roger davis trio
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roger davis trio

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The best kept secret in music


"review of arthurian dreamsuite by arthur shuey"

Review by Arthur Shuey
Roger Davis
Arthurian Dream Suite
All Music composed and performed by Roger Davis

In the formal study of folklore, one encounters the "Theory of the Monomyth" first proposed by Irish novelist James Joyce. According to this theory, there is but one tale told in true literature. It is the tale of winter's death and despair followed by the miracle which each spring calls forth from mysterious, hidden seeds. Spring is followed by bright summer, then autumn's harvest. The cycle then begins anew. Scholars find this story beneath the details of the epic of Gilgamesh, of the New Testament, of the Vedas and, certainly, of Arthurian romances.

As surely as any other hero, Arthur defines the monomythic mold. The legendary king is born from magic and hidden away with Ector. He comes to prominence upon removing the sword from the stone, a transparent allegory for mastering the powers of fertility on behalf of his people. Even as his court becomes a beacon for all that is best, however, an inevitable decline enters the realm with Guinever(Gwyn). The decline reaches a crescendo as apocalyptic as winter storms, yet as inevitable as the year's decline is Man's heroic faith in the return of fertility, abundance and glory.

It is epic literature; broad in scope and challenging in the narrative mastery it requires. To be able to tell this story well was the mark of the finest troubadours of medieval times. Today, it is the mark of Roger Davis. He knows the story. More importantly, he feels it. Perhaps most important of all, he knows his medium, the acoustic guitar on which he tells the story in the eight instrumental vignettes that comprise Arthurian Dream Suite.

If there is one element that binds the eight parts of Suite, it is dramatic tension. The story being told is at all times a great, personal, crucial story. In this rendition, it remains wholly personal to the listener. Whether the artist is merely prescient or highly telepathic is difficult to determine. Whatever the basis of his creative gifts, he takes nothing from the "monomyth" as it already exists in the listener's heart and mind. He reminds and reinforces, but does not edit or impose.

It is a heroic acceptance of a tremendous creative challenge, an ambition fulfilled, and a beautiful recording.
- encore magazine wilmington nc


Still working on that hot first release.


Feeling a bit camera shy


Roger Davis is a guitarist, composer, producer, music educator and recording artist.

With Seven American Artists, Roger Davis describes with his music how the artist makes him feel—the large space between gestures of Georgia O’Keeffe, the surprise swing section in a Romare Bearden, the dreamy chords in Mary Cassatt’s work, the ultra cool of a Leon Shenker, the alternating symmetries in a Minnie Evans, or the breezy balance of an Alexander Calder.

“I love art and artists of all disciplines. When the work of a visual artist speaks to me it heightens my consciousness and mental pathways open up that are unique to viewing art. At times when I feel lost and unable to create, I go to a museum or art gallery and almost always find my moorings and get back to the music.”

Roger Davis, a native of Wilmington, North Carolina, where he still resides, began his musical career with piano lessons at age six. As a teenager, he played keyboards with rock bands. Then at 17, he discovered a love for the guitar and never looked back. He studied music composition with Pulitzer Prize winning composer, Robert Ward. Roger now performs regularly with his trio in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. He has composed and produced a number of jazz flavored albums.

Seven American Artists was first performed before a standing room only audience at the Louise Wells Cameron Museum of Art, Wilmington, NC, on November 7, 2004. A number of the tracks on the album were inspired by works of art held in the permanent collection of the museum.

Seven American Artists is Roger’s fourth full length recording released on CD.