#CMchat Exclusive Premiere: Gary Kyle “Whiskey Dents”

Houston native Gary Kyle’s signature track is “Texas Strong.” It was the theme song for Lone Star Roads, a syndicated TV show hosted by Justin Frazell. Kyle has been very busy in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, bringing relief supplies to shelters and churches, and offering aid to veterans in the area.

Texas Strong” – standing up for what you believe in – the song takes on a new meaning after Hurricane Harvey and the recovery/rebuilding.

What inspired you originally to write the song?

“I actually wrote ‘Texas Strong‘ several years ago after I got into ‘daddy’ mode and started worrying about my kid’s future. America is still the greatest country in the world, but we’ve slipped into this gray area. We are afraid to call things what they are in fear that we might hurt someone’s feelings. I call it the intolerable tolerance. Right is right and wrong is wrong. I feel like in Texas we still kind of march to the heartbeat of an old America. Proud of our heritage, our state, and our country. We live in Houston and are knee-deep in the hurricane Harvey aftermath. There’s so much compassion from not only Texans. But from folks all over the country pouring into our communities. It’s amazing to see the strength and love we can show when we are united in a cause. We are TEXAS STRONG!”

Texas Strong Official Music Video

Kyle has also been busy promoting new music. His live shows reflect his Texas roots and his song writing, the sounds of Nashville. Splitting his songs into two EPs allows him to showcase both. Rewind (White), his latest, takes you through his home state (Rewind (Blue), will be released next spring).

Whiskey Dents,” the second single off Rewind (White), is a ‘sober reflection about the ripple effect of an alcohol-induced state.’

“‘Whiskey Dents‘…. this is by far the song I’m most proud of on this EP. A whiskey dent is a common term down here in Texas. It’s when you’ve had too much to drink and back your truck into something, you put a whiskey dent in it. This song is about a man that keeps putting whiskey dents in his soul. This song came to me on a Sunday morning after a late Saturday night show. My son wanted me to play with him and in all honesty, I was too hung over to do so. It hit me really hard and made me check myself. There’s not a show that I play this song that someone doesn’t come up to talk to me about it afterward. This song will move people!”

The other songs on Rewind (White):

“The first single we released is called ‘Tornado’ and was written by the great Dean Dillon (‘Empty Glass,’ ‘Tennessee Whiskey,’ and a million more) and my buddy, Jody Booth. They sent it to me via voice memo on their phone. When Dean Dillon gives you a song of his to record, you do it!  What an honor.”

“‘Late Night Runaround‘ is my ode to Johnny Lee’s Looking For Love In All The Wrong Places.’ It’s about a girl that keeps confusing love for lust. I love to people watch from behind the microphone and I see this a lot in places we play. Actually wrote this song several years ago and put it on my second record. I feel like it needed to be heard by more people so, I revamped the music and included it on this EP.”

“‘Champagne‘ was written by my buddy Ward Davis. It’s a tune about a guy that gets left at the altar. I see him at a bar in his tuxedo with his tie undone drinking a beer… when he was expecting champagne.”

“‘So Good So Far‘ is just a fun song about fishing that showcases the musicality and talent of my band. This thing is a burner!”

“‘With or Without You‘… Yes, it is the U2 song. We started playing this arrangement of the song at our live shows and got such a great response from the crowd I had to include it on the record!”

Is your family musical at all? 

“My father was a singer and played in a band. My mother was a singer and could sing any harmony part you wanted her to. One of my sisters is an opera/theater singer as well. One of my brothers would tell you that he’s a pretty good singer, but the only song in his repertoire is ‘Just What I Needed‘ by The Cars.”

What was the first song you learned?

“Ha ha… The first song I ever learned was ‘What’s Going On‘ By Four Non-Blondes…shhhhhh don’t tell anyone.”

Who influenced you and why did you choose to make country music?

“I grew up on 80’s and 90’s country and rock. My biggest influences are Alabama, Vince Gill, Travis Tritt, John Cougar Mellencamp, Richard Marx, and soul singers like Sam Cooke and Otis Redding.”

What do you do for inspiration when you sit down to write a song and it seems that nothing wants to come out?

“I don’t usually write that way. I try to write as it comes to me and not force anything. I’m constantly jotting down ideas and one-liners to write songs around. Now that’s not saying that I don’t get stuck on songs because I do. I’ve got a 100 that are almost finished except a verse here or a line there. That’s usually when I call on my songwriter friends.”

If you could record a duet with any country music star, who would it be?

“A duet with a female artist would be Alison Krauss, no doubt! Her voice gives me chills! If it was a duet with a male artist it would absolutely be Vince Gill. In my opinion, he’s the most incredible triple threat musician in country music ever!”

If you were driving cross-country and could only bring one CD, what would it be?

“Wow, that’s a tough one… if we’re going greatest hits record, (I’m going to go with) Alabama. If greatest hits records are excluded, I’m gonna go with Counting CrowsAugust and everything after.”

Gary Kyle’s plans for the future.

 “We are about to release a new single called Whiskey Dents and a music video for it as well. I just plan on going wherever God leads me. I’m always writing new music and would love to record an acoustic album next.”

If there were a movie of your life, whom would you want to play you?

“Definitely Ryan Reynolds because he’s hilarious and ruggedly handsome (that way we could trick people into thinking that I was too).”

Kyle and his wife will soon welcome their sixth child.

How would you describe yourself in three words? 

“Christian, husband, father.”

If you were granted one wish, what would you ask for?

“I’d wish for a teleportation device so I could kiss my wife and kids before bed every night.”

When you are not touring, what do you like to do for fun?

“I love hanging out with my wife and five kids (soon to be six). I love to watch movies, working out, and reading (menus of where ever we are eating out at).”

Last show you binge watched?

Ozark and any documentary on UFOs!”

Favorite item of clothing?

“I love boots! Got that from my dad. Growing up in Houston, Texas everyone has at least one pair of boots. I’m probably closer to ten!”

Kyle’s tour schedule and social media links here.

Author: Donna Block

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