Recommended if You Like
John Prine Johnny Cash Roger Miller

Genres You Will Love
Country: Country Folk Moods: Mood: Funny Folk: Alternative Folk

By Location
United States - Wisconsin

Barry Wayne Callen Facebook

Barry Wayne Callen

Barry Wayne Callen: Singer-Songwriter

Barry Wayne Callen had a stroke at age 49 and almost died. In the E.R., he vowed that if he lived he would leave something beautiful behind. Two months into his convalescence, he woke up with an entire song in his head (You'll find it on the Gospel of Fun Album. It's called "Call Me Crazy"). Getting a new song had never happened before and he doesn’t read music. Then he got another song, and another, like a mint left on his pillow by God (who apparently leaves songs like “Ha! Ha! Ha! I Got More Stuff Than You). The Kentucky accent he had spent decades getting rid of returned when he sang, and to his surprise, many of his songs were country songs.
For the first few years, he hid out in the basement behind the wet laundry, recording songs in his spare time and studying his heroes: Roger Miller, John Prine, Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson, and Hoyt Axton. For the last 8 years, he has averaged about 2 melodic ideas and 2 lyrical ideas a week. He now has over 5 hours of material. Eventually he got up the courage to sing and play guitar in public. He loves performing and songwriting. His sometimes collaborator and often muse and fellow artist is also his fiancee, Nell Weatherwax. His mother, and his grandparents were "Daddy sang bass, mama sang tenor" gospel singers. He is also blessed with two teenage daughters. He has also been struck by lightning. Literally.
“To my knowledge, no one has ever pulled off a start this late in the music business. I’m 57, and I’m out to prove that it’s never too late for a second chance. I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life," says Barry Wayne. "But I believe in redemption, late-bloomers, and second acts. My brother Michael died of AIDs at age 37, after racing to record his life’s work as a musician. He barely made it under the wire. I refuse to die with my music in me, but I’ve got to move fast and I’ve got a lot to learn.” In August 2011, for the first time, Barry completed recording 11 of his songs, the fulfillment of his deathbed vow and his life's dream. He worked with an amazing group of musicians assembled by producer Robert Farnsworth at Hummingbird Studios in Nashville, Tennessee. He titled the album "The Gospel of Fun."
Barry believes that feeling is healing, and he hopes that you feel something when you hear these songs. They are now available for purchase for the first time.
You can visit him on Facebook at Barry Wayne Callen, call him at 608.347.8396 for interviews or to book gigs, or email him at