In March, we shared news of acclaimed artist, producer, and front man of The Revivalists, David Shaw on debuting his self-titled solo album alongside the uplifting anthemic single, ‘Got Me Feeling Good.’
Since then, Shaw has received numerous support from his fans and bandmates on the path he’s taken as well as finally sharing the much anticipated project. HangTime was honorably bestowed with asking David Shaw a few questions about jump-starting his solo career, emotions he was feeling when songwriting, and fans take on the project overall.
HangTime Magazine: Tell us how it is working with the Revivalists pre-pandemic and now? What do you miss most since being quarantined?
David Shaw: I miss seeing the guys’ smiles during rehearsal, because now we’re having to wear masks and it’s really tough because there are a lot of moments in the rehearsal space where everybody gets really excited during a song. You have that mask on, which I know is very important to wear, but I can’t wait to see the smiles on my friends’ faces when we’re making these together.
HT: Please share with us what led you to officially jump-starting your career as a solo artist. How has it been different from working with the Revivalist?
DS: I knew that I needed to grow in a certain kind of way that a band culture doesn’t really foster, so that was one of the reasons why I kind of set forth on this journey.
With the band, I have a lot of firepower to lean on, but with this solo project all of the decision making is on me so I’ve grown in that way as well.
HT: What kind of reaction are you hoping to get from fans once your album releases?
DS: I just really hope that people get a great sense of joy and peace from the album, honestly because those were two main pillars of the making of the album from its inception.
HT: What were you thinking when you wrote “Got Me Feeling Good,” especially since it has a different and more upbeat vibe than “Promised Land,” “Shaken,” and “Shivers?”
DS: I was listening to a lot of Beck, Bowie, and Sublime at the time when I was in and out of Malibu. I was just getting into the lifestyle. The intersection of these artists and where I was geographically, maybe more importantly – emotionally, made me want to make a song that incorporated all of those things in a way that was unique to me and who I am, what I’m going through, and where I’m going.
For the music video, I was very involved with the concept. I just recently rekindled my love for skating and I was down at Crescent Park and I ran into an old friend of mine, Bobby Bonsey who was also down there and skating, busting all the crazy moves. I was impressed with how amazing it was, it was like breakdancing on skates, and we struck up a conversation there. I went home thinking about how cool it was and this was around the time when I was trying to come up with an idea for the music video and then it just came to me – maybe Bobby could do it. So, I approached him about starring in the video and he was super stoked about it and when he came to rehearsal he brought a buddy of his, “Slick,” who ended up being his partner in the video. They just kind of started moving together and I was just like, wow these guys got it. I wasn’t even originally going to be in the video because I wanted the focus to be on them, but I did say if I was gonna be in the video I was kind of joking, but I said you guys have to put me on a horse. The director thought that was kind of awesome and said ‘let’s make that happen’ and then we did which is crazy!
HT: Do you plan on continuing to work with the band in conjunction with your solo art? Could there be a collaboration in the future, maybe on the album? We ask this because this journey definitely feels personal and it would be amazing to just see the old part of you working with this new side because it’s all very emotional. It has been a heavy time.
DS: I would definitely consider it, absolutely. It’s something I’ve thought about. I just really haven’t asked the guys about if they want to, but I feel like they’d probably be down. I don’t see any reason why they wouldn’t be. This album is definitely personal to me, so that would be a reason to maybe not do that. At the same time, all of my art is very personal. In terms of me and my songwriting, it’s always been an open book and it’s always been a mix of what’s going on in my life, maybe some fiction, or what was going on previously in my life.
I tend to think about it like an ecosystem kind of how the Grateful Dead did it basically where Jerry has a solo band and one of the band’s biggest songs was “Sugaree” which came out on a solo record of Jerry Garcia’s. So, I would be down to throw some of those songs on a Revivalists set if that’s something everybody else in the band also felt good about. I certainly would never close the door on that, somebody else would have to.
HT: You’ve seen a lot of success as a musical artist, how do you see the industry changing once things start opening back up (with restrictions, of course)?
DS: I think during the pandemic a lot of digital avenues opened up for artists via livestreams and virtual meet and greets among other things. I don’t necessarily think that those are going to go away, they’re just going to be a bit of a secondary stream (no pun intended). I think the industry is going to change in a lot of ways, some for the better while some might maybe not be.
To celebrate the album’s release, Shaw curated a 5-show livestream series through concert livestreaming platform Mandolin, where he performed from prolific music venues including Chicago’s The Metro, New Orleans’ Marigny Opera House, and Hamilton, Ohio’s RiversEdge in Shaw’s hometown. There will be a finale from a secret location tonight in New Orleans (May 28th) before concluding where it all began on June 4th. For more information and to purchase tickets here.
In addition to the string of livestream/in-person events, Shaw has also announced five custom wrapped D’Angelico Excel DC Guitar via Fanaply–that will include 3D digital renderings, accompanied by the physical guitar featuring David Shaw artwork. Additional limited-edition items are also available including the album cover art designed by Mike Tallman of Add Noise Studios as well as three tiers (standard, silver, gold) of custom tarot card art for each song on the album by artist Priscilla Frank. All items were animated by Andrew Carey and initial purchase of each token will include a physical copy of the David Shaw album on vinyl. Tokens are available to claim on Fanaply.
Download David Shaw’s self-titled solo album on your preferred music streaming platform, and follow him on Instagram for upcoming releases!