Don DiLego
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Don DiLego

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE | AFTRA

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE | AFTRA
Band Americana Singer/Songwriter

Calendar

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Sep
29
Don DiLego @ The Bowery Electric

New York, New York, United States

New York, New York, United States

Sep
23
Don DiLego @ Live at Drew's

Ringwood, New Jersey, United States

Ringwood, New Jersey, United States

Aug
31
Don DiLego @ Belmar Boardwalk

Belmar, New Jersey, United States

Belmar, New Jersey, United States

Music

Press


"Touches base with Jeff Tweedy...like an outtake of Neil Young's Harvest Moon"

Sad country pop and a well executed Replacements cover - Here Comes a Regular - laid down live with only a few overdubs. NYC Singer-songwriter Don DiLego recorded his new his new EP Western & Atlantic in Charlottesville, VA and Portland, OR.
DiLego has a loose approach to his songs, allowing his fellow musicians to add textures and snippets. From the EP's opener, the slide guitar driven Midnight Train to the final track, the intimate Carry On he touches base with Jeff Tweedy and Howe Gelb. Television Sun starts like an outtake of Neil Young's Harvest Moon before evolving into a road movie theme song that could have been written by Steve Earle. - HERE COMES THE FLOOD


"Jaw-droppingly good"

I am almost embarrassed to admit that I’d never heard any- thing by Don DiLego before this jaw-droppingly good EP came across my desk a few weeks back. The seven near-perfect alterna-?tive country tracks will appeal to anyone who likes Ryan Adams, and ensures that DiLego will remain on my musical radar from here on out.
“Midnight Train” is the ideal scene-setter and DiLego addition- ally scores with “Chicago,” “The Holiday,” “Lonely Couples,” “Carry On” and an inspired cover of the Replacements’ “Here Comes a Regular.” Highly recommended.
—Jeffrey Sisk (The Daily News - McKeesport, PA) - The Daily News - McKeesport, PA


"Don DiLego Press Quotes"

Album: PHOTOGRAPHS OF 1971

"With Photographs Of 1971, Don DiLego has taken another step towards establishing himself as one of this generation's best up-and-coming singer-songwriters."
– BLOGCRITICS MAGAZINE

“The sparse arrangements and plaintive vocals create a wondrous setting with flecks of mellotron and the lonesome, weeping whine of the omnipresent pedal steel. A Masterful follow up to his Lonestar Hitchhiker series." - THE BIG TAKEOVER!

"Equal parts heartache and redemption, ‘Photographs of 1971,’ provides the soundtrack to the highs and lows of our human experience. Life has thousands of moods, and it seems to me that Don can write a song for each of them. Today, ‘Ghosts’ is striking a chord with me. Yesterday it was, “Dreamin.’ Who knows what it will be tomorrow." - LIVE 365/DAMON FERRARA -

"From lonesome heartachers to smart, sparkly, alt-country pop, Don DiLego’s brand of sometimes subdued, sometimes punchy twang-rock finds it’s true north on "Photographs of 1971." Volume up!" - XM RADIO-KATE BRADLEY/MUSIC DIRECTOR XM-50 -

"Photographs of 1971" is one of those records that creep up on you, a great vibe and very strong tunes. We have been spinning four songs from the album for quite a while, and it really does sound better each time. Give this one a listen, you won't be sorry. - XM RADIO-MIKE MARRONE/PROGRAM DIRECTOR/THE LOFT -

"Don DiLego is a storyteller who invokes vivid imagery in the vein of Johnny Cash. It’s apparent that DiLego feels everything he sings. "Photographs of 1971" is a great album for anyone embarking on a trip across the country or those just needing a dose of quality Americana. (Velvet Elk Records) - NORTHEAST PERFORMER -



<B>Album: THE LONESTAR HITCHHIKER & THE LONESTAR COMPANION</B>

“New York City's emerging folk-twang songsmith, Don DiLego, is alt-country's next poster boy.” -ROLLING STONE.COM-

