Rivers Rutherford

Induction Year: 2019

Birth Name: Melvern Rivers Rutherford II

Birth Date: 06-17-1967

Place of Birth: Memphis, Tennessee

Born and raised in Memphis, Tennessee, Rivers Rutherford began his musical education at the age of seven, when he took up the piano and guitar.

At age 15, he was hired to play piano on the Memphis Queen riverboat. From there he played clubs on Beale Street before attending the University of Mississippi on a piano scholarship.

A songwriting workshop with producer/writer Chips Moman led to a publishing contract and later to a first cut with The Highwaymen.

In 1993, Rivers moved to Nashville. A staff songwriting deal followed three years later and by 1998 a string of hits began: “Shut Up And Drive” by Chely Wright, “If You Ever Stop Loving Me” by Montgomery Gentry, “Ladies Love Country Boys” by Trace Adkins, “Living In Fast Forward” by Kenny Chesney, “Real Good Man” by Tim McGraw, “Stealing Cinderella” by Chuck Wicks, “These Are My People” by Rodney Atkins, “Unconditional” by Clay Davidson and “When I Get Where I’m Going” by Brad Paisley w/ Dolly Parton.

His co-written “Ain’t Nothing ’Bout You” by Brooks & Dunn was named the 2002 ASCAP Country Song of the Year.

Rivers was named 2006 ASCAP Country Songwriter of the Year.


"A Good Way To Get On My Bad Side"

(written with George Teren)

Tracy Byrd w/ Mark Chesnutt2001 #21 country

"Ain't Nothing 'Bout You"

(written with Tom Shapiro)

2002 ASCAP Country Song of the Year

Brooks & Dunn2001 #1 country, #25 pop

"Bullets In The Gun"

(written with Toby Keith)

Toby Keith2011 #12 country, #83 pop


(written with George Teren, Gretchen Wilson)

Gretchen Wilson2001 #2 country, #56 pop

"How I Got To Be This Way"

(written with Justin Moore, Jeremy Stover)

Justin Moore2010 #17 country

"I Want To Live"

(written with Brett James)

Josh Gracin2004 #4 country, #45 pop

"If You Ever Stop Loving Me"

(written with Bob DiPiero, Tom Shapiro)

Montgomery Gentry2004 #1 country, #30 pop

"Ladies Love Country Boys"

(written with Jamey Johnson, George Teren)

Trace Adkins2006 #1 country, #61 pop

"Living In Fast Forward"

(written with David Lee Murphy)

Kenny Chesney2006 #1 country, #48 pop

"Man Of Me"

(written with George Teren)

Gary Allan2001 #18 country

"Real Good Man"

(written with George Teren)

Tim McGraw2003 #1 country, #27 pop

"She Don't Tell Me To"

(written with Bob DiPiero, Tom Shapiro)

Montgomery Gentry2006 #5 country, #62 pop

"Shut Up And Drive"

(written with Annie Tate, Sam Tate)

Chely Wright1998 #14 country

"Smoke Rings In The Dark"

(written with Houston Robert)

Gary Allan2000 #12 country, #76 pop

"Stealing Cinderella"

(written with George Teren, Chuck Wicks)

Chuck Wicks2007 #5 country, #56 pop

"These Are My People"

(written with Dave Berg)

Rodney Atkins2007 #1 country, #42 pop

"Tonight I Wanna Be Your Man"

(written with Troy Verges)

Andy Griggs2002 #7 country, #52 pop


(written with Deanna Bryant, Liz Hengber)

Clay Davidson2000 #3 Ccountry, #49 pop

"When I Get Where I'm Going"

(written with George Teren)

Brad Paisley w/ Dolly Parton2006 #1 country, #39 pop
Geoff Moore2007 

"When The Lights Go Down"

(written with Jeffrey Steele, Craig Wiseman)

Faith Hill2003 #26 country

Rivers Rutherford

Induction Year: 2019