Originally published by John Torsiello Register Citizen
Torrington native Cody Wolfe moved to Nashville, Tenn., in 2014 to pursue a career in music and while making steady inroads, getting noticed in various channels, and performing for enthusiastic crowds, his talents as a songwriter steadily progressed.
Wolfe said he was genuinely surprised when his “Better Without You” recently hit the top of the iTunes charts in the country genre.
“It was amazing when it hit №1 ,” said Wolfe, 27.
“I watched it climb the charts, and to see my name up there with every other major artist is something I’ll never forget,” he said. “I played it out in downtown Nashville and everyone knew the words and sang it back to me; I had some pretty big artists congratulate me. The whole experience was surreal. I always imagined something like that happening and it finally did.”
Wolfe said the song originally was written for Blake Shelton.
“My first year in town, I was invited to a party for Cole Swindell at Warner Music Nashville,” he said. “Word got around that Blake might be looking for a breakup song after his split with Miranda Lambert. So I quickly came up with the best title I could think of, “Better Without You,” based on a previous life experience, and pitched it to Blake.”
“After I pitched it to Blake I wasn’t pleased with the original demo and knew if I was going to release it myself, I would have to have the song upgraded, just like Blake would,” Wolfe said. “I went back to the studio and added all kinds of percussion elements, electric guitar and changed the compression and effects on my voice.”
“I was very happy with the final result, and I knew right then and there it was a good song; I got great feedback from hit songwriters that heard it around town.”
Wolfe knew he might have a hit.
“People liked it right away,” he said. “When I posted a short sample of the song, thousands of people shared it. That’s never really happened before, not with any of my songs, so I knew the love and effort I put behind it paid off.”
Prior to “Better Without You,” Wolfe was known for his 2017 single, “Don’t Blame Your Drunk On Me,” which caught the attention of Sony Music producer Sean Giovanni, who later produced “Better Without You.”
The latter song has sold more than 500 downloads in one day, making it the number one country song in three countries on iTunes, and currently has 7,000,000 impressions on Twitter with more than 5,000 shares, said Wolfe. We caught Billboards attention, and they added my name to the site, which brought a tear to my eye.
Wolfe began his journey with music at the age of 6, learning how to play the guitar and inspired by artists such as Arlo Guthrie and John Fogerty. By the time he was 18, he had written more than 50 original songs, and began recording in Nashville.
He has a catalog of more than 300 original songs and said he’s writing every day. In 2020 he did a “Song A Day Challenge” and posted them to Instagram. This gained him notoriety in the Nashville songwriting community, he said.
Last year was a challenging one for Wolfe, as it was for many performing artists. He couldn’t tour and was dropped from his distribution label, UMG’s Empire, mostly known for hip-hop and rap artists. He then created his own label, Wolfe Den Records, and began to release new music. It all turned out to be a blessing in disguise, he said as the song skyrocketed to №1.