NASHVILLE, Tennessee – HALIE (Woolridge) comes from a musical family. In fact, she is related to Jimmie Rodgers who is often cited as the “Father of Country Music.”
Music runs deep in HALIE’s family. Her mom grew up managing bands and was a singer/songwriter as well. Her older brother, Michael Tyler is a renowned songwriter in the Nashville circuit penning number-one hits such as Dierks Bentley’s “Somewhere On a Beach,” Jason Aldean’s “Got What I Got,” and Blake Shelton’s “Neon Time.”
Her other brother also plays guitar and sings. Her brothers had a band when she was younger and being around music is all she knows.
That may explain why at age 22, HALIE won NBC’s Songland contest in 2020 and represented her home state of Missouri in the American Song Contest in 2022. Not only that, the lithe beauty is a model with the AMAX modeling agency.
She told me, “I never had a moment where I wondered, ‘What I am going to do with my life?’ I’ve always been around music and knew that is what I wanted to do.”
Immediately upon graduating high school, HALIE moved to Nashville, where her brother already resided.
Aspiring artists who are her age go to her for information since she knows so much about the music business. They asked her, “How do you know so much?” She tells them, “It’s all I’ve known.”
The song that spurred the songstress to win NBC’s Songland, “Girls Like Me” is so exquisitely written that it brought tears to Martina McBride’s. McBride would go on to record the song herself.
“I got teary-eyed myself just seeing her cry,” HALIE recalled.
In my opinion, it doesn’t matter if you grew up in the business or not. To be able to put feelings into words so succinctly, especially at such a young age, proves that HALIE has God-given talent. She was just fortunate to have people around who could point her in the right direction to grow her giftedness.
HALIE is a self-taught guitarist and has been singing since she was eight. At 12 years old she wrote her first song, a tune called, “Stupid Girl.”
“It was super goofy,” she recalled. But she never stopped writing songs and always looked up to her brother Michael for inspiration.
She has composed the heartfelt song, “Love Too Much,” along with her song from American Songwriter, “Better Things.” These songs resonate with so many as she sings her truth.
And while she is fully aware of the group songwriting sessions that Nashville is famous for, about 50% of the time, she writes alone. Though she is not opposed to writing for others, many of the songs she writes are very personal and she is eager to sing them on stage.
When she writes a song, she thinks, “Would I actually say this?” If the answer is “No,” the song is given to another artist.
Released on February 14th, “Heart Of A Man” might be the most introspective song she has written to date.
She advised, “I cried in the studio the day that I wrote it because I was going through it. It’s a real experience.”
With words like, How do you do it/ Break my heart in two like there’s nothing to it/ Like I was everything to you until I wasn’t/ Said you would and then you done it/ Did it all go to your plan/ Did it fall apart somewhere/ If I could know then maybe I could understand/ what’s in the heart of a man, HALIE is desperately trying to see the situation from the guy’s perspective.
She conceded, “With heartbreaks and breakups, I will never be the person to bash an ex. Maybe if I understood what was in his heart the whole time, I could understand the whole situation and why it went south.”
Because she has two brothers, she sees guys struggling firsthand.
“They say that men are supposed to be strong and not show emotion and that is just not true. Men have many of the emotions that we do and if we could understand their hearts more, we would have less judgment,” she informed.
And while not every song a person writes is going to resonate with everyone, the songs are going to ring true for some, and when it does, it is truly healing.
When you are going through a situation, there is nothing more freeing than to have your feelings validated. This is why music is so important. This is how music heals.
HALIE confirmed, “That’s why I write music. My whole passion behind songwriting is that when I was younger, I would listen to music because I wanted to relate to it. Now that I am older and writing music, that is my number one goal. I want people to be able to listen to the music that I write and feel that ‘she knew exactly what I was thinking.’ I want to write music that people say is personal to them.
HALIE’S songwriting ability is simply next level. She told her manager, “I will never put out a song that I did not write. I love to have meaning to the songs that I am putting out.
HALIE will soon be putting out a music video for “Heart Of A Man” and another single is soon to be released.
For those of us who are in tune with the music scene in Nashville, you need to keep HALIE’s name on your radar. At 22, this is just the tip of the iceberg for accomplished singer/songwriter.
You can follow HALIE on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, TikTok, and all streaming platforms.
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Bethany Bowman is a freelance entertainment writer. You can follow her blog, Instagram, and Twitter.
Photo HALIE by HALIE.