AURORA | When it comes to country songs, they just don’t exist unless somebody writes them.

There are always fiddle players, steel guitars and wooden beams in the floor of a honky tonk, but the boots don’t give those floors a line-dance-rhythmed beating unless a songwriter starts the process.

It’s those special talents in the creative cycle who will be featured Friday, May 7, for a special songwriters show and dinner benefiting Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS).

Founded in 1994 by Colorado country scene legend Bo Cottrell and wife, Lynne, TAPS has provided assistance to more than 50,000 surviving family members and others after the death of family member in the Armed Forces. The nonprofit provides peer support and grief counseling, as well as regional survivor seminars and the National Military Survivor Seminar and Good Grief camp.

Slated for the Denver Marriott Tech Center, 4900 S. Syracuse St. in Denver, the event will feature Brett Jones, Billy Montana, Frank Myers, Rob Crosby and Keni Thomas. While even diehard country fans may not be familiar with those names, they’re certainly familiar with the songs: Jason Aldean’s “Crazy Town” (Jones), Jo Dee Messina’s “Bring on the Rain” (Montana), John Michael Montgomery’s “I Swear” (Myers) and Andy Griggs’ “She’s More” (Crosby) remain in regular rotation on the country dial.

The event, which has open seating for $115 per person or $1,000 for a table of 10, begins at 5:30 p.m. with a reception and silent auction before the show and dinner get going at 7 p.m.

Later in summer, TAPS’ Colorado Celebrity Classic — now in its 11th year — will tee off June 26 at the Eisenhower Golf Club at the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs. The Classic has raised more than $3.5 million for TAPS since its launch. The Classic is preceded by TAPS’ Saluting Our Fallen Heroes dinner-concert the night before at Steve Grove’s Ranch at Cherry Creek. The June 25 concert will feature Grammy-winner Suzy Bogguss.

Reservations for all of the TAPS events can be made by calling 303-696-0450 or visiting