*Local Band Review Editors Pick, Top 10 albums of 2011 for "Fun Box" CD
*WESU Radio, Top 10 albums of 2011 for "The Last Record Party" CD
*IndepenDisc Records Top 10 albums of 2011 for "The Last Record Party" CD
*Fresh Dread Editors Pick, Top 10 albums of 2010 for "Keep To Movin'" CD
Dave Hogan is a songwriter and musician from Bridgeport, Connecticut; a veteran of three critically-acclaimed music groups, Red One, The Great Upsetters and The Rafter Bats. Beyond his established talents as a songwriter, he is a guitarist and vocalist. His musical style ranges from acoustic Americana and bluegrass to electric-guitar driven alt. country, to improvisational jam band arrangements.
After the dissolution of The Rafter Bats, Dave formed the rock group Graylight Campfire who released albums in October 2008 and February 2010. Dave was invited to participate in a tribute album for Golden Microphone Records, titled "Not Before My Time: The Amy O'Neill Songbook" (IndepenDisc), and collaborated with Jason P. Krug and Carmen Champagne (of the indie rock duo The Grimm Generation) on their tour and album.
Dave devoted several months making invitations to friends -- musicians he's worked with over the years -- to collaborate on some of his songs. Fun Box was released in the Spring of 2011.
In the fall of 2011, Tom Andrukevich reformed his band The Mill Valley Taters, teaming with Dave on lead guitar for a series of "revival" shows.
Dave's been playing a seemingly endless string of gigs, and has been a repeat guest of The Gathering of the Vibes, Wormtown, Scottypaluza, Berkfest, GreenFest and Keene Music festivals.
Dave Hogan - Vocals, guitars
Brian O'Callaghan - Bass and Vocals
Dennis Jackson - Drums and Vocals
Scott Camara - Dobro
Tim "T-Bone" Stone - B3, Piano & Keyboards
Keep to Movin'
All Are Welcome... Some May Stay
Not Before My Time, The Amy O'Neill Songbook
The Last Record Party
Into the Washboard Millennium
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Having become familiar with Dave Hogan through his session-work with Windsor, CT-based The Grimm Gen...Having become familiar with Dave Hogan through his session-work with Windsor, CT-based The Grimm Generation, it was no surprise that Hogan’s ultra-rootsy, Americana-influenced solo work would be so confident, strident and decidedly ear-candy for a destitute, world-weary soul. Hogan’s songwriting and musical style bear resemblance to some contemporary titans of the same genre: Hayes Carl, Justin Townes Earl and the now pre-historic Uncle Tupelo.
Working within the same musical landscape — Hogan’s articulate, gritty, lyrically savvy tales of errant lovers and personal failures make for a heady brew of buoyant tunes.
The opening track, “Time Can Change,” is reminiscent of Uncle Tupelo’s nascent forays into the burgeoning early 90’s re-examination of Gram Parson’s country rock playground, but rather bit middle of the road. Hogan channel’s Uncle Tupelo’s Jay Farrar’s vocal mid-range so successfully at times, that it’s hard to distinguish the two.
While a bit maudlin, “Go Away,” conjures up a certain Pure Prairie League vibe, (which isn’t such a bad thing in world of crappy music — how often do you turn off “Aimee” these days while listening to terrestrial radio?).
The standout track, “Downbound Train,” is a chugging country-punk tune, brimming with youthful optimism and a cocky resoluteness as Hogan practically shouts, “I am Orpheus, natural born son,” and declare he’s a “different man made for different times,” raising the specter of the legendary Greek’s divine music which was rejected by his contemporaries.
While it’s impossible to please every musical purist, Dave Hogan, is certainly a major player in the new breed of regional Americana. He hasn’t carved out a decidedly Connecticut sound (if that is possible), but he’s created the foundation by which others can certainly follow his lead. —Vincent Bator
The Record-Journal, Meriden, CT
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In the months before the Daffodil Festival, music director Rob DeRosa burns the midnight oil, perfec...In the months before the Daffodil Festival, music director Rob DeRosa burns the midnight oil, perfecting his all-Connecticut musical lineup.
Just when DeRosa thought he had the perfect 32-band mixture of sounds, Dave Hogan came knocking at his door with his smooth, bluesy sound looking for a spot. Never the one to turn away local talent, DeRosa accommodated and made Hogan the festival's 33rd performer.
"After years of honing the schedule to maximize the amount of acts in a reasonable time, I had settled on 32 as our best number," said DeRosa. "This year we celebrate 33 years as a festival, so I thought I'd add a 33rd performer."
Hogan will act as a roving musician at the festival, performing two songs on all three stages on the festival's opening day, Saturday, April 30.
Music has been a part of Hogan's life since he was 12 years old. He has been playing his own style of rock and roll, blues and folk for 16 years.
"My musical background is a mix of a lot of different sounds," said Hogan, who hails from Stratford. "There's folk, hard rock and blues thrown all together. I kind of like to mix it all together, and what comes out is this Americana sound. Some is a little harder and some is folksier. There is even some country in there."
