Nashville.com Featured Songwriter: Gary Hannan

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Gary Hannan, a native of Zimbabwe (then Rhodesia), shared his music at a South African fireside where he spent many nights strumming his guitar with fellow soldiers. At 18, Hannan was drafted into the Rhodesian army and then the South African special forces for the conflicts of the early 1980 s.

In 2005, Gary experienced his first big single #1 hit with Joe Nichols as the artist singing “Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off”. Following the conclusion of his service in South Africa’s army, Hannan became a commercial diver, stationed on offshore oil rigs in the North Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. During his leisure time, he visited Destin, Fla. One day he was playing golf on a course there and drove a ball into the midst of a group of players that included Mark Brown, a&r with Nashville’s Capitol Records label. The group asked Gary to join them, and when he mentioned that he composed country music as a hobby, Brown asked to see some of his material, which he eventually sent to a Nashville publisher. Gary began commuting frequently to Nashville, or joining acts like Montgomery Gentry and Lone Star on their tour buses for midtour writing sessions. Eventually, he moved to Nashville, became a United States citizen and made Nashville his new home.

In 2009, “Back When I Knew It All” went to #1 with the dynamic country duo Montgomery Gentry. Today He continues to write great country songs, telling his tales and inspiring would be songwriters. Some of the artist singing his hit wonders today are ..Montgomery Gentry….Darryl Worley….Michael Peterson…..Craig Morgan……John Michael Montgomery….Joe Nichols…Ritchie Macdonald of Lonestar and Hot Apple Pie to name a few . Some of his best times in songwriting have come from co-writing sessions with members of Bread…..Motley Crew……Firefall……Rascal Flatts…… Blues Brothers….the Flying Burrittos….and many others!

2010 has already sparked the continuance of an incredible year and journey. Along with a number of cuts on major artists, Gary began ‘Beer for Breakfast’ an event for celebrity songwriters and up and coming songwriters to meet and share the stage. Additionally, he is very passionate about the needs of our homeless vets and helping those who have made it possible for us to live a life of freedom through their sacrifice. In an effort to increase awareness Gary, agreed to be the organizations spokesman. To help spread the word and gain a better understanding, Gary has decided to live as a homeless vet for 8 days on the Streets of Nashville, during our nation’s week of memorial to our veterans.

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