Tim McGraw Departs Sony Music Nashville: Exclusive

Tim McGraw
David Needleman

Tim McGraw

Tim McGraw has parted ways with Sony Music Nashville, sources confirm to Billboard. 

McGraw and wife Faith Hill inked a highly touted deal with SMN’s parent Sony Music Entertainment three years ago in February 2017. Hill remains with Sony Music Entertainment. 

The deal yielded a McGraw/Hill duets album, The Rest of Our Life, on Sony’s Arista Nashville label, which debuted atop Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart in October 2017 and spawned “Speak to a Girl,” a top 20 hit for the duo on Billboard’s Country Airplay chart.

McGraw also released two tracks, via Sony’s Columbia Nashville imprint: “Neon Church,” which peaked at No. 20 on Country Airplay and “Thought About You,” which climbed to No. 17 last year.

Upon the simultaneous release of the two songs in October 2018, McGraw said, “I love that there are no rules anymore and I can give fans more music at once. I really felt that both these songs were ready to be heard and will absolutely give a sense of where I’m going with my next project. They're meaningful to me and show the diversity of what I’ve been working on musically.” The singles were co-branded Columbia Nashville/McGraw Music.

McGraw starts his Here on Earth headlining arena/amphitheater tour July 10. Every online ticket comes with the ability to redeem one CD of McGraw’s forthcoming album, also titled Here on Earth. However, there is no word on a release date or new label for the project and whether it includes “Neon Church” and “Thought About You.” The Here on Earth Tour includes two stadium dates with Luke Combs: Sept. 4 in Los Angeles and Sept. 12 in Philadelphia. 

Prior to Sony Music Nashville, McGraw was signed to Big Machine Label Group, for whom he recorded the Grammy-winning “Humble and Kind” for  2015’s Damn Country Music. The Lori McKenna-penned song reached No. 1 on Country Airplay (McGraw’s 25th chart-topper) and was named song of the year at the 2016 CMA Awards.

Recently, McGraw has expanded his portfolio to include best-selling author: He co-authored the New York Times best-seller Songs of America: Patriotism, Protest and the Music That Made a Nation with famed historian Jon Meacham, as well as the top-selling health and fitness book Grit & Grace: Train the Mind, Train the Body, Own Your Life.

McGraw’s representative and a representative for Sony Music Nashville declined to comment.