Gary Clark Jr. is a prime example of a prominent blues torchbearer because not only has he propelled the modern blues-rock sound further into the limelight, but he is also an admirable role mode for the younger generation of musicians.

Gary started playing guitar when was 12 when he was living in Austin, Texas, a great hip music town. He began playing small gigs around the area until a well-known promoter, Clifford Antone heard Gary playing one night. Antone owned a club that helped to spring the career of Stevie and Jimmie Vaughan, who Clark was able to play with at a young age.

Vaughan and other musicians in Austin recognized a great talent within Gary Clark and “helped him along his musical path, facilitating his ascent in the Texas rock and roll scene.” He slowly made his way into people’s ear holes and by 2011 was recognized as the “Best Young Gun” by Rolling Stone Magazine.

From there, Clark’s career exploded, recording with standout artists like Alicia Keys, Foo Fighters, Sheryl Crow, Childish Gambino, and many more. As you can tell by this eclectic mix of artists, Clark isn’t afraid to experiment with multiple styles and has backgrounds in hip hop, rock, and soul. Clark has also appeared on television shows and movies, and recorded songs featured in various media.

At 7 years old, Austin’s Mayor dubbed May 3, 2001 “Gary Clark Jr. Day” and he won the Austin Music Award for Best Blues and Electric Guitarist three different times! Then in both 2014 and 2015 he won the Blues Music Award for ‘Contemporary Blues Male Artist of the Year.” He also gained even more of a following when his blazing cover of “Come Together” was featured in the unfortunately sub-par movie “Justice League” in 2017.

Patrick Ortiz

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