Kurt Fortmeyer was born in a barn and raised in a stable environment, or so he might tell an unwitting listener in one of his sillier moments. His life was changed irreparably at a tender and impressionable age when he was subjected to Roger Miller, Allan Sherman, Chubby Checker, and Trini Lopez.
His first solo show was at the HOLE IN THE WALL SALOON in Raleigh, North Carolina. In the late '70s, influenced by Jack Kerouac, Jesse Winchester, and Townes Van Zandt, he hitchhiked coast-to-coast, playing in the streets and parks of New Orleans, New York, Memphis, and San Francisco. Brandishing his acoustic guitar and harmonicas, and writing and playing original songs with a traditional bent, Kurt has been found in venues as wide-ranging as Montessori Schools, motorcycle bars, restaurants, and rest homes. He has performed at THE FESTIVAL FOR THE ENO, THE CASTALIAN SPRINGS BLUEGRASS FESTIVAL and THE HAW RIVER FESTIVAL.
In 1995, Kurt was honored with inclusion in the “Music of North Carolina” series at the NORTH CAROLINA MUSEUM OF HISTORY in Raleigh.
In 1997, Kurt and his wife Nina opened HYPHEN COFFEEHOUSE in Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina which quickly built a reputation as a must-play venue for traveling singer/songwriters.
In 2003, the Fortmeyers closed the Hyphen and began preparing for a move to Nashville, Tennessee.
In the fall of 2009, Kurt released a full-length CD called “What’s Not To Love About That?” which drew comparisons to Guy Clark, Robert Earl Keen, Tom Russell, and Kris Kristofferson.
In January 2012, Kurt released a digital single “Hard Times (Call For Hard Liquor)”, which started getting him terrestrial and internet airplay in Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, Italy, Great Britain, and Australia, as well as at many independent radio stations stateside.
Kurt celebrated the release of a new album entitled "One More Night In Nashville" in mid-January 2014. Several songs from that record, including "Dickel, Strait & Jones" and "Not In My Backyard", were already garnering airplay. Later that same year he was chosen "Best Of The Best" local songwriters by Nashville Ear, and he also received the 2014 Horizon Award from the Tennessee Songwriters Association International.
Kurt has shared the stage with Grammy-winning songwriters Steve Leslie and R.L. Castleman. and Hall Of Fame songwriters Don Wayne and Jimmy Payne. He has opened shows for many artists including Livingston Taylor, Emmylou Harris, and Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver.
As at home in front of a microphone as he is on a front porch, Kurt plays real music, by, for, and about real people. Amen.
My song "Pelicans" has been selected
as one of the winning entries in the song contest
for the 2024 Will McLean Music Festival in Brooksville, Florida.
Kurt’s songs have been covered on recordings by:
Florida country act Jim Van Fleet & The Reign “The Edge”
Minister/fingerpicking folksinger Dean Phelps “My Dog Jesus”
American Idol contestant Chelsea Sorrell “Dead End Road”
Texas country singer Luke Robinson "All The Above"
Nashville rock band Medicine King "Homegrown Medicinals"
Country singer Tyler Barham "Dead End Road"
Florida motivational honky tonker Dumpster Mike "The Writing On The Floor"
The Trey Ward Band (Bluegrass) "Fast As I Can"
2Country4Nashville "My Dog Jesus"
© 2015 by Dad Zone Music.