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David Francis | Fake Valentine

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NYCBigCityLit David Francis - Poet and Songwriter Jonathan Leonard in "Leonard's Lair" David Francis' film VILLAGE FOLKSINGER premiered October 28, 2013 at Anthology Film Archives, NYC David Francis Facebook page

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Folk: Folk Pop Rock: Acoustic Moods: Type: Lyrical
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Fake Valentine

by David Francis

Deeply moving songs with a musical and lyrical wit bordering on the surreal...
Genre: Folk: Folk Pop
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
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1. Fake Valentine
2:13 $0.99
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2. Life Smiled
3:02 $0.99
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3. Reflections In The Mirror Of The Life I'm Wearing
3:19 $0.99
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4. Lines In Blue Ink
4:16 $0.99
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5. Song For A Party Never Held
6:03 $0.99
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6. Message
2:41 $0.99
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7. Time Of Day
2:41 $0.99
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8. Vilma's Lighter
3:31 $0.99
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9. Effusion
1:08 $0.99
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10. They Both Agreed
2:43 $0.99
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11. Far
5:18 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Check here for ALBUM REVIEWS, RADIO PLAY & TOUR DATES...

Musicians featured on "Fake Valentine":

David Francis (vocals, guitars, bass, piano, Hammond B3, synthesizer,
mandolin, harmonica, recorder, percussion)
Jimmy Greenwood (bass)
Jeff Philips (bass)
Keith Crupi (drums)
Aaron Russell (drums)
Drew White (drums)
Steve Finkelstein (congas, percussion)
Katy Cox (violin)
Anna Clyne (cello)
Petina Cole (piccolo)
Edward Rollin (oboe)
Patience Higgins (tenor sax)
Ira Landgarten (tambura)

RADIO PLAY

David's music has been featured on:

Radio Wildfire
WCR 101.8 FM "Roots & Branches" hosted by Steve Morris - interview and live songs
HFM 102.3 "The Dave Charles Show" - interview and live songs
209 Radio 105 FM "Headstand" with Patrick Widdess - interview and live songs
BBC Radio Gloucestershire - "The Saturday Morning Show" with Faye Hatcher - interview and live song, and on "Folk Roots" with Johnny Coppin
Radio Caroline - "Imagination" with Rob Leighton
Monochrome Museum - interview and live song
The Acoustic Stage
Bluebird Radio
Radio Marmalade
Homegrownradionj - "Sher Delight" with Sher
WGBH - "Folk on WGBH" with Naomi Arenberg
CIUT 89.5 FM
CJSF 90.1 FM
WPRB -"Music You Can't Hear on the Radio" with John Weingart
WVKR - "All-Most Folk" with Michael Chenault
WTUL - "The Folk Show" with Mark Tobler - interview and live songs
Mountain Mix
Unsigned Underground
Face the Music (Jamesb.com)
Folks Who Rock
Radio Gets Wild
Emerging Artists Radio
Radio Orphans Podcast
Indie Music Sampler
The Great American Music Hour Podcast
KRFC Radio Free Colorado
Planete Indie
The Sonic Spotlight
Tea with Hungry Lucy
Homegrown Podcast
The Colorado Wave
Mondo Blu Radio
Bagua Radio
Indie Launchpad
Blue Guitar Internet Radio Show
Heartstrings.ca
Rock Solid Radio (Australia)
Detroitbeatz
The Fevered Brain of Radio Mike
WDYN
The Happy Smoker
Indie Music Wave

Internet TV - "The New Grey Whistle Test" - interview and four songs

REVIEWS

Review in "The Black and White Magazine" (Canada) (September 2006) by Garrett Johnson:

