Darryl Jackson - Composer/Musician/Multi-Instrumentalist/Producer
Darryl (DJ) Jackson Bio:
I started Piano lessons at age 6 and have continued to play Piano over 50 years. Both of my parents were musicians. My Father was a professional Piano player in the 30s and 40s as featured dinner club Piano entertainment. My Mother was not a professional musician but played both Piano and Organ and ensured I continued my Piano studies as a young boy and into my teens. I was fortunate we always had a Piano and Organ in the house. During my “Piano lesson” time in my teens, I realized I was able to “Improvise” and discovered I had a natural talent for harmony. Piano theory came easy to me but reading music did not. I realized I could “play by ear” and not only memorize the music but improvise my own music. This later proved a downfall, as I cannot sight read music. Later in my teens, I took up Guitar, as most kids my age and excelled at the guitar and was self-taught.
In my later teens and early 20s, I quit Guitar and went back to keyboards, as they were more popular with the more progressive rock was of the time. Bands like Moody Blues, YES, Return To Forever, and many more great musicians of the time steered me towards keyboards again.
In my mid 20s to mid-30s, I went on the road through the mid-west touring with several various show bands, playing keyboards. Then in my late 30s, I decided to take up Bass Guitar. I continued to play Bass in bands over the next 30 years, while still playing Piano, Keyboards, and Guitar in my solo projects.
I was raised in Las Vegas, Nevada from 6 years old to my late 40s. Living in Las Vegas and being exposed to great music and musicians that play in the clubs, lounges and showrooms, gave me my lessons in performance and musicianship. I have seen the best of the best over the years in showrooms in many Hotel Casinos over the years. From Elvis to Sinatra to Shania to Cher, to Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5, and many more.
What is your favorite genre of music?
My favorite genre is what I may be listening to at any time and any mood. My favorite genre is something new and different and deep and is not too repetitive. I have been listening to music for over 50 years and every genre you can imagine throughout those years. This includes earlier styles of Motown, Rock and Roll, and Rock, to Classic Rock, Progressive Rock, Jazz, Smooth Jazz, Acid Jazz, Experimental, Electronic, Chill, and much more. I also like big orchestrated music for film/tv and have been working towards fitting my music into the film industry.
What is your music recording experience?
My first recording experience was in a small studio in Las Vegas back in 1962. The band I was in had a great female vocalist and we did a rendition recording of “Summertime”. I played Piano and the song turned out great. I still have a copy of that recording, which I cherish.
Later in my early 30s, I worked at Las Vegas Recording Studio for a time and was mentored and taught by the staff engineers on the fine art of recording. I was there about 2 years and was immersed in the recording industry. But my music won out and I went back to playing and performing again in local clubs and a few hotel casinos in the Vegas area.
In 1995, I developed, designed, and built VectraSound Rehearsal and Recording Studios in Las Vegas. It had 12 rehearsal studios for bands to rent rehearsal space, as well as a complete live stage room and an adjacent 32 channel analog recording room. I recorded many local bands and some pro artists like Seals and Croft (Summer Breeze) to name a few.
I retired from live performance with bands in 2010 and seriously launched my solo career in 2015. I have a fully furnished home studio I built and use daily. Being a multi-instrumentalist and playing many instruments, requires balancing practice on each instrument during the week with recording tasks and STILL working a day job.
Tell us your experience as a musician.
Music has been my creative outlet and more than a serious hobby all my life. As a driven composer and musician, I have devoted a large portion of my life to music. Growing up in Las Vegas was a different experience than most. For sure, the caliber of musicianship was a demand. I went from jamming and playing with friends at my house or their house, to High School dances, to State Fairs and other small venues. Then in my mid 20s to mid 30s I was on the road off and on through those years all over the Midwest from Montana to Minnesota, to Chicago, to Texas, to the Dakota’s to Michigan and Wisconsin. Was with several show bands during those years. Then from my 40s on, I played many hotel casinos in Las Vegas, as well as popular clubs throughout the city. In 2001, I moved to Seattle, Washington and have been a part of 3 major local bands playing large events annually. One of my high points in my career was in 2008 while with a local band in Seattle (Astrocats), we won a battle of the bands contest in Issaquah WA and was sent to Chefchaouen, Morocco ( sister city of Issaquah) to open for one of their annual music festivals.
As a solo artist and multi-instrumentalist, I play Piano, Keyboards, Bass Guitar, Electric and Acoustic Guitar, Drums and virtual Drums with my solo compositions. I also do all the arranging and orchestration for my music.
Tell us your future goals.
Getting more of my music published and out there and listened to. Having a many people as possible hear my music is important for exposure and trying to be at the right place at the right time. Although I am currently presented on iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, and Internet Radio, my more immediate goal for 2020 and beyond is landing a film/TV music publishing deal. I look forward to working with a producer to review my catalog and find nuggets of some music I have created but needs to be developed further.
Elaborate on how you think your music is inspiring your fans.
My music is something “Different”. It is not like anything else people have heard. It’s meant to be a musical mosaic and not standard or predictable. It’s honest music created from the heart and soul. I like to think my music paints a "musical landscape" in your mind when you listen. Fans have told me my music "Takes Them Places" in their mind with musical vistas and dreamy patterns of musical themes. Much of my music is still actually played on instruments from beginning to end of the song, much like in the old days. To me, that captures the real Art of making music and capturing that special moment in time that music flows into existence from God to me so I can share that experience. I am a purist and love the sound of real instruments. However, I do utilize editing tools for loops when needed. My fans have told me they enjoy my Piano playing, which is usually featured on most of my music.
State the artists you cherish most and your reason.
After studying and listening to music over 50 years, it would take pages to list all of my influences that span all genres. But some of the most special artists to me to top a list would be; Prince, Hendrix, Doors, Eagles, Beatles, Kansas, ELP, Jeff Beck, Lyle Mays, Vince Gill, Garth Brooks, Keith Emerson, Rick Wakeman, Arthur Rubinstein, Chopin, Beethoven, Mozart, Greig, and Tons and tons more.
Elaborate on how you develop your melody.
Melodies for my songs are captured on various instruments to start. It depends on if I am sitting at a Piano or have a guitar in my hands, just playing chords and tie chords together to form some structure. Then a melody just pops out of that. Rarely do I start with a melody right off. It comes more about by hearing chords played together and in sequences to form basic song structures. Then the melody can be found more easily.
Tell us if you enjoy collaborating with other artists.
After having played in 5 to 10 piece bands over a 50 year span, collaborating with bandmates is the best and most creative way to produce music. As a solo artist, I struggle constantly to be innovative and creative by myself. I miss working with other artists as it really helps the creative process flow.
I do have guest artists play on a few of my songs. I hope to do this more in the future.
Explain how you put instruments together.
I play each instrument one at a time and record it and then record the next instrument parts. Since I play all the instruments, I start with drums and work my way around the song with adding each instrument as I want that I hear in my head.
Thank You for visiting and please return often for updates to new music :-)