2011-08-10 / LifeStyles

Jeff Gates celebrates release of new CD, ‘You Make Me’

Kenneth Wright returns home to open concert at release party Aug. 11 at Daddy Joe's
By SCOTT POWELL Ledger Staff Writer spowell@gaffneyledger.com

Jeff Gates was cleaning up old boxes in the garage last year when he found a cassette tape.

Sheer curiosity prompted the blues guitarist to track down a tape player so he could determine if any songs were on it. He had no idea the tape would inspire him to work on his first new CD in 16 years with the support of his wife, Amanda.

The Jeff Gates Band will hold a party Aug. 11 at 7 p.m. at Daddy Joe's Beach House BBQ to celebrate the release of his CD entitled "You Make Me."

The song he found on the cassette tape was re-recorded for the new CD.

"It was a song called 'Dangerous' I had recorded with drummer Scottie Thomas during a practice back in the late 1980s,'" Gates said. "The song had a little groove to it and sounded really good. I was listening to it when I remembered I wrote it. This is when I realized I could get started working on new music."

Gates spent the next several months working on new songs around his regular job as a music teacher. He organizes the popular "Patio Session" music jams for local and regional musicians every Thursday at Daddy Joe's. He also plays several nights a week in various clubs on his own and with a fun band called "Back Alley Blue" with Daddy Joe's owner Shag Stepp.

Gates credits Amanda for encouraging him to enter the recording studio and record the CD. She helped him with all aspects of the CD, which is being released independently by the couple.

"This CD would have not been possible without the support of my wife Amanda. She gave me the support and encouragement I needed in order to do this," Gates said.

Thomas is one of several longtime musician friends featured on Gates' new CD. Others include Asheville keyboardist Brad Durden of Copperhead and bassist Bo Beattie.

"These are very good friends from a lifetime of music," Gates said. "I feel very fortunate and blessed to be good friends with a group of high-caliber musicians who are willing to play."

Country music artist Kenneth Wright will be the opening act for Gates when he performs in concert at a release party for his new CD.

Wright has experienced success as a songwriter in recent years, landing a song on the most recent CD by Tim McGraw.

"Kenneth is a real good friend of mine and has been very supportive," Gates said. "I appreciate his willingness to come down from Nashville to support me." The new CD "You Make Me" is available for $10 on CD Baby, Amazon, iTunes, and Rhapsody. Local residents can learn more about the Jeff Gates Band by going to the reverbnation Web site.

"This is a leap of faith. I don't really know what's going to happen," Gates said. "I hope people will like the CD so we will have the opportunity to perform in other places and support it."

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