“Not since Bruce Springsteen's Nebraska has a concept album been more stirring or truthful. Lonestar Hitchhiker calls to mind a sense of the down-trodden romantic America that has laid in torpor since the Beat Generation. DiLego's surprisingly twangy voice brings a heartfelt realism to his incredibly diverse soundscapes and his songs demand to be listened to. With a rich sense of orchestration, the album is masterfully arranged in a way that is reminscent of “Smile”-era Beach Boys. The instrumentation is more than amazing, it remains wonderfully understated, highly befitting, and never distracting. If songwriting isn’t hard enough in keeping genuine and unique, then concept albums are down right next to impossible. Don DiLego manages both with great ease, making Lonestar Hitchhiker a true and significant masterpiece.” - NORTHEAST PERFORMER -

“Inspired by a rather innocent New York City subway conversation, Don DiLego spent months travelling along Route 66 to discover different people and their stories. The end product is an Americana, trip-hop account that is as intriguing as it is quirky. Most of the album lends itself to roots rock in the vein of Wilco. The '60s pop in "Nicotine Prom Queen" and the nomadic balladry of "Border Song" make the record surpass possible expectations. "I've passed the point where my common sense died," DiLego sings. The coda throws a wrench into the overall effort but, nonetheless, the craftsmanship often comes to the fore, particularly on "California." –ALL-MUSIC GUIDE, PICK! -


"The songs on the album reflect years of growth and self evaluation. Tracks like "New Road" and "Border Song" have a cool Americana – Country vibe. This is an artist that's destined for greatness. - MP3.COM -

"An eclectic blend of folk Americana and straightforward rock, “Hitchhiker” is a wonderful musical snapshot…and the songwriting is magnificent! “The Lonestar Hitchhiker” is an album to put in your car CD player and ride."
- ST. LOUIS “MGD” GUIDE -


"This is a concept record at its trippiest. DiLego comes away with a cinematic album-a spacy, visual journey replete with madness, menace and cheap hotels. Intricately arranged pieces of quirky Americana that beg to be filmed as a kind of documentary/feature. Has Hollywood ever optioned a record before?"
- PERFORMING SONGWRITER -


"The Lonestar Hitchhiker is a strong debut. It presents a man who is obviously confident about who he is and what he is doing. The title track here ought to be a big hit. "Goodnight, Aliens" is even better...a soft and subdued piece which shows just how good this guy's voice is... (Rating: 4++)" - BABYSUE.COM -


"DiLego really is quite accomplished as a crafter and arranger, brilliantly blending samples and loops with more traditional singer-songwriter instrumentation. Unexpectedly, this talent manifests itself in a series of piano-based ballads that would put a smile on Ben Fold’s face. His best hook, “Ohio Fight Song” locks into an insanely catchy organ/infectious guitar riff groove for a track that c - Multiple Listings


"RollingStone Review-Lonestar Companion"

Alt-countryers who shudder every time Ryan Adams is held up like a God need look no further than New York City's emerging songsmith, Don DiLego. DiLego's The Lonestar Companion -- Vol. 2 is a crossover gem, full of folk-twang, falsettos and road tales that are intended to accompany his ambitious 2001 debut, The Lonestar Hitchhiker -- Vol. 1. But Vol. 2 can stand strongly on its own. In contrast to the layered, if-Beck-went-alt-country Vol. 1, Vol. 2 relies on acoustic guitar, engaging melodies and front-porch harmonies. Still, the same influences remain: Hank Williams, early Wilco and even the Beach Boys. And while DiLego is a talented multi-instrumentalist, like his influences, his emphasis is on songwriting. The gorgeous bridge in the upbeat opener "Miss Louisa's Daffodills" and the Casio keyboard in the experimental "Election" reflect DiLego's talent for penning at once dynamic and catchy songs. Vol. 2 also reveals DiLego's softer side, as he quiets down for the cello driven "August 18, 1805" and duets with folk-pop princess Bree Sharp -- whom he produces -- on "Ol' Hank Williams." Though the under forty minutes of music may leave some feeling cheated, this collection satisfies those who swear by Vol. 1, and provides everyone else with a noteworthy introduction to alt-country's next poster boy. (BENJAMIN FRIEDLAND) - RollingStone.com


