BLUES BYTES – DAVE MANN
Interview by Bob Gordon
What’s the best thing about playing festivals?
Performing with a primed for listening audience that’s ready to hear what you have to say musically and lyrically. You can really dive into a much deeper place – quicker without first having to work hard to capture their attention. It then becomes a mutual transaction, a conversion if you like, between audience and musicians. One can’t exist without the other otherwise it’s just a rehearsal.
Do you have a Blues at Bridgetown experience that you’d like to share, either performing or as an audience member?
It’s actually been at least a decade since I’ve performed at BB. We had a wonderful time playing that one and only other time. I think the town hall was most memorable.
Where do you feel you fit in musically along the blues and roots scale?
I’d say in the centre somewhere but slightly towards the rootsy side maybe. Others may have a different idea of our music but that’s how I see it…
What have been the highlights of your music career thus far?
Opening up for John Butler Trio on his east coast tour. Opening up for The Waifs and Cat Empire. Port Fairy Festival. All of these gigs were tremendously exhilarating playing in front of such large audiences on a massive stage.
And then contrastingly, playing intimate house concerts with no PA system just diving into vulnerability and story.
What have you been mainly focussing on in 2023 and how is it coming along?
My wife and I have three kids so juggling domestics and music and an income is quite a challenge. We’ve been doing what we can when we can without burning out. We’ve done a few tours, worked on a lot of music admin stuff getting ready for more tours. I’ve also been recording a lot of music for other artists in my studio.
What are your plans and hopes for 2024?
To be able to continue playing music and it make enough coin to pay for costs and to make it worthwhile for my family.
What can folks expect from your performances at Blues at Bridgetown?
It’s been quite a while since my band and I have performed together. It’s going to be a bit of a reunion – we’ll touch on some old favourites and revisit the spark that carried us for 15 years. And have fun.