is celebrating it's 5th year

in beautiful Owen Sound Ontario

Gary Gillespie 

program creator / instructor

Gary is fairly new to Owen Sound, and found this beautiful city by the bay thanks primarily to his wife, Deb Taylor, a former Owen Sound resident. Her parents still live here in the home they moved to from Montreal back in the 70’s. Deb's desire to be close to her family is what prompted the move here from Vancouver and with it, the newest Famous Rock School location. Since settling in, Gary has found Owen Sound to be a vibrant and welcoming music community, with a very large population of talented musicians.


Gary musical journey began in Montreal at the age of seven, when he was singled out in music class for the voice with the perfect pitch. Soon after, at age 11, he wrote and performed his first song. It wasn't until his teen years, living in Nova Scotia, that his musical talent truly blossomed. As lead singer of the Halifax-based band, Broken Toys, Gary was able to hone his stage presence and songwriting style. After developing a strong local fan base, Broken Toys went on to win the semi-finals of CBC-TV's regional "Battle-of-the-Bands" and toured the country from coast-to-coast.


It was on the second national tour that Gary decided to relocate to the West Coast. It was in Vancouver, along with guitarist/violinist Ian Cameron of Strange Advance, that the band Faith & Desire was formed. Their first independent release, via Spinner Distribution, garnered rave reviews from as far as Europe and landed them live gigs at the prestigious Whiskey-A-Go-Go in Los Angeles and as the opening act for Richard Marx in Hawaii.


The first single, "One Condition of Love", received strong radio support across Canada that gave Faith & Desire a "Top Adds" mention in The Record. The second CD, Heavy Mellow, was released independently in Canada and was picked up internationally by Sony (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) and Escape Records (U.K.). The single, "Fool For A Day", ended up on a CD compilation from Valentine Music Productions (Singapore) that was distributed in countries such as China, Korea, and Malaysia, and was included in the television series Higher Ground. Gary was also awarded a CDI scholarship in Write-On, a national songwriter’s competition.


Some other live performances include Anchorage Alaska, Molson Indy Vancouver, Disney World Florida, 2010 Olympics and singing the national anthems at G.M. Place for the Vancouver Canucks. His acting credits include playing the part of singer Georgie Fame in the T.V. movie, The Linda McCartney Story.


Gary now has five children, each with their own unique creative talent. His desire to work with children, combined with his interest in learning styles that support creativity and individuality, is what keeps him actively involved in offering his music program, Before They Were Famous. His vision is to reach more children in this way, people of all ages and backgrounds who are touched by the gift of music. He wants to give young performers the opportunity to discover and develop their gifts and strengths, and learn that dreams can and should be made a reality.

2020 Summer Camps 2020

Contact now to register for

a weeklong camp in July and August


In the News
Left: Past Famous Rock School student
Finn Wolfhard Summer Camp

Finn in Netflix Series Stranger Things