MP3 Dan Gilliam - Simple God Songs
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9 MP3 Songs
FOLK: Modern Folk, ROCK: Americana
Dan Gilliam Biography
I was born on "the day the music died" Feb. 3, 1959. Buddy Holly's plane crashed in the wee hours of the same morning my mom gave birth to me. Because of my connection to this fateful day, I have always considered my music style to be a reincarnated mix of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper. Sometime around 1969 I fell in love with the music I was hearing through the earplug of my transistor radio. The songs of The Doors, Neil Young, Chicago and America gave me words for some of the unknown things I was feeling. At age 13, I picked up the guitar and discovered an avenue for self-expression in writing and singing my own songs. Artistic endeavors were my private ambitions. When my parents divorced in 1973, I would rely heavily on these diversions to help me survive the trauma of watching my world blow apart.
Over my 45 years of travels and travails, I have written and recorded 8 albums of original music to document my life journey. In 1986, after my brief career as a professional pastor I recorded my self-titled debut album, "Dan Gilliam" and sold about 100 copies to friends and family. The circulation of this cassette helped to open local doors for me in Cincinnati and other Midwestern towns to perform my songs for drug prevention school assemblies. This led to the writing and recording of my second cassette album, "A Good Used Brain is Hard to Find"(1988) containing songs I performed for school audiences in 40 states. Assisted and inspired by my bar-based cover band "Pacer", I recorded "Storms and Love" in 1991, a collection of folk-rock love songs. In 1993, after snooping around the alleyways and back doors of contemporary Christian music, I wrote and recorded "Shake the Walls" which led to many performances at churches and Christian coffee houses. In the ensuing years, I have found myself sharing the stage with many well known Christian artists such as Servant, Rich Mullins, Big Tent Revival, Jennifer Knapp, The Newsboys, Audio Adrenaline, All Star United, Bleach, Sonic Flood, Michael Roe (of The 77s), Greg Lawless (of Adam Again) and Richard Swift. For the most part, however, I have performed my music and told my stories in relative obscurity.
"Farm Café", my bare bones 1995 recording was the beginning of me finding my true voice as a singer and songwriter. I sold over 500 copies of this album from the trunk of my car the first year and made a conscious decision that whether of not the world wanted another performing artist I was going to be one. In 1997, shortly after wedding my wife, Lynn, I traveled to New Haven, In. to record "The Color of God" at Monastic Chambers studio with Jon Gillespie and a few talented musician friends. Selling out my first 1,000 copies of this cd in less than a year allowed me to put aside the cash for my 1999 record "I Am Not Like God". Probably, my best sounding record to date, I was fortunate to have been helped by California-based guitar aficionado, Rich Nibbe, and cutting edge worship leader and songwriter, Chris Lizotte.
"Simple God Songs", my 8th independently produced album, was recorded in Cottage Grove, Or. at the beginning of our two year commitment to Art House Friends, the Quaker church plant Lynn and I helped start. I penned all of the songs with a little help from my friends. My old pal Dave (Beaker) Strasser and my brother-in-law (Chris Morgan) gave me chords and inspiration for "You Are There (Ps.139)", Rob Harris gave me the Scripture boost I needed to finish "The Narrow Road", and Jeff Oakes got me fired up to help him finish "Remember". I am grateful for the contributions from these talented and humble dudes of God. The production of the record took place in the studio Keith Schneider runs out of his garage. In a generous display of giftedness and commitment of his time, Keith not only engineered the cd but also played all the bass lines and electric guitar. Jon Behr put down all the percussion, exhibiting a mature capacity for steady rhythm and tasteful frills. I sang all the vocals and played your basic acoustic guitar (Taylor 710 ce) and harmonicas.
As of today, none of these recordings has been released on any record label and all have been largely unrecognized and undocumented by the music industry. I cannot say, however, that I have been tortured or even bothered by this lack of commercial success for I believe that God, as I understand God, has a higher calling on my life that supercedes any accomplishment or failings that I may have as an artist or musician. After all, it is only by the grace of God that I have a story to tell, a song to sing and a picture to paint. I think my best ones are yet to come.
Peace, love and art,
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