--by Nichole Shafer
We wish there was a sub-genre here called SINGER/SONGWRITER.
Doug is a BMI songwriter and publisher. He's been a pro jazz trombonist since 16 and has been fortunate to play behind such legends as Ella Fitgerald, Lynn Anderson, Pearl Bailey, Manhatten Transfer, The Temptations, Mel Torme, Judy Collins, Ray Price, Bobby Goldsboro, B.B. King, B.J. Thomas, Joe Williams and many more in his career.
"Fly A Tribute to John Denver" and most of the others are arranged and produced to give the album a very New Age sound even thought the songs are mostly folk/country.
His production treatment of these songs is the way he hears them and he wasn't going to record them any other way.
All songs were written and performed by Doug.
This independent CD Album project was completed soon after CBS radio affilliate, KVIL 103.7 FM in Dallas, one of the largest AC stations in the country, played his original song, "Fly A Tribute To John Denver" less than 2 weeks after John died. The switchboard response was so
heavy that KVIL decided to make a memorial John Denver Tribute CD single of Doug's song and sold it nationwide as a KVIL promotion with the KVIL logo. The KVIL single is valued by some collectors of KVIL memorabilia, and we still have a few available which are not for sale.
7 tracks off of this album have received BMI radio play royalties, including FLY.
Doug met John while setting up for a gig back in the late 70's, and the results of that private and personal conversation had a profound influence on Doug's life.
That meeting is what inspired "Fly-A Tribute To John Denver," both versions
of which are contained here.
An interesting sidenote:
With the exception of tracks 11 and 12, Doug did all the instrumental work , as well as all the arranging, engineering, mixing and production which makes the end result a pure view into his soul.
Two cuts ["Candles and Ice Cream" and "Close Your Eyes"] were written for his young sons who you'll actually hear on "Candles and Ice Cream" and "Christmas Midnight."
Some of Doug's personal favorite songwriters/artists include Craig Carothers, Don Henry, Jerry Vandiver, Jason Blume, Karen Taylor Good, Skip Ewing, Allen Shamblin, and John Denver (of course!). His music collection is vast and covers everything from country, folk, Celtic, New Age, 80's rock, alternative, jazz, contemporary Christian, and Indie singer-songwriters.
Additional Credits [Track 11, 12]: Kathy Kersey - Synth, Vocals [track 2, 12]/ Jacob Fitch - spoken [track 7,10]/
Bobby Houston - Percussion, Drums/ Steve Bayless - Electric Bass/ Ronnie Ellis - String Bass/ Sunrise String Quartet - Strings [track 12]/ Rebecca Ruiz - Background Vocals/ Jerry Matheny - 12 String Guitar/ Ron DiIulio - Synth/ Dallas Symphony Orchestra players - Strings [track 11].
Recording Studios: Mad Dog, Autumn Sound, Access Creative.
Mastered and mixed at Yorktown Digitalworks.
This glass mastered CD includes a 2 leaf [4 page] insert with extensive liner notes and original photography of Big Sur, CA by Doug. The design of the CD itself is fascinating and depicts a star chart of the night sky.
A CD is an entire creative package..the art..all of the songs.. which only together can illuminate the soul of the creator. Doug's CD collection is also his "art" collection and also supports all of the songwriters of the album cuts that do not receive radio airplay. It is these incorrectly labelled "filler" songs that he feels are often some of the most beautiful.
I've been blessed with some cool memories of making music and rockin' out on the same stage with some true legends. In spite of all of that, what really matters most to me is raising my kids to be physically and spiritually strong, yet never losing the hearts of children.
I will never forget those who have touched my shoulder on this Grand ride in some way, and paying them back by helping someone else, if I can.
My advice to others is never forget that the magic is in the journey. Always stop to take pictures along the way, to listen to the wind, to smell the rain, and never lose a gentle spirit.