Nick Daugherty
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Nick Daugherty

Band Pop Singer/Songwriter


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"Album Review: Nick Daugherty - Movin' Higher"

Nick Daugherty has a pleasing voice so its no surprise that he was chosen to be one of the “Top 100 Unsigned Artists” by Music Connection. His songwriting is uplifting and fun. Perhaps the only downer about the guy is that he’s almost interchangeable with artists like Gavin Degraw, Jason Mraz and John Mayer. That doesn’t matter because Nick’s debut Movin’ Higher is so good, you’ll keep playing it until the disc is worn out.

You’ll cheer him on as he tries to muster up the courage to speak to the girl of his dreams in “Out Of My League.” And you nod in agreement as he calls off on “Sick Day,” which is one song that just about everyone except maybe Paris Hilton can identify with. It is the every man style of his songwriting that makes Nick’s songs stand out from his peers. Perhaps it’s the 14 years of guitar experience he has and the 8 years writing songs, but whatever it is, Nick’s songs have a certain appeal, because they are open and honest and sometimes even painful.

Nick paints a picture with each song, especially Jaime. You don’t need a video to accompany the song to picture a loving relationship unfolding. The lyrics do that for you. Just as you can feel and see his heartbreak as he sings “Giving You Up” a song about the painful breakup of a not only a lover but also another friend. I Won’t Stand For Watching You Fall Down a song about an attempted suicide will break your heart as you listen.

There’s no glitz or gimmicks to Movin’ Higher, its just great songwriting and a voice that seems familiar and that’s what will draw people in. You’ll listen to one song and say, isn’t that….and with a shake of the head of someone else, you’ll ask…well then isn’t it? Until someone finally says “That’s Nick Daugherty.” and you scramble off to find Movin’ Higher because you’ll want to hear more and more of his unforgettable and so true to life lyrics.

Its not often that an album can really touch a part of you so completely, but this one does. Nick writes about life and love in a way that so few can, and he does it beautifully so that you savor each moment of the music he’s sharing with us. You go through the ups and downs and all those moments in between on Movin’ Higher and you’ll love every minute of it.

If you try one new artist this year, let it be Nick Daugherty. He may not have a new sound but the music he’s giving us is too wonderful to be passed over. - Mossip Journal

"First Look: Nick Daugherty"

As though waiting for the other shoe to drop, songwriters often await the anticipated visit from the Muse, and it often comes in the middle of the night. Artists don’t always have the luxury of devoting all their time to their craft and take on various day jobs to pay the bills, thus finding themselves immersed in two worlds.

With the stream of consciousness flowing continually, sometimes these worlds collide. Which brings us to Nick Daugherty, a most stunning songwriter who, in the song, “Sick Day,” wakes up tired from loss of sleep the night before and decides he needs some time for himself, even if it’s just to veg out for a day.

Nick’s lyrics are keenly articulate and clever. For example, in a line from the song, “cause my back aches, I’m in dire straits,” though unintentional, serves as an excellent metaphor for this collision of worlds as the stress (aches) of one’s job invariably collides with the music (dire straits) playing in the songwriter’s mind.

What a gift this young man has — I can’t wait for his debut CD! - Heartland Public Radio

"Rock’n Beach Cities – Nick Daugherty at The Lighthouse"

Los Angeles-based singer/ songwriter Nick Daugherty will be performing tracks from his debut album, “Movin’ Higher,” Saturday, May 23, at The Lighthouse in Hermosa Beach.

The 28-year-old has had quite an unusual musical path. By day, he works as a hi-tech software engineer and by night takes to the stages of Hollywood.

Growing up in Louisiana, Daugherty spent his days listening to Green Day, playing the 3 guitar chords his grandfather taught him. Unlike most singer/songwriters who tend to name James Taylor or The Beatles as influences, Daugherty’s are far vaster and touch upon many genres. Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, John Mayer and Sam Cooke all fall into his list of inspirations; and one of them had a lot to do with his quest for being a musician.

“I heard John Mayer back in 1999 and instantly knew he was something different,” Daugherty said. “He had great songs and sang them well, but it was his guitar chops that dumbfounded me. It smacked me in the forehead and made me realize I had a lot of work to do.”

After high school, Daugherty enlisted in the military and was stationed at Los Angeles Air Force Base.

“I was working on satellites for the military in this vault with no doors or windows or anything,” he said. “Nice work if you can get it, but it wasn't for me.” Eventually, the Air Force came around and was asking for volunteers to leave the service as they had too many people working in his field. Raising his hand, Daugherty opted to opt out and focused intently on his much-desired music career.

This Saturday at The Lighthouse, Daugherty will be giving the South Bay crowd a taste of his debut CD. The album is almost three years in the making and was produced by Mandi Martin, who formerly managed Ray Charles’ publishing company and worked with some of the biggest soul artists of the 1960s and 1970s. The Hermosa Beach show, which opens at 1 p.m., coincides with the release of “Movin” Higher” on iTunes.

