Country star Gary Allan performs at Gypsum Daze on July 15 | PostIndependent.com
Lindsay Bribiescas
Lindsay@vaildaily.com

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Country star Gary Allan performs at Gypsum Daze on July 15

Gary Allan has sold over 8 million albums. He headlines the Gypsum Daze concert on July 15.

On Saturday, July 15, country artist Gary Allan will be coming into Gypsum for the first time to headline the closing concert of Gypsum Daze.

Known for hits like "Mess Me Up" and "Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain)," Allan started playing for audiences as a 13-year-old at local bars. He used to play in punk bands during the day, but he would perform country songs with his dad and brother in the evening, starting when he was 12 years old until he was 15 or 16 years old.

"My dad and my brother are probably why I play country music now, and I think it was the Highwaymen tour — that was when country got real hard core and all it was, was just lyrics," Allan said. "They didn't have a great band and it was just some dude singing some crazy cool songs. That's when I got locked and that's when I knew that's what I wanted to do."

But despite his early love of music, getting his start wasn't all that easy.

Allan took a job at a car lot after a potential record deal fell through with BNA. A co-worker at the car lot was listening to one of Allan's demos and accidentally left the disc in a car when it sold. The couple that bought the car enjoyed his music so much that they offered him a check for $12,000 to fly to Nashville to record a demo, which jumpstarted his career.

"They still live in L.A. and they come out to shows. She comes out and cleans out my merchandise booth and I give her whatever she wants," Allan said. "If you believe in fate, that was definitely it. I have no idea how I would have gotten a record contract any other way. It was such an odd string to follow. And usually you hate the guy that you bought your car from, so to have that person give you $12,000 for a record deal is mind-boggling."

But for Allan, that record deal was just the beginning. He has now toured with Rascal Flatts as well as Brooks & Dunn, and he's sold over 8 million albums.

"I think everyone hopes that they're going to be here for 20 years, but the average is four to six years," Allan said about his long career. "I think it's awesome. I couldn't have wanted anything more."

Despite his fairly regular success, Allan insists on looking for new ways to challenge himself. His tip for staying relevant relies on variety — he makes sure that he's not putting out the same types of songs.

"I always see myself changing it up, but I don't know how until I'm writing the song and it just kinda takes on its own directions," Allan said. "I try not to ever write with boundaries. I try not to say, 'Hey, let's write this kinda song,' and just write whatever comes in. I just kinda let it go where it goes."

If you go …

Who: Gary Allan performs with The Swon Brothers.

When: Saturday, July 15, at 7 p.m.; gates open at 6 p.m.

Where: Lundgren Theater, Gypsum.

Cost: Tickets are $25.

More information: Visit http://www.townofgypsum.com