ALBERTON - West Prince singer-songwriter Cory Gallant estimates he got more sleep Monday night than he did the previous five nights combined.
Gallant is just back from a whirlwind visit to Hamilton, Ont., which included a spotlight performance and participation in a Canadian Country Music Awards Legends Show.
It was all systems go from the time he arrived in Hamilton last Thursday until he left for home on Monday.
“But that’s what you need to do when you’re at events like this,” he said. “It is one big family, and I’m the new guy in this family.”
Gallant, who had the opportunity to sing several of his original songs during a spotlight performance at the George Hamilton, said he got lots of good feedback from the crowd and from established songwriters.
He attended workshops with the likes of the CCMA’s 2018 Rising Star Award winners, The Rewlaws, as well as established performers like Meghan Patrick, who won the female artist of the year award, and Aaron Goodvin.
Gallant’s wife and daughters also attended the celebrations, and that was another of Gallant’s weekend highlights.
“The kids were just in heaven,” he explained.
The couple’s oldest daughter, Chloe, also scored a standing room ticket in front of the stage for Sunday’s awards show.
“Seeing Chloe there and the look on her face and her being able to experience that at her age,” he said, was very special.
“Inspiring would be a word that would sum up the whole weekend for me,” said Gallant, describing what the whole experience meant.
“Just being in that atmosphere for five days and always being around somebody showcasing or in an environment where there’s live music going on and seeing how everything works and meeting the people I did at the Legends show. It makes you want to be better at what you do, and it makes you want to strive to be on that stage and sing my own stuff next time.”
He said his goal is to keep working on his own material and to be able to perform it at the 2019 CCMAs in Calgary.
“That’s what I mean about inspiring. It makes you want to be a better entertainer. It makes you want to write more songs, makes you want to play more,” he said, adding he hadn’t realized before going to Hamilton that the CCMA experience would have that much effect on him.
Gallant said there are already some things in the works for him because of his Hamilton exposure, but he is waiting for the details to be finalized before sharing them.
The whole weekend was one of networking.
“I handed out a lot of business cards and received a lot of business cards from everyone from recording studios and songwriters who want to collaborate.”
Another highlight was a Thursday night mingling session where all the country stars gather to catch up from the year before.
“I’m the new guy,” he said. “That was a great opportunity for me to make some new friends and kind of get familiar so that they are familiar with me for next time.”