October 21, 2014

Elyria
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Making music her life

NORTH RIDGEVILLE – Diana Tyler is someone who knows that even when life does not go the right way the first time, it`s important to never give up hope.

CARL SULLENBERGER / CHRONICLE
Diana Tyler

Tyler, 49, of North Ridgeville, has been singing, performing and writing songs since she was in her 20s. But, it was her songwriting ability that got her noticed by Nashville-based Cavet-Vanderpool Publishing, a subsidiary of Rosebud Records and Productions.

Now, one of Tyler`s songs, “Only Joseph,” is being performed by a female trio known as J3, based in Michigan. J3, whose sound is a blend of country and Christian, is comprised of sisters Jill and Janel, and their friend, Jenny.

The road to getting a song sold in Nashville was not an easy one.

“I started dabbling in writing music, almost like a dare to myself,” Tyler said.

The journey started in the early 1990s, when Tyler, who was living in Columbus at the time, joined several Columbus-based songwriters to drive to Nashville in the hopes of selling their songs to record producers.

“We scheduled a few group meetings with several representatives of recording/publishing companies, mostly smaller, independent outfits,” Tyler said.

After meeting with several bigwigs, there was only one meeting where Tyler walked away feeling a little more confident in her songwriting abilities.

The producer said she liked some of the songs showcased by the writers and wanted to place a hold on a few of them. The contract was only a verbal agreement, nothing substantial.

“I came back (from Nashville) a little more confident. You have to have your ‘A-game` on when you go to Nashville,” Tyler said.

That confidence in her abilities had to keep her going for a while. It was more than a year before Tyler heard back from the record producer.

“Many months later, she sent a contract to hold the song ‘Only Joseph.` For various reasons, that contract never got signed. The whole thing just kind of fell through. After all that, I pretty much gave up on the ‘song-shopping` thing entirely,” Tyler said.

After the contract fell through, Tyler, who had kept her day job as office administrator for Washington Avenue Christian Church, continued writing and singing. She decided to put the idea of being a big-time songwriter on the back burner for a while.

Then, in the spring of 2006, Tyler received news that made her heart skip a beat.

Out of the blue, a new contract for the song arrived in the mail.

“She was still interested in the song, and in fact, had a group – J3 – who wanted to record it for their Christmas album. So, I signed the papers,” Tyler said.

The song “Only Joseph” can now be found on two CDs – “He`s Christmas” by J3, as well as “A Rosebud Christmas,” which is a compilation project by several artists, but features J3 singing Tyler`s song.

“Life is a series of goals and I wasn`t sure I was going to get this one (of selling a song). But, I did,” she said.

Want to go?
To hear Diana Tyler perform live, stop by the Carlisle Café on East Avenue, Elyria. She will perform at 6 p.m. Friday and Dec. 22.
To listen to J3 perform “Only Joseph,” visit www.cafepress.com/rosebudrecords and click on “A Rosebud Christmas.”