Justin Moore hit Nashville with a ready-made image. He was that good kid from a small town with a rowdy heart of gold who just happened to be able to sing about it. Moore grew up in tiny Poyen, AR, working on his grandparents' cattle farm, having an archetypal American rural childhood. He started singing as early as two years old, and at eight he won a talent show at the local high school. He sang gospel songs in church but spent the rest of his time listening to country music, studying the genre inside and out, old and new country, all at once. And he knew what he was doing. Moore may have been from a small town, but he wasn't naÔve, and when he finally moved to Nashville after high school, he was prepared and already armed with a manager. Soon he had an attorney, too, and signed a writing deal with Big Picture Music. He also met producer and songwriter Jeremy Stover, and the two began writing together, patiently waiting for the right break. Moore eventually signed with Big Machine Records, part of Valory Music Company, home to pop-country stars Taylor Swift, Jewel, and others. By then Moore had assembled a pretty solid band, which led to some opening spots in 2008 on tours by Trace Adkins, Luke Bryan, Brooks & Dunn, ZZ Top, and the Rowdy Frynds Tour with Lynyrd Skynyrd and Hank Williams, Jr. His first single, "Back That Thing Up," was released late that year, and made it onto the country Top 40 charts. A second single, the autobiographically apt "Small Town USA," was released in February of 2009.
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