In the tradition of old souls like Leonard Cohen, Paul McCartney and 1960's-era Scott Walker, David Francis offers a voice world-weary and overly melodic. "Fake Valentine" is a sad album that touches the dusty corners of your mind. Using a vast array of instrumentation to complement Francis' guitar playing, these songs are not only lush, but often quite orchestrated...in an indie rock kind of way. The centerpiece of the album, "Song For A Party Never Held" is a multi-layered instrumental composition that reveals David Francis the composer. But Francis scores mini-overtures in pop-like fashion throughout this 11-song album. The most effective attempt is probably the opening title track, a painful and tragic triumph of a song. The Beatle-esque "Life Smiled" sounds so genuine, it's difficult to admit that it draws so heavily from any other source. "Vilma's Lighter" could easily come from Cohen's personal journal, and Francis channels melodies that seem to come from decades before us...in such a fresh way. This is the kind of artist I do cartwheels over. Francis doesn't necessarily challenge you with his music, but he certainly does comfort you. His tenor soothes, and his melodic charm sounds so focused and effortlessly infused. The beauty of an album like "Fake Valentine" is that it has both immediate and longlasting rewards, being the cult-classic album that it is. Here's to the future of David Francis.

Al Biernacki, Gloucester Guildhall (UK) (April 2006):

David Francis lives in New York, yet his classy songs and impeccable pop instincts evoke memories of the best of British in the '60's, like a Ray Davies/Beatles collaboration...but there's much more to this wise and slightly bemusing New Yorker.

Review in "Vanity Project" (UK) (March 2006) by Skif:

A single voice that brings to mind Paul McCartney and, indeed, there is something a bit latter-day Beatles, maybe Wings, about these tunes for guitar and piano. A light AOR psychedelia and a delicate strum backing a vocal that appears to emit from a melancholic, weary sprite. This is gentle, twee, warm, impish acoustic pop brought alive by subtle orchestration.

Review in "LosingToday" (December 2005) by David Adair:

Pastoral ambient indie slides along at a stroll to give a soundtrack to an enjoyable summer, as well as being delivered with earnest grace and charm by the crisp-voiced David Francis. "Life Smiled" is a positive and thoughtful number that displays Francis' Paul McCartney-meets-Tom McCrae vocal prowess and substantiates the decision to utilise instrumental variety. The track produces a bubbly feel-good vibe on the back of tingling instrumentals, giving off an atmospheric sound.

The pangs of rejection and the trials of everyday life are melodically and mournfully (with a trace of jazz) put under the microscope in "Reflections in the Mirror of the Life I'm Wearing," done with true Leonard Cohen depth. The dreamy and rainbow-grabbing nature of Francis' work shines in "Song for a Party Never Held" that contains a delightfully jazzy jam at the end to help you float away. Francis has produced a second album that meanders along at the pace of a pony ride through a country park, allowing you to take in the scenery along the way.
Review also appeared in "Glasswerk" "AngryApe" & "Damn Pest" (UK)

Review in "Whisperin & Hollerin" (UK) (August 2005) by Different Drum:

New York singer/songwriter David Francis is a true magpie with his music taste, taking bits from here and there and arranging them in various guises from classic pop through folkish balladry to theatre musical. "Fake Valentine" is his second album of remarkably diverse but consistently interesting songs. The man himself looks decidedly old and slightly spooky in a Klaus Kinski kind of way, but the voice and the emotion is far more comforting.

On "Life Smiled" he's a cross between Wings-era McCartney and - gulp - Chris de Burgh. "Reflections in the Mirror of the Life I'm Wearing" skirts dangerously close to the Kinks' "Sunny Afternoon," while the instrumental song cycle of "Song for a Party Never Held" sounds like the overture to a musical. By the time we reach the darkly toned "Far" he's found his Lennon-esque inner demon and translated it for the indie crowd.

Too varied in style and presentation to feel like a coherent album, "Fake Valentine" is more like a random selection of classy songs from a jukebox of unknown artists whose music a long while back "fell off the radar."

Or in other words file under Intriguing.

Review in "Collected Sounds" (August 2005) by Anna Maria Stjarnell:

The front cover of this album makes me think the music is going to be a scary kind of country. It's not, it's quite sophisticated pop with Beatles-y flourishes. "Life Smiled" reflects on past happiness and does so well. The melody is very Paul McCartney and the arrangement Sixties pop. "Reflections in the Mirror of the Life I'm Wearing" strays so close to the Kinks' "Sunny Afternoon" that it has to be intentional. The vocal is very Ray Davies, too. "Song for a Party Never Held" is half early Roxy Music and half late Japan (the band, that is). With tenor sax, handclaps and the odd vocal wail, it's really an epic in waiting. "Vilma's Lighter" is a sweet little song of losing an item precious to you because of who it belonged to. "They Both Agreed" sarcastically sees us through a breakup while still being a pop song. In the end, "Fake Valentine" is an album of tarnished romance and great songs.

