line ("Round Here"), Rhett launched his debut album It Goes Like This in the fall of 2013 — containing his first three No. 1s on Billboard's Country Airplay chart ("It Goes Like This," "Get Me Some of That" and "Make Me Wanna"). His followup album, 2015's Tangled Up, scored four more radio No. 1s, including "Star of the Show," co-written with his dad Rhett Atkins.

That pairing with his pop kickstarted Rhett's current streak of nine consecutive airplay No. 1s, which include "Marry Me" and "Look What God Gave Her," along with collaborations with Maren Morris ("Craving You") and Jon Pardi (this year's "Beer Can't Fix"). His latest hit "Be a Light," featuring Reba McEntire, Hillary Scott, Chris Tomlin and Keith Urban, is currently at No. 7 on the chart.

But he's not just a singles man. Rhett's latest two studio album's Life Changes and Center Point Road, via Valory and Big Machine respectively, both debuted atop the all-encompassing Billboard 200 Chart, with each earning Grammy nominations for best country album. He has also won multiple awards at the ACMs and CMAs.

"Thomas Rhett is an all-around force in music," said Ben Vaughn. "He can put on one of the most unforgettable, energetic live shows you've ever seen, and then hop right off stage and write the next great song. Aside from being an extraordinary artist, he is a man of great integrity who I'm grateful to have called a friend for many years. Everyone in Nashville can attest to his character; Thomas has invested his time in our community and contributed to the success of dozens of other artists. I know I speak for myself, Spencer (Nohe) and the entire WCM team when I say we're honored to be on this journey with him."

Details of the WCM deal were not disclosed. Rhett was represented in the agreement by Jess Rosen with Greenburg Trarig.