Dave Fenley Interview by Christian Lamitschka for Country Music News International Magazine & Radio Show
Lamitschka: Music has many new fans
throughout Europe who may be hearing about you for the first time. How would
you describe yourself and the music you play to someone who has never seen or
Answer: That’s a tough question! I’d
say that it’s soulful country with elements of hip-hop and R&B. It’s
lyrically driven. My live show is very stripped down and honest. If you don’t
know me a little better after a show, you weren’t listening.
Lamitschka: How was the last year
for you? What were your highlights?
Answer: Last year was a whirlwind. I
started the process of being on The Voice (USA) back in January. And I finished
in the top 10 in December. So it was a lot of traveling, a ton of singing with
great artists, rehearsing with the best band on TV, and writing songs for
future albums. Last year was an amazing blessing.
Lamitschka: Do you write the songs
yourself? If not, how do you go about finding the songs for your CD?
Answer: I like to consider myself a
songwriter before anything else. I love telling a story. I only have 3 minutes
to make you believe and care about a character I create out of thin air. When
you think about it that way, it’s kinda crazy. I usually co-write songs with
people I admire in Nashville. It’s always great to work with friends and create something you’re proud
Lamitschka: Your current single is
being played by radio. What do you feel is special about this song that makes
people want to hear it?
Answer: “Come to Think About It” is
totally personal and honest. I used to use alcohol to help cope with personal
issues and get over heartaches and such. This song kinda reflects back on that
guy that I used to be and offers a new option. One with humility. One with
apologies. Hopefully this song will help someone find their way through a dark
Lamitschka: Do you have any
interesting stories about how fans have been affected by your music?
Answer: I have the best fans in the
world! I hear so many stories about people using my songs for their wedding, or
their graduation, or even an occasional funeral (those are powerful). But the
stories that get me the most are from fans that are so moved by a song that is
causes change. I have a song out called “Bruised and Beautiful” that I wrote
for a friend battling Cancer. I get so many messages from people who are in the
same fight or from their loved ones. They let me know that the song has given
them hope, or peace, or whatever they needed at the time. Those kinda things
mean the most.
Lamitschka: What do you think about
today’s music industry?
Answer: I think today’s music scene
is so exciting! Music is always evolving and growing and breathing. Kids from
all over the world really only need a computer and passion. They can produce
their own music from home and it can sound so good you’d never know it wasn’t
done in a million dollar studio. We might be at our most creative time ever. So
much access to new music. I love it.
Lamitschka: If you had the chance to
change something about the music industry, what would it be?
Answer: I would just change how
songwriters and the artists get paid from streaming. All these services offer
up our music but don’t pay the creators a fair share. Music isn’t free to
create. So why is it expected to be free to listen to?
Lamitschka: As an artist, you so many
tasks such as recording, touring, interviews. What do you like best, what’s
your favorite activity?
Answer: I love recording and
touring. Any chance I have to sing my songs in front of an audience is a great
day. If they happen to know the songs and sing along with me, then the
recording and album did what it was supposed to. I’m not the best at interviewsbecause I get
all tongue tied. But I’m working on it.
Lamitschka: Before you became a
star, were your friends and family supportive or was it a struggle?
Answer: I’ve been blessed to have a
very loving and supportive family. My friends have all been on this journey
with me for 18 years now! That’s crazy to think about. It’s really great to be
breaking out internationally and no longer a secret in the States. The music
business is always a struggle. But that’s what makes the successes so much
sweeter. You wanna make it, earn it.
Lamitschka:What inspired you to become a
Answer: I grew up listening to great
old country music. Some of the best told stories were in those old Willie
Nelson and George Jones songs. Then I found R&B folks like Otis Redding and
Lionel Richie and I was hooked. Great, emotional songs sung with so much passion
and conviction. I had to learn how to write them!
Lamitschka: Is there any place you
haven’t played that you would like to?
Answer: I’ve played a little bit
throughout England but I would love to come back and play more of Europe as a
whole. It’s so breathtakingly beautiful there and I miss it terribly.
Lamitschka: When you’re on tour, do
you have time to play tourist?
Answer: I try my best to make time.
It’s not always easy but I like to at least find some great local food and a
pub to have a pint after the show if I can.
DF Photo by Richard McLaren