Bio of Gary Michael Prukop
Born Gary Michael Prukop, this singer/songwriter/musician’s strong, soothing voice grabs the attention of an audience right from the start. Gary’s great story telling, visual imagery, and the emotional delivery of his performance brings to life his heart-felt songs.
Since learning the saxophone in the sixth grade, Gary Prukop has taken his musical gifts from the band hall to the dance halls, receiving numerous musical awards along the way. In 1972, Gary entered the infamous Texas dance hall circuit, joining The Country Drifters of Victoria as their saxophone player. Two years later, the band dropped the “Country” from their name and became The Drifters of Victoria, and Gary stepped in as the band’s lead singer and booking manger. Gary and his fellow band members soon proved to be quite the entertainers, gaining one of the largest and most faithful followings in the region, consistently packing out dance halls all across South Central Texas.
In 1983, Gary wrote “Corpus Christi Wind” with fellow band member and friend, Jon Mulligan, contributing the musical arrangement. The Drifters soon took Gary’s song, “Corpus Christi Wind”, all the way to Billboard magazine and self-produced a video for the song, which aired on America Rocks and HBO. Following the success of “Corpus Christi Wind”, in 1987, this BMI writer wrote and sang “Loneliness Don’t Live Here Anymore” for the movie Johnny Be Good with Anthony Michael Hall, Robert Downey Jr., and Uma Thurman.
After a very successful run in the Texas dance hall circuit, The Drifters decided to break up in 1988, playing their last dance in Moulton, Texas. Following the band’s breakup, Gary went to Nashville to work on a singing and recording project called The Gary Michaels Project. Gary soon became disenchanted with Nashville, and decided to return home to Victoria, Texas. Upon his return, Gary joined the Taylor Brothers Band, singing lead vocals and playing the saxophone. This gifted singer/songwriter/musician continued to perform to crowds all across the South Texas region until 1997.
With a number of songs to his writer’s credit, Gary continues to be inspired by music, writing country and Christian songs. Gary and his wife, Connie, reside in Rockport, Texas. They have two daughters, Tonia Prukop Ellis and Tammy Prukop.