Leaving the 1956 Flex tour bus David Mayfield and his family called home to start his nightly shift at the tool and die along side his father it’s easy to understand why he celebrates every performance he’s afforded.
David Mayfield is the “other” voice and lead guitarist, as well as a contributing songwriter for folk rock favorites Cadillac Sky, whose last album “Letters In The Deep” was produced by Dan Auerbach (Black Keys) but his role as a member of the Texas by way of Nashville quintet is just one of the many musical paths this Grammy-nominated artist has journeyed.
Growing up in Kent, Ohio, David was surrounded by Bluegrass music. At the age of twelve he was playing bass for the family band, traveling from festival to festival, along with his younger sister, noted songstress, Jessica Lea Mayfield, singing and absorbing the stories and lessons taught by road hard veterans, all the while picking up tips on how to play a lick on guitar or mandolin. By the time he was a teenager, Mayfield had won several national awards for his guitar and mandolin playing and his reputation was being forged in the world of Bluegrass as a player to watch out for.
Things changed however when the family parked their bus in the heart of Country Music USA. Settling in Nashville, with the hopes of finding a steady gig that would allow for some stability, struggling to survive on music alone, David’s father took a job in a machine shop working the graveyard shift, while 16-year-old David got hired to sweep its floors. Once the last day shift worker and office staffer had left the building, voices would soar over the roar of machinery. Father and son while working to keep the family afloat, would simply sing. As if they hadn’t a care in the world. Mayfield recalls it as one of his happiest memories.
The family eventually moved back to their hometown in Ohio but David returned a few year later and after a stint of all night “gun-for-hire” gigs in the tourist filled honky-tonks that line downtown Nashville, Mayfield auditioned for country hit maker Andy Griggs. He got the gig and hit the road, eventually landing several appearances on the coveted Grand Ole Opry stage.
In 2008 when Jessica Lea Mayfield was ready to make her debut record, Blasphemy So Heartfelt, she asked David to play bass on it. He did. And over the next year he would tour as her bassist, and as a newly minted member of Cadillac Sky all while writing and performing his own songs.
That same year he produced and engineered the album “In Gods Time” for old friend Barry Scott. Much to Mayfield’s surprise and with some amusement the song went on to earn a Grammy nomination in the Southern Gospel category in 2009. His production credits continued with Among The Oak & Ash’s sophomore effort for Verve Records.
But it was while on the road with Jessica that Avett Brothers, Scott and Seth took notice of Mayfield’s musicianship and the three quickly developed a friendship, leading them to invite David to sit in with them dozens of times including their 2010 Bonnaroo & Merlefest sets. After urging him more and more to make a record of his own, when he took to the studio the Avett’s were quick to lend their voices.
David Mayfield Parade is the culmination of that encouragement. The album reflects the numerous influences that come from a lifetime of being immersed in American music and channeling its unique forms with sincerity and celebration from the howl of early rock-n-roll, to the low lonesome twang of folk and country with a voice that is all at once heartbreaking and inherently hopeful.
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