“There’s so much diversity on this album,” said Daugherty. “Songs range from sounding like Foo Fighters, Jack Johnson and Otis Redding.” When he is not performing, Daugherty still works for a tech company in which he consults quite a bit with NASA, JPL and various other aerospace engineering companies. The 9-to-5 day job doesn’t seem to be affecting his pursuit of a career in music. Music Connection just named him one of the “Top 100 Unsigned Artists of 2009” and he is playing all around Los Angeles. For more information, visit - The Beach Reporter, Hermosa Beach, CA


"Movin' Higher" - debut release May 23, 2009

Streaming airplay on and

Singles from the album:
1. Movin' Higher
2. A Thousand Times Tonight
3. Staring At the Sun



There’s an ease and familiar grace to the way that Nick Daugherty sings. With a grounding in acoustic rock, luminescent pop, and gospel soul, Daugherty’s music shimmers with an infectiousness that separates him from the vast pack of aspiring artists and songwriters. His debut album,Movin’ Higher, is a collection of songs that is the sound of a man finding the full dimension of his talent for the first time, establishing him as a significant new artist to watch.

Movin’ Higher is the product of Daugherty’s tenaciousness and wisdom in finding great collaborators to both enhance his music and push him to be his best. Working with veteran producer Mandi Martin, who has worked with legends like Ray Charles, Sam Cooke and Oleta Adams as well as musicians like Wrecking Crew member and Motown session guitarist Don Peake, the songs on the album showcase a rare combination of beautifully written lyrics with masterful pop/rock/soul arrangements, letting the ebullient quality of each song shine through.

It’s been a long road for Daugherty to arrive where he is now. The Lake Charles, Louisiana native has been writing and playing music since his early teens. Nick’s initial exposure to music was through singing gospel in his church choir and listening to pop artists like Sting, Hall & Oates, Billy Joel, Kenny Loggins and others. He says, “All I knew about music as a kid was pop radio and gospel, but everything changed for me when I heard an interview with John Mayer where he talked about bluesmen like Albert King, Stevie Ray Vaughan and Buddy Guy. That opened up a whole new world for me and led to my love of blues, jazz, and R&B.”

With his love of music expanding, Nick soon saw different possibilities for his own music. “Blues and jazz is just more colorful – it’s a better palette to paint with,” he says. “I still love pop, and that’s still present in my music, but I love working with the whole spectrum of colors in blues, jazz and soul. Life is not as simple as ‘happy or sad’ – it’s more complex, and I want my songs to convey those complexities.”

After attending college at Baylor University in Texas, Nick enlisted in the U.S. military and did one active duty tour as an officer. And while the military was a tremendous experience, Nick saw his music “going by the wayside,” as he puts it. He continues, “I put out a demo CD, but being in Los Angeles (where Nick was stationed and currently resides), I knew I was a small fish in a really big pond. So once my tour ended, I decided to give myself a year to really give it my all and go for a record deal.”

That goal inspired Daugherty to build a website ( and to create its featured attraction, “How to Get a Record Deal in 365 Days.” Its rewards were almost immediate. Over 120,000 people visited the daily blog to check his progress, and it began to spread the word about his music. “About a month into it, I met Mandi [Martin], who soon became my producer, and whose impact on my music has been invaluable. We decided to put out a record independently, and through that process I started my own label, Skyrocket RecordsTM.”

Producer Mandi Martin’s influence has been enormous on Nick. “She ripped me apart,” laughs Nick. “I thought I was ready to record, but she refused to take me into the studio until the songs were ready. She had me examine each one in depth, and even rewrite several from the ground up. Sometimes, I thought a song would be done, but she’d tear it apart again, and I’d rewrite it… again. We went round and round for ten months like this, and I had to swallow my pride, but each time the songs came out stronger.”

When the time finally came to record Movin’ Higher, Mandi called on an A-list set of musicians she had known and worked with for years. “She got us the best players in town,” states Nick. “Besides Don Peake, she got guys like Voyce McGinley (drummer for Kitaro and Cirque du Soleil), Alex Del Zoppo (keyboardist from the band Sweetwater), and Paul Marshall (bassist from the band Strawberry Alarm Clock). Everyone added their own bit of magic to the album and the result is masterful.”

From the first notes of “Movin’ Higher,” the album’s title track, the sound is one of joy and rebirth. Intricately arranged, with subtle percussion, gorgeously picked acoustic guitar, rich organ and piano lines and enveloping background vocals, the song is Nick’s statement of where he’s been and where he’s going. The sound is all his own – a synthesis of soul, pop and gospel that feels familiar yet rings with a singular tone.

“A Thousand Times Tonight” shimmers with a sense of mystery and wonder that comes with falling in love for the first time. It’s impossibly romantic, and with another brilliant arrangement featuring a gorgeous string section, the music not only supports Nick’s lyrics, but takes it to another level entirely. Daugherty’s phrasing is a wonder – powerful and passionate throughout, soaring in the rig