Every great artistic talent stems from a great love, is cultivated by the intrigue of influence, and thrives on passion for human experience. Besides Daniel front man Danny Brewer’s immense talent is no exception. His poetic lyricism, natural-sounding acoustic riffs, and evocative voice combine to produce truly masterful melodies. Not only are his songs beautifully composed, but they also possess a deep emotion that is rarely seen with such clear precision from a musical artist. In other words, he has the ability to create music straight from the soul, with naked honesty.
Besides Daniel’s forthcoming third release, This Marvelous Grief, displays this honesty in an increasingly refined style from his last two albums. Reflecting Brewer’s experiences in love, loss, self-discovery, and adventure, the introspective songs are a testament to not only his talent, but also his reliability. Most everyone has dealt with the pain of a broken heart, severing ties with a long-time companion, and feeling the desire to find oneself on his or her own terms. But not everyone can create a visceral portrait of these feelings like Brewer does in his song, “Grand Canyon.” Not everyone can generalize human patterns as sympathetically and accurately as he does in “10,000 Beautiful Angels” when he sings, “We all hold on to books that we read in our youth. We accidently invent our own versions of truth.” Such ability is only perfected with time and desire, and Brewer has always strived to make music.
Growing up in the suburban south, Brewer was not particularly interested in much besides music. His father cultivated that love by teaching him how to play guitar after returning home from working long hours at a construction job.
“I fell in love with the magic in the chords and melodies, and learned to play when I was 12 or so,” said Brewer.
Throughout high school, Danny played in bands that were “essentially not very good.” Danny felt as though he already had his calling, but the road he chose was not the easiest. As old friends and band members left for college, Danny decided to stay home and create music alone. After years of experimenting with different sounds and compilations, he created Besides Daniel.
“Besides Daniel is a musical project I started as a side project to my hard rock band. It has continued in many forms since then. Beginning as a bedroom electro-acoustic recording project, to a solo folk act, to a full band act, to a duo indie folk, then almost to nothing… and now to another solo effort hoping for a full band experience live.”
The band has a rotating cast; most currently, Chris Collin Bump on bass and Tyler Axtell on drums. The trio toured together in spring of 2013, beginning in the Southeast and venturing to the Northeast, Canada, into the Midwest, and ending in Colorado.
“They are incredible guys and have tackled the most ambitious tour I've ever done,” said Brewer.
With his solo spirit still in tact, Danny went on from Colorado alone, with only a bicycle to carry him. For the better part of summer 2013, he battled loneliness and weathered storms on a bicycle tour of the Pacific coast, staying with friends along the way or couch surfing, playing at random clubs and coffee shops or busking wherever he could.
The so-called “fingers crossed” travel style displays the same transcendental desire, respect, and awe for nature that emanates from Besides Daniel’s music- the truthful and poetic lyrics, unpretentious guitar riffs, and flowing syncopation. A personal account of his journey can be followed on his blog: http://danielonthemove.tumblr.com.
Upon returning in August, Brewer will again tour around his home state of Georgia and the surrounding southeast to perform songs from This Marvelous Grief, which will be released in October 2013. With his wanderlust and listenership only growing, Brewer has plans of touring in Brazil and Europe within the next year.
“I hope to see my music turn into something that can really be a special part of peoples lives. So I have no end in sight as far as making music, touring, and exploring the possibilities of what this life has to offer.”