Review in "Leonard's Lair" (UK) (June 2005) by Jonathan Leonard:

At the time of their best work, passionate singer-songwriters Scott Walker and John Howard were hardly overwhelmed with praise. That came later in life and their recordings are now coveted by many a music critic and band member alike. Little is known about David Francis' past but judging by his work of today (not to mention his well-worn features) he follows that same lineage of classic songwriting. The title track is the ideal place to start; Francis' voice is rich in world-weariness but it's also characterised by a sense of innocence and grace. Other songs wear their 60s influences on their sleeves; "Reflections in the Mirror of the Life I'm Wearing" blatantly steals from the Kinks' "Sunny Afternoon" whilst "Lines in Blue Ink" sees Francis revel in the easy listening surroundings. The piano ballad "They Both Agreed" is another fine moment but it pales in comparison to the ambitious orchestral movements of "Song for a Party Never Held;" a moment which proves he's an arranger and a composer as well as a great singer. A mature album is expected from a mature musician but the sense of life and vigour is what makes "Fake Valentine" really stand out.

Review in "Opus" (May 2005) by Richie DeMaria:

When one looks at the cover of David Francis' "Fake Valentine" and sees his solemn, ancient face staring out from behind flowers and plants, he or she has to wonder just what kind of music this fellow produces. With a visage imparting some deep wisdom or gloom and a head of ghostly white hair, it's hard to guess what to expect. What kind of sound, exactly, does this man produce?

Something more human, accessible, engaging, and likeable than you might expect, that's what. Mr. David Francis' sound, catchy and classic, is an honest summation and reprise of all good things rock 'n' roll. In a world where music is often studio-fied to death or awash in tricky computer effects, his is a more basic, simple brand of music that is both sonically and emotionally evocative of classic rock. It's honest, enjoyable, and good, which is just about all one could ask for.

And really, you can't ask for more than the opener, "Fake Valentine." The title sounds fluffy, but don't let it deceive you; it's a pretty, moving, and heartfelt (no pun intended) song with a timeless pop melody. Alongside a stark 12-string guitar and strings, David tells us he's been "pretending, pretending, pretending." Love's often one way or the other in pop songs - you've either got it or you don't - but Mr. Francis, ever the mature songwriter, tells of a relationship where the feelings of love seemed to be lost, when they were merely feigned. It's short, but very, very sweet.

Elsewhere, his craft and talent are no less apparent. Songs like "Life Smiled" and "Reflections in the Mirror of the Life I'm Wearing" are generously swathed with melodic goodness, and the aching "Lines in Blue Ink" is the perfect pop downer for late, uncertain nights.

For the most part, David dabbles in the traditional, though he is not without variety; "Message" and "Time of Day" have a slightly tropical feel. The only song that really drifts from the conventional is the six-minute instrumental, "Song for a Party Never Held." An epic by most definitions, it shifts from cosmopolitan piano ballad to baseball park anthem (complete with cheesy organs) to elegant piano movement to dark ambient before going back to where it all began.

On a first listen, it's interesting; on a second, it's great. Though it does hinge on being a little melodramatic at one point, as murky moans threaten to overtake the piano, it is mostly successful in taking a melodic idea and extending it and filtering it through different themes.

In less than forty minutes, the album is over, and the question is answered. What lies beneath that mysterious fellow? An open, pondering soul, one familiar with love's ups and downs and with writing diverse, memorable songs. The album's appeal transcends age, and could be appreciated by ears both young and old, both new and veteran, alike. For David Francis demonstrates the power of simplicity and of good song-writing and their ability to obliterate the need for much musical embellishment.

It is, in sum, a pleasantly enjoyable disc, one that deserves to be heard by far more than have probably had the chance to hear it. Do yourself a favor and give yourself a chance.

