Gary AllanWhen Gary Allan first hit the country scene with his debut hit, 'Her Man,' he had the image of a clean-cut California cowboy. These days, Gary's true self has been coming out more and more, as he steps further from the "golden circle" of Nashville and more into who he is as an artist.

"Anytime something starts to feel like a popularity contest or not about the music, I'd rather just not be involved," Gary tells GAC. "I'm not a big high-fiver. That really gets to people around me when we have a No. 1 or something big happen. I'm not a big, 'Let's go have a party about it!' I'm always like, 'What's next?' That's just the way my mind works. I'm a musician and play my songs. That's all I need to do. If everybody else wants to go do the posters and the contests, I'm not coming. I'll be my own poster."

Gary is creating his own poster, if you will, of body art. This past December, Gary added to his several arm tattoos with even more ink, a far cry from his look in the '90s. "My whole back's tattooed," he grins. "I just wanted a twist. I was always in punk bands when I was little ... I think that's where the tie comes from."

But Gary's body is not the only place he is wanting to bring the ink and needle. "I thought that it would be really cool and really hip -- especially during this 'Get Off On The Pain' tour -- to have somebody getting tattooed onstage," he explains of inviting fans to get inked in front of thousands of fans.

Gary is currently on the road with Jack Ingram and the Eli Young Band.