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  • Gary @ BootsofUK

Meet our writer: Gary Lemmon

Welcome to my first official blog post as a collaborator for Boots of Europe, thank you for this opportunity.

My name is Gary Lemmon and I’m an identical twin from the U.K. I can play violin (although I haven’t in a while), and I like to sing (more on this later).

My love of Country is still a relatively new one, and perhaps like many of you, it’s more a case of Country finding me, rather than the other way round.

The song that stands out as sparking my interest in Country was ‘Need You Now’ by Lady A. In my youth I recall the likes of Shania Twain and LeAnn Rimes but didn’t appreciate the genre at this age. To me all it was, was Stetson hats, cowboy boots and checkered shirts. I think appreciating and understanding Country music comes with a level of maturity, one that I feel I can now appreciate.

The thing I love most about music as an art form, is it’s way that it is relatable and translatable, even without lyrics it sets the tone and can depict a certain emotion or feeling. It has the power to be the embodiment of an emotion and yet also change them.

A few years ago I wasn’t feeling myself, dealing with the pressures of the world, my life, and just feeling numb. I forget exactly how I came across them (probably an Instagram ad or something) but I then discovered Ashton Lane, my favourite of which is ‘Chemistry’ because it’s upbeat and I’m a romantic. If you haven’t heard it, go listen to it on whichever platform you use. From here my love of Country was firmly established and I’d find myself getting other artist adverts or recommendations on YouTube and Instagram.

Another song I became engrossed with was Tom T Hall’s ‘That’s how I got to Memphis’ which features in The Newsroom starring Jeff Bridges. I found a very prominent remark within the programme where the title is basically saying that’s how I got here. It’s another incredible tune so I recommend checking it out.

Additionally Katherine McPhee starred in Country Comfort where I discovered Rascal Flatts ‘Bless the Broken Road’ which I have covered and worth checking out my analysis of the lyrics.

Most recently, through the help of Boots Of Europe, I have had the pleasure of getting to know of many more artists such as

  • Nate Smith - ‘I Don’t Want To Go to Heaven’.

  • Lainey Wilson ‘Things a Man Oughta Know’ and ‘Sayin What I’m Thinking’

  • Gabby Barrett - ‘Good Ones’

  • The Band MacMillian - ‘Somebody’s Got To’

  • Ernest & Morgan Wallet - ‘Flower Shop’

  • Ward Thomas - Push for the stride

  • The Shires

  • The Wandering Hearts - ‘Dolores’, ‘Wish I Could’ & ‘Devil in Disguise’

If you’re not already familiar with Boots of Europe’s Hot Country Radio playlist, it is well worth a listen!

Music is a therapy and taps into us all one way or another. I certainly indulge in this therapy when covering songs, affectionately dubbed ‘Garyoke’ by friends and former co-workers. I post those covers on my Instagram and YouTube accounts.

In my opinion Country songs are the best for self discovery, taking life experiences and building, growing and reaching our potential. Any song, written and composed well can make us feel united, less alone in so much as the lyrics are relatable to your situation, you no longer feel alone. With this you slowly find your confidence and become who you were always meant to me. We may feel alone, insecure, or we may be from a different culture or faith but music allows our differences to congregate together to celebrate differences and insecurities.

Anyway, I hope I haven’t bored you enough and that you found my thoughts insightful.

In the words of Tom T Hall “Thank you for your precious time, Forgive me if I start to cryin’, That’s how I got to Memphis”.

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