Sep 13, 2011 09:27 AM WV Sound
Keeping a beat in the Mountain State
Musician Soldier Gary Bonnett Gets Back to Writing
Songwriting has to come from a place of truth, and that is certainly the case for musician Gary Bonnett. He first picked up the guitar as a teenager and spent many years finding his voice. The Rock Cave native, who recently returned home from a stint with the Air National Guard in Afghanistan, found he wanted to pursue an old-time, country music feel—the style he was brought up around.
“Growing up in West Virginia has given me the upbringing to appreciate the more laid-back side of life and the little things that matter most,” says Bonnett, who now resides in Denver, Colorado.
His debut record, “The Long Road Home,” found success on the Americana Roots Charts and helped him gain opening slots for top artists Pat Green, Darryl Worley, and Keith Urban.
His latest record, “Red Dirt Songs,” pays tribute to pure country living, and sheds light on his experiences in the military combined with a hectic tour schedule. “My music and sound has grown in depth,” he says.
“The experiences from my life reflect a deep passion for life and love, digging deep at the soul.” Bonnett says his military experience very much shaped his music into what it is today.
Bonnett had his guitar handy as the praise and worship leader at the chapel on his base overseas, but he plans to get back to writing more now that he’s home. His song, “Almost Home” is a song he is proud of—as it reflects his West Virginia roots and the loss of loved ones.
“I grew up listening to his bluegrass music and his real West Virginia songwriting. It is real and true and so much fun to tap a toe to.”