It is always a pleasure to speak with Ray Scott. Being a big fan of traditional country music, I really appreciate what he is doing and the songs he chooses to record. Ray and I caught up about music and his decision to stop drinking during a rather candid phone conversation. 

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Ray Scott's most recent album is called "Guitar For Sale." As Ray admits, many think that may be his way of saying goodbye to music. However, the exact opposite is true.

The title track (Guitar For Sale) is a song that I thought only musicians would relate to. After performing it live, folks responded to it. I figured I would get a lot of questions about me quitting or not. (The album) is a combination of songs that are personal to me and that I have a close relationship to.

Ray has performed in the area a few times and most recently performed at Sportsmens Tavern. His sound is a traditional, honky-tonk style that has many of us that are hardcore fans of country music questioning if he has any angst over what is being released from Nashville these days.

I think Ray had one of the most fair answers to that question when he said,

I'm like anyone else. You know, you like some of it, some of it you don't relate to. That's art. That's music. It evolves. It may have evolved too far. These artists, Sam Hunt, FGL, they attract big crowds. But I don't begrudge them of their success. I do think that traditional country music does need to keep some identity and there are some that are still carrying that torch.

Ray Scott is certainly one of those that are keeping country music traditional and it's working for him! Scott has been added to the Jam in the Valley lineup this July and it's one performance you won't want to miss.

Before we ended our conversation, Ray shared some personal news.

I've been sober for 16 months for the first time in my life. I feel like I am writing the best stuff in years. I wasn't nervous taking that step. I was nervous about playing in clubs and sometimes people get offended when they buy you drinks and you don't drink them. But people have been very supportive. It's a good chapter and I encourage anyone to try it. I've haven't been in such a good mood in a long time.

Like Ray, I realize that there is room for all artists and that the music is always evolving. I think country music needs to keep it's tradition of telling stories. That is something it has lost over the last couple of years.