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The great thing about being a journalist in Nashville is you get to meet so many talented people on their way to greater things. A strong character coupled with a good talent are always the final determinants in who succeeds over time. All-American country singer Ansel Brown comes straight out of Charlotte, North Carolina with both.

Ansel’s actual career path to the stages of country has been anything but ordinary.

Brown started life as a proud member of a Navy family in Greenville, South Carolina. But just like most military families the Browns moved to Hawaii when he was 10 years old. Ansel’s musical talent was always evident even as a child. Because of that his mom arranged an audition for him and his sister with the prestigious Hawaiian Children's Choir. If that sounds familiar this choir was later to be prominently featured on the soundtrack for the hit Disney movie, "Lilo & Stitch". Ansel and his sister both did very well. Ansel also got the chance to show off his natural ability with music and kids. He says, "It was, and still is, a very professional choir, and it was a great thing to be a part of. We made regular TV appearances and music videos, and we sang at all the big Hawaiian events. The leader was very strict, but she was really good, and that's where I got my love for singing."

Upon moving back to the mainland, Ansel's Hawaiian education left him struggling to catch up at a new school in Annandale, Virginia. This tough learning challenge made Ansel make, what he calls "the worst decision I ever made". He quit high school at age 17. He says, "That decision really hurt. I was angry at myself, and I realized what I'd missed out on. From then on, when I started something, come hell or high water, I was going to finish it."

He completed his GED and went to college in Charleston, South Carolina. While there, he caught the country music vibe from Nashville, listening to such artists as Garth Brooks, John Michael Montgomery, Collin Raye and The Judds. Ansel was also heavily involved in music ministry. His performing skills soon earned him a solo spot in church where his stirring vocal performances started to draw attention. His children's ministry was a particular hit with both kids and parents, who lined up to get involved. But for all of his success as an instructor, Brown quickly realized that, through his work with kids in church and as a Pop Warner Youth Football head coach, he was learning at least as much as he was teaching. "Those kids taught me how to perform in front of anyone," he says. "They gave me my 'I'm-not-afraid-to-do-this' mentality."

For anyone who has ever worked in advertising, doing that along with any other job is nearly impossible. But over the next several years, Brown built a successful advertising business in the Charlotte area. This success in business, though, brought Ansel the confidence to follow the dream of what he really wanted to do. He explains, "It came like a bolt out of the blue. Somehow I just knew, and I heard a voice inside me saying, 'I'm supposed to be a country singer.'"

Ansel Brown set out on this musical journey by contacting the local office of the Nashville Songwriters Association International. He did this to to find songs while he spent the evenings composing his own. Then he reached out to producer Cliff Downs,his only country music connection. Ansel had met Cliff years earlier through his advertising business. When Downs heard the singer and his songs, he immediately invited Brown to Nashville and the pair entered the recording studio. With his career on a fast track, Brown took the leap, leaving his business behind and committing to the music full-time.

Like the rest of us working in Nashville entertainment media Ansel took a bit of the geek route to get his talent out to the world. He says, "It was my drummer who said, 'What about MySpace?'. I didn't even know what it was. I had no clue." When he finally established his MySpace page and put his newly recorded songs up on the site, things exploded. "Within two weeks we had 10,000 plays," he says. "Within two months I'm at 100,000 plays and I'm thinking, 'Okay, I can deal with this.'"

That he did, and with his online presence established Brown suddenly found himself flooded with offers to appear and perform. What’s more, he even got the opportunity to write for a cause near and dear to his heart: a Pop Warner Football-themed song named "We Call it Football" for the Carolina Panthers. But one invitation, to sing for seriously ill children at Charlotte's Levine Hospital, stood out from all the rest. Not knowing what to expect, Brown made his first appearance at the hospital, and from doctors to nurses to parents, everyone involved was stunned by the intense connection Brown made with the children. As Ansel prepares his debut album, he is set to embark on a series of hospital appearances on behalf of his hometown hospital dubbed "The Bigger Heart Tour.-- "

"You see those kids going through what they're going through, and you realize your problems are nothing," Brown says. "Part of my vision is to have a positive impact on the world with my music and to touch people in a positive way. And every step of the way, God has been there to make sure there's something under my feet."

Anyone who has heard the songs on Ansel’s MySpace page know he has an incredible talent. His latest his, “Mine’s Bigger” shows just what a big hearted musician can do with the right skillset. Run, don’t walk, to see this up and coming artist at a show near you. You can tour dates, etceteras, through his website at or