Mixing politics and country music is a tricky feat these days, but a top Nashville songwriter will be doing just that. Lee Thomas Miller has officially entered the race to represent Tennessee’s 7th congressional district. U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn held the seat since 2003, but will be vacating the seat to run for Senate.
Miller, who has penned songs for Brad Paisley, Tim McGraw and Jamey Johnson, announced his candidacy on Tuesday, Nov. 14.
“I’ve been writing the stories of real Americans for as long as I can remember,” Miller said in a press release. “Stories about life and loss. Love and regret. Songs about innocence and youth. Songs about faith and the struggle to keep it. I give a voice to those who can not find the words they are looking for. I give a voice to those who are not being heard.”
While Miller may not be a politician, he does have experience representing others on the political stage. Miller serves as president of the Nashville Songwriters Association International and frequently travels to Washington D.C. to testify before Congress on copyright reform.
According to The Tennessean, a group of Music Row songwriters, including Liz Rose and Luke Laird, officially put forth support for Miller in an open letter. Curb Records founder Mike Curb and artists Brad Paisley and Dustin Lynch also signed the letter.
Regarding copyright issues, Miller has called for fewer regulations determining how songwriters are paid. He has also taken a stand against streaming services, charging that the services do not fairly compensate songwriters and artists.
Miller recently teamed up with comedian Sarah Silverman for a segment on Silverman’s show I Love You, America. Miller and Silverman co-wrote a song and performed at Nashville’s Bluebird Cafe. Silverman is using the song to raise money for the families of the Las Vegas shooting victims.