Review in "Atomicduster" (UK) (February 2005) by Nick James:

It's not every day that you have compliments bestowed upon you by the manager of the Rolling Stones, but that's one of the many feathers in the cap of David Francis. What do our dynamic duo think about these songs though?

T: It's quite an extraordinary set of tunes to be honest.
A more alternative Elvis, shades of Chris Isaak, large splodges of Bo Diddley, a smattering of early Roxy Music and even Eno's solo output. Those folk who dismiss something as "crap" if they don't like it upon their first listen will continue to bury their heads in the sand, whilst those of us with even half a brain will be handsomely rewarded with repeat listenings, as this is a fine release filled with exquisite beauty, and while it is unlikely ever to spawn so much as a hit single, it would almost certainly be championed by any of the more "mature" music magazines that seem to be the only ones worth buying nowadays. I only wish the great John Peel were still around to witness Francis' impressive output, and I'd be intrigued to hear his comments. The references that spring at you are endless while the album plays: the latest being the late Billy Mackenzie crooning over a Latin American beat, but the fact remains that this album is truly wondrous.

N: I think it's a case of getting into the right headspace before drawing any conclusions, and as you said, all this and more. David, to my mind, bears the uncanny spirit of Ray Davies, perhaps vocally, but none more so than track three "Reflections in the Mirror of the Life I'm Wearing", which cheekily utilises the intro of "Sunny Afternoon"...or perhaps it had just been on random play just before he settled down to pen this track. His musicality is undoubted, and wholly worthwhile once you get past the "sheep."

Review in "Smother" (January 2005) by J-Sin:
(Editor's Pick)

David Francis' sophomore album "Fake Valentine" has already been gaining momentum by collecting some great words about it. But we all know we can't trust music critics, right? Well, here they are most certainly spot-on. The title track evolves a guitar plucked with curious distraction, almost as David pours out his soul as waves of string arrangements wash about us. That sets the mood for a broody album that is at once tense and relaxingly tender. The format is a stringy vein between blues-rock, the wildly weird tales that Lennon and McCartney told us in the early days, and the anthems that you might find on a Queen album, but always with a sincere and straightforward approach.

Review in "Ear Candy" (December 2004) by John Lane:

At first blush, David Francis' most recent offering "Fake Valentine" appears to be a grim, daunting work to wrap your arms around. On the sleeve, a pensive Francis stares up at us in almost gothic repose, amidst a garden setting. "What is this creature?" a first-time listener might be compelled to ask, feeling a little intimidated. And to answer, it is a direct work, while also a study in contrasts, which David Francis offers up with smooth élan.

Much has been made of Francis' vocal similarities to one Sir Paul McCartney, which is fair enough and it is quite a draw for this listener. But oh my, unlike McCartney, Francis has set out to challenge himself and the listener with the opening track, "Fake Valentine" - are we willing to accept a paradoxical theme? Can we take another ballad about a broken-hearted lover? With Francis at the helm, the answer is resoundingly affirmative. There's a very personal feel to this disc - while string work might be a bold adornment, the acoustic guitar work by Francis is the deep glue that holds everything together. In other words, if one were to strip away any of the embellishments, the trueness of the songs would still remain perfectly cohesive; that's the sign of a true musician.

Francis is not afraid of playing the field stylistically. An eerie Peruvian-sounding woodwind opening graces the song "Life Smiled," which gives way to a jaunty, piano-driven trip replete with harmonies that melt. And I must add that if there ever was a singer who deserved (and whom we needed) to be on FM radio, it's Francis because melody is absolutely king.

From the subtle bite of "Vilma's Lighter," where a simple electric guitar generates a guiding nerve of bitterness complementing Francis' plaintive voice (which becomes increasingly distressed at turns), to the valedictory, thumping last-hurrah of the closing track "Far" (which defies expectations), "Fake Valentine" proves itself to be the work of a skilled artist. Where in lesser hands, the exercise of writing 11 variations on a theme might have turned into an artless bile-fest, David Francis goes about the work with a whole range of emotions - which is really a better representation of the human spirit. I know nothing of David Francis' personal life, but if this album represents the fruits of a relationship gone wrong, then there is something to be said for adversity yielding great art. Nonetheless, given Francis' overwhelming vocal and instrumental talents, I would love to see how he handles a more sunshine-y project!

