RED WING — Gary Allan was born and reared in California, which tells you he comes at country music from a different angle.
Allan, who performs Feb. 12 and 13 at Treasure Island Casino, is a staunch traditionalist, with his feet planted firmly in the Bakersfield wing of country music. Nashville has always been too slick for him; with his gritty voice and no-frills songs, Allan is much more at home on the outskirts.
That’s where he began his career while still in his early teens, playing in his father’s band in out-of-the-way honky tonks in southern California. After finishing high school, Allan formed his own band, playing bars at night and selling cars by day. A demo tape found its way to the right people, and after a showcase concert for record executives, Allan was signed to a recording contract.
His first album, 1996’s “Used Heart for Sale” went gold. He has steadily released albums and singles since then, including his most recent album, 2013’s “Set You Free,” which went to No. 1 on the Billboard 200 pop chart. His style has remained relatively consistent, mixing traditional country ballads and Bakersfield honky-tonk.
Over the years, Allan has had four No. 1 country singles: “Man to Man,” “Tough Little Boys,” “Nothing on but the Radio” and “Every Storm (Runs out of Rain).”
Allan is due to release a new album this year, and will likely preview songs from that record in his Treasure Island concerts.
If you go
What: Gary Allan
When: 8 p.m. Feb. 12 and 13
Where: Treasure Island Casino, Sturgeon Lake Road, Red Wing
Tickets: $60, $55, $50; 800-222-7077