Born and raised in the swamps of Louisiana, Hal had a restless spirit from an early age and cut his musical teeth as a traveling troubadour on the dusty back roads of the Southeast. Matter of fact, if you have spent any time in a smoky honky tonk, at an SEC frat party, in a biker club, or around a fire at a hunting camp, chances are you have probably heard Hal Bruni play a few of his unforgettable tunes.
As fate would have it, Hal wound up in Tuscaloosa, AL, in the late 80’s and became a musical staple around the University of Alabama. In 1990, Hal released his first independent album, No Turning Back, which featured ten original songs and produced several local hits.
In 1991, Hal met and formed a life-long friendship with Outlaw Country legend Wayne Mills. Hal and Wayne formed an acoustic duo and later founded the band 90 Proof together. Wayne often credited Hal with teaching him to play the guitar, although Hal says “Hell, we taught each other. If I ever did anything for Wayne, it was showing him what I knew at the time, which wasn’t much, and I encouraged him to write his own stuff.” Hal and Wayne wrote several songs together over the years and together with their friend, Bubba Thurman, wrote the song “Superfriend”, which Wayne featured on his Under the Influence of Outlaws and Mama CD. Hal and Wayne remained very close until Wayne’s senseless murder in November of 2013.
Hal moved to Nashville in 1992 to pursue songwriting and in 1996 was signed to the Muscle Shoals area based Night Town Records. Hal formed the band Hal Bruni and the High Rollers and in 1998 released the Tales From The Gypsy record.
Hal moved back home to Morgan City, LA to start a family in 2001 and moved the band’s home base to New Orleans. Hal and the band began working on what was to become the Blue Collar Town CD in 2003. Tragedy struck in early 2004 when Hal and his wife, Robyn, lost their first child, Jacob, at five months old to what was deemed SIDS. The following year, Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans and devastated the studio where the band was working, destroying all but a handful of unfinished tracks from their recording. Hal and Robyn moved back to the Nashville area in 2005.
In 2008, Hal moved back to Morgan City in order to raise his family in his hometown, all the while writing songs and playing his performing songwriter acoustic shows. In 2010, Hal formed Dasahit Publishing and Productions, LLC. He began working with one of South Louisiana’s most prolific producers, Pershing Wells, in 2012 at Digital Sac-a-lait Studios in Houma, LA, and in 2013 released the long awaited Blue Collar Town CD on Yeah You Right Records, of which Hal is the President.
Hal formed the new band in late 2013, and in 2014 the band was christened “Hal Bruni & The Branded.” Some of the notable shows in 2014 included the LA Shrimp and Petroleum Festival, Morgan City Downtown Rock the 5th Independence Day Weekend Celebration in Lawrence Park, and Outlaw Fest 2014.
Hal is a proud member and Godfather of The Last Honky Tonk Music Series, co-creator and co-star of the new outdoor variety television series “Dat’s the Life” (currently in post-production). Hal is currently working on his fifth studio album, Smoke and Mirrors, which is scheduled for release in 2017.