One brought him to the party and the other taught him how to slow the party down. Tyler Rich says Dustin Lynch told him to get to Nashville, and Jon Pardi kept him on the straight and narrow once he arrived.

Garth Brooks also helped Rich with an early introduction to his manager, Bob Doyle, which led to a nice conversation and good advice (Rich is now managed by Lynch's former manager, Pete Hartung at L3 Entertainment).

"That was one of the things that really sparked the beginning of me writing in Nashville and creating my own little writing circles," "The Difference" singer tells Taste of Country Nights.

Lynch was the instigator. Rich came from California to meet with L3 and other potential managers and the "Good Girl" singer told him he liked what he was doing musically, but he needed to move to the epicenter of country music to be successful.

"Literally I went home two days later and packed up and moved to Nashville four weeks later," he says.

It'd become a mentor relationship. Lynch trumpeted Rich from the start, once cautiously telling Taste of Country about the northern California newcomer he was excited about. "For that first year he just taught me everything to do, what not to do," Rich recalls. "Helped me out with everything. Took me on tour."

Lynch also gave Rich a confidence boost when he needed it, which he did very soon after his move. “There’s nothing like moving to Nashville and realizing you suck,” he says, laughing. "Everything I had released back then ... I mean, it didn't suck, but it was just very old for me. As soon as I moved to town I was writing one to two songs a day ... where the best songwriters in the world move. I know every songwriter says it, but I believe every song I write just keeps getting better and better."

"The Difference" is the breezy love song on Rich's new EP, but there's a song for every side of his personality. "Adrenaline" is more aggressive, while "Take It or Leave It" is moody and dark. One figures the music will keep getting better with men like Doyle, Hartung (who also manages Justin Moore) and Lynch in Rich's corner, plus invaluable advice from Pardi in his back pocket.

“Don't go out drinking late at Losers every night,” he says, laughing, referring to a popular Nashville bar and live music venue. "Have a late night at Losers ... just don’t do it every night."

Taste of Country Nights is a syndicated night show which airs on nearly 100 radio stations nationwide. Listen to highlights on iTunes or your Android device.

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