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    Rising country-pop star Griffen Palmer is more than meets the eye. Armed with instantly accessible lyrics, small town sentiments, and deeply heartfelt ballads, Palmer teeters on the precipice of new-found acclaim.

    Already a go-to songwriter for high-profile Music City staples like Florida Georgia Line (“Second Guessing”) and Keith Urban (“Polaroid”), the singer/songwriter has been making waves ever since winning NBC’s Songland, where he worked with acclaimed hit maker Shane McAnally and FGL’s Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley on crafting “Second Guessing.” And he’s only just getting started: Palmer is currently readying his debut album, which is set to feature a new crop of immaculate country-pop gems.

    Palmer has been attuned to great songwriting from a young age. As one of six siblings in Ontario, Palmer grew up in a big, musical family and drew inspiration from pop-rock staples like John Mayer and Kings of Leon. His father, also a musician, bought Palmer a drum kit when he was still in elementary school; he’d point out strong lyrics in other artists’ work like The Eagles, Elton John, and Bruce Hornsby, and encourage Palmer to write his own original songs.

    While attending Ohio’s Bowling Green State University on a Division 1 rugby scholarship, Palmer would frequently play four-hour cover sets in bars around his college town. Taking audience song requests, he began to nurture a love for country music. After graduation and back in Toronto, Palmer was introduced to GRAMMY-nominated songwriter Geoff Warburton (5 Seconds of Summer, Shawn Mendes) at a house party. The two hit it off and Palmer relocated to Nashville, where he signed a publishing deal with Big Loud in 2019.

    Since his breakout appearance on Songland, Palmer has penned numerous songs for The Band Camino, Chelsea Cutler, MacKenzie Porter, Jade Eagleson, and more. As a solo artist, Palmer has a clear knack for crafting ultra-catchy hooks with heartfelt appeal. Originally written to be a wedding song for his friends, “Second Guessing” captures the joy in finding your life partner: “Since I met you/ I ain't spent one second guessin'/ I made up my mind/ I never knew I/ Just had to find my direction/ Gettin' lost in your eyes/ 'Cause I've turned days into nights/ And spent all of my life askin' questions/ Now I don't spend one second guessin'.”

    When the pandemic sent the world into lockdown, Palmer made the best of a difficult situation by decamping up north, where he set up shop in a house with Warburton, and the two wrote at least 30 to 40 songs in a span of three weeks. “We’d just wake up every morning and write a song,” Palmer says. “Then we'd go up to his cottage and write there for a week. You could have an idea in the morning and work on it for an hour, have lunch, go work on it later, play video games, and then finish it later. It worked out for us because there was no pressure, really.”

    One of the songs that came out of Palmer’s pandemic writing bubble was the twanging mid-tempo ballad “25 To Life,” where Palmer draws inspiration from young love and the power of connection. "I had a vision of this dark, prison lingo-y type of song,” Palmer recalls. “I remember pitching this song to Geoff. I was like, ‘hear me out.’ It sounds like it could be really weird, but I think there's a way to make this really cool. And so he trusted me with it, and ‘25 To Life’ became an anchor for the project – a guiding light for everything else.”

    And then came "Bottles On The Table,” a lush sing-along song that boasts a hefty guitar solo that came to Palmer during a morning run. “I was just stopping at all of these traffic lights, writing this song down,” he says. “By the time I got home, I had almost the whole song done. It has this cool, Police-Sting, ‘80s rock kind of vibe. It’s a flirty, fun, young love song. I feel like every record needs something like that.”

    As Palmer prepares to launch, he’s quick to stay humble and remember important pieces of advice from his Nashville songwriting community. “You gotta learn how to stay human amid all the crazy music industry baloney,” he says. “A lot of the time, the most talented people get success, but so do the hardest working people. Never stop working on your craft.”

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