Dan Strauss

Dan Strauss


Dan Strauss is a Singer/Songwriter who evokes elements of Nick Drake, John Lennon, Jeff Tweedy and Ray LaMontagne. The wistful, melodic songs are textured with many styles: folk, country, and rock. His songs are steeped in melody and lush hooks with lyrics that tell stories familiar and new


Dan Strauss began his music career at the tender age of 7, encouraged to take piano lessons by parents who were themselves avid music enthusiasts. �I grew up in a house in Queens where there was always music playing,� says Strauss. �The Beatles, Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, Simon and Garfunkle, Beethoven, Mozart, Bob Dylan, Lena Horne and others made up the musical tapestry in that house.�
It should therefore come as no surprise that Strauss, who at the age of 15 added guitar and harmonica feathers to his songwriting cap, pens tales about life and relationships with a Dylan-esque insight, Springsteen sincerity and classical music sensitivity. Whatever the message, each song is charmingly delivered through an engaging, untainted voice and a mature musical palate that incorporates elements of rock, country, jazz and folk music. Dan�s songs offer a rich diversity in their structure and sound. One minute, you are listening to a lush, harmony-laden pop ditty drenched in a Phil Specter-like wall of sound blanket and the next you are immersed in a sparse, haunting ballad reminiscent of Jeff Buckley, Elliott Smith or Bruce Springsteen.
Songwriters cover the basic topics of life, love, the state of the world. Dan�s songs are no different, but his style of storytelling and lyrics are wholly unique, filled with rich metaphors and subtle references to literature and songwriting that precedes his own. He will find a way of expressing the simplicity of a quiet night, a dream or a New Year�s Eve in words that leave you needing to listen again to fully understand the picture he is painting.
In 2001, Dan released his first CD, Renting Happiness. This CD, recorded in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (only a few blocks away from where his father was born in 1939) captures the sonic landscape of his 30-plus years. You can hear all of his influences as well as his love for a variety of styles present on songs such as Best Thing, Cosmic Child, and the title track. In 2005, Dan upped the ante with Rocking Chair. Working with producer Cyrille Taillandier, who had just completed Lenny Kravitz�s Baptism, Dan took songs that he had written one summer in a cabin nestled in the woods of New Hampshire, and created, what songwriter Jerusha Korim called �a string of jewels.�

From the opening guitar riff of Cold, the first track on the CD, Rocking Chair delivers 12 songs that are melodic, lyrical, playful, vivid, poignant and pure. Imagine The Beatles, Wilco, and Beck with a dash of early Elvis Costello and The Pretenders and you have an inkling of what is in store. After the release of Rocking Chair, Dan took to the stage as often as possible (he is also a middle school science teacher), playing such New York City venues as The Knitting Factory and The Living Room. Audiences continue to find a strong connection to what Dan�s songs are about, amazed at how he is able to capture what they have gone through and felt in their own lives, and they are hard-pressed to stay in their seats when they hear the opening chords of songs such as The Red Tornado, Six Years in June, or Dan�s brilliant and powerful cover of George Harrison�s All Things Must Pass.
These days, Dan continues to write and record in his Brooklyn apartment. Over the past two years, he has written over a dozen new songs that are considered some of his best. He has taken leave of the big pop sound that so perfectly captured the songs on Rocking Chair, and found a mesmerizing voice in the stripped-down styles in which he has recorded demos of songs such as Lost My Way, Orbit of You, Better, and Flower Shop.
It is clear, once you have heard Dan�s music that he is carrying a torch - one that was lit by Buddy Holly and has been passed on through the decades to artists such as Josh Rouse, Beth Orton and Ray LaMontagne. As he continues to grow as a songwriter, he taps into such emotion and memory that you literally feel that you are part of his life, and you find a bit of your own life hidden within the wistful, spirited songs oozing from your speakers.


Orbit of You

Written By: Dan Strauss

Broken glass and the rain won’t stop. Think fast, get up on your feet now.
The railroad car’s out back. And California’s in your soul now.
I’ve got nothing against the rain, I wouldn’t even try to change it if I could
I wouldn’t even try to call you.

If I could be down at the shore, I would wait – I would wait no more.
I’d paint the colors that I see in you. Mostly different shades of blue
Last night I could feel summer end, felt a little like a friend.
Made me want to walk around. Made me want to go and feel this town

I’ve waited for this time. I can’t disguise the view
I hear voices echoing inside the station. I spin inside the orbit of you.

You thought for a minute that the traffic would stop. And you could just get out and fly.
Every instinct that we’ve ever had, kept us hovering outside.
I like mornings here with you. Feels like something steady.
Maybe everything is fine or maybe we’re not ready.
My guitar gets out of tune, puts me in a lousy mood.
Makes me think about the workings of our minds and

© Dan Strauss

Lost My Way

Written By: Dan Strauss

I was on my way. I was on my way
But I stopped in this town, looked around, walked around
And I lost my way. I lost my way

I was on my way. I was on my way.
My bags were packed. I had my tickets. I was on my was
Then I saw your face, and I lost my way.

Seems like yesterday. Seems like yesterday.
I woke beside you, slipped inside you, tried to find you, alibied you
And I lost my way. I lost my way.

This is everything, every little thing
All the echoing like a choir singing to me.
This is all of it, every little bit.
Got a taste for it. Gonna keep it inside of me.

Maybe years from now. Maybe years from now.
Putting walls up, pulling walls down. Changing faces, leaving this town.
I’ll find my way. I’ll find my way.
I was on my way (3x)

© Dan Strauss


Written By: Dan Strauss

Can you hear the sound of wheels
On the rain-soaked streets?
Can you feel the morning pass
And your skin against the sheets?

Its almost like wishing

See the actions you almost take
The satisfactions you almost make
California to Montreal
Didn’t learn anything at all.

I tried to get you off my mind
(Drove around a lot and wasted lots of time.)

You’ve got so many things I need. (Its complete now)
I look around me and I see (its complete now)
Our time capsule fills with all these things.

So much to be thankful for
The safety of your wooden floor
I hate to think of you tonight
Traveling lost in the moonlight

The rain won’t stop falling

Can you feel the collapse
Punctured by the doubts we have
Not enough people following through

Even though they know what they need to do.

© Dan Strauss

Open and Shut

Written By: Dan Strauss

Open and Shut
Words and music by Dan Strauss
© 2009

This is where we started
And this is where we’ve come.
I didn’t say things
Exactly as I had them in my mind
Nowhere is everywhere
A piece of the kingdom
For a day’s work done
Pack up your things
Tie up your boots
For a long, hard climb

Can’t you once come find me
‘Cause I keep finding you
You just go on running for cover
And I keep coming through

I was a breath, turned into the wind
I was the sand turned into the sea

What is it you’re looking for
Fear’s a long way down
Here I am right outside your door
Kind of just hanging around.
The path, hard to find in wintertime
Unwrap the memory
Remember what your hand
felt like in mine and put the rest away

Can’t you once come find me
‘Cause I keep finding you
You just go on running for cove.
And I keep coming through

I was stone turned into the mountain
I was alone turned into the universe


Renting Happiness, 2001
Splendid, 2003
Rocking Chair, 2006
Circles, 2009

Set List

Lost My Way
Renting Happiness
Orbit of You
Heavy Heart
Rocking Chair
Your Love
All Things Must Pas (George Harrison)
Six Years in June