Cradling baby daughter Olive Pearl in the crook of his arm, Jake Owen stepped up onto the stage in the reception area of BMI's headquarters in Nashville Thursday (March 7) to accept the crowd's adulation for his third No. 1 single, "The One That Got Away."
Photo Credit: Heather Hargrove
It was also the first of Owen's No. 1's to date that the singer had a hand in writing. Sharing the spotlight were his co-writers Dallas Davidson and Jimmy Ritchey.
BMI's David Preston, who hosted the celebration, announced that this was Davidson's 14th chart-topper and Ritchey's first.
Davidson has been a BMI songwriter of the year for the past two years.
In keeping with BMI tradition, both Owen and Ritchey were awarded monogrammed acoustic guitars to commemorate their initial No. 1 songwriting achievement.
Preston also brought to the stage and commended Owen's producers, Rodney Clawson and Joey Moi.
Tom Luteran, representing Sony/ATV, Davidson's publisher, noted Davidson has had "nearly 200" songs recorded in his relatively brief career, three of which are being used in national commercials.
Turning to Owen, Luteran cracked, "I've got two daughters myself. It gets harder."
At that point, Owen walked to the side of the stage and handed off 3-month-old Olive Pearl to his wife, Lacey.
Davidson thanked his many relatives who had come to the party, including his mother and aunt.
"I want to thank my wife Sarah," he continued, "the one that didn't get away."
Owen expressed particular gratitude toward Ritchey, saying he had believed in and supported him since he came to Nashville.
"This [occasion] has been eight years in the making," he declared.
He asked the audience to "say a prayer" for his father, who is currently at the Mayo Clinic undergoing treatment for cancer.
"I believe a No. 1 song starts happening," Owen concluded, "when it's believable and validating."
View photos from the party.