Accessible Alt-rocker David Paige always has his eye on the prize. “I love being from Illinois,” says the musician, “It's made successful touring possible. As a growing independent artist, I have been able to go out on regional tours regularly and build up a fan base in several markets nearby. From Chicago, you can drive in any direction and it won't be long before you're near another thriving music scene!” Just back from one such tour, Paige spoke with Our Town about his influences, performance experiences and sound.
Our Town Who are your influences?
David Paige I'm a child of the 90's, so I have a ton of influences from that time--Matchbox Twenty, Third Eye Blind, and Goo Goo Dolls. My first cassette was Nirvana's Nevermind. Listening to that tape, I felt the impact music would have on my life. My love for Nirvana turned into my discovery of The Foo Fighters, definitely one of my biggest influences. I also went through a three year phase in college where I only listened to the Beatles. I learned a lot about songwriting from dissecting their songs and exploring their harmonic choices, song forms and wide range of lyrical content. I've dialed that back though. Now I can enjoy the Beatles in responsible, healthy amounts.
OT How would you describe your sound?
DP I tend to borrow elements from several different styles, depending on what each specific song needs--similar to blending ingredients for different meals.
OT What's your writing process like?
DP Each song is different. Sometimes I hear a melody in my head, and I'll work the chords to fit. Other times I'll have a lyrical idea and build a song to support the mood. I also sometimes write chord changes or riffs first, and pick out the melody from there. Once I'm happy with the song, I bring it to my bandmates to flesh out the rest of the arrangement.
OT For you, what's the most challenging part of performing?
DP When I get really excited for a show, the time on stage flies by faster than I'd like. Sometimes I can get so caught up in the set list, that I find it difficult to slow down and enjoy the moment. That's definitely something I'm working on.
OT What do you enjoy about playing Chicago?
DP I love performing in my hometown because I get to see all my close friends and family in the audience! It's really nice to come home to that after being on tour.
Learn more about David Paige at www.davidpaigemusic.com