Chad Bradford
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Chad Bradford


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The best kept secret in music


"Tiki bar aims for country music crowd"

In an effort to build on the success of its new Pirate's Pub tiki bar, Weeki Wachee Springs is hoping to expand its appeal to country music audiences.

This weekend, Nashville singer Chad Bradford and his five-piece band, Dollar Short, will bring a mix of new and old country music to the Florida-themed pub.

"We're doing very well with it," said Weeki Wachee general manager Robyn Anderson. "Most of our customers have found us through word of mouth."

Since opening earlier this summer, the outdoor tiki bar has seen weekend crowds of about 100 people. Anderson said she credits the pub's success to its laid-back atmosphere.

"I think we're a very different type of setting for most people," she said. "We're more relaxed. People come here in flip-flops."

Though the bar is licensed only for wine and beer, Anderson said that talented local acts like Stan Prinston, Electric Red and Smooth have drawn crowds to the umbrella-covered bar near the park's sandy beach.

"Many of these bands have their own following," she said. "So they get a bit of a surprise when they come to see a show here."

The bar's popularity has convinced Anderson that the time is right to take a chance on bringing a new artist into the area.

A native of Hatton, Ala., Bradford, 29, moved to Nashville in 2000 and said he sometimes misses the small-town feel of places like Hernando County.

"Hatton is a real small town," said Bradford, who recently finished recording his first release, Dollar Short. "I'm from a place that's pretty much like Mayberry."

For his Florida audiences, Bradford said the band will play several of its regional hits as well as country rock music.

"We'll just have a variety of music - maybe throw in some classics," he said. "We're going to have a good time."

Bradford and Dollar Short will perform from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. today and Saturday. There is a $2 cover charge, with drink specials throughout the evening. For information, call 596-2062.

- JOY DAVIS-PLATT,St Petersburg Times Staff Writer

"On The Road To A Dream:Chad Bradford"

To read the article goto the addresses listed below
Page 1

Page 2 - Southern Family Magazine

"Local man inks record deal"

By Ginger Grantham
Staff Writer

When it came time to celebrate signing a recording contract, Chad Bradford opted to do it with home folks.

The Hatton native will make the official announcement that he has signed with Acclaim Records at P.J.’s, a night club in Muscle Shoals, on Friday, April 28. In fact, Bradford expects to have a party. And he wants his friends and local fans to help him celebrate. The fun begins at 7 p.m.

“I haven’t been there in a while,” Bradford said in a telephone interview as he drove through Georiga on the way to his next play date. “I wanted to recognize people who were my fans and who supported me in the past.”

For a long time, he considered himself the house band at B.J.’s and drove from Nashville to perform there in weekends.

Bradford has high hopes that the recording deal will be the launchpad that propels his career into the national spotlight.

“I’d like to get established in the Southeast and then spread out nationwide,” Bradford said.

He explained that Acclaim is an independent label that has had success in the past.

Joseph Danna, Acclaim president, said the company is based in Spring Hill, Florida. He said that Bradford will work on recording a complete CD and tour the East Coast performing at fairs, festivals and small clubs.

“Chad does southern rock and country, not hard rock,” said Danna.

Both Danna and Bradford are amazed at how the deal came together. It was almost fate.

Bradford has a friend in Tampa, Florida, who came in contact with Danna. It was a meeting not releated to the music business at all. But when the friend found out what Danna did, he told him about Bradford.

Then everything else just seemed to fall in place.

Bradford, who is 32, has been working on his career for a number of years now. At one time he even lived in Nashville and tried to break into the business there. He had some success but decided to try things closer to home.

He now lives in Moulton with his wife, Carrie. Between them they have three chihldren. Bradford has finally given up his regular day job to become a full-time entertainer. That was about two and a half years ago.

“But I still do odd jobs when I am back in Moulton to help pay the bills,” he admited. “Sometimes those entertaining checks just don’t come.”

Bradford describes himself as a contemporary country singer. He has recorded CD’s in the past but they were mostly self-produced while he tried to attract a label.

He is aware that he has chosen a difficult career path. It is not easy to break into the music business big time. Many talented people never achieve success.

“But if it was easy, we’d all be doing it,” Bradford
- The Moulton Advertiser


Chad Bradford Demo CD and "Dollar Short" produced by Chris Seiver Productions


Feeling a bit camera shy


"You need to stay in school and finish your medical career because it's
going to be a struggle being a country music artist," said Gerald Bradford.
Luckily for us, the young man who respected and always heeded his father's
advice didn't this time. The then twenty-two year old is still the same singer
with the ever present burning desire to live out his dream. Chad Bradford is
now one of the hottest unsigned country artists out today. His following is
growing in rapid numbers as he continues to play venues throughout the south.

Chad was born and was raised his
entire childhood in rural north Alabama. As you would guess, he was enriched
with the Muscle Shoals Sound at a very early age, since his hometown of Hatton
is only twenty miles away. With the Shoals R&B sound, along with country and
gospel music, Chad was soaked in all types of music. Country music was his
first love and still remains the same today. He was heavily influenced by
Merle Haggard, Larry Gatlin, and Garth Brooks.

At the age of eighteen years old, Chad got his first taste of the honkytonks
performing at the Nashville Lounge in Sheffield, Alabama. This was a big
adjustment for the young singer since he had only performed in church and
school as a young teenager. He also started his first year of college with
the plan to become a medical doctor. He finished his undergraduate studies at
the University of Alabama at Birmingham with a bachelors of science in Medical
Technology. Shortly after graduating, he was introduced to Walt Aldridge of
FAME recording studios and began to get his first taste of the studio life.
Chad also began making quite a name for himself in north Alabama and south
Tennessee by playing anywhere and everywhere he could. Chad won first place
in the nationally renowned Jimmy Dean Talent Contest in Muscle Shoals, Alabama.
He started bringing in hundreds of faithful fans at PJ's nightclub in Muscle
Shoals. "Chad doubled and even tripled my attendance within a few months,"
said Tom Berryman who is the manager there. He added, "We had people traveling
from Mississippi, Tennessee, and even Georgia to watch that boy play."

Feeling like it was time to make the big move, he moved to Nashville in January 2000.
He recorded a four song demo and sold over 2000 copies with literally no promotion
at all except the club venues. Earlier this past year, Chad released his first
album, Dollar Short, and the response has been great. He decided to leave the
regular house gig in Muscle Shoals and start promoting his album throughout the
south. What a great decision he made, for he has tripled his fan base with shows
in south Florida, Tennessee, and Alabama. Today, Chad continues his journey on the
road living out his dream. He has left his mark on every stop along that journey and
continues today with people wanting more.