Better Than Ezra’s Kevin Griffin Goes Country
Kevin Griffin of pop-rock band Better Than Ezra, whose hits include ‘Good‘ and ‘Desperately Wanting,’ has been making several country connections recently. Whether it be as an influence, on the songwriting front (he penned Sugarland’s No. 1 ‘Stuck Like Glue‘) or just geographical, Music City seems to be welcoming him with open arms.
Former Better Than Ezra drummer Travis McNabb left the group in 2009 to tour with Sugarland, making Kevin’s first connection to the genre. “I know the Sugarland guys because of Travis,” Kevin confirms to the Dallas Morning News. “I was writing ‘Stuck Like Glue’ and I thought, ‘Man, this is a song that Jennifer [Nettles] sure could sing’ … I had no problem getting in touch with them and I’ll tell you, No. 1 songs don’t come along that often. I’m so thankful to have that one. It’s been five years since my last No. 1 [Howie Day‘s ‘Collide.’]”
The band also has a fan in Taylor Swift, who chose to cover one of their tunes during the Hope for Haiti telethon. “It’s flattering that Taylor chose ‘Breathless,'” Kevin says. “But it’s not just her. Lady Antebellum has cited us as an influence and so have other bands.”
Connecting a few more dots brings another connection to Lady A. Michael Busbee, who wrote Better Than Ezra’s ‘Black Light,’ ‘Wounded,’ ‘All In‘ and more, co-wrote Lady Antebellum’s recent No. 1 ‘Our Kind of Love‘ with the trio.
Has all the Nashville admiration prompted Kevin’s recent move to Middle Tennessee? “I spent five years in Los Angeles, and it’s just crazy expensive there,” he explains. “I have three boys, and it just makes sense for them to have a big yard, and there is opportunity for me in Nashville as a songwriter.“
The move is one Busbee would likely condone, having a favorable relationship with the city’s music scene. “Nashville has the largest collection of musical talent in the world,” he said at the ‘Our Kind of Love’ No. 1 party. “I don’t live here, but I was embraced when I first came here to pitch my songs and write with other writers.”