David Statzer
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David Statzer

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"Napan Returns from Nashille with Debut CD Under His Belt"

David Statzer
Napan Returns from Nashville with Debut CD Under His Belt


Southern charm is alive and well, right here in Napa , and goes by the name of David Statzer. The friendly, good-natured, jovial Virginia-born Napan, who still proudly carries his southern drawl with him, currently divides his time between his life in Napa , trips to Nashville recording studios and a growing nation-wide performance schedule. I first saw and heard Statzer, a couple of years ago when his band happened to be playing at DG’s, a local club that typically featured jazz and blues. I was somewhat surprised to hear that a country-rock band was playing, but had always been impressed by the music and musicians that played the club, so I eagerly went down to check out the David Statzer Band. It turned out to be a great evening of great music performed by great musicians. Statzer, playing bass, had Denny Collert on lead guitar, Mark Laybourne on 2nd lead guitar, John Lowrey on harmonica and Sandy Baca drums. They did an eclectic mix of country and rock and produced harmonies not often heard in contemporary music, rivaling some of the best I have ever heard, reminiscent of those of the Eagles and CSN&Y. A bassist and vocalist, Statzer has been singing and performing since his early childhood - first in church and later in various bands. His love of music and attachment to his country roots, has kept him involved in music throughout his life. He has continued to perform music in various bands for most of his life, but has been building a serious musical career over the past 20 years. Nashville seems to have finally taken notice.

Early this year, in what Statzer described as one of those rare, “must have been meant to be meetings that almost didn’t happen,” he teamed up with not only a stellar song-writing team, but also some of Nashville’s best session musicians, producers and recording engineers. As Statzer tells the story about a visit to Nashville where he was taken to a local American Legion Hall to a writers’ session - a kind of open-mic night for songwriters where the writers sing their songs, and a cornucopia of Nashville’s songwriters, singers, musicians, and other industry talent (the famous as well as the soon-to-be-famous) drop in. By the end of the evening Statzer had been introduced to a songwriter by the name of Terry Dennis. “We really felt this instant connection,” Statzer said, and ultimately the two teamed up with the intention to have Statzer record some of Dennis’ songs. In February of this year, Statzer signed on with Three Hat Productions and recording began. The result has been Statzer’s first full-length cd, entitled, “Until I Get it Down.” The combination of Statzer’s rich, soulful, southern vocals and his talented Nashville collaborators, is a cd filled with the roots of country music –heartbreaking love songs, tender ballads, country blues and bit of honky-tonk; the sweet interplay of pedal steel guitar with country fiddle, topped off with Statzer’s vocals and Nashville harmonies. Though all of the songs are originals, written or co-written by Dennis, they have a distinctly traditional feel, which, according to Statzer, “was intentional.” “We really tried to pay tribute to some of the traditional music,” Statzer said, “and people have been telling us how much they appreciate it.” Growing up listening to and admiring the talents of Waylon Jennings, Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, Steve Wariner and Elvis, and later having been bitten by the southern rock of Lynyrd Skynyrd and the modern country of Johnny Lee, Statzer’s music combines his many diverse musical influences and “Until I Get it Down,” reflects this well while still sticking quite close to its traditional country roots.

Statzer is currently returning to the road to complete a tour of the southeast with fellow Three Hat artist Michael Ken and is beginning plans for the formal release of the “Until I Get it Down.” To hear Statzer’s music for yourself and to keep an eye on his schedule, visit him on the web at www.davidstatzer.com. “Until I Get it Down,” can be found at www.cdbaby.com and downloads at www.Itunes.com.

- Napa Valley Life


Discography

First single release is MUGWUMP

Second release in UK "Until I Get It Down" Off ablum of same title. Debuted at 34 and topped at 22, still remains in the top 40

Third release "I Refuse To Get The Blues" Scheduled for release in April 2008

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Bio

The “stats” are best told by STATZ himself. So, just picture yourself sitting in a nice comfortable chair listening to what he, in his warm, friendly and somewhat witty fashion, tells you about himself.

I was born in Saltville, Virginia, not much more than a wide place in the road and home for only about 1,600 people. My father was one of those colorful characters you hear about… a magician, ventriloquist, singer and dancer, even performed on Vaudeville. He was known to have tipped the bottle perhaps a little too often too!

Mom was the rock… good, kind and understanding with a heart of gold. She believed angels walked the earth and I believe SHE was one of them! She always told me there was some special reason I was put hear on earth. You know what I’m gonna say it is, don’t ya’? Yep, MUSIC! I started singing somewhere around the age of six. I remember riding in that old Ford Falcon, playing in the back seat with Merle Haggard, Johnny Cash and George Jones playing on the radio, Country music was always on the radio and in my blood.

The plant my dad worked at shut down and at eleven years old the family moved to Georgia. It was in those Georgia churches, that I first took a real interest in playing music. At 14 years old, I started playing bass in church (lots of music there and I loved it). I began to travel with several gospel groups, including the Kings Kids, all over the Southeast playing churches and tent revivals every weekend.

Years passed, I grew up with the influences of everything from Lynyrd Skynyrd to Conway Twitty. After school, I wound up down in Louisiana where I went to work at an oil refinery. It was around the time that Johnny Lee came out with, “Looking For Love” and the Urban Cowboy era. That’s when I really began playing country and shortly after, I got into playing the clubs. There were several bands and then came “Backroads” which is where I learned about the road and how rough it can be. A common gig in those days would began at 9:00 PM
and go till about 4:00 in the morning. A year and a half went by and the group disbanded. Time rolled by and I had an opportunity to join The Stone Mountain Band with Buddy Andrews as the leader. Buddy became my music mentor, and taught me so much in so little time about the entertainment business. Buddy was a very talented musician that played in numerous major road acts such as George Jones and Johnny Duncan. Armed with some newfound wisdom and more experience under my belt I put the Backroads band back together. We started out in a small roadhouse in LaPlace, Louisiana and within six months, we were booked solid, playing every weekend and many week nights, opening for Nashville recording artist such as Steve Wariner, Tammy Wynette, Billy Joe Royal, Moe Bandy and John Wesley Ryles just to name a few.

I eventually moved to California where I continued to play with numerous local artists and one night in late 1990, I met the girl of my dreams, Renee. She’s been by my side ever since. She was the one I was looking for all my life and I owe everything to her. She’s the angel that puts the soul in my songs and the drive in me to succeed!

This sure enough isn’t all there is to know about David Statzer, just a thumbnail sketch so to speak! His voice and music speak for themselves. Throughout his music career he’s shared the stage with some of the best … or did THEY!!!