Barry Ferguson

Smoky Mountains Songwriters Festival, Barry Ferguson, Songwriter, SMSWF, Gatlinburg, TNBARRY FERGUSON (FUZY LAYTON)
My grandmother gave me my first guitar as a Christmas present when I was 9, and being an only child, there was lots of times that was my companion. Being around Lester Flatt some as a child did not hurt, although I must admit I did not take advantage of that as much as I should have, because at that time baseball was my first love. It was not until college at Ole Miss, where I kicked around the baseball program there, did I realize my love for playing music; my team mates even hung the nickname ‘guitar man’ on me. Being exposed to the blues scene in Mississippi, as well as being fortunate to run into the likes of people like ‘The Doobie Bro.’, Lynyrd Sknyrd, Tony Joe White, The Eagles, etc., all who were influences musically to me, I began to write music and soon it was apparent that this cross of blues/outlaw country/southern rock was my musical niche. I spent some years in Nashville, where I was exposed to the writings of people like Wil Nance, Steve Dean and others, but dropped out of the music scene after losing a child and a couple of major cuts. Music was put on the back burner for a few years as I watched my three lovely daughters grow up; it was not until years later when, by chance, I was re-united with people like Wil Nance (She’s Everything to Me) and Gary Duffy (Paint Me a Birmingham), and once again the music bug began to re-blossom and re-emerge in my life. With the musical influences of earlier years and the lyrical influences of some great writers I was fortunate to study under and write with, I have finally begun to develop my own style and sound, and once again music is a vital part of my life. There are many ‘what if’s’ in my musical quest, but that cannot be changed – now it is look to the future and let the music and words take me where they may.

Barry is from Dottie West’s hometown of McMinnville, TN.