BW: Brian Mansfield wrote an article about your new CD and he refers to you as an outlaw. Are you an outlaw, Gary?
GA: Yeah, a little bit. But, I think it’s not very outlaw to call yourself an outlaw, unless you’re Waylon Jennings. (laughs)
CM: So, would you agree with his assessment of you then?
GA: Yeah, I would. I actually just read that.
CM: What about you is so outlaw?
GA: Hmm… See what I’m sayin’?
BW: Right, you can’t go any further…
CM: Well, we’re giving you permission so it’s ok.
GA: Yeah, then no, I don’t think I am.
CM: I’m looking at the track listing; Josh Thompson, The Warren Brothers, Rachel Proctor, Sara Buxton. You had some good writing partners!
GA: We did. You know what’s funny – it’s the first time I’ve written with girls and I didn’t realize that until the album was done.
CM: So, why was the experience different when writing with females as opposed to males?
GA: There was a lot of songs, or a lot of hooks that I had that they wouldn’t want to write and it was just because their perspective is so different. Writing with Hilary Lindsay…I remember throwing out lots of things and her going, “ I don’t believe that. I’m not writing that.” It was interesting having that perspective.
BW: And they smelled better too.
GA: They smell a lot better; it’s a lot more fun.
CM: Tell me about being Gary Allen the dad. Are you finding any challenges?
GA: You know what, that’s probably the funnest thing that I do, and there’s always challenges. I’ve got a teenage daughter that’s a challenge every day. I think that’s the most fulfilling thing I’ve got. I’m super close to my kids. They’re really excited right now because I’m #1 on iTunes. They just keep sending me texts.
BW: That’s cool that they’re fans.
GA: Yeah, that’s one of the greatest things I do.
CM: Do they ever come up to you and say, “Dad look so and so is coming in concert, or you’re on tour with so and so can we get backstage and meet them or see them?” Do they ever do that?
GA: Oh, constantly. They’re always working me for concert tickets even if I’m not there. They see more shows than I do.
BW: Who do they like?
GA: Fun, they’ve dragged me to Lady Gaga, they all just went to Justin Bieber; and I tell you what, when you’re a dad in Nashville, no matter how popular or big a weight you’re swinging, every dad is trying to get a Justin Beiber ticket!
CM: He’s standing there in line with like Tim McGraw, Alan Jackson. Everybody is in line to get their kids tickets. That’s awesome.
GA: Yeah, the will-call line was hilarious.
BW: Your song “Bones” was chosen as the official theme song for PBR. Have you ever ridden a bull?
GA: Never. Fine line between bravery and stupidity in that sport.
CM: Wait, wait, you’ll get on a surf board though?
GA: Absolutely! After I fall off a surf board, nothing wants to beat me up.
BW: No, but there are sharks and jellyfish.
GA: It’s amazing how many people are afraid of the ocean. I think I’ve just been in it my whole life so I don’t even really think about it. I remember when Jaws came out when I was a kid though. I couldn’t surf for a little bit, that really freaked me out.
CM: Do you still do some surfing when you can?
GA: I do. I made it out there about four or five times this year. I came out – actually on accident – and got caught in the US Open. There was a million people in my surf spot. But yeah, I made it out there about four or five times. I always keep about four or five surfboards out there in Huntington Beach with my friends so I can stop by anytime and dive in.
BW: How’s the clothing store doing?
GA: It’s doing really well. Ya know, we catch pretty much every act that goes through town.
CM: Like who?
GA: Guns and Roses, Journey, and then all the country people. During the award shows, some of the best looking stuff and worst looking stuffs mine.
CM: You’re not in there measuring inseams, right?
GA: Yeah, no, not me.
BW: You design some or all of the clothing at the store?
BW: You ever just buy a pair of jeans and experiment on them with like different cuts, rips, and a bottle of bleach?
GA: I buy five pairs of jeans and have somebody else do that.
CM: You have kind of taken a step toward being a fashionista, I’m sorry I’m gonna put you in that category, because you’re designing some of the clothes. Do you sit there watching RuPaul’s Drag Race and go, “Hey that’s a good idea.”
GA: No, actually! (laughs) To me it’s more like deciding the cool stuff from not. I’ll walk through the store and say I don’t think that’s gonna sell and I think this is gonna work. It’s more things like that.