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Who Are Blake Shelton's Most Frequent Songwriting Partners?
Lots of people have collaborated with The Voice Coach, but there are a few special people he works with the most.
It takes a team of people to make a music industry juggernaut like Blake Shelton — who is also a coach on The Voice for one last season — successful. And while Shelton does write some of his own incredible successful songs, there are a handful of important songwriters with whom he's worked, usually multiple times, in his career.
Check out which songwriters he's worked with more than once...
Fellow Voice coach — and Shelton's now-wife — Gwen Stefani has become one of Shelton's more frequent collaborators, usually on the duets they've written together. He's credited as one of the writers on their 2016 duet, "Go Ahead and Break My Heart," her 2018 Christmas song, "You Make It Feel Like Christmas," and his rendition of her other 2018 Christmas song, "Christmas Eve." (The version she recorded doesn't include his lyrical contributions.)
Former The Voice Battle Round coach Miranda Lambert was also one of Shelton's songwriting partners. She's listed as a co-writer on his 2008 duet with her, "Bare Skin Rug," while he's got co-writing credits on several of her songs. Those include: "Me and Your Cigarettes," "Love Song," and "Sin For A Sin" off her 2009 CMA Award- and Grammy-winning album Revolution; "Over You" from her 2011 album Four The Record; and "Family Feud" the her group Pistol Annies's 2011 album Hell on Heels.
Dorothy Shackleford (a.k.a., Blake Shelton's Mom)
Dorothy Shackleford was perhaps not the most well-known name in Nashville when she contributed a verse and her voice to Shelton's song, "Time for Me to Come Home," on his 2012 Christmas album Cheers, It's Christmas. But the song and her voice were such a success that she ended up writing a book (with fellow author Travis Thrasher) based on and with the same name of the song.
That book spawned a Hallmark Channel Christmas movie — which Shelton and Shackleford also executive produced — in 2018. Shackleford then penned the next three films in the series, which were released in 2019, 2020, and 2021, respectively, and then took a break and served solely as an executive producer on the fifth in 2022.
Country music fans who don't know her name definitely know the music of singer-songwriter Jessi Alexander — who's released three albums of her own! She and Shelton share songwriting credits on 2012's "Savior's Shadow," 2016's "Friends," 2017's "Turnin' Me On," and 2019's "Jesus Got a Tight Grip." Without Shelton, she helped write many of his other songs, including the 2013 Grammy- and CMA Award-nominated "Mine Would Be You," 2021's "Monday Mornin' Missin' You," "Drink On It," "Good Country Song," "A Girl," "Got the T-Shirt," and "Now I Don't."
She won a Grammy in 2013 for her songwriting role in Lee Brice's "I Drive Your Truck," and has also written for Jason Aldean, Morgan Wallen, Dierks Bentley, Faith Hill, Reba McEntire, The Voice Season 3 winner Cassadee Pope, Darius Rucker, Tim McGraw, Little Big Town, Trisha Yearwood, and Miley Cyrus.
Don Ellis Gatlin and Billy Montana
Don Ellis Gatlin (credited as Don Ellis) was originally part of the Pennsylvania-based 1990s country band, Darryl and Don Ellis, with his brother: The two won The Nashville Network’s You Can Be a Star reality series and eventually moved to Nashville and released two records. After the band broke up, Ellis turned to songwriting and performing — including with Kenny Rogers. He's currently part of his band, Savannah Jack, and the Kenny Rogers Band, which is made up of the late singer's original band members.
Billy Montana — an upstate New York native born William Schlappi — formed his own band, Billy Montana & The Long Shots with his brother, Kyle, and three other musicians in the late 1980s. They broke up after releasing three singles and Montana moved to Nashville to pursue his own musical career, releasing his album, No Yesterday, in 1995 before focusing completely on songwriting. He's penned songs for country music royalty, including Garth Brooks, Lee Brice, Tim McGraw, Kenny Chesney, Martina McBride, Jason Aldean, Lee Ann Womack, Kellie Pickler, Trace Adkins, and Kenny Rogers.
The two have co-written two songs with Shelton: 2001's "Problems At Home" and 2003's "My Neck Of The Woods."
Author and journalist Michael Kosser started his Nashville songwriting career in 1971, penning songs for country legends like George Jones, Conway Twitty, and Barbara Mandrell.
He's co-written several songs with Shelton, including: 2001's "That’s What I Call Home"; and 2007's "I Have Been Lonely" and "The Last Country Song."
Trypta-Phunk (a.k.a. Shelton's Back-Up Band)
Tracy Broussard, Rob Byus and Beau Tackette — the drummer, bassist, and guitarist, respectively, in Shelton's touring band — have a side project called Trypta-Phunk, a funk/fusion band.
They are also listed as the co-writers on two of the songs from Shelton's 2012 Christmas album: "Santa’s Got A Choo Choo Train" and "The Very Best Time Of Year" (on which the band is also listed as a featured artist.)
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