David Courtenay's passion is bridging the gap between generations through music with timeless appeal. In the tradition of the Doors, Jack Johnson, the Beatles, and Paul Simon, David sings soulful songs that celebrate life, question conventionality, and express the emotions that arise from living in intriguing times.
David began playing his unique blend of rock, folk, and reggae while majoring in theatre at UC Santa Barbara. As a trained and experienced stage actor, he naturally connected to his audiences with a strong and charismatic presence. After graduating from UCSB, he passed on a full scholarship for an M.F.A. at the prestigious National Theatre Conservatory and instead headed to Los Angeles to pursue his love of music. He quickly put together a band and played in clubs, restaurants, and lounges all over Southern California for over three years. Soon after releasing his debut album in the summer of 2007, David decided it was time to hit the road and try out an entirely new city. He headed east to Chicago, a city whose rich culture of performance fits him perfectly. There, he put together a new group with four other gifted Chicago musicians called Modern Conversation.
With his deep, powerful voice, keen piano playing, and solid rhythm on the guitar, David is a performer with variety and stamina. Each one of his shows is different, with a unique set of his many original tunes mixed with fascinating reworkings of his favorite artists' songs. Taking his music to the next level, David has recently been shopping his music to film and television production companies. The title track to his new album, Eloquent Cool, will be heard in the upcoming feature film Dark Honeymoon (starring Daryl Hannah, Tia Carrere, and Roy Scheider). With his increasing exposure and growing audience, you can expect to see David touring across the country in the very near future.
David Courtenay - Vocals, Piano, Rhythm Guitar, Keys
Devoney Dean - Percussion
Dan Montgomery - Bass Guitar
Nathan Stout - Keyboards
Brian Bianchi - Lead Guitar
The debut full-length album, Eloquent Cool, was released in July of 2007.
The Rhymes In My Head
Paying the Price
On My Way
In the Grayness
Giving All I Can
Eloquent Cool (12/6/07)
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After spending several years in L.A. honing his musical chops, Central Coast native David Courtenay ...After spending several years in L.A. honing his musical chops, Central Coast native David Courtenay is back in town with his debut album, featuring ten original songs that pay homage to the music of late 60s and early 70s. On the engaging "Rhymes in My Head," Courtenay's voice hints of Jethro Tull frontman Ian Anderson, while the funk infused "Paying the Price" is reminiscent of Crosby, Stills, and Nash. "These Years" treats listeners to Paul McCartney-esque piano stylings, and "On My Way" and "Higher Mind" echo the works of the Grateful Dead. And even though he may be influenced by the music of the Free Love era, Courtenay's songs are modern enough to entice even the most contemporary of music fans. To purchase Eloquent Cool, visit cdbaby.com.
An Elegant Soul
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David Courtenay's latest musical effort is the mesmerizing album, “Eloquent Cool”, and before you he...David Courtenay's latest musical effort is the mesmerizing album, “Eloquent Cool”, and before you head for his next stage apprearance at Soho Club in Santa Barbara on September 2nd , why don’t you let yourself drift into the world of David through his music and through his words. David’s soul is truly “eloquent,” and shall I say more like “elegant,” with points of jazzy hues and a pop groove that could be the reincarnation of Bob Dylan and Paul Simon. Yup, Mr. Courtenay is a legend in the making, but the simplicity, honesty and feel-good extent of his talent shows us, for now, a humble man in thirst of a future, whatever the future might hold. With songs like “Eloquent Cool” (and he does know about keeping it cool) or “On My Way,” we can read a path taken in the self-enlightenment of the purest search for art and music perfection. Songs by David are like a gentle wave carrying your body and soul home. With a velvet touch of the guitar, he knows how to lure you beyond your self-contained ocean and forces you to come out of your bubble, to get a taste of the whole wide world. If you’re curious about his inner thoughts, keep on reading this article. And in any case, we'll see you at Soho and on MySpace very soon to keep sharing happy feelings about a happy and elegant singer, Mr. Courtenay.
Emmanuel Itier: What was the inspiration, both musical and lyrics-wise, for "Eloquent Cool" ?
David Courtenay: Most of the songs on this album were written during my early adult years, between the ages of 17 and 21. At that time, I immersed myself in the music of The Doors, Simon and Garfunkel, The Beatles, Cat Stevens, and all of those great songwriters from that era. To me, that music is simplistic yet powerful, and its appeal never really fades with time. So I've always tried to write songs with lingering melodies and meaningful lyrics that tell relevant stories. Much of my lyrics were inspired by the many transitions that were occuring in that time of my life: becoming an adult, breaking out of my shell, my first relationship, deciding what kind of performer I should be, etc. I was also reading a lot of Shakespeare and classic drama at that time, so hopefully that helped me out a little bit!
EI: Being a singer is for sure a difficult path, especially with music piracy and the whole industry being upside down. How do you keep the faith within and keep going?
DC: I have an unconditional love for music that has only gotten stronger with time. Making music is my greatest desire, and I could never give up on it because, for me, that would be the equivalent to giving up on life. The reinvention of the music industry that is taking place is frightening, but it's equally as exciting and promising. This is an age where independent artists have an incredible amount of tools to promote themselves with, record their own music, and to sell their own songs. Going it alone is certainly a tough road, but it can also be a more gratifying one if you learn how to do it right. I'm learning a ton by doing so many things on my own, and I know one day its all going to pay off.