Review in "Fufkin" (September 2004) by Kevin Mathews:

Lovers of 60's-influenced music will be positively thrilled to hear what David Francis has to offer. This New York native takes obvious cues from the Kinks ("Reflections in the Mirror of the Life I'm Wearing"), the Zombies ("Fake Valentine") and Paul McCartney ("Message") and delivers masterful personal works that will surprise many with their strength and charm.

Review in "nycBigCityLit" (June 2004) by Kevin Delaney:

Blessed with a gift for melodies that seem hauntingly familiar, yet impossible to pin down, David Francis mesmerized listeners on his eponymous debut album in 2001. With a low-fi DIY sound based around Francis' intricate, understated 12-string guitar and piano, the record featured deeply moving songs of loss and yearning countered with a musical and lyrical wit bordering on the surreal.

While the sparse arrangements of "David Francis'' hinted at a wider harmonic scope, "Fake Valentine,'' his new album, is a fully realized work. Francis, a transplanted Texan, recorded the album in a Manhattan studio with a cast of fine backing musicians, rounding out his vision with bass, drums, strings, tambura and a few well-placed horns and woodwinds. Together they offer up a compelling blend of styles and mood twists on a record that still manages to flow seamlessly and coherently from start to finish.

Francis' pop instincts are impeccable, and songs like "Life Smiled,'' "Time of Day'' and "They Both Agreed'' show off his McCartneyesque tenor and incisive lyrics to great effect. Elsewhere, a surprising range of folk, rock and pop influences show up, with some latin, jazz and ska rhythms to keep things moving. The influences may seem clear but not one note is derivative. Think Nick Drake with flashes of humor, Burt Bacharach with a raw emotional edge or Arthur Lee with real chops, and you'll still only get a hint of what this album is like.

One of the high points of "Fake Valentine'' is a hypnotic six-minute instrumental called "Song for a Party Never Held.'' Francis jumps between piano, Hammond and chromatic harmonica as the piece alters its mood from deep, quiet sadness to high baroque drama. Along the way a few moments of pure whimsy sneak in and the song winds strangely but brilliantly to a climax of jarring though distantly echoing horns. A listener is never sure what to expect next but is emotionally pulled in throughout. Kind of like "Fake Valentine'' as a whole.

Review in "Splendid" (March 2004) by Mike Meginnis:
(featured on "Splendid Boombox")

The number one mistake made by songwriters who take themselves too seriously is the reduction of life to cartoonish terms. They capture the broad emotional strokes (it makes me sad when a girl doesn't like me, but it makes me happy when she does) and miss the subtle nuances that make people interesting. For contrast, David Francis is an extraordinarily mature musician who's not afraid of tackling humor and strangeness in the same breath as lost loves and new flames. He uses romances - successful and ruined alike - to discuss strange little feelings that words can evoke but never truly describe.

The title song "Fake Valentine" makes a strong first impression. Delicate guitar work twists and floats languidly, slow and then suddenly surprisingly fast. David Francis' delicate falsetto croon joins it. He sings, forlorn, lovelorn, "Just been pretending/ All of the time/ Our love was ending/ I didn't know./ Just been pretending/ To be mine/ Pretending! Pretending! Pretending!/ All of the time..." As he sings on, his voice clearly on the brink of breaking, strings - a sparkling interplay of cello and violin - join him, accentuating his every word as an incidental function of their own agenda. "I was your lover/ You were just biding time!/ You said that you loved me/ While seeming resigned/ Pretending! Pretending! Pretending!/ All of the time." The first two or three times you hear the song, you'll be convinced you've heard it somewhere else - it rings true in a nostalgic, delicate way that feels like memory.

