Eastern Sierra Music Fest Names Headliner

Eastern Sierra Music Festival names first headliner

Additional Artists to be announced, organizers urge folks to ‘Save the Date’.  The benefit for the National Wounded Warrior Center will be held on July 22 and 23 at Bishop’s Tri-County Fairgrounds.

Submitted by the Eastern Sierra Music Festival

Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers to headline inaugural Eastern Sierra Music Festival

BISHOP CA – Legendary country singers Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers will headline the first-­‐ever Eastern Sierra Music Festival.

The July 22-­‐23 festival will be held right here at Bishop’s Tri‐County Fairgrounds. Organizers urge people to save these dates as the festival will feature a host of legendary and up-­‐and-­‐ coming country artists.

The Eastern Sierra Music Festival benefits the National Wounded Warrior Center.

Close vocal harmonies helped the Gatlin Brothers score dozens of hits during their 60-­‐year career. Those hits include “Houston (Means I’m One Day Closer to You),” “Broken Lady,” and “All the Gold in California.”

The brothers have earned honors from the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music, among others. The prestigious Grand Ole Opry inducted them in 1976.

The Gatlin Brothers are strong supporters of veterans and Armed Services members. Eastern Sierra Music Festival organizers are confident the trio will bring a great energy to the festival.

Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers will headline the Saturday, July 23 line-­‐up. Additional acts, including the July 22 headline performer, will be announced as appearances are confirmed.

Tickets for the Eastern Sierra Music Festival will go on sale in January. To keep up-­‐to-­‐date on festival news, visit the festival’s website, www.WWMusicFest.org, or follow the Eastern Sierra Music Festival on Facebook and Twitter.

Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers have been dazzling audiences for 60 years. It all began in 1955, when Larry was six, Steve was four, and Rudy was two. Since those days, the road that the trio has plowed has taken them to concert stages all over the world, and has seen their records top the charts and touch the lives of fans from eight to eighty.

Larry says of their 60th Anniversary Tour, “We’re not calling it a farewell or a final tour. We’re calling it the 60th Anniversary Celebration. By no means are we retiring, but after this tour, we are going to slow down a little bit. The promoters are going to have to want us about three times more than they want us right now,” he laughs.

As Larry says, “There are other priorities in life. I have two granddaughters. Brother Steve has seven grandchildren and Rudy has two kids. We still love the fans and the road and we still love to sing but we want to spend more quality time with our families.”

After performing together as children, Larry went off to college – studying law at the University of Houston. In 1971, he auditioned for the legendary Imperials, Elvis’ backup group. He didn’t get the job, but he met Dottie West, who was the opening act for the legendary Jimmy Dean, who would become one of Larry’s oldest and best friends. Dottie was initially taken with Larry’s resemblance to Nashville songwriter Mickey Newbury. Dottie told him one night in her backstage dressing room at the Landmark Hotel in Las Vegas, “Larry, you look so much like Mickey Newbury, you’ve just got to be able to write great songs.” After the gig in Vegas, Larry went home to Houston, wrote eight songs, sent them to Dottie, and she sent him a plane ticket to Nashville.

Through Dottie, Larry met Kris Kristofferson, who became a champion of Gatlin’s talent as a writer and singer. Kristofferson introduced Larry to Fred Foster at Monument Records which resulted in a contract with the record label. His first album, The Pilgrim, was released later that year. Johnny Cash, wrote the liner notes for his first album, and dubbed him “The Pilgrim,” which is what he called Larry until the day he died.

Steve and Rudy moved to Nashville in 1975 and teamed up with brother Larry to form Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers. By 1976, the Gatlin Brothers were in the fast lane, thanks to the chart-­‐topping success of the Grammy-­‐winning “Broken Lady.” The hits continued throughout the rest of the decade, with seven more number one songs: “I Don’t Wanna Cry,” “I Just Wish You Were Someone I Love,” “Statues Without Hearts,” “Love Is Just A Game,” “All The Gold in California,” “Houston (Means I’m One Day Closer To You)” and “Night Time Magic.” In addition to being inducted into the Grand Ole Opry, the trio was nominated for awards by the Country Music Association, the Academy of Country Music and the Music City News Awards, among others. “We won some of ’em too,” says Larry.

So, as Larry, Steve and Rudy close out one chapter of their lives, they are looking forward to

the next one. Larry says, “We’re not cutting back because we can’t draw a crowd or that we can’t sing anymore. Today, we sound just like we did 40 years ago … pretty dad burn good. We’re not being run out of the business. We’re not going broke. We’re not down to bread and milk money. We just think it’s time to do some other things, slow down a little bit, and do it with class and dignity – on our own terms. We are grateful to God for our fabulous run and we can’t wait to see what else He has in store.”

In addition to the tour, the brothers will soon release a new Gospel album on Curb Records, titled, Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers 60th Anniversary Celebration. Larry says, “We were going to call the album, The Gospel According to Gatlin because some of the new songs are a little edgy, a little bit different. Then we realized it was our 60th anniversary, so we went with that as the title. And speaking of edgy, Larry says, “Steve and Rudy and I didn’t get where we are by playing it safe. We have always pushed the envelope, we have always crossed borders others were afraid to cross and we’re not going to stop now … and that is the Gospel According to Gatlin.”

The Gatlin Brothers – Steve, Larry and Rudy Gatlin. Photo courtesy Eastern Sierra Music Festival
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