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MEET JAMES GARLAND
James Garland is a musical late bloomer; he didn’t even start dabbling in music until he was 26. But in just two years, he was performing professionally, nudged onstage by a man he’d sought out for guitar lessons. That man, David “Dagan” Gann, heard Garland play one tune he’d written and immediately recruited a band to perform behind the newbie. Garland booked gigs by walking into bars around his Southeast Texas home and auditioning on the spot. It didn’t take long for his “aggressive country” cocktail — shots of red dirt and southern rock poured over good ol’ country, served with a Texas-tuned baritone — to catch on.
Garland has landed four tracks on the Texas Regional Radio Report chart, and he hopes to up that tally with the June, 2022 release of his first full studio album, Man in the Mirror. Produced by Chad Mauldin, it was recorded at Mauldin’s KSIJ Studio in Gladewater, Texas — in the same historic space where KSIJ-AM once broadcast in-studio performances by Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and other legends. While Garland doesn’t cite Elvis as a direct influence, he does mention Cash, right alongside fellow icons Merle Haggard, George Strait, the Eagles and Tom Petty.
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