Capitol Records star Keith Urban mingled with hundreds of supporters recently to toast the success of his single, “Somebody Like You.” It has perched at the top of the Billboard country singles charts for five straight weeks. The celebration was held at the Nashville headquarters of BMI, the performance rights organization.
Among those applauding Urban were his parents, Bob and Marienne; singer Steve Wariner ; Capitol Records/Nashville president Mike Dungan; and dozens of visibly enthusiastic young women.
“Somebody Like You” is the lead single from Urban’s second Capitol album, Golden Road, released last month.
“Seeing him on [the CMA Awards Show] last night made me want to be young and skinny again,” sighed BMI’s Joyce Rice as she began to introduce a string of well-wishers to the crowd.
Said Dungan, “This [celebration] is very much testimony to the fact that Keith Urban is unwilling to compromise [musically].” Urban’s co-producer, Dann Huff, gave the Australian artist most of the credit for the direction his music is taking: “Keith is very much able to make his music by himself. He doesn’t need much help.”
Barry Coburn, Urban’s publisher, remarked, “We’re very thrilled to be a part of your quest. This overnight success has been going on a lot of years.” Before Urban emerged as a solo artist, he recorded for Capitol as part of the group The Ranch. That group scored its first chart hit, “Walkin’ the Country,” in 1997.
Urban thanked his co-writer, John Shanks, who did not attend the party. He explained that he had not known Shanks before their publishers arranged their first writing session. “He was a little mortified when I brought my banjo,” Urban recalled. “But I think he understands now.” Urban’s parents, who plan to be in the U. S. for six weeks, will take turns going out on the road with their increasingly famous son.
“In the end,” Urban said, “I just want to thank Nashville as a community for accepting me.”