navy Veteran & Singer-Songwriter
Blake Esse-singer-songwriter, Nashville Star finalist, winner of Clint Black’s “Competing for a Cause” contest and now a CAMMO featured artist. Blake, noted as "a standout artist" recorded “Feels Good, Don’t It,” in Nashville with Clint Black, Paul Franklin, Brent Mason, and other Nashville studio legends. Blake has opened shows for Alabama, Charley Daniels, Dierks Bentley, Jamey Johnson, Michael Raye, and toured with Clint Black. Blake regularly plays venues from Nashville to Virginia and he is a proud U.S. Navy Veteran.
Blake adds his name to the list of stars who have performed and launched their music careers at The Birchmere, including Mary Chapin Carpenter, Lyle Lovett, Shawn Colvin, Jerry Jeff Walker, Dave Matthews, Vince Gill, John Prine, Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt and k.d. Lang.
A self-described “Navy brat,” Blake grew up surrounded by music and he started playing the guitar when he entered the U.S. Navy in 2007. While deployed to the Middle East, he spent his off-hours practicing and perfecting his music and songwriting. In 2008 he competed and was a finalist on the Nashville Star television contest, where he first met Army veteran and CAMMO co-founder Victor Hurtado.
After completing active duty in 2011, Blake continued to pursue his music career. He submitted a song to country music star Clint Black’s “Competing for a Cause” contest, which he won. He ended up recording the song, “Feels Good, Don’t It,” in Nashville with Clint, Brent Mason, Paul Franklin and other country music legends. He later reconnected with CAMMO and now performs as a CAMMO featured artist. He has also opened for Dierks Bentley, Michael Ray and others, and has toured with Clint Black. He looks forward to touring again with Clint in 2017 while juggling a ‘regular’ job and his Navy Reserve obligations. In the meantime, he is collaborating with Grammy award-winning studio producers, recording songs and performing for CAMMO events.
Heart Songs for Veterans has partnered with CAMMO and will be releasing Blake Esse's single "Feels Good Don't It" on March 9th 2018.
CAMMO Center for American Military Music Opportunities is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded in 2009 by U.S. Navy veteran Cathie Lechareas and U.S. Army veteran Victor Hurtado that believes in the healing power of music. Run by veterans for veterans and active-duty service members, CAMMO provides military-specific music programs to help past and present service members suffering from neurological impairments such as traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). CAMMO also develops military and veteran artists, technicians, writers and musicians at its CAMMO centers.