"NE Performer Mag Review-Lonestar Hitchhiker"

Don DiLego ought to be incredibly proud of his road trip inspired album, “The Lonestar Hitchhiker”. Not since Bruce Springsteen's “Nebraska” has a concept album been more stirring or truthful. Like a wizened hobo troubadour, DiLego extends his incredible journey to anyone lucky enough to listen, but instead of doing such with an antiquated Americana folksiness, the songs remain appropriately modern, bringing a sense of dangerously revealing honesty. Hailing from New York, ex-Bostonian Don DiLego is probably best known around these parts for his rock band Standing on Earth, who held a fleeting until snubbed-by-Sony success. After a brief and brutal stint in California, he traveled to New York and began his venture as a solo artist, which very quickly got him a record deal with Universal. Lonestar Hitchhiker is his first solo album. “Lonestar Hitchhiker” calls to mind depressing Greyhound bus stations, strange truck stops, neon strip malls bustling with Midwestern starving culture and most of all, a sense of the down trodden romantic America that has laid in torpor since the Beat Generation. It stands as testament to a way of life we have long since taken for granted. DiLego's surprisingly twangy voice brings a heartfelt realism to his incredibly diverse soundscapes and his songs demand to be listened to due to their refreshing unpretentiousness and utter conviction. With a rich sense of orchestration, the album is masterfully arranged in a way that is reminscent of “Smile”-era Beach Boys (which to this reviewer is probably one of the highest accolades one can get). The instrumentation is more than amazing, it remains wonderfully understated and highly befitting, never distracting from whatever mood DiLego settles on. If songwriting is hard enough in keeping genuine and unique, then concept albums are down right next to impossible. Don DiLego manages both with great ease, making “Lonestar Hitchhiker” a true and significant masterpiece. - Performer Magazine


"Pop Matters Review - Photographs of 1971"

Don DiLego got the idea for this album by looking at old photographs, deciding to bring those still pictures of bygone days back to life. While it’s often a cathartic process for some, it’s just as often mired in self-pity and melancholia. Fortunately, Don DiLego bypasses all that “woe is me” feeling for the most part, especially on the smart kick starter “Dreamin’”, which sounds like a classic Sloan album cut. A lot of these tracks would be perfect road music, especially the slow-building but catchy “The City or the War”. However, he can’t escape the dour moments with “At the Texaco”, which has some fine guitar accents offsetting the piano. This is quickly forgotten about with a tender “Automatic” that would have Chris Isaak jealous. DiLego chooses an interesting cover for the album with the Kinks’ “I’m Not Like Everybody Else”, giving it a darker tone. But DiLego is at his best with an Americana flavoring, as is the case with the title track, and the weary alt.country nugget “My Misery Is a Fairy Tale”. The breezy, David Gilmour-tinged pop of “Rosemary’s Suite” is another keeper. Tender and thoughtful, DiLego has made a very good album of audible Polaroids. - Pop Matters


"BlogCritics Review-Photographs of 1971"

"I kinda have a 'thing' for the art of the 70s," Don DiLego writes in the liner notes to his third album, Photographs Of 1971. "There was a particular sense of style and rhythm in what we saw on the movie screen and in still photographs."
DiLego's affinity for that much-maligned decade doesn't stop there. With its compressed acoustic guitars and flat snare drum sound, Photographs Of 1971, firmly establish him as a disciple of the singer-songwriter movement of the early-to-mid-70s, and there are plenty of references to that genre throughout the CD. The intro to the gorgeous "At The Texaco" references John Lennon's "Jealous Guy," "Falling Into Space" uses the rhythm from Tom Petty's "American Girl" as a starting point, and the chorus "Rosemary's Suite" contains harmonies that wouldn't have sounded out of place on a Badfinger classic. Finally, there's also a blistering cover of The Kinks' "I'm Not Like Everybody Else."

