Texas native Gary Kyle recently released the first of two EP's entitled "Rewind White," which centers on the Americana side of the singer-songwriter. The six-song set, with its balance of poignant ballads and energetic dance hall numbers, has a little something for every music lover - and showcases Gary's compelling versatility. The father of five (with number six on the way) kindly took the time to answer a few questions via email about the EP, what's ahead, and more.
You recently released a new EP, Rewind (White) which is the first half of an album you are releasing in two parts. What spurred you to do an album this way and do the EPs differ in any significant ways?
We got into the studio and recorded 12 new tracks. After listening back for a couple months we realized that there are six tracks that are very "Texas country"/"Red dirt" sounding tracks, and the other six tracks sound more of a "Nashville" style.
Why is the significance of the title, Rewind?
"Rewind" is the track that hits home for a lot of people. We all wish that we could take some things back in life, but our decisions have made us who we are today. Rewind...do over...second chance. Life is hard and everyone stumbles and falls, but we are all given the chance to stand back up. Tomorrow is a new day & we must remind ourselves that the view from the windshield is much bigger than the rearview mirror.
“Tornado” is such a fantastic energetic track as is “So Good So Far.” Was there any particular reason you placed those songs as the EP’s anchors?
I always love kicking off a new record with a fun song, and I thought "Tornado" was the right pick for that; not to mention, it was co-written by the great Dean Dillon.("Tennessee Whiskey", "Empty Glass", etc.) We knew that we were going to release that to radio. We put "So Good So Far" last as the "barn burner" on the record to showcase the musicianship of the guys in the band... So good so far...Can't wait for Rewind Blue.
Your rendition of “With or Without You” is spectacular. Why did you choose to record this song and who is singing with you?
We started playing my version of the song at live shows and we were getting standing ovations when we were done playing it. I've always wanted to put a cover tune on a record and I felt like this was the perfect one. Emily Shackleton sings the female part of the song. She's in Nashville. She is a writer that just landed some cuts on the new Carly Pierce record.
“Whiskey Dents” is an incredibly emotional song, but I also like “Champagne.” Did you write that one and can you relay the story behind the song?
I wrote "Whiskey Dents", but not "Champagne." There's a funny story behind "Champagne." One of my very first bass players used to play this song and told me for years that he wrote it. When I asked him if I could record it, years later, he finally told me the truth and said he had no part in writing it. Ward Davis actually wrote the tune, and I have had the honor of playing with him at some songwriter showcases. I added a melodic hook, and played with the melody a little bit. The first time he heard my version of it, he actually told me he liked mine better. He's a great guy for humoring me.
What’s on tap for you for the remainder of 2017?
My wife and I are expecting our sixth child, Hank Silas, in early December! We have a few big shows left in November, but we will be taking most of December off to be with family. In late January of next year, the Texas Strong tour kicks off for six weeks straight.
I always like to know what you're listening to...is there one recent release, any genre, that you cannot stop listening to and recommend others check out?
I'm in love with the new Carly Pierce record, even before I knew Emily had written any songs on it. She's an incredible writer and I love her voice. The production on the record is stellar.
Finally, knowing you’re from around Houston, which of course was hit hard by Harvey, can you let us know how the city and people are doing and speak a bit about your flood relief efforts.
Although much of the city was completely devastated, with people losing everything they owned, the spirit and outlook are amazing! The communities are still working day and night to help each other rebuild. Every day on Facebook, needs are posted and usually met by volunteers the same day. Our Texas Strong tour that starts in late January will be a fundraising effort to help those that were directly affected by Harvey. We plan on having concerts in all the hard-hit areas and donating proceeds from shows to help rebuild each town. The people of Texas are showing the rest of America what it could and should look like. God is good!
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Purchase Rewind HERE