"Fake Valentine" never quite returns to the heights reached by its title track, but its remaining ten songs are respectably solid efforts. "Reflections in the Mirror of the Life I'm Wearing" is a cool, slightly jazzy song about the crazy, intricate disasters people construct (and reconstruct) around themselves, like houses to live in - and about men and women trying to forge some connections between their respective messes. Instrumental "Song for a Party Never Held" is by turns a whimsical ballpark ditty, a haunting ghost's dirge and a classy piano tune, sustaining itself on its own flesh until it collapses into a bizarre, beautiful amalgamation of all three aspects.

Album closer "Far" is a gutsy shaking-up of Francis' image. It's a more straightforward but mildly disturbing rock tune in which he sings, as if from the end of a very long hall, "Stars/ There are no stars/ Up overhead/ The only place that you should be/ Is in your bed/ But you won't sleep/ You'll sleep no more/ You'll lie awake instead/ Why?/ Because you can't forget/ All the things she said." It's the sound of alienation, in strangely catchy form.

Francis' sound, a bluesy sort of rock made delicate enough to evoke folk songs, would have worked as well thirty years ago as it does today - but that's an aspect of it, not something you'll let worry you. This troubadour can play his music pretty much any time and place he wants - his themes of loves lost and found, and his effortless evocation of the subtle dementias they bring, will always be relevant.

EVENTS:

June 30, 2017 - premiere of the album "Improvisation" at the MJ Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
May 29, 2017 - release of "St. Transient Hotel" video

October 7, 2016 - Featured singer-songwriter, and film screening of "Village Folksinger" at Hermon Chapel Arts Centre, Oswestry, England, with host Dave Reeves
September 12, 2016 - Featured singer-songwriter at Saturn Series Poetry, Shades of Green, NYC
April 8, 2016 - the album "Memory Journey" and "Wilderness/Self Portraits" premiere at the MJ Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

September 11, 2015 - "Village Folksinger" selected for the Gulf Coast Film and Video Festival, Houston, Texas
July 17-18, 2015, Featured singer-songwriter at the Positive Energy Music Series, Center for Progressive Therapies, Manchester, CT, and screening of the film "Village Folksinger"
February 28, 2015 - featured poet at Brownstone Poets, NYC
January 3, 2015 - David Francis' musical-documentary-collage film "Village Folksinger" plays in the Newfilmmakers Series, NYC

October 24, 2014 - release of David Francis' "Commercial for Cassette"
April 8. 2014 - release of David Francis' documentary "Projection"

December 4, 2013 - Featured singer-songwriter at the Tract 187 Culture Clatch, Ding Dong Lounge, NYC
November 27, 2013 - Featured singer-songwriter at the Green Pavilion Poetry Event, Brooklyn, NY
October 28, 2013 - David Francis' musical-documentary-collage film "Village Folksinger" premieres at NYC's Anthology Film Archives
July 12, 2013 - Featured singer-songwriter at the Positive Energy Music Series, Center 4 Progressive Therapies, Manchester, CT
March 17, 2013 - Featured singer-songwriter at Great Weather for Media, accompanied by Stan Pyrzanowski, Parkside Lounge, NYC
February 19, 2013 - Featured singer-songwriter at Brownstone Poets, accompanied by Stan Pyrzanowski, Cafe Dada, Brooklyn, NY

November 24, 2012 - Featured author, reading short story "Towels Without Wasps" at the Fall 2012 issue premiere of Jenny Magazine, Youngstown, Ohio
November 5, 2012 - Featured singer-songwriter, Saturn Series, Revival Bar, NYC
April 7, 2012 - Featured singer-songwriter, Sidewalk Cafe, NYC

October 31, 2011 - Featured singer-songwriter, Halloween at the Yippie Museum Cafe, NYC
October 15 - Featured singer-songwriter, Musical Benefit for City Harvest, Brooklyn, NY
July 15 - Featured singer-songwriter, Positive Energy Music Series at the Center for Progressive Therapies, Manchester, CT

December 4, 2010 - Poetry reading, NYCBigCityLit at the New York Public Library, NYC
September 13 - Poetry reading at Brownstone Poets 2010 Anthology reading, Brooklyn, NY
August 6 - Featured singer-songwriter, Positive Energy Music Series at the Center for Progressive Therapies, Manchester, CT
June 8 - Featured poet at City Voices, Wolverhampton, England

