Bates singled out for country-music honor

Henry County native, Ty Bates, is glad to see his efforts paying dividends, in his quest to become a country music star.

"It's a humbling thing, because you work so hard, and for someone to finally give us some recognition, it was cool to see the hard work pays off," said Bates, 25, of McDonough.

He was named Georgia Country Artist of the Year, Nov. 5, at the Georgia Country Music Awards. He is scheduled to perform an acoustic music set, Friday, at 8 p.m., at The Zone Sports Bar and Club, 1483 Ga. Highway 20 West, in McDonough.

Bates, who grew up in Hampton, has been singing since he was 12. Many of his early engagements, included venues familiar to many in the Southern Crescent area.

"I started singing at churches, and the Peachtree Peddlers Flea Market, in McDonough," said Bates. "Then I moved to pageants for all the high schools and middle schools.

"I moved to Myrtle Beach, S.C., and did a show out there for three seasons," he continued.

Bates has shared stages with well-known country music acts, including Jake Owen and Little Big Town. He describes his music as a combination of southern-rock and country. He has appeared with such artists as Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Marshall Tucker Band, Eddie Rabbitt, and Kenny Rogers.

Bates released an original, self-titled compact disc in 2011.

"This CD is a compilation of 10 songs, and I wrote all the music and the words for eight of them," he said. "It's in the process of getting approved for iTunes." His iTunes currently feature the first song on his CD, "Dusk Til Dawn."

The singer, who now lives in Nashville, Tenn., said he is grateful for the encouragement he has received from his fans, including his parents, Frances and Terry Bates, of McDonough.

"They're as dedicated as it gets, sometimes, more than I am," the singer said.

Bates' mother, Frances Bates, said she is proud of what her son has accomplished, and is looking forward to seeing where his abilities take him.

"He is proving with talent, determination and, yes, hard work, you can still make it in this business without a million dollars."

For more information, visit www.tybates.com.