Tifton Gazette: Kip Moore making name for himself

Tifton native Kip Moore left Tifton years ago to pursue a career as a singer/songwriter only to find out you take it with you when you go. "Growing up in South Georgia, the way of life, it's embedded in me. I draw a lot from those memories," Moore said.

He was born the son of Stanley and Bonnie Moore and grew up as one of six children. His childhood was filled with inspiration through the talents of his family. His father recently passed away, but will always be remembered for his talent and the impact he had on the community through his work as the golf pro at Spring Hill Country Club for over 30 years. His mother, and most of his family, is still in Tifton. Moore plans a quick visit with his mom on his way to a concert in Tampa where he will open for Brantley Gilbert on Oct. 8 to a sold-out crowd.

Moore says when he was growing up his mother loved painting and would paint on almost anything. He also has fond memories of lying on church pews with a blanket and listening to her practice the organ. She also taught piano and had sufficient talent to intimidate Moore, who says he used to practice in secret because he didn't want to embarrass himself in front of his mother or his older brother who both impressed him with their abilities. "I would practice when nobody was around, just figuring out stuff, watching his hands and trying to do the same thing," he said.

He recalls weekends were often spent driving to the beach with his dad to go fishing. His dad's choice in music stays with him today. "He would play a lot of Jackson Browne, Willie Nelson, Bob Seger, Tom Petty and Bruce Springsteen. I always gravitated toward lyrics. Even when I hadn't lived enough to understand them, they still shaped me,"

Moore played basketball for Wallace State in Alabama before transferring to Valdosta State on a golf scholarship. He played at local clubs with a band and wrote songs daily. "I still didn't really think music was an option. Maybe it was one of those things where I didn't quite believe in myself enough," said Moore.

He moved to Hawaii on a whim after a stint as a bartender on St. Simons Island. After about six months in Hawaii living in a $50 a month hut, he decided to move to Nashville and give music a real chance in 2004. He was rewarded four years later by gaining the attention of Creative Artist Agency's Mark Dennis. That led to a record deal with MCA Nashville and the notice of songwriter Brett James, who produced Moore's first album.

Moore has written many songs, for himself and others, but a few of them clearly show Tifton is still with him. He said, "There's one song I have out called "Crazy One More Time" about a girl I knew in Tifton and was crazy about. We ran into each other years later and it was like we hadn't skipped a minute. We were crazy about each other again.
"My new single is 'Something About a Truck.' It's about a memory from Tifton. In high school there was this girl I really wanted the attention of. I drove this Izuzu Stylus. It was a piece of junk. It was the farthest thing from a chick magnet you could get and she never paid any attention to me. One day it broke down and Dad let me drive his truck. All the sudden this girl noticed me. We had a date in that truck and I knew it was the truck that got her there. She was driving the truck by the end of the date."

"Something About a Truck" is his most recent single released from an album that will come out in January. He is currently touring as an opening act for Carrie Underwood, Billie Covingon and many others as he hops from one tour to the next. He will begin his own tour next year.

Moore says his childhood will undoubtedly continue to inspire songs in him and he expects he will eventually write a song about his father. "Dad was always very supportive of me. He never discouraged me. He was the man — definitely Stan the man. He had a very significant impact on my life. I'll be a better dad because of him."

By - Tracy Coley Ingram

The Tifton Gazette

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