THEAUSSIEWORD.COM’s special interview with country artist Dan Davidson.
How and where did it all begin for you? What drew your interest to the music industry?
Well, I started a band when I was 19, it was called “Tupelo Honey”. We were an indie rock band with a furious pace. In a few short years we were opening arenas for bands like Bon Jovi. It was a crazy time! After lots of fun, success, and memories we all wanted to try some new things. Eventually, being a prairie kid from the heartland of Canada, I landed in country music! I guess listening to my dad play Willie Nelson, Lyle Lovett, James Taylor, and Beatles songs on piano and guitar growing up got it all started for me! I took guitar lessons, went to college for music and the rest is history!
What motivates or influences you in your quest to make great music?
I think honestly the thing that motives me is how hard I connect to certain artists. I feel music HARD. I always wanted to be that for someone else. Create a soundtrack to someone’s life, you know?
What are some of your biggest goals you hope to accomplish?
It’s hard to say, I always just keep my head down and try to follow the motto “Be great and don’t go away”. I suppose I’d love to headline an arena tour – but one thing at a time!
What can we expect from you in the coming months? Any plans to tour?
Well right now its settling into Canadian slow season! All of us Canadian artists are retreating to our creative caves for a couple months. So, LOTS of content filming, lots of recording and getting ready for the touring season to pick up again in the spring! Talking about returning to Australia early in 2023!
Tell us a bit about your latest release and how would you best describe your music?
Girl Drinks Beer is a fun, simple party song to help Canadians forget its winter, and to get Australians pumped up for summer. Travis Collins and I teamed up on this little song dedicated to all the country girls out there that now how to keep things simple!
Give us an insight into your creative process. What gets you writing songs?
I listen to a lot of music of all genres and try to just listen to the people around me. I find I get a lot of inspiration from how women speak to their friends candidly. I find that my wife, friends, and sisters sometimes unknowingly have a cool way of saying things. I always am on the hunt for interesting turns of phrase. My phone is filled with little notes and scraps of lyrics. Sometimes songs just hit me in the shower or on a long drive and I’ll sing little nuggets in my phone. From there its sorting through it all and making noise!
Is there a hidden meaning in any of your music?
Nope! Just trying to make something that people can have a good time to while listening.
Success, what is the secret to it?
I think persistence, a good reputation and some luck.
What has been your biggest career highlight so far?
I think in country music it’s definitely getting my first platinum record. As an indie artist that is INSANELY hard to do!
Which stars of the music industry do you find inspiring?
I think people that have forged their own path against all odds inspire me most. Willie Nelson, Trent Reznor, Dr Dre, Eminem, Queen, Rush, even Nickelback. If you can find success on your own terms, you’re a legend.
Are there any new projects in the pipeline?
I’ve got a new EP almost finished, and I’m producing 3-4 artists right now – always up to my elbows in songs!
The music industry is constantly changing, where do you see yourself a few years?
Well – hopefully still performing all over the world and growing that fan base while still getting top 40 songs on country, rock, and pop as a producer/songwriter. I’m happy where I am, just want to do what I do on a bigger scale!
What is your favourite and least favourite part about this line of work and why?
I’d say least favourite: the lack of being able to rely on any consistent income and being away from my family from time to time. The best: connecting with people, seeing the world and making music with my friends
Name a few of your favourite Australian artists.
Travis Collins, Dozzi, Hayley Jensen, Casey Barnes, Silverchair (I know, cliche, but they were a big reason I started playing guitar!), Keith Urban of course, and ACDC!
The shape of the music industry has changed significantly over the years, including the use of social media, how do you feel about the industry as a whole and what does it mean to you in getting your records out into the public eye?
Well, I’d be lying if I said I think that social media has been healthy for artists. I think it decreased the mental health of the industry for sure. It’s made artists a little more disposable. I find that it’s a little strange that it used to be that you make great music in order to make fans, and NOW it’s you make fans in order to make music. On the other hand, I suppose it takes away the barrier to entry. I get it, got to change with the times but yea… I find it a little less about the art and more about the celebrity now. I do my best online – but I really try to post from a place on honestly. Personality has to win out in the end.
How will you continue appealing to the international market?
Well – I’m really focusing on only a couple international markets. I’ve done so much groundwork and research on places like Australia and found that the fans and the scene there is a match for what I do. I’ve decided to invest in that – double down, spend the money and develop something that I can call my touring home away from home!
Do you collaborate with others? Who is on your wish-list?
I’ve collaborated quite a bit over the past year! I’ve worked with the Road Hammers, Hayley Jensen, and Travis Collins. I’d love to keep that train rolling – I haven’t quite figured out who’s next! I’ll probably release a couple more solo before my next collab 🙂
What advice do you give for other artists wanting to follow in your footsteps?
I think just as a mentioned before – be great and dont go away. I’d add to that by saying it’s great to collaborate, delegate and surround yourself with people who care about you.
A message for your fans. How do you best interact and respond with your followers and fans?
I’d love a follow on @itsdandavidson – I love hearing from people and respond to every message!!
Any last words?
Is that a threat!?