October 31, 2009 - Featured singer-songwriter at The Lamb Inn, Yapton, England
October 29 - Singer-songwriter with poet Caroline Cadenza at Rhythm & Muse, Teddington, London
October 18 - Featured poet at The Back Fence, NYC
August 20 - Featured singer-songwriter at Gizzi's Coffeehouse, NYC

David completed a music & poetry tour of England in July 2009:
July 17-24 - Recording sessions at Monochrome Museum studios, Yapton
July 14 - Guest poet at “City Voices,” Wolverhampton
July 13- Featured poet at Beehive Poets, Bradford
July 10 - Featured singer-songwriter at The Shed, Leicester
July 9 - Interview & music performance on WCR 101.8 FM's “Roots and Branches,” hosted by Steve Morris, Wolverhampton
July 8 - Lecturer at Uni-Verse Poetry Group, Bath Royal Literary & Scientific Institution, Bath

June 16, 2009 - Featured poet at Brownstone Poets, Tillie's, Brooklyn, NY
January 22 - Featured singer-songwriter at The National Underground, NYC

October 10, 2008 - Featured singer-songwriter, Positive Energy Music Series at the Center for Progressive Therapies, Manchester CT
September 27 - Featured singer-songwriter at The National Underground, NYC

David completed a music & poetry tour of England in September 2008:
September 25 - Featured singer-songwriter at "Rhythm & Muse," Teddington, London
September 24 - Recording session for "Anthem for Green England" at Monochrome Museum, Yapton
September 22 - Featured singer-songwriter at iTV show taping, The Roadhouse, Birmingham
September 20 - Featured singer-songwriter at No Ford Eco Town Acoustic Gig, Yapton
September 18 - Featured singer-songwriter at Mosaic Music Club, Leicester
September 17 - Interview and performance on 209 Radio 105-FM "Headstand" hosted by Patrick Widdess, Cambridge
September 15 - Featured singer-songwriter at The Golden Fleece, Nottingham
September 14 - Guest poet at Wilmorton Poetry Group, Derby
September 12 - Featured singer-songwriter at Kontra Roots Club, Woodford, near Kettering
September 9 - Guest poet at "City Voices," Wolverhampton
September 8 - Guest poet at Beehive Poets, Bradford
September 7 - Interview and music performance on HFM 102-3 Radio "The Dave Charles Show," Market Harborough
September 6 - Interview and poetry reading on UK Poetry Podcast, London
September 5 - Guest speaker at Speakeasy Writers' Group, Milton Keynes

August 10, 2007 - Featured singer-songwriter, Positive Energy Music Series at the Center for Progressive Therapies, Manchester, CT

England music tour, summer 2006:
July 6 - The Acoustic Society, Stourbridge
July 6 - Taping of radio show "Monochrome Museum," Stourbridge
July 5 - Brodie's, London
July 4 - The Roadhouse, Birmingham
July 2 - The Crown and Cushion, Haslemere
June 28 - The Cellars at Eastney, Portsmouth
June 27 - Monkey Chews, London
June 25 - The Harrison Pub, London

US shows, spring 2006:
June 16 - Positive Energy Music Series at the Center for Progressive Therapies, Manchester, CT
June 8 - Langdon Street Cafe, Montpelier, VT
May 19 - Barrington Coffee House, Barrington, NJ
May 3 - The Main Pub, Manchester, CT
April 26 - Acoustic Coffee, Portland, ME
April 24 - Sugar Cube Cafe, Cromwell, CT
April 22 - Radio Bean, Burlington, VT
April 19 - Brooklyn Coffeehouse, Providence, RI
April 18 - SKYBar, Somerville, MA

