I’ve been feeling music all my life. I sometimes see harmonies as coloured ribbons flowing. I am learning all the time.
Here is some information about me, Dave-of-the-long-name-variety.
My first musical creations were upon a boingy upright piano from the age of 3. I had lessons but rarely got a buzz from them: I always preferred to improvise. To this day I can honestly say that I’m the worst possible guitarist to have around a campfire, or at a busk because I can’t play a single song written by anyone else. I’m also really crap at the music questions in pub quizzes. I digress. I had guitar lessons aged 9 and was told by my teacher that I would never be able to play the guitar. Quality motivation! And then there was the knitting needles, the bigger the better. I think it was The Glitter Band, and Cozy Powell who got me borrowing mum’s knitting needles to hit the cushions and sofa with. I loved the feel of the movements of drumming, and thought it to be exceptionally cool.
Moving on to my teenage years, I was smitten by, among others, Tubular Bells, Fleetwood Mac, The Stranglers, Genesis, Yes, ELP, Queen, Caravan, the Dickies’ version of the Banana Split Song. Oh, and Carlos Santana inspired me, along with Ted Nugent, to replace the nylon strings on my classical guitar with Ernie Ball Super Slinkys, and I’d play along with everything I heard (Ted had told me to practice until it hurt (on a radio show)). The talented but shy musician JW encouraged me to learn to play parts of Tony Banks’ piano and keyboard parts, and so my musical self was being molded. I continued to abuse pillows, mattresses, sofas, and other surfaces but instead of knitting needles I now had drum sticks.
I used to sit in on rehearsals for the band No Parallax, and became friends with what was to become Airbridge. In February 1982 I had nothing to do other than seriously avoid gaining any possible “respectable” employment, so Sean Godfrey asked if I would be willing to hump band gear about. That was such a great opportunity to both stick close to my musical passions, and piss my father off at the same time, as 19 year-olds are sometimes wont to do. I became the main roadie, and the live sound engineer for Airbridge, and those two years were a roller coaster of delights.
My gigging experience began as a drummer with The Logarhythms and we played a few parties in 1983, and I loved it. However, I didn’t gig again until the late 1990s. My office mates at Lancaster University happened to write songs, played guitars, bass, and sing, so we formed a band named after the door of our office, C31. I played litter bins until I could borrow, then buy, a kit. We gigged on campus in the bars, and in the Yorkshire House venue, and at a Graduation extravaganza to 400 people. That was a highlight, especially as I had to chase my borrowed drum kit across the stage. That taught me that the most important piece of kit for a drummer is a carpet.
From C31 two of us formed Dead Man’s Porn, but we didn’t get around to gigging because I returned to Norwich. On returning, I met up with Sean Godfrey and Lorenzo who were still writing and playing together, so I joined them as the drummer/guitarist/singer of Airbridge: hurrah! That was late 2009, and I’m still here with Lorenzo creating our music, really enjoying co-writing and collaborating, and finding talented others, like Jason and Maddalena, to add their sounds to our own.
The website seems to want to know what I do
I play a 6-string Martin electro-acoustic, a 6-string pimped up electric Strat-o-like packed with Seymour Duncans, a 6-string Godan A6, a 12-string Freshman electro-acoustic, and an Aria Pro2 bass.
I also play the massive range of noises that Logic Pro X can create via my M-Audio Oxygen 61 keyboard.
I hit things. The drums on Return were my expanded Roland TD-12. For Memories of Water I bought a Crush, all birch kit, added a 6″ & 8″ pair of toms, and enjoyed whacking that about with sticks, brushes, reeds, and beaters. I also play my djembe on the album, and a shaker: woo!