The gravel in Georgia-reared Ty Bates distinctive draw and his genuine fire for the center stage are a fresh throwback to the days when unique and storytelling tunesmiths dominated the country charts. “I grew up on the Garth Brooks, Randy Travis, Alabama and Allman Brothers days of country music. Those artists are the reason why I started writing songs. I wanted to touch fans the same way their music did with me. It’s about processing and discovering your own meaning behind the songs.”
The country genre first hooked Ty at a very young age when his father, a Ford Motor Company employee, took his son to the plant’s open house. There he would see the beginnings of a country music legend as Alan Jackson was playing the company party. From that day, he became invested in the genre discovering the sounds of artists like those mentioned above in addition to the signature hits of Dierks Bentley and Blake Shelton. However, it would take a tragic accident for those closest to him to truly recognize and push him to polish his talent. “My brothers and I were playing with gasoline too close to the camp fire and I had spilled some on my basketball shorts. Well, you know what happened next. The worst part was that my brothers and I tried to hide the fact that I got burnt. Moms are smart though and she figured out pretty quickly that her boys were into something. Several skin grafts later I was back to normal.” It was during the recovery of one of his surgeries that his mom overheard Ty singing to pass the time. To this day, she and his immediate family are his biggest supporters.
Now, with musical fuel pulsing through his veins, he would take gigs anywhere he could find an audience. “I would even take the guitar on mission trips with the church to Nicaragua. We’d teach the natives English, build huts and end the days playing music with the community.”
Most notably, Ty efforts would secure a residency in shows at Six Flags Over GA and in several programs during the summers with his “Big Momma” (grandmother) in South Carolina. Like any musician, his employment resume is filled with part time jobs that deserve their own episode of Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe, but Ty refused to falter in pursuing his dreams to one day fill venues like the Ryman Auditorium and Red Rocks in Colorado. He would win recognition as a finalist in the Colgate Country Showdown and take home the trophy for “Georgia Male Artist of the Year” from Georgia-Country.com.
Moreover, it would be a submission into the Longhorn Steakhouse “Sing It like Jake” contest that would prove to be an once-in-a-lifetime experience. The win granted Ty the opportunity to sing alongside Jake Owen at Jake’s hometown show in Vero Beach, FL. Since then, he’s made the permanent move to Music City and built a grassroots fan base through performance opportunities with artists like Reba, Dolly Parton, Blake Shelton, Gary Allan, Dustin Lynch and Lonestar. Red Light Management also added Ty to their celebrated roster of headliners which includes Luke Bryan, Faith Hill, Tim McGraw, Dierks Bentley and Kip Moore. His debut self titled EP will premiere this summer containing five songs all recorded at the famous Warner Brothers Studios. Ty penned or co-penned the entire project and looks forward to hitting the asphalt throughout the coming year to meet new fans along the journey. “Ever since I looked out and saw the audience singing a song called Firefly that I wrote, I knew that this was it for me. You cannot recreate that feeling when you see people that you’ve never met singing back to you a song that you crafted yourself. That’s why I get on that stage --- to make that situation happen over and over again!”