It’s no secret that Johnny Gates “knows how to hang with the ups and downs of the music industry.” (Entertainment Tonight) The singer/songwriter announced via Billboard today the release of his self-titled debut solo EP on August 30. In lieu of the news, he also released new track “Hell Outta Here,” available tomorrow across all digital retailers. Billboard praised the “infectious” track as a good feature of Gates’ “gravely vocals alongside driving percussion, delicate banjo and soulful electric guitar parts.” To celebrate his inevitable return to Music City, Gates will take the stage at The Back Corner in Nashville on August 19.
Gates shares, “In some ways, this project is the official launch of my solo career, but in a lot of ways, I feel like I’m finishing what I started so many years ago when I first arrived in Nashville. What has always intrigued me about this city and country music is the song. While making this project, I’ve never felt more connected to the songwriting process. Some of the tracks came from a late night, with only my acoustic guitar and a half-empty beer. Others came on noisy nights when I had to stop when the sirens got too loud or the neighbors started complaining. It was as bare-bones as possible in all of the best ways. This collection of songs truly embody the spirit of why I came to Nashville in the first place, and how thrilled I am to be back.”
The project, produced by Tyler Thompson, marks Gates’ inevitable return to Music City, feeling right at home with new artists like Maren Morris, Ruston Kelly and Caitlyn Smith defying genre lines. The bona-fide performer first arrived in Nashville right out of high school as the lead singer of the Runaway Saints. After landing a record deal with Warner Brothers, the band headed west to Los Angeles. After massive tours with Rod Stewart, Ryan Cabrera, Secondhand Serenade and more, the band split leaving Gates behind with only his guitar and music still very much in his heart. After going solo, he toured the country a few more times – even packing LA’s iconic Troubadour. He went on to compete on Season 12 of NBC’s The Voice where Blake Shelton dubbed him “the next Mick Jagger.”
JOHNNY GATES TRACK LISTING:
1. Hell Outta Here (Johnny Gates, Tyler Thompson, Lauren Luiz, Michael Costello)
2. Dive Bar (Gates, Thompson)
3. Church Girl (Gates, Thompson, Luiz, Costello)
4. Bandit (Gates)
August 19 – The Back Corner – Nashville, TN
August 20 – The Hotel Cafe – Los Angeles, CA
ABOUT JOHNNY GATES:
This isn’t Johnny Gates’ first rodeo, he “knows how to hang with the ups and downs of the music industry.” (Entertainment Tonight) It was his long hair that landed the singer/songwriter the lead vocalist spot in his high school band, the Runaway Saints. After achieving great success in Rhode Island, Nashville started calling their name. The guys were greeted with a record deal at Warner Bros. and time in the studio with industry heavyweights Nathan Chapman (Taylor Swift, Keith Urban, Dan +Shay) and Dann Huff (Thomas Rhett, Kane Brown, David Bowie). Shortly after, they took off to Los Angeles to tour with Rod Stewart, Ryan Cabrera, Secondhand Serenade and more. Off tour, LA wasn’t feeling like home and the band parted ways. Gates stayed behind with only his guitar, touring the country a few times and packing even The Troubadour. He spent some time on national television on Season 12 of The Voice, where Alicia Keys dubbed him “a male Gwen Stefani” and Blake Shelton “the next Mick Jagger.” Embraced for his “strong artistry” (Hollywood Reporter) and “insightful songwriting and keen sense of emotional flow (Parade), Gates is finally back in what he calls his musical home, Nashville, inspired by what it’s become with artists defying genre lines like Devin Dawson, Ruston Kelly, Caitlyn Smith and more. Gates will release his self-titled debut solo EP on August 30 after releasing its next single, “Hell Outta Here” on August 15.