Do you remember the boy singing on the bus from school going home? The boy who watches everything that goes on around him? The boy who saw another boy holding a gun and throws it in the river below the bridge?
He is the one and only “Billy Gilman.” He was raised in Hope Valley, Rhode Island, in the town of Richmond. Gilman was born on May 24, 1988. His parents are Frances “Fran” and William Wendell “Bill” Gilman, Jr.
Gilman essentially loves singing. His voice fits country. With this, he started recording songs about the country. Some of his country songs dealt with faith, love, and family. Some were violence and difficulties of life in a perception of a child.
Billy Gilman started singing at a very young age before he has gone to school. He actually sang and performed in public at the age of seven. When he turned nine, he was discovered by Ray Benson (The frontman of the Western swing band Asleep at the Wheel, as well as an actor, and voice actor.). Benson helped Gilman produce demo records. Gilman then signed a contract to Epic Records in Nashville. After signing the contract, Gilman underwent a lot of preparations. These inclined him more about the country.
One of Gilman’s recorded demos was Martina McBride’s song. He sang the song beautifully. At that point, Gilman has and can reach high notes. So he chose a McBride song. With this, he got the contract.
At the age of 12, he recorded the song “One Voice”. It peaked at No. 38 on the Billboard Hot 100. It also became a top 20 hit on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart in 2000.
All in all, he released 5 studio albums, one compilation album, sixteen singles, and thirteen music videos, as well as other charted songs and non-album releases.
Furthermore, Gilman performed at the Grand Ole Opry. He sang the songs “One Voice”, “Asleep at the Wheel”, and “Till I can make it on my Own.”
After “One Voice” was released, it gained popular and positive feedbacks from audiences as well as country music critique. It was nominated at the 43rd Grammy Awards for “Best Male Country Vocal Performance” and “Best Country Song” for the songwriters, Don Cook and David Malloy. In addition, Billy Gilman himself won the “Favorite Country New Artist” in 2001 at the American Music Awards.
At the peak of Gilman’s career as a country singer, he was the youngest country singer in history. He was influenced by many country music artists and legends. They were Jimmy Dickens wherein he got to meet personally when he was 12 years old. The other legends were Patsy Cline, Tammy Wynette, and Pam Tillis.
Here are some of Billy Gilman’s tracks:
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