Crowd Braves Rain to Help Dierks Bentley Celebrate “Somewhere on a Beach”

He Parties With the Five Writers of His Latest Hit

A steamy, hit-and-run rain was still scrubbing the Nashville sidewalks as an umbrella-shaking crowd quick-stepped into the South bar on Music Row to congratulate and dispense trophies to the five writers of Dierks Bentley’s latest No. 1, “Somewhere on a Beach.”

Those writers are Dave Kuncio and Josh Mirenda of ASCAP, Jaron Boyer and Michael Tyler of SESAC and Alexander Palmer of BMI.

“Somewhere on a Beach” is Bentley’s 14th No. 1 and, according to Capitol, his record label, his fastest-rising one to date.

Kuncio and Palmer are based in Los Angeles. Kuncio has written for and/or produced such pop stars as Selena Gomez, Alicia Keys and Justin Bieber, while Palmer has worked with Iggy Azalea, Jason Derulo and Chris Brown.

“Somewhere on a Beach” was the first country chart-topper for all the writers except Boyer, who also scored a No. 1 with Dustin Lynch’s “Hell of a Night.”

As partygoers lined the long, lavishly stocked bar, Bentley moved among the crowd near the stage, chatting and posing for photos.

Waiters set up food tables near the front door, arraying them with trays of chicken tenders, roasted vegetable wraps, smoked turkey pinwheels and something called “Cajun angels.”

The dispensing of plaques and trophies at No. 1 parties — along with accompanying remarks — is always a time-consuming process, what with kudos issued to each writer, artist and producer from the performance rights organizations, record label, publishers, the Country Music Association, Country Radio Broadcasters and other interest groups.

Imagine that process times five — as in this case — and you’ll have some concept of eternity.

Bentley was the last to speak. He praised the demo for “Somewhere on a Beach” as being so well crafted that he and his producer, Ross Copperman, were at considerable pains to come up with a more compelling version.

More to the point, he added, the song embodied precisely the qualities he looks for when choosing material for his albums.

“There’s a lot of [good] songs I pass on because they’re not right for me,” he said.

“Somewhere on a Beach” is the first single from his new album, Black.

Edward Morris is a veteran of country music journalism. He lives in Nashville, Tennessee, and is a frequent contributor to