It’s been almost a year since we last caught up with Camp Hill’s Ben Galllaher — and in that year, he’s gone from playing SaraBozich.com Happy Hour events to big time gigs — like opening for country star Brantley Gilbert in front of 6,000 people.
Gallaher has also gone from playing bars as a one-man solo acoustic act around Central PA and Nashville to fronting a full band — which he will bring to Buck Wild’s Rode House on May 16 as part of his “No Strings Attached Tour.”
“I’m so excited to get back to Buck’s and back to Pennsylvania — that’s my fanbase,” Gallaher said in a recent telephone interview. “Everyone has been behind me since day one and it’s so cool to come back — and no one has ever heard me with a full band so I’m hoping we can get a lot of people out.”
Gallaher is no stranger to playing Buck Wild’s stage in front of a full house — he served as an opening act for nationally touring country artists including Ashton Shepherd, Craig Campbell, Colt Ford, Jon Pardi and Frankie Ballard. But now that it is his own show, he’s even more excited to play for his hometown fans.
“I’ve opened up for so many Nashville guys at Buck’s, but it’s really cool to finally be able to headline my first show — full band — at Buck’s,” Gallaher said. “I keep telling my band, you guys better get ready for the Pennsylvania shows — because it’s going to get rowdy!”
Gallaher’s band — which has musicians from Minnesota, St. Louis, and Texas — has been playing a high-energy, guitar-driven two-hour set each night — mixing covers and originals.
“We’re probably playing eight original songs or so — probably three or four new ones and then the songs that go over well off of my album like “Then There’s Friday” and “Tennessee Whiskey,”” Gallaher said. “And the show is so guitar-oriented with two of us playing lead and rhythm — trading guitar solos back and forth — and there’s a good amount of songs where we will be rocking two electric guitars. It’s going to be rockin’ country music!”
With a year left at Belmont University in Nashville, Gallaher still has school obligations before immersing himself full-time into his budding country music career, but that hasn’t stopped him from looking ahead and making plans for tours and another album.
“It’s too early to tell anything exact, but right now we’re looking at putting out another album sometime next year. I’ve got a bunch of tunes that we’ve been playing out so I’m excited to first see how they go on the road and then get them recorded,” Gallaher added. “When I graduate, I’ll be looking to do the road thing full time — to keep going back to some of the places we are hitting on this tour and start to broaden our fan base.”
And even though the touring will be more extensive following graduation, even this current trek up the eastern half of the country in a van is special to Gallaher.
“It’s kind of surreal because I’ve always dreamt of touring — it’s been one of my biggest things. And that it is actually happening — like we are hitting the road tonight — is like, ‘wow,'” Gallaher said. “I am definitely excited for the stories that are going to come out of this trip.”
The “No Strings Attached Tour,” sponsored by Snagajob, will take Gallaher and his band through West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, Ohio, and Pennsylvania — before ending with shows during the CMA Music Festival week in Nashville, Tennessee.
“We are playing the Listening Room, which is right across from the Riverfront Stage downtown and we’ll be playing a couple other places downtown that week,” Gallaher said. “Nashville is just swarmed during CMA Fest and that’s a good thing because we know we will be finishing off the tour to a full bar.”
For more information on Ben Gallaher, find him on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or at www.bengallahermusic.com. Plus, buy and download his self-titled debut album from iTunes.