Dave Isaacs

Dave Isaacs

BandAmericanaAdult Contemporary

Van Morrison meets Gov't Mule.

Biography

A master musician. A vocalist of soul-baring intensity and power. Every great musical partnership creates an identity of its own that is greater than the individuals that comprise it, and in coming together as Good Souls the duo of Dave Isaacs and Briana Hardyman both embody and transcend this truth. In the tradition of great vocal pairings like Fleetwood Mac’s Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham or the duo recordings of Emmylou Harris and Gram Parsons, Hardyman and Isaacs’ voices blend effortlessly with a character and personality all their own.

Musical driving force Dave Isaacs is himself a walking testament to the power of disparate elements coalescing into a new whole. A classically-trained musician with a jazzer’s sense of improvisational daring, he was raised on the mountain sounds of his mother’s Appalachian roots and found his first inspirations as a guitarist in the driving blues-rock of Eric Clapton and the Allman Brothers. He has shared a stage with the legendary Les Paul and collaborated with acclaimed Southern folk poet and Americana artist Tom House (co-author of the closing track on Good Souls’ debut album, the wistful “When I Was Young”). His all-instrumental 2004 solo release Flying earned him national attention and accolades with features in Jazz Improv and 20th Century Guitar magazines, while his previous work fronting NYC-based country-rock band Jackalope Junction received nationwide radio play and praise for his adroit and sophisticated songwriting. A master teacher, he leads regular workshops for the Nashville Songwriters Association and is developing a comprehensive curriculum for performing songwriters to learn to better accompany themselves.

Briana Hardyman’s soft-spoken and easy manner offer little hint of the electric transformation that comes over her in live performance. Formally trained as a theatrical actress, she is a master of the dramatic gesture and a riveting presence onstage. Her singing is alternately tender and defiant, with a compelling vulnerability tempered by the wisdom of hard-won experience and the sorrow of loss. Her songwriting is steeped in the classic country that formed the soundtrack to her childhood on a Wisconsin dairy farm, but molded by the sophisticated folk of Patty Griffin and the vibrant blues and soul of Bonnie Raitt. Her debut recording Only A Dream was produced by folk veteran Tret Fure, whose mentoring and influence are apparent in the maturity and depth of Hardyman’s lyrics.

Since the chance meeting in a Nashville bar that brought Isaacs and Hardyman together, Good Souls has rapidly evolved into an established band with gigs throughout the mid-South.

Lyrics

Angels Wings

Written By: Hardyman/Isaacs

2 AM, the telephone rings
you called to say that you felt something
you played me a song about angels wings
every time you listen you think about me

what it means, the answer you seek
what your feelings mean to me
but I can't go back or help you heal
now that you finally feel
you'll find your angels wings
now that you feel something

I looked at the clock, put on a coffee pot
poured myself a cup, I had to say some things
you feel like you're swimming but the tide's too strong
you've got to feel it you've got to move along

what it means, the answer you seek
what your feelings mean to me
but I can't go back or help you heal
now that you finally feel
you'll find your angels wings
now that you feel something

i've walked the line
you can't come to me
every time you feel something

sing your song, make believe that you still get to me
but I can't go back or help you heal
now that you finally feel
you'll find your angels wings
now that you feel something

Rag Doll

Written By: Hosking/Criss

He wonders what goes on in that head when she’ so far away
Sometimes when she’s lost in the clouds he doesn’t know what to say
livin’s not forever but she feels like she’s never begun
always working but never getting anything that she wants done

Chorus:
That’s what’s on her mind
All those sleepless nights
Lying there staring at the walls
While he’s by her side
She watches the time go by
Learning how the shadows fall
Feelin’ like an old rag doll

Is this really all she has to show for growing older
Her boy’s in trouble again, what now, God only knows
living’s not forever and this ain’t what livin’s for
Always giving everything, now she’s got nothing more

Repeat chorus:

Bridge:
When she reaches her lowest point
He reminds her of her heart
That’s bigger than the life she’s living
And we all play our part

Chorus/Outro:
That’s what’s on her mind
All those sleepless nights
Lying there staring at the walls
While he’s by her side
He said its ok to cry
And she knows just who to call
When she’s feelin like an old rag doll

When Are You Coming Back Home

Written By: Isaacs/Quealy

Rain beatin' down on the windshield
sun's just beginning to rise
the freeway's so crowded but I'll all alone
remembering our last goodbye
I guess it's not raining where you are
reminds me we're too far apart

when are you coming back home?
been so lonely since you been gone
when are you coming back home?
come on back to me

seems a little bit cold for October
could winter already be here?
you said you'd be back when the job was all done
now it's been over a year
everyone thinks that I'm so strong
but I've been pretending for too long

when are you coming back home?
been so lonely since you been gone
when are you coming back home?
come on back to me

traffic is moving so slow
more bad news on the radio
I don't wanna hear it

When I Was Young

Written By: Isaacs/Tom House

When I was young and trusted easy
miracles were commonplace
I stood toe to toe with angels
sang their praises, felt their grace

When I was young and trusted easy
revelation shook my head
I was quick to take the highway
never questioned what I did

come a time the clock stops ticking
doors start sticking, gears get jammed
I did what I did a-gallop
I'll be damned, I'll be damned

When I was young and trusted easy
miracles were commonplace
I stood toe to toe with angels
sang their praises, felt their grace

I could stretch and touch the sky
feel the sunlight cheek to cheek
I could catch a wind myself
voices tell me what to speak

come a time when reason fails
Gospel turned to fairy tales
simple truths that might have been
never mine to hold again

When I was young and trusted easy
miracles were commonplace
I stood toe to toe with angels
sang their praises, felt their grace

Into Blue

Written By: Isaacs

You and I, we've been learning
all these things about each other
we never really wanted to know

you and I on our island
all the bridges burning
trapped when there's no place to go

though it's always so sad
when a good thing turns bad
there's nothing more we can do
everything fades into blue

Side by side we were standing
in a dream I remember
it must have been so long ago

day by day, we were changing
it's not hard to understand it
but some things aren't easy to know

though it's always so sad
when a good thing turns bad
there's nothing more we can do
everything fades into blue

Discography

1998 Jackalope Junction: A Sense Of Direction
2001 Jackalope Junction: Just Drive
2003 Dave Isaacs: Prodigal Son
2004 Dave Isaacs: Flying
2006: Dave Isaacs: Old King Crow
2008: Good Souls: Good Souls

National radio play on all releases. Principal or only songwriter on all releases.

Set List

No typical setlist, music varies according to the venue. The band is very flexible and can go from jazz to blues to rock to country, sometimes in the same set. Repertoire is constantly evolving but the base is a constant 150-200 songs, plus six albums worth of original material and new songs being written all the time. Average ratio of covers to originals is about 50-50.