Publishing

'Girl Crush' Writer Lori McKenna Sells Catalog in Deal With Concord, Pulse & Creative Nation: Exclusive

Spencer Combs

Pictured (Back Row L-R): Luke Laird (Creative Nation), Scott Cutler (Pulse Music Group), Jim Selby (Concord Music Publishing), Duff Berschback (Concord Music Publishing)
Pictured (Front Row L-R): Beth Laird (Creative Nation), Lori McKenna, Josh Abraham (Pulse Music Group)

Lori McKenna, one of country music’s most revered songwriters, has sold her catalog to Concord Music Publishing, which will work in partnership with Creative Nation and Pulse Music Group going forward on her music.

McKenna has won three Grammy Awards for best country song -- for Little Big Town’s “Girl Crush,” Tim McGraw’s “Humble and Kind” and The Highwomen’s “Crowded Table” -- and has written other hits for Carrie Underwood, Miranda Lambert, Faith Hill and many other artists, as well as co-writing “Always Remember Us This Way,” which was featured in Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper’s A Star Is Born. Concord’s deal also includes the publishing from McKenna’s 12 solo albums, including 2020’s The Balladeer.

Concord Music Publishing acquired Fujipacific Music’s stake in Pulse in January 2020 and formed an exclusive joint venture. Pulse already had an existing joint venture with McKenna’s publishing company, Luke and Beth Laird's Nashville-based Creative Nation.

Concord will administer McKenna’s catalog and her future works, while Creative Nation will continue to run day-to-day coordination on McKenna’s writing sessions and projects. Concord, Creative Nation and Pulse will be creative partners on McKenna’s endeavors.

"Working with Lori McKenna the past five years has been a dream come true. Her talent is undeniable and she continues to evolve and write some of the most iconic songs for our generation. We are so excited to continue working with her and to add Pulse and Concord as our publishing partners in this next chapter," Beth Laird, co-founder and CEO of Creative Nation, said in a statement.

"I'm thrilled and thankful to keep doing what I love most with my Creative Nation family in Nashville. I'm so excited to add Pulse and Concord in this next chapter and I look forward to what’s to come," said McKenna, who is also part of the Love Junkies, a wildly successful songwriting trio composed of McKenna, Liz Rose and Hillary Lindsey. Concord Music Publishing inked a worldwide co-publishing deal with Lindsey and formed a creative development co-venture, Hang Your Hat Music, with the writer in June 2020.

Scott Cutler, co-CEO of Pulse, added, "Lori is one of the most authentic and widely respected writers on the planet—she has such a special talent. Pulse has had the honor of being a part of her story through our partnership with Beth and the Creative Nation team. We are so excited to partner with Beth and Concord on this next chapter and to continue to be a part of Lori’s future—this is a music publishing dream team!"

Jim Selby, chief publishing executive at Concord, said, "As both a songwriter and an artist, Lori McKenna has contributed to some of the most notable and groundbreaking hits in country music and beyond. Concord is honored to be chosen as the home for her catalog—our creative teams worldwide are looking forward to working closely with Lori, alongside Creative Nation and Pulse, to champion the hits still to come."

Concord declined to disclose the terms of the deal.