An Oklahoma City bass tournament angler and songwriter doesn't think his fishing song will ever be a huge commercial success, but Randy Joe Heavin considers it a huge personal success.
“It's not going to make a million dollars, but it's going to be around,” said the 48-year-old retired Air Force master sergeant. “People will be playing it when I'm 80 years old.”
The song is part of a CD of fishing songs produced by Heavin's Patriot Records. Heavin wrote and performs “I Wanna Go Fishing” on the CD which also contains 13 songs from artists such as Texas' Jason Allen and Oklahoma's Ty England.
Half of the proceeds from the CD is donated to Recycled Fish, a nonprofit organization of anglers which promotes good stewardship of waters.
Heavin and Teeg Stouffer, executive director and founder of Recycled Fish, are good friends. They came up with the idea for the fishing CD called “Songs From The Tackle Box” more than two years ago as a way to raise money for the organization.
Heavin has written more than 100 songs over the last 15 years and “half-written” 500 more.
“My friends call me Half Song Heavin,” he said.
An Illinois native, the Air Force brought Heavin to Oklahoma in 1997 where he was stationed at Tinker Air Force Base. He retired in 2005 and began pursuing his two passions: making music and bass fishing.
“I planned to move to Nashville but there is something about this place,” Heavin said of Oklahoma. “I really like it here.”
Based on the number of downloads from iTunes, Heavin's “I Wanna Go Fishing” is the most popular song on “Songs From The Tackle Box.” The CD also can be bought at www.songsfromthetacklebox.com.
The song also has gradually found an audience through YouTube. “I Wanna Go Fishing” reached 100,000 hits on YouTube last week.
“People are picking it up,” he said. “A couple of Russian dudes used it in a salmon fishing video.”
Heavin also learned of a restaurant in India where customers can fish and dine used the song in a promotional video. He's also heard it played on fishing shows on television.
Heavin is not making any money from such piracy, but he's happy that people like the song well enough to use it.
“A lot of people write songs that are never heard,” he said
Like all aspiring songwriters, Heavin dreams of one day penning a hit song. But an even bigger dream is singing “I Wanna Go Fishing” onstage at the Bassmaster Classic.
An avid tournament angler who fishes in BASS events as a co-angler, Heavin worked as a volunteer at the Bassmaster Classic in Tulsa in February and lobbied unsuccessfully to perform “I Wanna Go Fishing” at the event.
“I don't know why it didn't pan out,” Heavin said. “They have had some worse people than me up there singing.”