England tour, spring 2006:
April 8 - Live performance on "The Saturday Morning Show" with Faye Hatcher, BBC Radio Gloucestershire
April 7 - Acoustica at the Guildhall, Gloucester
April 3 - Videotaping of "The New Grey Whistle Test" TV show at The Roadhouse, Birmingham
April 2 - Blue Angel Cafe at The Horn, St. Albans
March 31 - Rosie O'Grady's, Oxford
March 28 - Traders, Petersfield
March 24 - Alchemy Presents at View Two Gallery, Liverpool
March 22 - Raw Strings at Man on the Moon, Cambridge
March 21 - Acoustic Lounge at Smoke Rooms, London
March 19 - The Bunch of Grapes, Bristol
March 16 - The Broadway, Stourbridge
March 15 - The Twist, Colchester
March 14 - Platform at The Railway Tavern, London
March 12 - The Harrison Pub, London
March 10 - The Music House, Norwich

February 4 and 17, 2006 - Musical interlude in the play "Breuckelen" at Collective:Unconscious, NYC

November 16, 2005 - C-Note, NYC
October 7 - Chelsea Pier 63 Hurricane Benefit, NYC
September 10 - Chelsea Pier 63 Peace Fair, NYC
July 22 - Positive Energy Music Series at the Center for Progressive Therapies, Manchester, CT
July 10 - Zeitgeist Gallery, Cambridge, MA
May 11 - SKYBar, Somerville, MA
April 28 - Squawk Coffeehouse, Cambridge, MA
March 19 - Live performance on "The Folk Show" hosted by Mark Tobler on WTUL-FM, New Orleans
March 16 - Neutral Ground Coffeehouse, New Orleans
February 10 - C-Note, NYC

November 20, 2004 - WUMB Radio's Bazaar of the Stars, Boston
October 18 - C-Note, NYC
October 5 - Chelsea Pier 63 (with band), NYC
October 2 - Sayville Fall Festival, Sayville, NY
September 10 - Black Sheep Cafe, Amherst, MA
August 24 - Chelsea Pier 63 (with band), NYC
July 26 - Cantab Lounge, Cambridge, MA
July 18 - Winona Folk Concert Series, Lake Hopatcong, NJ

DAVID FRANCIS' albums "Improvisation," "Memory Journey," "Cassette," "On a Shingle Near Yapton," "David Francis" and "Poems" are also available on CDBaby.

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Poor Henry

George Harrison meets Brian Wilson & that sells him short
There is something about the opening cut (Fake Valentine) that never fails to stop me in my tracks. All of which is an apt description of David Francis' talent. There's something about this guy that can't help but grab you. As with any artist these days, you could drop names endlessly in terms of comparisons. George Harrison's underrated balladry. Brian Wilson's sense of arrangement. The sparse complexity of Nick Drake & Elliott Smith. The dramatics of Freddy Mercury. None of which touches on his vaguely flamenco stylings on the 12 string. So, I'm here to tell you, there is something sublime & original at work here.

The use of a recorder should give you some indication. Remember those in High School music class? I swear he makes the thing sound vaguely Arabic on the closing track.

If you're looking for after hours balladry, you've come to the right place. "Life Smiled" may be the most chipper song in the lot, yet still there's a a wry sense of melancholy that gives it more weight than your typical Top 40 single. The exile theme from his previous release returns again in the touchingly romantic, Lines In Blue Ink. Smack in the middle comes this lengthy instrumental I'd be hard pressed to describe. Let me just say, the melody of Song For A Party Never Held is irresistable. Here Francis simply lets his fingers do all the talking. Bittersweet sentiment comes to a fore on Vilma's Lighter & They Both Agreed is one of the most poignant piano ballads I've heard in years. On the last track (Far), he ends it all on a decidely dark note. If it weren't for the aformentioned Arabic recorder, I'd say he's channeling his inner Joy Division on this one. Suffice it to say, I doubt he's ever even heard of that band.

In short, this is brilliant edifying stuff. Something you don't come across everyday. It's homespun enough to be Indy chic & meticulously arranged enough to give the finger to the whims of fashion.
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Curious Gum Publications


It is truly rare when a new recording gets me excited,but I could not justify(even with my jaded sense of the state of the so called industry)being moved this deeply without giving credit to a songwriter who,obviously,is willing or compelled to be so vulnerable that he takes the emotional heat for all of us.This album transports me back to a time when my heart was still maleable.that's what music is supposed to do isn't?Buy it immediately and LIVE!
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