Cleveland, OH, USA
Born and raised in Cleveland, Gary Willard received his first guitar when he was eight. Enamored with The Beatles at a young age, he was in his first band by age 13. Taking over on lead vocals early on as no one else wanted to, his confidence grew as a singer, and he developed leadership skills that served him well over time with various groups and musicians. Breaking into the bars, groups such as 'Breakout' and 'Nasty Habits' played through a 5-state area at the premier clubs of the day. Before long, Gary branched out into performing his own songs with 'The Evidence', who landed an opening act slot for a number of groups that came through Cleveland, including Cheap Trick, Belinda Carlisle, Bad English, Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, Henry Lee Summer, and others.