Bonner Black

I was born on August 15th 20 years ago and I grew up on a farm in a small town of 150 people called Hot Rock Tennessee. Hot Rock is in Lincon County and it’s one of those places that google doesn’t even know it exists (literally. I’ve tried to find it). I love my family and I love my roots, but I knew that I would never stay in Hot Rock.

When I was 4 years old my mom took me to my first ballet class and for 16 years, ballet was my entire world. When I was 10 years old I went to New York city for a summer on scholar ship to dance with the Eglevsky Ballet, then at 11 was accepted to study for a summer with Ballet Magnificat (a professional christian ballet company), at 12 I studied in Birmingham Alabama for a summer on scholarship with the Alabama Ballet. At 13 I became an apprentice at the Huntsville Ballet Company, and then at 14 I danced as a Senior Company Member at the Academy of Classic Arts and danced as a soloist for a year and a half. But behind the leotards, I found an interest in playing guitar and writing songs. I never played for anyone, but I couldn’t shake the idea of maybe being a musician…

I honestly don’t really remember why the switch flipped, but when I turned 15 something just happened in me.I started begging my Mom to let me take a vocal lesson and I started taking with a man named Kevin that went to my church. After a while he sent me to vocal coach Jamie Wigginton in Nashville. I still remember that first trip with my mom. I had skipped ballet and we had no clue that it would be the first trip to the city that I would end up living in just 2 years later. After a couple lessons Jamie sent me over to NSAI (Nashville Songwriter’s Associate) because he thought I should nurture my songwriting more. I became a member and soon after I met Bart Herbison (the director) in the lobby. He had me play him a couple songs and then he took me under his wing. At 16 I resigned from my position in the ballet company. I released my first album that year and started playing shows all around the south. I found an interest in the legal side of the music industry and began accompanying Bart Herbison to Washington DC to represent songwriters in the fight against online music piracy. I made several trips with him and sang in numerous Congress and Senate offices and I also sat on a panel speaking to house members on the issue. When I turned 17 I opted out of college and moved to Nashville on my own. to work my craft full time. I went on my first tour through Texas playing in some great venues and singing on several TV stations including “Good Day Dallas” in the top 5.

At 18 I started a band with my best friend Katie Mae Smith. We played rock and roll/ bluegrass music all across the southeast for 2 years. We opened for folks like The Band Perry, Charlie Daniels, Shooter Jennings, Big Smo, Mell Tillis, and The Bellamy Brothers. After an amazing run we decided to split in July of 2015 so we could nurture our individual creative interest.

Currently I am writing for an EP which I hope to release in the spring and planning for another tour in the summer.

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