Erinn Bates is a Nashville native who has never been a stranger to the music business. “Being born and raised here is so odd to some people,” she says, laughing. “I loved growing up in the heart of this town.”
The singer fell in love with country music at an early age. “My Dad would play 95.5 FM and AM 650 in the mornings on the way to school. I had songs in my head all day.”
At 6 years old, Erinn started playing the piano and by the time she was a teenager, she was teaching herself guitar. One of her own songs caught the ear of Buzz Ledford, a family friend, who managed David Allan Coe and worked in country radio. He was certain she was a hit writer early on and encouraged her to keep writing songs.
“Buzz was a dear friend and always believed in me from the very beginning. He passed away much too soon. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about him. I want more than anything to make his family proud.”
While a freshman at Belmont University, Buzz introduced Erinn to the Grammy winning producer of The Judd’s, Brent Maher, and powerhouse hit songwriters, Mark Selby and Tia Sillers (“There’s Your Trouble” Dixie Chicks). Before graduation, she had another manager, Dale Morris, who manages Kenny Chesney, and she signed a demo deal with another award-winning producer, Mark Wright (“I Hope You Dance” Lee Ann Womack), at Sony. Mark Wright and Mark Selby produced her project that was never released with the major.
“Those days at Sony, I just kept pinching myself. I couldn’t believe I was given an opportunity to be a recording artist with a major label. I loved Mark and Tia like my own family. They honestly helped me find my voice. My only regret back then is that I wasn’t recording any of my own self-written songs. I’m so grateful for that time, regardless.”
Since recording with Maher, Selby, and Wright, she has been writing non-stop and found her independence, literally. Erinn has won song competitions, battle of the bands, had songs recorded by artists in the USA and Canada, had her original songs on network television, and performed lead vocals and mandolin in the country duo, The Darlins. In the fall of 2013, the girls won the national battle of the bands, The 2nd Hourly Gig, sponsored by job search site, Snagajob. With over 100,000 votes cast, The Darlins were chosen by the public to open for country star duo, Montgomery Gentry. Since their win, they have performed shows with Kacey Musgraves, Trace Adkins, Loretta Lynn, and many more.
Currently, Erinn is recording and writing new music. For more news and releases check out www.erinnbates.com