Vernell Hackett is a freelance journalist in Nashville, Tenn., who has covered the Nashville music scene for a number of magazines, including Country Weekly, Classic Country & Western Music Magazine, the Home Services Guide, Bluegrass Unlimited, American Cowboy, Billboard Magazine, Country Song Roundup, Working Cowboy and Venues Today. A native of Riesel, Texas, Vernell moved to Nashville in 1973 to write articles about country music. She has interviewed many country, bluegrass, western and Christian artists, including Johnny Cash, Garth Brooks, Michael W. Smith, Dolly Parton, Brad Paisley, Don Edwards, Del McCoury, Willie Nelson, George Strait, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Merle Haggard, Michael Martin Murphey, Waddie Mitchell, Reba McEntire, Trisha Yearwood, Stephen Curtis Chapman, Amy Grant, Larry Stephenson, LeAnn Rimes, Alan Jackson, Montgomery Gentry and Hanna McEuen. Vernell helped establish American Songwriter magazine in 1984, which she edited until 2004. She graduated from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas, with a B.S. degree in journalism. Vernell has written about a variety of subjects during her career, including music, art, and entertainment, travel, pets, food, legislation, characters, home décor, crafts, history, video and business.