EI: Listening to music is one experience, and going to a concert another one. What can people expect when they come and see you live?
DC: The energy that my band and I bring to our shows is very heightened. We really get into the music and have a blast on stage. We amp things up a bit and make the music more danceable when we play live. Our last show, we had the whole crowd dancing, and I hope we continue to get people on their feet!
EI: What song from your album, "Eloquent Cool," is the true representation of what you're about? And what are you about?
DC: I would say "Higher Mind." It's a song about keeping your sanity and a smile on your face through crazy times. That's pretty much what I'm all about--surviving and staying optimistic in even the most adverse of situations.
EI: How is your music evolving over the years, and what do you think you do different today?
DC: I'm more intricate in my songwriting process now, and I pay more attention to details. I think my newer songs have more of their own feel to them and sound different than my original influences. I've also been co-writing with my guitarist, Fran McConville. We take our time with the music and stretch it out a bit more. We're beginning to develop a more unique sound that has a little more of a modern feel to it.
EI: What is the next step for you in your career, and where would you like to be in a few years?
DC: The next step is to hit the road and start touring rigorously. I think the college circuit would be a great place to build a larger following, because young people seem to broaden their musical horizons at that age. Getting music into television and film is also a big goal of mine and a great way to get exposure. My song, "Eloquent Cool," was recently picked to be in the movie, Dark Honeymoon, starring Daryl Hannah, Tia Carrerre, and Roy Scheider. I was really excited to have my music included in the film, and I hope there are many more projects to come. In a few years, I see myself touring all over the U.S., Europe, South America and beyond. Hopefully I'll have a few records under my belt too.
EI: What do you want people to get from your music? What should be your legacy?
DC: When I'm writing my music, I'm not thinking too deeply about what I want people to get from it, but ideally I'd love for people to feel inspired when they listen to it. All of my favorite artists inspired me to think a bit differently, to open my mind to all the possibilities that exist, and to change for the better. I hope my music does the same. If I'm remembered as someone who sang a message of peace, happiness, and positive change, I'll be a happy man.
Contact David at:
www.musicdavid.com, www.myspace.com/musicdavid--CDs available at: www.cdbaby.com/davidcourtenay
Publicist: Mo McFadden at: firstname.lastname@example.org
David Courtenay, "Eloquent Cool"
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Courtenay constructs flowery, dense arrangements for his Kinks and Cat Stevensesque pop songs. ... Courtenay constructs flowery, dense arrangements for his Kinks and Cat Stevensesque pop songs.
A Santa Barbara native, Courtenay sings in a presentational
style, overlaid with swashes of multi-tracked vocals, so he stands out from
the bus load of singer-songwriters with weak, hushed voices.
Many tunes have a reggae
lilt--such as "On My Way" and "Mayaguana Isle"--and though
sometimes his cleverness leaves
a melody abandoned ("Higher Mind"), this 10-song debut has enough character
to stand out.
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David Courtenay got his BFA in Theatre at UCSB before moving to Los Angeles and launching his music ...David Courtenay got his BFA in Theatre at UCSB before moving to Los Angeles and launching his music career with the album "Eloquent Cool". His songs are beautifully crafted contemporary pop that reveal layers of classic influences like the Beach Boys and the Beatles on repeated listening. Courtenay will return to Santa Barbara for a combination CD release party and benefit for the Surfrider Foundation on Sunday, September 2 at SOhO.
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Across the board, David Courtenay's music has a message of simple reflection, spiritual awareness an...Across the board, David Courtenay's music has a message of simple reflection, spiritual awareness and a universal appeal. It's more than just good music. He understands his subject and uses his music to softly connect people to their sensibilities. He's a man who makes you feel a need to connect with your ownself to better understand your connection to the world.
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David Courtenay may be pursuing his music career in L.A., but he hasn't forgotten where he came from...David Courtenay may be pursuing his music career in L.A., but he hasn't forgotten where he came from. He is slated to perform at SOhO on Sunday, April 9th, and while the David Courtenay Band plans to entertain with an arsenal of originals that mix rock, funk, and reggae, some crowd-pleasing covers are also on the playlist. Courtenay's strong, classic vocals have cross-generational appeal reminiscent of his early folk rock influences. His originals can be found at musicdavid.com.
Original Song Set list is approximately 2 hours and can be shortened if necessary. Songs are: Eloquent Cool, The Rhymes In My Head, Paying the Price, Mayaguana Isle, These Years, On My Way, In the Grayness, Giving All I Can, Higher Mind, Time It Takes, Hey Shirode, A Wiser Man, You I Saw, The Silent Seas, Take Me To This Paradise, Have I Found Her, Hear Your Cry, Come of Age, Diamond in the Rough, Faithful Ghost, Seize the Day, Just A Word, Faker's Row.
Cover song set list can be up to 3 hours long. Cover songs are generally played only at special events, parties, or anywhere only cover songs are requested. Artists covered include Bob Marley, the Doors, Paul Simon, U2, the Beatles, 311, James Taylor, Frank Sinatra, Neil Young, Elvis, the Band, Cat Stevens, Elton John, CCR, and Bob Dylan to name a few.
There are no upcoming dates at this time.