PC: Thanks, Dave, for agreeing to this little interview.
DM: First off, it’s great to be with you, Paul. Thanks for bringing the cocoa and tater tots!
PC: How old were you when you first played guitar? Were you self-taught?
DM: I've never learned to play the guitar, Paul ... I've always used backing tracks!! Truth be told, I began playing guitar when I was six - taking lessons first from Bill Tapia at Campana Music in Lafayette, finger picking style from a couple of teachers, additional lessons from Chick Gandel, years of teaching myself, jazz improv from Jeff Neighbor and classical from Jim Bertram at Cal State East Bay.
PC: Who were some of your musical inspirations?
DM: Al Caiola playing the Bonanza series TV theme song! And my folks’ encouragement. I was exposed to, interested in, and listened to all styles of music at an early age. I would fake going to sleep and listen to my radio under the bed covers deep into the night every night. I was a night owl/vampire from the beginning.
PC: What are a couple of your favorite highlights (so far) of your musical career?
DM: Anytime I get to perform with Paul Cotruvo! Though all other highlights pale by comparison, the special memory list would go way beyond space allowed here. Some thoughts that immediately come to mind are all the fantastic local musicians I've played with over the years, including: playing with David Martin's House Party; recording with saxophonist Michael Brecker in NYC; playing acoustically with Marty Balin (Jefferson Airplane) for my sister's wedding; opening for Journey at the Cow Palace in SF; playing for an estimated crowd of 100,000 on the steps of SF City Hall; The Lloyds and Buzztone years; playing for intellectually handicapped clients at Agnew's State Hospital, performing four times at the Waldorf Astoria in NYC; and having lunch with actor Charles Durning on the movie set of Die Laughing between music scene takes. I could fill many pages of remarkable moments that would include just a person's smile or a cool story. I've been blessed to keep a roof over my head for all my life doing something I love ... music. I am truly grateful!
PC: What have been some of the strangest highlights?
DM: If you're a rocker, nothing is strange! I do remember performing one night at the haunted Brookdale Lodge in the Santa Cruz mountains doing a "Twin Peaks" themed party with DMHP. Very odd spooky goings on that night - capped off by a huge dead rat lying on the doormat of my on-site hotel room upon arrival after the show! Creepy!
PC: How do you feel about music in the Bay Area and the next generation of bands?
DM: It feels like there's a grassroots resurgence in playing music for the love of music and expression versus the use of music to be a "star." Very encouraging!
PC: Beatles or Stones?
DM: Beatones? Steatles? Love the talent, songwriting, charisma, and humor of the Beatles ... Love the blues-based edge, songwriting, style, and longevity of the Stones.
PC: Springsteen or Dylan?
DM: Dylan's songs will be sung for generations to come ... genius in his prime. Springsteen was
highly influenced by Dylan. Who have I seen more times in concert? Springsteen. I'm a Bruce
fan for many reasons, one of which is his respect for and mutual love affair with his audiences.
PC: If you were a Beatles song, what would you be?
DM: Depends on the day! (laughing) ... Helter Skelter, And I Love Her, Getting Better, We Can Work It Out, In My Life, Let It Be.
Thanks Dave! Here are some of the public gigs you can attend to see the House Party. Guaranteed, a good time will be had by all!
August 4: Concert: Pleasant Hill Summer Concert on the Lake
August 15: Concert: Pleasant Hill, downtown
August 22: Club: Pleasanton Hilton, Pleasanton
August 24: Dance/Concert: Sonoma Red & White Ball, Sonoma
Quote of the Month:
To the world you may be just one person, but to one person you may be the world.
Paul’s Picks for August:
August 1: Chris Cain Band, Armandos, 707 Marina Vista, Martinez, 8pm
August 3: Dan’s Bar, 1524 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek, 10pm
August 4: Dave Martin’s House Party, Pleasant Hill Summer Concert by the Lake, 6pm
August 17: Caroompas Room, Armandos, 707 Marina Vista, Martinez, 8pm
August 18: Cover2Cover, Pleasant Hill Summer Concert by the Lake, 6pm
August 24: El Desayuno, Armandos, 707 Marina Vista, Martinez, 8pm
August 29: Sin Silver, Rocco’s Pizzeria, 2909 Ygnacio Valley Road, Walnut Creek, 8pm