Cleveland-born DAVID WILCOX was inspired to play guitar after hearing a fellow college student playing in a stairwell. His lyrical insight is matched by a smooth baritone voice, virtuosic guitar chops, and creative open tunings, giving him a range and tenderness rare in folk music. He released an independent album in 1987, was a winner of the prestigious Kerrville Folk Festival New Folk award in 1988, and by 1989 he had signed with A&M Records. His first release on the label, ‘How Did You Find Me Here’, sold over 100,000 copies the first year largely by word of mouth. Now, 17 albums into a career marked by personal revelation and wildly loyal fans, David continues to find and deliver joy, inspiration, and invention. He joined us for our 5GB series.
What’s the first gig you ever attended?
The very first musical performance I attended was the Cleveland Orchestra at severance Hall. I remember the little gold buttons on the little red jacket I wore. I must’ve been four or five years old. I was transfixed by the complexity and power of that spectacular sound.
What is the best gig that you ever played/performed?
The most satisfying gig for me is always the musical medicine week I do every summer at the Omega Institute. It’s like therapy. I ask people how they’re doing and I make up each song specifically about what they’re dreaming of what they’re hoping for; what they’ve been going through and then the song becomes a catalyst to help them move toward their goals.
What is the best gig you have ever seen?
Tom Waits. Or maybe that string quartet outdoors in Italy.
Gig you would most like to play?
I have have gotten better at enjoying each and every gig these days. It is good for my soul no matter where it is. But there’s a few songs I would love to play for the president.
What would be the lineup for your dream gig?
The gig I would most want to go to would require a little time travel, but I would love to see Chet Baker in the early years.
Catch David Wilcox at Eddie’s Attic.