Hogan plays mainly originals with his group Graylight Campfire. He throws a few covers into his sets, but tries to stay true to his own creative juices.
Hogan is a seven-year veteran of Gathering of the Vibes, an annual summer music festival in Bridgeport. The performances have made him right at home when performing to outdoor crowd.
"Outdoor shows are great," Hogan said. "They have their own energy. You gotta throw it out there a little more because people tend to spread out a little bit when they are outdoors. If you get a nice day, you can feel the good vibe. You get the elements around you and that's really what music is all about."
Though he is most comfortable playing with the breeze blowing through his rock-star long-brown hair, Hogan will take a gig just about anywhere for a chance to share his music.
"I got a lot of gigs popping up all over the place, both big and small," Hogan said. "Wherever I can get a gig I'll be playing. We play the opening gig at Stratford Little League and play at pig roasts and parities. Big gigs, small gigs, indoor or outdoor, I just wanna play as much as possible." —Stephanie O’Connell
The Alt. Country Forum, The Netherlands
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The American Dave Hogan is a seasoned musician in his heart and to his core. His search through a w...The American Dave Hogan is a seasoned musician in his heart and to his core. His search through a wide range of styles including folk, hard rock, bluegrass, country and blues has given him a wealth of musical material.
In recent years, the singer and guitarist from Stratford, Connecticut has been active with his band Graylight Campfire, however we're discussing Hogan's solo project, Fun Box. This time machine turns the clock back forty years to the era of the untitled debut album by Crazy Horse. Hogan was inspired by it, as it's one of his favorite records.
The album Fun Box spent overtime in my CD player as the rain pattered against my windows these last days. Along with Hogan's voice, guitar and piano, Graylight Campfire bandmates Dennis Jackson (drums), Brian O'Callaghan (bass) and some friends including Jason P. Krug (vocals), Kris Santala (vocals) and Tim "T-Bone" Stone (keys) on the album draw cheerfully from the alt. country and Americana keg.
The semi-acoustic High, Dry & Lonesome, Go Away, Downbound Train, and Out in the Open are all strong songs with a prancing Crazy Horse on his team.
They're infinitely charged with both authentic and contemporary feeling. Must an artist reinvent himself each time, or maybe just do what he does best? I lean back in my chair when I hear for the umpteenth time the now-familiar and elegant sounds of Next Time Around, World's Oldest Question (want to be singin' the blues?) and Please Come Home. And you know how that is? By the conviction and the charm brought by this incredible album by Dave Hogan.
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Guitarist and songwriter Dave Hogan has a broad background in music to his credit with groups such a...Guitarist and songwriter Dave Hogan has a broad background in music to his credit with groups such as Red One, The Great Upsetters and The Rafter Bats, probably all completely unknown to European music fans. In 2006, this musician from Bridgeport, Connecticut branched out as a solo artist, and ventured into the Americana and alt. country genre.
With his backing group "Graylight Campfire," 2008 and 2010 saw the release of two albums, to only moderate success. Quitting isn't in Dave's vocabulary, so he gathered some musical friends around him in the studio to record his new solo album, "Fun Box." Ten original compositions were given a place on this record, most notably easy-listening Americana songs.
Opener "Time Can Change," "High, Dry & Lonesome" and "Next Time Around" offer a good swinging pace, reminiscent of Neil Young & Crazy Horse, a group that Dave Hogan himself claims as his main source of inspiration.
The acoustic Neil Young (or was it our own Admiral Freebee) was probably in Dave Hogan's mind when he wrote "Out In The Open", the closing number of this record. A few more tracks worth looking at, slower tempo country songs "World's Oldest Question" and "Please Come Home," followed by the frenzied, turbo-charged "Downbound Train," in what we can we say is rock and roll in its purest form.
It goes without saying that Dave Hogan and his friends had a lot of fun recording this album, and that good time radiates entirely in the quality of the ten songs that shine on this beautiful album. --Valère Sampermans
Time Machine Music, Serbia
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A Bridgeport, Connecticut-based songwriter, vocalist and guitarist, Dave Hogan is a veteran of three...A Bridgeport, Connecticut-based songwriter, vocalist and guitarist, Dave Hogan is a veteran of three critically-acclaimed groups: Red One, The Great Upsetters, and The Rafter Bats. He’s been a musician for most of his life, having collaborated with a large number of musicians through the years. His solo career started in 2006, and “Fun Box is his current full-length release, featuring 10 tracks.
Dave successfully handles multiple genres. His musical style ranges from Americana and alt. country tendencies, to 70's rock and acoustic, with some additional elements in between as well to tell a complete story. His vocal interpretation is extremely convincing. It possesses a fresh energy; a very personal and enthusiastic view. What is also important to say, all of his 10 songs are accessible yet refined, thus should satisfy even the average listener’s ear.
In some aspects his work reminds me of James Taylor, but the album itself presents its own personality. Dave as a songwriter has shown enough of his own “tricks” and catchy melodies that offer an original portrayal of his musical heritage.
“Fun Box” as an album satisfies in every regard, and I recommend it particularly for old school and 70's music fans. —Branimir Lokner