Meet multi-instrumentalist David Jolley
Keep one eye open for David’s new CD, a collection of sacred songs on guitar.
Keep the other eye peeled for David’s finger-style guitar instructional video.
He paid ten books of S&H Green Stamps for his first guitar. “You could have driven a Hummer under those strings,” he recalls with a smile. Obviously it didn’t matter. By age fourteen, David Jolley was touring the country giving performances that would have made his musical influences — Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs, Chet Atkins and John Hartford — proud indeed. The love of traditional country and bluegrass music is still with him today, the flavor of it evident in every note.
David has performed as a sideman on the Grand Ole Opry and with various artists on the road, including Ray Stevens, Crystal Gayle, Mark Chestnut, Jimmy Dean, Vassar Clements, Jeannie Seely, Stonewall Jackson, Jimmy Dickens and Connie Smith. He’s kept busy playing sessions, entertaining at special events, benefits and conventions, appearing for years on the General Jackson Showboat and RFD-TV with the Shotgun Red Band, and as a featured performer on the magnificent Mississippi Queen.
David’s versatility shone especially bright in 2006 when he was a featured musician in the CMA production of Broadway Meets Country Orchestra at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, backing Trisha Yearwood, Ben Vereen, LeeAnn Womack, Barbara Mandrell, actor Peter Gallagher and others. This was also the year his personal bookings picked up, as David played more and more solo shows sharpening his wit and humor.
Thirty years of steady work in the entertainment field can be attributed to David’s proficient approach to finger-style guitar. This approach includes borrowings from Chet Atkins and Jerry Reed as well as innovative techniques all David’s own. As a vocalist, traditional sounds of Ricky Skaggs and George Jones come to mind. Equally at home on the banjo, first-quality musicianship is evident in everything he does.
A musician of this caliber stays in demand. With a large selection of accomplished Nashville musicians on call, he can configure anything from solo guitar to a seven piece country, jazz, bluegrass or variety band. He currently carries professional endorsements from Taylor Guitars, Deering Banjos, D’Addario Strings, Elixir Strings, SIT Strings, AER The Acoustic People and Peavey Electronics.
David was born in Chicago in 1960; his family moved to Northern Alabama when he was 13. He and his wife, Cheryl, live in Pegram, Tennessee, along with their son Nolan. His newest CD, released in December 2012, is titled after David’s composition, Paddle Wheel.