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Dave Alvin



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When Dave Alvin thinks back on the single tragic event that sparked his two latest albums, he recalls teetering on the edge of believing that it happened at all. "This kind of got started as a reaction to the death of my best friend Chris Gaffney, who was a singer, songwriter, accordionist, guitarist and my spiritual advisor," says Alvin. "He'd been playing with my band, the Guilty Men, for years when he wasn't playing with his band, the Hacienda Brothers. So, the first couple of gigs that we  ...
Some discover them amidst tragedy. Others put pen to paper as a baby's birth unfolds before them in the back of some nondescript cross-country bus. Still others are pretty good at relating their emotions after a night drenched in beer and whiskey. Dave Alvin happened to find the subject of a new song while poking around a dingy Southern California junk store. Though the venerable Los Angeles-based roots rocker and charter member of The Blasters may not be the first to find inspiration among  ...
Ask Dave Alvin what day it is, and chances are pretty good he'll get it right. It's keeping straight which band he's playing with and what songs are on the set list that night that might cause some problems. It's already been a busy year for Alvin, a fourth generation Californian who gained his initial fame in the roots rock band The Blasters. Yet more and more, that roots rock tag has evolved into just plain roots music. There's his recurring role as the guitarist in the funky, folky,  ...
Dave Alvin's version of California is a little bit different than the one you're used to hearing. In Dave Alvin's world, not everything in the Golden State glitters. "If you never drive more than one mile from the ocean, your concept of California is every bad joke you've heard someone from New York make," Alvin says during a recent interview, "but if you go to Bakersfield or Downey, where I grew up, it's another reality. Not everyone's writing screenplays."  ...

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