The last time I heard David play was at a very solemn gathering. Singing at a funeral is no easy task, I know. But, the grace and poise with which David sang will stick with me for the rest of my life. In a room full of heartache and turmoil, came a voice full of hope, clarity, and compassion. To say it was stirring would be a massive understatement. It seemed only fitting for an incredible artist to give homage to an incredible person, and an amazing life that was lived. You see, on a normal stage, the response to David’s music is jaw-dropping, because he is so captivating. But this day was a little different. There wasn’t a dry eye in the building. // Here’s an interview I did this month with David, and I hope you take some time to check out his music.
Paul: Thanks so much for taking the time to do this! For those out there who may have never heard your music, where do you fall stylistically? Are there any artists you listened to growing up that are still making their way into the music you’re creating today?
David: I’m not entirely sure how to label my music. I’ve used terms like singer-songwriter, Americana, and folk for the last few years. If there was a place that existed directly in the center of all three of those, that’s what I’d be. When I was 21, just a couple years after I started writing, my cousin gifted me Ryan Adams’ Gold. Adams’s influence on my music is still pretty evident. Outside of that, I’m a 90’s kid through and through. I grew up on alternative/top 40 radio and despite my desire to be a dark folk artist I can’t help but lean into strong hooks and pop melodies.
Paul: Speaking of growing up, I know you were born and raised in the Sugar Land area and still have family here. How is it living in Austin these days, surrounded by so many artists and musicians? Could you tell us about the transition of getting up there?
David: Austin has been good to me. I was pretty lost before getting here but quickly found friends who were confident and unafraid to create and say whatever they wanted. It was refreshing. I moved to town at the end of ’08. I had just come off a six-month stint of living in my car while traveling the country. Before that, I was living in Nashville, working at a cafe, and pretending my Nashville address meant I was serious about my pursuit in music. When I finally landed in Austin, I was spent. The overall lack of vision in my life had taken a toll on me. Not sure how long I could’ve kept running like that.
Paul: You have quite a discography under your belt already. I know for me it’s been amazing to hear your evolution from the happy tunes of your early days to the more introspective and deeper waters of now. Especially your last couple albums – you really seem to have hit a sweet spot all around! Should we be looking for more of this in the future?
David: I think for the most part I’m stuck in the deeper waters. Sure, sometimes I’ll be light-hearted and maybe a little tongue-in-cheek. But I enjoy writing about the heavier, more painful moments in life.
Paul: What has it been like for you, personally, to hear some of your songs on shows like Private Practice? Did that create some more awareness for your music?
David: It’s always a cool feeling to be recognized nationally. Not only does it create more awareness but it’s a nice affirmation that I’m not doing everything completely wrong.
Paul: Being Vino & Vinyl, we love a good LP. I just pre-ordered your super rare Serialbox Vinyl release, which I’m pumped to get! And this is your first vinyl, right? Do you see yourself re-releasing albums like Apologies on vinyl in the future?
David: Thanks for that. Yeah, it’s my first and I’m excited to finally have one with my name on it. As much as I want to release a vinyl for some older albums I’m not sure how possible it is right now. I’m keeping my fingers crossed though. I’d love to see Apologies on my record player and take in all the pops and hisses of the vinyl.
Paul: Your blog is amazing and you are an insanely gifted writer. It’s so captivating! Have you have considered writing a book?
David: Occasionally the thought creeps into my head. I think before attempting a novel it’d be fun to release a compilation of my stories from the road.
Paul: I know you’ve mentioned in your songs that you like a good whisky. But could you indulge my curiosity and tell me your favorite wine?
David: I’ll be honest. I don’t venture into wines very often. If the craving arises I’ll run out and buy a cheap Malbec but I don’t wander out too far. I did, however, go to Napa this summer and I have to say that Quintessa is a fine wine. Touring the winery was a pretty cool moment.
Paul: That’s awesome man. Quintessa is one of my favorites! Thanks again, David, for chatting us up man! What is the best way for people to stay connected with you for upcoming shows in our area?
David: Thanks for the questions, brother. My website is a best place. All my dates, videos, and news can be found in one spot. Plus, you can sign up for my email list. See you down the road. // davidramirezmusic.com