Gary Gene Bolton
Gary Gene Bolton was born and raised in Pittsburg, Kansas. He began singing at the age of five, accompanied by his older sister on piano. He loved to sing the popular songs of the day, at first to his family and later to school audiences culminating in winning a talent show at Pittsburg State University where the reception he received made him realize he had what it takes to become a professional singer.
Gary played the trumpet for many years, but singing is his primary form of musical expression. He was inspired by the great Charlie Rich. As he said “It’s that soulful quality” that he aspired to in his own singing. He has been influenced by many fine performers but sees himself in a niche somewhere between Kenny Rogers and Charlie Rich.
Gary moved to Los Angeles, determined to make his mark in music. He performed at every opportunity in clubs in and around Los Angeles including the Hyatt on Sunset and The Sportsman’s Lodge in Studio City. He was noticed by several hit songwriters who hired him to record their songs – Peter Sterling Radcliffe’s “The Lonely King” was among them .
When illness struck his family, Gary was unable to continue touring, so he began writing. He already had many ideas for songs that just needed to be completed. When he finished his first song “With a little Bit of Love”, he sang it to his friend George Motola, who is noted for his classic love song “Goodnight, My Love”. George loved it! He gave Gary some valuable tips and encouraged him to keep on writing.
Romance is a frequent theme throughout this album in such songs as his first composition “With a Little Bit of Love” and in “Love of My Life” and “You’re the Only Beautiful Woman”.
As one journalist noted, “Gary’s paramount songwriting and vocals derive from an introspective, occasionally shadowy nature.” From a man and a woman reminiscing on a missed opportunity (the sweet “Innocent Night”) and new lovers maximizing every minute of a three-day-weekend (the salty “Me and My Baby”) to sadder tales such as a buddy telling you what your wife is really doing on girls’ night out (the roadhouse cheating fable “With a Perfect Stranger”) or another about a fellow who leaves his greedy wife to find true love in a patch of well-hidden paradise (the vivid daydream “Pretty Red Haired Girl”), Gary engages the listener with even handed strokes of down home insight – (and just wait until you hear his “secret hit single”).
Reflecting on the thoughts behind another gem, Gary says, “‘Does a Mother Cry’ is about a boy who’s adopted. Now, this song isn’t just about adoption. It’s about mothers, women who devote themselves and sacrifice. Children have a strong sense of this kind of love.” Given that summation, it’s no surprise that Gary would also have a heart-tugging song on this album about a couple who tried to stay together through the good and the bad times…“For the Children.”
The two songs most likely to catapult him to crossover success are “Love of My Life” and “You’re the Only Beautiful Woman.” The deepest of all the songs is where Gary speaks about hope in “With a Little Bit of Love” and there is truly no justice if the poignant “Whatever Happened to Main Street” doesn’t become a classic.
Discussing that song’s inspiration, Gary recalls, “A friend was telling me about her father possibly losing his business. I stepped outside and the words ‘Whatever Happened to Main Street’ just popped into my head…with that melody. The first thing most people think when they hear ‘Whatever Happened to Main Street’ is that it’s about the past. In my mind that song is about the past, but it’s also about the future.”
This new album “With a Little bit of Love”, is being issued on the Lightning Creek Records label, produced by Richard Egizi and co-produced by Randy Farrar. The album showcases Gary’s vocals and songs supported by some of the industry’s finest and most versatile musicians: pianist Tom Canning, additional keyboardist Randy Farrar, guitarists Mitch Holder and Josh Sklair, pedal steel, dobro and banjo specialist Greg Leisz, bassists Nathan East and Cliff Hugo, drummers Rayford Griffin, Gary Mallaber and Rick Schlosser, violinists Sherril Babtist and Chas Waltz, and vocalist Teresa James.
Gary is a member of:
The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences
American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers
Songwriter’s Guild of America
National Music Publishers Association
Professional Musicians Union Local #47 in Los Angeles