Country recording artist Jeff Bates will perform two concerts at DelGrosso’s Amusement Park this Sunday at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m.
According to information from CMT’s website, “Jeff Bates was given up for adoption as a baby. He later met his birth mother, though his natural father remains a complete mystery. Mississippi sharecropper Ed Bates and his wife Barbara adopted him. Barbara, the daughter of a Pentecostal preacher, raised the baby on gospel songs. Eight brothers and sisters came along, and Ed and Barbara also took in two cousins.
“By his teens, Bates was a self-described ‘geek.’ Poor and shy, he had few friends and was constantly picked on by bullies. The family was so backwoods that at the age of 17 Bates had never been outside of Marion County, Miss. Hungry to see the world, he joined the National Guard. After that, he took a job on an oil rig.
“One night, a friend urged him to get on stage at the Colonial Steak House in Columbia, Miss. He sang Elvis\’ ‘Suspicious Minds,’ George Jones\’ ‘He Stopped Loving Her Today’ and Conway Twitty\’s ‘I\’d Love to Lay You Down.’ The club owner offered him a six-nights-a-week gig and Bates quit his job the next day.
“Wanting to pursue his music more seriously, Bates moved and blossomed quickly once he began writing with Music City\’s tunesmiths.
“Everything seemed to be looking up until he got caught up in using drugs. At one point, Bates had even sold all of his musical equipment to fund his drug habit. When that money ran out, he hit rock bottom, and the police eventually found thousands of dollars worth of stolen musical equipment at his home. He was sent to jail.
“During his time behind bars, he decided to ask everyone for forgiveness and turn his life around. The next day, he found out that Gene Watson had recorded two of his songs and that Tracy Lawrence had recorded a song Bates wrote with Kenny Beard, called ‘What a Memory.’
“Bates worked pouring concrete building foundations for houses by day and created new music by night. He got his songwriting contract back. In time, some of his tapes made their way to RCA. In 2002 the label signed him and released his debut single ‘The Love Song’ in 2003. Rainbow Man arrived in later that year, followed by Leave the Light On in 2006.”
DelGrosso’s Amusement Park is excited to welcome Bates to the stage this weekend.
Other country concerts held at the park included American Idol contestant Josh Gracin, along with Jimmy Wayne, Mark Wills and Blake Shelton, to mention a few. Earlier this summer, Kentucky Headhunters and Joe Diffie performed for a large crowd of country music fans.
Another large crowd is expected for Bates’ concert.
Admission to the concert and parking are free to the public. Individuals are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs and settle in for an exciting afternoon and evening of entertainment.
There’s even more music planned in the future as Ronnie McDowell is set to perform September 30.
There is also Free Christian concerts planned for Sunday, September 2 during Frontline Ministries Youthfest Weekend as Sanctus Real is set to perform two concerts.
Other events planned for this summer include the Tyrone Community day, which is set for August 3 and the March of Dimes Rubber Duck Regatta will be held this year on August 12. For more information, call 1-800-258-4159.
For a complete list of upcoming events, visit DelGrosso’s on the internet at www.delgrossos.com.