Welcome to this week's #FeaturedFriday.
Meet David Britt. He and I have been chatting on Twitter for a while now and I'm happy to welcome him as this week's #FeaturedFriday artist.
David is one of those people who you meet who is so talented, both as a songwriter and as a singer, and it makes you wonder why you haven't heard him on the radio.
I often hear country fans gripe about the state of country music radio and I just shake my head because there are so many people out there who are actually putting out music you want to listen to, you just have to spend a little extra time finding them. David's one of those people: a musician who you could skip the radio waves and buy his music instead.
I don't think you can categorize David's music as one specific type of country music. If you want sort of silly bro-country songs about sexy women and trucks with a little country rap thrown in, listen to Country Flow. You want music that gives thanks to God? Listen to God Was Looking Out For Me. You want a song that walks the line between pop and country? Listen to Sweet Becca Jayde. You want a song to help you get over a break up? Then listen to To Hell With Your Love in the video below. It sounds like a Brantley-Gilbert-penned tune and it's pretty damn good.
Seriously, folks, if you're done with the radio and all of it's frustrating musical politics, just find some great artists online and support them by purchasing their music. David Britt's music is a great place to start.
Check out some questions he answered for me after the jump …
Introduce yourself - Where are you from, when did you first start performing, who got you started, etc.
Hello everyone. My name is David Britt. I was born and raised in Charlotte, North Carolina. October 1st 1975 is my birthday. I graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 1998 where I played tennis for the Tarheels. I started playing violin at age 3 and started singing in the church choir a few years later. I also often pretended I was Danny in the movie Grease and acted out the song “Greased Lightning” for pretty much anyone my parents had over to the house when I was little. I always loved music and had dreams of wanting to write and sing my whole life, but it wasn’t until a few years ago that I actually started, and realized my calling was to be a songwriter. I was working as a commercial real estate broker and had for several years before that been a tennis professional, but still couldn’t get music out of my mind. As most artists will tell you, in order to start writing there is always a catalyst, especially in country music. One usually goes through some kind of life changing event before writing their first note. Love found, love lost, heart break etc. You can say I had some of that for sure, and in turn, it got me into writing music– currently 515 songs to date. Although that was the kickstarter for my music, today I write about all kinds of things. My writing is all across the board. From one day to the next I never know what just might hit me, but no matter what I write it comes from the heart whether it’s happy, sad, or funny. I’m a die hard romantic and nearly everything I write comes from personal experiences in my life. My music is real. That’s the only way to be. I taught myself how to play the guitar and the rest is history.
Who has been your biggest musical influence?
Gosh that’s a good question. Growing up I listened to a ton of Elvis, The Oak Ridge Boys, Hank Sr., and Dolly Parton. I would sing with my Dad all the time to their music. I would have to say all of them. I still listen to them a lot and oddly enough, and more like surreal, Joe Bonsall of The Oak Ridge Boys has become a very good friend of mine and has really been supportive of my music. I’m very thankful to have him in my life. I also loved and still love to listen to Dave Matthews. He has definitely been an influence. Although my music isn’t quite the same, I still see it’s character come out in many of my songs. I’ve seen Dave play 101 times since I was 17 years old. Finally I would definitely say my Mother has been a big influence. She played the piano and helped me all the years with my violin. We loved listening to the oldies together. Sam Cooke, The Drifters, The Beatles. Love them all. My parents did a really good job of putting music in mine and my brother’s lives. Side note: I used to watch the heck out of the Lawrence Welk show when I was a little boy.
What’s the weirdest song on your iPod currently?
The weirdest song. Well if I don’t count the crazy song “Everybody Act Like An Animal” that my two kids and I just wrote, I would have to say “Rock the Casbah” by The Clash. My college roommate and I used to jam to that song back in the day and I still get a kick out of listening to it. The sound affects are hilarious.
Describe your music in three words.
Real, Romantic, Fun
What goals do you have for the future?
I would love to get signed to a label, tour the world and sing and dance like Luke Bryan, but I realize that is something that’s left up to God and a whole lot of luck. There are a tons and tons of singers who are so much better than I am. I just want to continue making music and touching people lives and hearts. It’s my passion. I’ve made some great friends over the course of my country music quest and my children love it. If nothing more comes of it other than that, it will be wonderful for me. I feel very blessed. I’ve written hundreds of songs. I will keep writing for sure.
