April 20, 2024

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Interview with David Deacon: The intellect and soul is specific and unique in all of us

Interview with Canadian Blues – Rocker David Deacon. An interview by email in writing.

Dear readers, get to know more about our US/EU Jazz – Blues Festivals and the activities of our US/EU Jazz – Blues Association in the capitals of Europe, we will soon publish program for 2024, enjoy in the July – August – Brussels, Berlin, Prague, Warsaw, Sofia, new addreses this year, also in Amsterdam, Budapest and Liverpool.

JazzBluesNews.com: – First, let’s start out with where you grew up, and what got you interested in music. How exactly did your adventure take off? When did you realize that this was a passion you could make a living out of?

David Deacon: – I was doing a poetry reading in a NYC club and the opening act was a folksinger. The Blues and Folk music were so influential in my early years, my music was informed by influences such as Albert King, Taj Mahal, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen and Tom Waits. Of course, there were many others but you get the idea.

OUR US/EU Jazz and Blues Festivals 2023

JBN: – What routine practices or exercises have you developed to maintain and improve your current musical proficiency, in terms of both rhythm and harmony?

DD: – I am not that formal in how I work. I have no musical training so I just start writing down thoughts and then some melodic ideas occur to me and I sing an accapella version of my idea, record it on my phone and send it to my guitar player collaborator Andy Ryan and he figures out an initial musical structure and then we work out the details and arrangements in the studio.

JBN: – Have you changed through the years? Any charges or overall evolution? And if so why?

DD: – The big change is moving away from spoken word and poetry into melody and lyrics. The change occurred because I had these melodic thoughts and so I wanted to start writing songs and not so much writing words.

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JBN: – In your opinion, what’s the balance in music between intellect and soul?

DD: – The balance between intellect and soul is specific and unique in all of us, as that is the essence of who we are. Therefore, when you hear someone’s music you can fairly easily get an understanding of where their particular balance lies and the people in the world who think and feel similarly will quickly find a resonance in their sound.

JBN: – There’s a two-way relationship between audience and artist; are you okay with delivering people the emotion they long for?

DD: – If people are touched by your music it is because they have something in common with its emotion and what it does to them is much like a good conversation with a friend. It opens a little of their soul. And how is that not a good thing for all?

JBN: – How can we get young people interested in jazz when most of standard tunes are half a century old?

DD: – Like all art forms, music will continue to evolve. Some people will prefer what has been in the past and some will prefer what is happening now and time will determine which will last or be appreciated the longest. John Keats had “My name is writ in water” chiseled on his grave because he thought his poetry would never be heard, yet he became one of the more celebrated of the English Romantic poets after his death. I believe good music will always get heard.

JBN: – John Coltrane once said that music was his spirit. How do you perceive the spirit and the meaning of life?

DD: – To me, God is time. What we do is what we are. Therefore what time we spend in music (listening, making it, performing it) is that part of us, is that much of our whole.

JBN: – If you could change one single thing in the musical world and that would become reality, what would that be?

DD: – An artists co-op music streaming channel which doesn’t take from the poor to give to the rich.

OUR US/EU Jazz and Blues Association 2023

JBN: – Whom do you find yourself listening to these days?

DD: – Impossible to answer as the list is so long. It’s everyone I always liked and then new artists I discover. To me, like life, music is never ending and ever changing.

JBN: – Let’s take a trip with a time machine: where and why would you really want to go?

DD: – I just wan to be right here in this second. I never want to leave the second I am living in, until I no longer can live.

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Interview by Emmanuel Bolton

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