DiLego even breaks the 16-track, 59-minute CD into two sides, as if it were an LP. That old-school method of sequencing gives him the opportunity to showcase the lovely "Dreaming" as the opening track. Side Two opens with the title track, the album's emotional centerpiece, and then moves into a sort of suite, with three self-written hymns interspersed throughout the remaining songs to provide a sense of continuity as the arrangements grow sparser and more experimental from the straightforward tracks on Side One.
Yet for all its evocations of thirty-five years ago, DiLego is not a nostalgia act determined to recreate the greatness Late For The Sky or Sweet Baby James. Rather, he's drawing upon their influence to remind us of what can be achieved by emphasizing introspection and creativity in his music. His musical sensibilities are rooted in the current Americana/alt-country sounds of Ryan Adams and the early Wilco albums, as baritone guitars, pedal steels and feedback enter in and out of the mix to provide tasteful coloring without adding clutter. But most impressive of all is DiLego's voice, an emotional versatile instrument that can go from a whisper to a soaring falsetto in an instant.
With Photographs Of 1971, Don DiLego has taken another step towards establishing himself as one of this generation's best up-and-coming singer-songwriters. Highly recommended.

- Blog Critics Magazine


"World Cafe, WXPN Review"

“The disc recaptures the rhythym of 70’s movies and photographs, as well as DiLego’s own distinct take on alt-country.” / David Dye from The World Café, WXPN - World Cafe with David Dye


"Santa Fe Reporter-Photographs of 1971"

Don DiLego’s latest album, Photographs of 1971, carries all the trademarks of DiLego’s New-York-sidestreet skinny-indie style: soaring, almost yodely intervals, heartachey lyrics of loves lost and cigarettes lit and the road stories—can’t forget the road stories. This is exactly the kind of music you’d expect from a lanky Northeastern traveler in vintage Western shirts and wavy hair blown back out the bus window.

For his third studio release, DiLego combines the narrative epic fairytales he told us in The Lonestar Hitchhiker, Vol. 1 and the scattered melancholic musings of Vol. 2 to bring us a cohesive yet varied Photographs. His bio reveals that one of his favorite films is Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and that his first album was Rhinestone Cowboy, so it’s no surprise that this western Massachusetts-born rock star has a little bit of a cowboy complex when it comes to wah-wahs and ploddy baselines. But never fear, there’s not a bolero in sight. His Western inspiration is charming when coupled with the decidedly rock-and-roll riffs and pounding intros for which DiLego also has a penchant.

Best listened to at night, perhaps while cleaning, Photographs is a little heavier than DiLego’s previous releases. But just when you think he’s stuck wallowing in poetic murmurings, he breaks the flow, as he always does, with a quick slide up the fretboard. Upbeat tracks like “Falling Into Space” (which even has cowboy-like “ya-hee”s) effortlessly combat the melancholy of “At The Texaco.” &#8232;

DiLego got the idea for the album and its title track from a pile of white-rimmed family photographs, and songs of bittersweet twang and folky nostalgia underscore what DiLego describes as “the album’s themes of giving reverence to our life’s journeys and misadventures and celebrating the pain.” It all becomes music to DiLego; everything from patrolling a bedroom in the middle of the night to a bible open in the middle of the road. And it all translates beautifully. &#8232;


© Copyright 2000–2005 by the Santa Fe Reporter

- Santa Fe Reporter


"All Music Guide-Lonestar Hitchhiker"

Three Stars- “AMG Pick”

AMG EXPERT REVIEW: Inspired by a rather innocent New York City subway conversation, Don DiLego spent months traveling along Route 66 to discover different people and their stories. The end product is an Americana, trip-hop account that is as intriguing as it is quirky. Most of the album lends itself to roots rock in the vein of Wilco, but a song like the title track calls to mind Primitive Radio Gods. Although a couple of tracks seem to fall through the sonic cracks, like "Mister Goodwill" and "The Vegas Man!," there are several instances where the passion for the project overcomes any noticeable faults. The '60s pop in "Nicotine Prom Queen" and the nomadic balladry of "Border Song" make the record surpass possible expectations. "I've passed the point where my common sense died," DiLego sings. The coda throws a wrench into the overall effort but, nonetheless, the craftsmanship often comes to the fore, particularly on "California." — Jason MacNeil