If you could tour with anyone who would it be?
There are so many I could say, but I think it would be a blast to tour with Brad Paisley, Blake Shelton and Zac Brown. Those guys are amongst my favorites. Love them and their music. I’d love to tour with Hank Williams Jr. and Willie Nelson too, but I’m not sure I could keep up with them.
If they were shooting a movie about your life, who would you want to play you?
Wow, another good question. I would go with Vince Vaughn. He’s my favorite actor. He can be funny and serious and when I watch his movies I always walk away feeling good. That’s the way I want people to feel when they hear my music. Wedding Crashers is my favorite movie of his btw.
If you weren't singing, what would you be doing?
Fishing and hanging out with my son and daughter all the time! If I could be Bill Dance or Orlando Wilson catching Bass for a living that would rock!
Name a few interesting things you'd like people to know
I played collegiate tennis for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and played professionally after college. I’ve written and published 3 books. Before They Play A Grand Slam: Parenting The Junior Tennis Player, Button the Butterfly, and Sweet Dreams Little Baby. After college I did acting for a bit, too. Did some commercials and one movie called “Shallow Hal.” I got to hang out with Jack Black and Gwyneth Paltrow for two weeks. That was unreal. The part I played is in the swimming pool scene. You would need Super Man vision and one heck of a pause button to see me though. Ha!
Do you have any hidden talents?
I can take a tennis racquet with no strings in it and put it over my head and pull it down my whole body and then step out if it. Only on one occasion have I gotten one stuck at my waste line. That was an interesting night to say the least. I also can eat tons of hot dogs and doughnuts. During a hot dog eating contest I ate 14 hot dogs with mustard, chili, onions and slaw on them in less than 30 minutes. I've also eaten 2 dozen hot glazed Krispy Kreme doughnuts at one time.
Do you write music or just sing?
I write and sing all of my music. I’ve collaborated on the instrumentation and musical side on a handful of songs with Grey Brewster of the former band Athenaeum and Stefan Kallander of the band Bubonik Funk, but other than that I’ve been doing it myself. I look forward to writing with some other country artists sometime soon. I think that will be a blast. My producer and engineer is Jason Scavone who has had great success in music as a songwriter and as a touring musician. He was signed to a few major labels in the last several years and was the lead singer of the band The Noises Ten. We really have got a great working relationship. When I bring him songs I’ve written he has an uncanny ability to make tweaks here and there to make them very special. He’s the man.
Who would be your dream duet?
It’s a four way tie. Hope that’s ok. Dolly Parton, Carrie Underwood, Miranda Lambert and Kellie Pickler. There’s not much I wouldn’t do to make that happen if it was possible. I Love those ladies. Talent beyond belief. Maybe I could do a different song with each of them. However if I had to pick one today I would say Carrie Underwood. I would LOVE for her to sing with me on my song, “Say What I Want To Hear.” I would likely just sit down and listen to her if we did though. She’s incredible.
What is one question you’d like to answer that’s not usually asked in interviews?
Do you like to bake? The answer is yes. Love to cook in general but love baking a ton. My two favorite things to bake are my homemade chocolate chip-peanut butter chip cookies which my kids call “Daddio’s Coo Coo’s” and my homemade Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding. I will tell you, both of these are some kind of good. Not too sure they are good for the cholesterol, but they’re good for the soul. Being from the South I fry everything. Honestly I can’t think of anything I wouldn’t fry. My saying is: “If you want to eat—fry, fry again.”
Are you signed to a label and can fans purchase your music?
I am not currently signed, but I’m all ears! My music can be purchased from most all online stores. iTunes, Amazon, Spotify and soon from my website you will be able to buy my CD’s. I’ve got one album on iTunes now self titled, “David Britt.” I also have several singles on there too. However in the next couple of months I will be releasing my second album called “Country Flow” and a separate acoustic EP called “Close Your Eyes.” I’m super pumped about both of those releases.
Tell fans where they can find you – Twitter, Facebook, website, etc.
If you're a singer or you know someone who you think should be featured, just send me an email to Shannon@NashvilleGab.com and we'll see what we can do.