Dave Parks continues busy year with July concert at Renaissance Center

Singer/songwriter Dave Parks' career exploded in 2006 and '07 with a scheduled appearance in the movie A Father's Choice, for which he also co-wrote the theme song, the production of two music videos released in spring '07, and the release of a ground-breaking new album, Livin' an American Dream.

The Renaissance Center in Dickson presents Parks in concert in the Performance Hall at 7 p.m. Saturday, July 28. Tickets for the show are $10.

Growing up in the Great Plains of Oklahoma and Kansas, Parks first grabbed the national spotlight immediately after high school with a string of appearances on The Nashville Network's Be a Star program. Finishing as a semifinalist by performing his own songs, Parks knew he had to return to Nashville in a few years with a more mature perspective as an artist.

Inspired by a soulful, country-blue sound, Parks has woven his sense of humor, love of family, God and country, and depth of feeling into his writing and vocal styles, securing him a place on the short list of promising Nashville newcomers.

More contemporary than traditionalist, Parks is recognized for infusing his brand of country music with elements of southern blues, rock and soul, without sacrificing country and western fundamentals.

The son of a guitar-playing Baptist preacher who is the song of a guitar-playing Baptist preacher, Parks grew up with country music on Saturday night and Gospel music on Sunday. As a high school freshman, Parks was asked to sing a few songs at his annual hometown Watermelon Festival.

"All the people who were dancing stopped," Parks recalled in a 2005 interview. "They were all standing there listening to me. The power in the songs was touching them, but they were touching me, too. I knew this is what I wanted to do with my life."

During his four years at Kansas State University, Parks honed his live performance skills by playing at local clubs in and around Manhattan, Kan. After graduating, Parks and his wife Renee packed their bags for Music City.

Since he's been in Nashville, Parks has collaborated on original material and/or performed with Willie Mack, Thom Shepherd (who wrote Redneck Yacht Club), Phil O'Donnell ('Fore She Was Mama) and legendary Grand Ole Opry fiddler Hoot Hester. Launching his summer tour in April, Parks has shared the stage with Terri Clark, Blake Shelton and Ronnie Milsap.

In March, he returned to his hometown of Oxford to make two music videos with his high school friend Dallas Henry of Wheat Field Productions. Henry entered one of the videos in an online contest on NBC's It's Your Show website and less than two weeks later Livin' the American Dream was awarded the Best Video prize by online voters.

Parks has been busy working on the independent film A Father's Choice, with shooting at various locations throughout Dickson County. Burns resident Jeff Martin, director of Music Technology at The Renaissance Center, also played piano on three tracks for Parks' debut CD.

For more information on the Dave Parks concert July 28 at The Renaissance Center, call (615) 740-5600 or visit www.rcenter.org. To purchase tickets, call (615) 740-5601.

The Renaissance Center is a fine arts education and performing arts center at 855 Highway 46 South in Dickson, just 35 miles west of Nashville on Interstate 40 at exit 172.

Photo by Margo Amala on Unsplash

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