- All Music Guide


"CMJ New Music Review-"Falling Into Space""

Don DiLego / “Falling Into Space”

Indie/Alternative Channel
Playful alternative rock that unapologetically obeys straightforward chord progressions and pop mantras, Don DiLego writes of a destiny unattained, turning hardship into something agreeably digestible, though not as easily forgettable.

RIYL: Spoon, Beach Boys, Wilco

- CMJ/OurStage


Discography

Full-length CDs:

1. "The Lonestar Hitchhiker - Vol. One" - 2001
2. "The Lonestar Companion - Vol. Two" -2003
3. "Photographs of 1971" - 2006

Film:

Ranchero (Full Score - Lamppost Productions 2007)

Photos

Bio

FINALIST - INDEPENDENT MUSIC AWARDS
"BEST POP/ROCK ALBUM"

FINALIST - 2007 INTERNATIONAL SONGWRITING COMPETITION ( ISC)

FINALIST - GREAT AMERICAN SONG CONTEST 2007

HONORABLE MENTION - BILLBOARD SONG CONTEST 2007

WINNER - AUSTRALIAN SONGWRITER ASSOCIATION AWARD 2007

#14 on TRIPLE A
WORLD CAFE with DAVID DYE
NPR
XM

BONNARROO SHOWCASE 2008

Since the release of his previous album, “Photographs of 1971,” Don DiLego has produced and released two EPs as Beautiful Small Machines with his long-time musical partner Bree Sharp (which included a guest appearance by Duran Duran’s Simon Le Bon), penned a soundtrack to the feature film “Ranchero”, and helped co-write many of the songs that would appear on Jesse Malin’s “Love it To Life” album. During that same “interim” period, he also played on the Light of Day Tour in Europe, which traveled to over 10 countries sharing the stage with Malin, Marah, Willie Nile, and for a brief fleeting moment, even Bruce Springsteen.

At the beginning of 2010, Don joined Jesse Malin & the St. Mark’s Social and set out on the road with Gaslight Anthem and later Gogol Bordello to begin support of the new album. But soon the inspiration of new songs would begin to pour in, and after returning home, it was back to the writing process again at his wooded escape, Velvet Elk Studios. The “Western & Atlantic EP” was born of a week of isolation in a Portland recording studio called The Secret Society, with Don enlisting Colin Killilea (Yost/Pocketknife) and Marwan Kanafani (City Breathing) as multi-instrumentalists, Gregg Williams (Dandy Warhols, Sheryl Crow) on drums, and longtime songwriting partner and bassist Erik Olsen. The result is a what-you-hear-is what-you-get sort of affair, with everything being tracked live in a room...a highlight of which was an unlikely one-take cover of The Replacements “Here Comes a Regular.” Mixing was done in Charlottesville’s White Star Sound and at the Velvet Elk Studios. But what started out as one album, became two, and upon the release of the Atlantic & Western EP, Don is right back at work finishing the full-length “Magnificent Ram A”. Whereas “Western” is more along the lines of the eclectic soundscape that Don has become known for, “Magnificent Ram A” is it’s alienated older cousin. And so it goes.

Don has released three...check that...now four solo albums, the last of which was the well-received Photographs of 1971 (Velvet Elk Records), until his recent July 2012 release of The Western & Atlantic EP on Velvet Elk. His first two albums, “The Lonestar Hitchhiker (Universal/Kingcuts)” and “The Lonestar Companion (Velvet Elk Records)” were also well-lauded for their retro-twang storytelling.

BOOKING CONTACT:

Amanda Case
AIC Entertainment
206.781.3956
info@aicentertainment.com