With his deep, rich voice, and immense respect for the traditional country sounds, Dillon Carmichael is making a name for himself. His debut album Hell On An Angel, released in 2018, even showcased his knack for storytelling – having written eight of the album’s ten tracks.
Let’s get to know more about the budding country singer below.
1. His family members are among the heavyweights in country music.
Born and raised in the small town of Burgin, Kentucky, music runs deep in Dillon Carmichael‘s family.
His grandfathers from both sides were renowned artists: Harold Carmichael was a gospel singer, while Harold Montgomery performed country songs at the Grand Ole Opry. Meanwhile, Carmichael’s mother, Becky Montgomery, is a gifted vocalist in the Montgomery Family Band, singing all over the eastern part of the state. His father was also a singer who often performed in public.
Carmichael’s uncles were bona fide country music stars too: Eddie Montgomery of the popular country duo Montgomery Gentry and John Michael Montgomery, who amassed hits during the ’90s.
2. He taught himself to play guitar.
Carmichael was only eleven years old when his father gifted him his first guitar, and he taught himself to play it.
When he started feeling comfortable with the instrument, he and his friends put up a band and began playing around town, both in talent shows and informal gigs. However, the band eventually broke up, yet Carmichael never stopped pursuing his musical dreams.
He then started writing songs and playing solo shows at bars all over Kentucky – polishing his live performances and learning how to be a musician, singer, and entertainer.
3. He was eighteen when he landed a publishing deal.
Before Carmichael even graduated from high school, he already caught the attention of a Nashville publishing house’s representative, Jennifer Johnson. While performing at one of the bars in Nicholasville, Kentucky, Johnson offered him to strike a deal as soon as he graduated from high school.
So just four days after receiving his diploma, the Kentucky-native packed his bags, moved to Music City, and signed that publishing contract.
4. His music is a nod to his musical heroes.
Hank Williams Jr., Lynyrd Skynyrd, Merle Haggard, Waylon Jennings, and David Allan Coe are just some of Carmichael’s childhood favorites.
Today, these country legends heavily influenced Carmichael’s music. “I just love the honesty and stories in their songs,” he said. “I’ve always loved classic country. It was just a part of my raisin’, so I’m sure that has a lot to do with it.”
In fact, throughout his entire career, he would ask himself, “In this situation, ‘What would Hank do?'” Which led him to write the song “What Would Hank Do” a couple of weeks before his debut album was recorded.
5. He worked at Grand Ole Opry long before he was inducted.
In 2018, Carmichael made his debut on the Grand Ole Opry, singing his hot song “Dancing Away With My Heart.” But what most people don’t know is that he spent a year and a half – beginning in 2015 – working at the Opry as a security guard.
Carmichael recalled how his boss once jokingly told him that the best thing about working on the security team is that he can stand in the Opry circle, and no one will say a thing because he’s on security. Yet, the singer-songwriter never did that. After all, he was looking forward to the day that he will be introduced and get to play music in that prestigious circle.
And Dillon Carmichael was able to achieve that! “It’s just overwhelming. I’ll think about that when I take my last breath,” he said of his emotional career highpoint.