- David Michael: vocals, guitars
I was born David Michael Ings in Johannesburg and spent my first five years on a diet of Simon and Garfunkel, America, Magna Carta, John Denver LIVE, Beethoven and the Trout Quintet. Moved with my parents to Port Elizabeth at age five and half and learned to play guitar at eight. I remember at five years old knowing that I wanted to play for an audience and have them FEEL the music I had written.
Started writing my own songs in High School and finally in my third year of varsity with a little nudging from my friends started playing in a local coffee shop on Friday nights for little more than coffee and tips. I finished my degree in English and Psychology at UPE and moved to Cape Town to do my HDE (teaching diploma) at UCT. Started playing in local restaurants and pubs to "pay the rent" and then taught High School English for two and three quarter years. Changed the name I performed under to David Michael because the principal at the school I worked at considered my playing gigs as "moonlighting" which was against regulations.
Left teaching and moved to Knysna where I played full time. (I know that is a strange place to go to do that!) Nevertheless, met up with some excellent musicians and had some hard times and good times which precipitated the recording of "Everything you hear is true". I had recorded a low budget tape in 1995, which I sold at gigs, and there is still some material from that project I will re-release. Opened for Robin Auld at one of the local venues, got stiffed by the owner but more importantly got the opportunity to chat to one of my most favorite South African musicians.
In the meantime in 1998 got into the Finals of Shell Road to Fame and got the opportunity to play with some great musicians on "Keeping the Faith" which gave me some ideas for it's final recording on the album. Had my song aired 4 or 5 times during the running of the competition which was interesting because to see what I look like on stage from the outside for the first time. Also got quoted incorrectly by the press for the first time although I doubt it will be the last.
I recorded "Everything you hear is true" in Soundsphere Studios in Bloemfontein, owned and run by John Smit a man with great ears in my opinion. Played at Oppikoppi 2000 just before the recording of the CD in my electric guitarist's band called VoŽl. I still think it is the most progressive Afrikaans rock album around and can be found through Afrimusiek in Stellenbosch.
Released the album, moved to Nelspruit and continued to sell it at gigs. Opened for Karma at the Blue Moon late last year, met Ray Phiri in a local pub and realized through conversations with all these musicians that their plight was not much different from my own, just in degree. I appreciated the wisdom and philosophical attitude of both Ray and Robin. They've both been very encouraging when I've wanted to toss in the towel.
Okay, so I am now resident at a few venues in Nelspruit and am interested to see that the album appeals to an age group of 14 - 40+, English, Afrikaans and Black. This flies in the face of the industry's very regimented sense of "MARKET" and what appeals to whom. Feedback suggests that the album has a wide appeal because the favorites being touted include Free, Blue, Colours, Extraordinary Dream, Love can be Hard and Keeping the Faith.
The future holds a new recording when the budget allows it (thank goodness for tax cuts), I am particularly looking forward to putting down a Blues-rock track called "My baby loves Jack Daniels more than me" as it is very popular and frequently requested at live gigs. The new album might well go in a very acoustic direction although nothing is caste in stone at this stage.
-- David Michael, March 2002
David Michael Music
P.O Box 8320 Nelspruit 1200
Tel. 082 3801142
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