Jacob Dillan Summers, aka Avid Dancer, has had a rather alternative introduction to the world of all things musical. Growing up in a fundamentalist Christian home, he led a very sheltered childhood where it was forbidden to listen to any secular music. From his teenage years onward, he had a lot of catching up to do and his music discovery remains ongoing.
Before his current music venture began, Summers was a world champion drummer and a marine. This is where he came from and just where he goes from here is an exciting possibility, one I shall eagerly anticipate.
Summers released his debut EP, ‘I Want To See You Dance’, in October 2014 via New York-based Grand Jury Music. When speaking to them of his childhood, he wrote: “Growing up before the Internet, I was cut off. I wasn’t even allowed to watch MTV! I lived in an alternate reality. I remember sending some songs to a friend and he said, ‘Dude, you remind me of The Kinks.’ I thought they were maybe a new band, but when I listened to them I fell in love with their music. Another time, I got compared to Elliott Smith, and then I got really into him.”
His music is distinct; a quality one could imagine was extracted from a youth’s-worth of listening to music but, knowing his past, it is a wonder to hear how his style has naturally developed, free from any influences and yet very much drawing upon an old classic sound
When songwriting he invariably begins with the rhythm section, the percussion shapes and creates his songs, his rudimental drumming background plays a major part in this process. This gives his material it’s individual sound and defines songs such as, “All the Other Girls,” (..is it only me that can hear Nina Simone’s ‘See Line Woman’ in this track?). This dreamy little number has such a vintage sound, this comes through in its composition, basic in structure it evokes a very specific psychedelic sound
Another version of , “All The Other Girls” – Live from The Paste Parlour at CMJ 2014
Another example of a rhythm defined song is the smoky torch-soul ballad “Stop Playing With My Heart.”
This is definitely an artist to look out for, I highly recommend listening to his EP, which can be found here: https://soundcloud.com/avid-dancer/sets/avid-dancer-i-want-to-see-you
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