From Dave Elwert
Hey Everyone! I'm Dave. I'm a drummming, piano-playing, song-writing adventurer from the great state of Indiana. I consider myself extremely blessed to do what I do for a living. I'm 31 and have been married for 9 years to one amazing woman. For as long as I can remember, music is all I ever wanted to do with my life. Although, I think there was a short period of time after the movie, "Twister" came out that I wanted to be a storm chaser, and let's be honest... if I could make a living as a full-time backpacker, I'd consider it. As for the last 10 years, I've been doing what a lot of people like to refer to as "The Music Thing". I think they call it that because they don't really understand what it is we musicians do. For me, "The Music Thing" has always meant doing several things. I've taught lessons, managed a venue, ran a studio, booked shows, road managed, toured as a keyboardist and a drummer, produced albums, and pursued a career as an artist. Currently, my work is primarily drumming, producing, and songwriting.
SONGWRITING / ARTIST:
My aspirations to be an artist has been reshaped over the years. I used to believe that a successful artist should not sway too far from their defined style, or sound, or brand. We artists are told that we should establish an identity and stick with it. That doesn’t sit well with me. I believe that the best songs are written and recorded with feeling. That’s what music is all about for me. Sometimes it means that a song should be a country ballad, and other times, a folk tune, or a rock anthem, or a pop song. Whatever makes the most sense at the time. I've realized that I'm more of a songwriter than I am an "artist", and I'm okay with that. I may not tour the world in a big fancy bus with my name on the side, but I love to write songs, and in a variety of styles. I love that freedom. Lord willing, I will continue to make albums for years to come. Who knows... maybe one day you'll hear one of them on TV, or recorded by somebody famous... I have no idea what the future holds. I'll keep writing songs regardless. My latest album, 'ADVENTURES' is unlike anything I've ever done. I would categorize it as an indie-pop/rock album. Take a listen. I hope you love it!
DRUMMING / KEYS:
My first pair of drumsticks were two Linkin Logs from my childhood toybox. My first set of drums consisted of various sized encyclopedias pulled from the bookshelves around the house. I loved books... each one had it's own unique tone when struck with a Linkin Log. I upgraded to actual drums and started studying percussion at age 15. This continued through junior high and high school, and percussion became my instrument of emphasis at Anderson University, where I graduated with a degree in Music Business. It's hard to pick my favorite or most influential drummer. If I had to name a few, I would say Steve Jordan, John Bonham, Ringo Starr, and Steve Gadd, among many others. My preference solely depends upon the music at hand. I play a lot of rock, pop, and country, where it is the drummer's job to keep a tight groove, play in the pocket, and drive the energy of the song. In rock, pop, and country, the vocals are the focus 99% of the time and drums, along with any other instrument, should be complimentary and not a distraction. When playing jazz and funk, there is a little more freedom to improvise. There is a time and place for everything. My focus as a drummer is to always play appropriate to the gig, and with confidence.
My approach on piano, B3, rhodes, synthesizers, and every other instrument with a keyboard is very similar. Don't get in the way, and be complimentary to the song. The difference between keys and drums for me is that 9 times out of 10, I'm writing the song that I'm playing keys on, so I get to be a little more creative with the parts. In many cases, keys are a color/texture instrument. It's best when they are there, but barely noticeable, however you'd notice if they weren't there. Make sense? Some of my favorite piano/keys players include Bruce Hornsby, Billy Preston, Elton John, Cory Henry, Stevie Wonder, and Ray Charles. There are so many others, but I'm sure they'll live with me not mentioning their names. Ben Folds, Elton John, Gabe Dixon... okay, I'm done... for now.