A native of McMurray, Pennsylvania, Gary grew up the youngest of nine children. At an early age, he was first exposed to the blues of the Allman Brothers and the creative genius of such bands as the Doors and Jimi Hendrix. In 1969, an older sibling brought home the debut release from Crosby, Stills & Nash and he was hooked. Listening to that record made the hair stand up on his arms. So, at age seven, he began to teach himself the guitar. He never sang in front of anyone until his first band audition at age 16.
Gary has now been playing music for 50 years and professionally for nearly 40 years. He has been an integral member of various bands, starting in high school with Reckless Abandon, then in collaborations with his brother and mentor in Bush & Gary and Falcon. Other bands that followed: Powder Finger, The Khakis, Jaguar, Blind River, Smokin’ Section and KPG. Performing alongside his brother, Bush and Gary took home 2nd place in the first Graffiti Rock Challenge. As a member of Smokin' Section, Gary performed in the very first Pittsburgh Blues Festival; The River City Blues Fest, and enjoyed one of the top rankings in The City Paper's Reader's Poll for Best Local R&B/Blues Band. While in front of Smokin' Section, he also played live performances on Pittsburgh radio: WDVE's morning show "Coffee House" as well as an appearance on WYEP's Blues and Rhythm Showcase. More recently, Gary participates in the "Music Smiles" program, which brings local musicians to Pittsburgh area hospitals. "Music Smiles" is funded by donations through the Sonny Pugar Memorial, Inc.
Today, Gary plays primarily solo, acoustic shows. In 2018, he took the leap and made performing his full-time career. His acoustic performances showcase a tasteful variety of new music, classic rock, alternative and blues, as well as his original material. Gary’s love for the blues remains the backbone and inspiration for his song writing today.
2010 - 1st Place - Best Solo/Duo Act - Blues Society of Western PA Blues Challenge
2011 - Quarter-finalist - Solo/Duo - International Blues Challenge, Memphis, TN
2013 - 1st Place - Best Solo/Duo w/Matt Barranti - Blues Society of Western PA Blues Challenge
2014 - Quarter-finalist - Solo/Duo w/Matt Barranti - International Blues Challenge, Memphis, TN
2018 - 1st Place - Pittsburgh Acoustic Challenge
2019 - 1st runner up - Blues Society of Western PA Blues Challenge