Clay Cumbie

Clay Cumbie

BandPopSinger/Songwriter

A self taught guitarist, Cumbie studied the craft of singer/songwriter icons of the 70’s and 80’s such as James Taylor, Jim Croce, Jackson Browne and rock/ soul pioneers Hall and Oates in his youth. All those guys were my heroes growing up. In a nutshell my music is a byproduct of my musical heroes.

Biography

The southern Alabama cotton town of Opelika is surrounded by the musical heritage of deep-south country soul and southern rock. A short drive south of Florence, Alabama, home of the famed Muscle Shoals sound, and a stone’s throw east of Montgomery, birthplace of Hank Williams, the farms and peanut fields along the back roads echo with the incredibly rich mix of musical flavors. It is among this collage of sounds that Clay Cumbie was born and raised.

A self taught guitarist, Cumbie studied the craft of singer/songwriter icons of the 70’s and 80’s such as James Taylor, Jim Croce, Jackson Browne and rock/ soul pioneers Hall and Oates in his youth. “All those guys were my heroes growing up,” Cumbie remembers. “They all had such a huge influence on the way I write songs.” By the time he was a teenager, Cumbie was playing in local clubs and honing his own songwriting craft.

Eventually the Cumbie family moved west to Columbia, MO and Cumbie’s focus shifted to an altogether different skilled craft: baseball. As an up-and-coming player throughout high-school, Cumbie starred on the field while keeping his musical hobby on the side.

As Cumbie’s focus shifted between the diamond shape inlays on his guitar and the baseball diamond, music was undergoing a radical shift from the eclectic 80’s to the innovative alternative rock and New Country sound of the early 90’s. Country music was reborn with the “class of ‘89” artists such as Alan Jackson, Clint Black, and Garth Brooks who brought legions of new fans to the genre and drove sales skyrocketing.

Invigorated by the proliferance of accessible country music and the influence of new singer/songwriter artists such as Dave Matthews and Sheryl Crow, along with songwriter driven bands like Counting Crows, Cumbie rejuvenated his love for singing and playing. He revitalized his live show and amassed a dedicated local fanbase around Columbia.

“Eventually I was forced to make a decision between baseball and music,” Cumbie laments. “As much as I relished the enjoyment of being part of a winning team on the field, there was a part of me that needed to be on stage in the spotlight.”

The chance to get his songs heard by the masses and perform on stage triumphed his passion for sports. Leaving home at the age of 19, fresh from graduating High School, Cumbie made his way to Nashville to pursue his dream.

Barely four years later, from his 9th floor balcony overlooking the busy downtown Nashville streets, Clay Cumbie puts the finishing touches on another slice-of-life song laden with the soulful harmonies gleaned from the musical mosaic he cut his teeth on. After a few rough starts in a business known for its toughness and competitive edge, Cumbie has found his home with Big Loud Shirt Industries, a top independent publishing company run by veteran songwriter/producer Craig Wiseman. “I believe my musical journey led me here for a reason,” he says with a smile.

Clay Cumbie is currently co-writing with Nashville’s best songwriters with an eye on releasing an album of his own material in the near future. He keeps his current fans happy by touring throughout the country.

Discography

Upcoming Album produced by hit songwriter/producer Craig Wiseman.

Set List

Four Letter Word
Nothing But A Smile
Breathless
Dandelion
What Love Means
Never Had
Waking Up In Your World