Meet Musician Dave Elwert and His Love for Music

Please introduce yourself. What do you do? Why? What do you want people to know about you?

I’m Dave! I’m a thirty-something year old songwriter, musician, producer, husband, and Hoosier. From an early age, I knew I wanted to one day be a professional musician; not with dreams of fame or fortune, but simply because I loved Music. It simultaneously was and still is my escape and my podium. It’s where I go to celebrate, to mourn, to think, to pray, and sometimes to simply hide. It says what can’t be said with only words. It’s powerful and I love it.

Currently, my musical existence is split three ways. My #1 passion it to write and produce records of my own. If someone wants to know how to best get to know Dave Elwert, I’d tell them to listen to my songs. This, however is not how I make my living. I love the creation process, but I have no desire to be front and center on a stage.

I make my living as a touring musician and a producer. I love them both. It’s nice to enjoy touring without the pressures of being an artist hovering over my head. I’ve toured as a keys player and drummer for a variety of artists, but my primary gig for the last two years has been drums for BMG artists, ‘Runaway June’. When I’m not on tour, I’m producing projects from my home studio. Between my music, touring, and producing, I’ve struck a healthy balance of personal creativity, touring life, and time at home.

What qualities make you different and unique from everyone else in the industry?

After my childhood years of lessons, playing in church, ensembles in high school and college, and the rise and fall of several bands with friends, I was finally released into the wild to try and make a living… and although it’s been incredibly difficult at times, I’m still here, still doing it, and I still loving it. It’s been about 15 years since I had a “real job.” In that time, I’ve worn many hats to make ends meet. I ran a music venue, opened a studio, taught lessons, toured as a singer-songwriter, played keys and drums for other artists on the road and in the studio, and engineered and produced countless recording projects. It’s never been just one thing, and I sometimes wonder if it were, how much better I would be at that one thing.

I used to envy those musicians, who are ‘specialists’, who are incredibly good at their one thing. I used to think it would be so much easier that way. Years have proven otherwise, as many of those ‘specialists’ have thrown in the towel when the work dried up, and I’ve had the fortune of being able to switch gears and keep trucking along. “The grass is always greener,” as they say. I’ve learned to be grateful for the path that I’m on. It hasn’t always been the most scenic, but I’ve yet to reach the end. I suppose this is one of my more unique qualities; the ability to adapt and overcome. It can be a pain, but when you love something enough, you’ll be surprised by how much pain you can endure.

Describe THAT moment when you realized you’re doing what you were born to do.

I don’t know if I can point to a single moment in time, but I can sum up countless moments in one word: Goosebumps. Literally the only times in my life that I’ve gotten goosebumps, music was the culprit. It could be a heart-wrenching lyric pair with the perfect melody, a rhythm section that is so tight you might pass out, or a string arrangement perfectly underscoring the scene in a motion picture. In those moments, my soul comes alive. So whether I’m in the studio working on one of my songs or someone else’s, or I’m playing keys or drums on a stage; if something happens that gives me the goosebumps; those are the moments I’m reminded that I’m in the right place.

Dave Elwert

What’s been the biggest challenge you’ve had to go through and how did you grow through it?

Given the path that I’ve chosen, my biggest challenge has been the fact that I don’t live in Nashville. I’m three and a half hours north, which may not seem like a big deal, but trust me, to a lot of people in that town, I might as well live on the moon. Bottom line: I have a great reason for living where I do. My beautiful, loving, and supportive wife loves what she does. It brings her joy and fulfillment, and that gives me more joy and fulfillment than music alone ever could. Life does not revolve around my love for music. Betsy and I are a team. She wants nothing more than for me to be happy, and I want nothing more than for her to be happy, and we’ve managed to find a way to do that.

For years, I’ve commuted to and from Nashville, doing co-writes, playing in friends bands at bars and songwriter nights, pitching my own songs, auditioning, etc etc. More times than not, when I drove home and watched Nashville’s skyline fade off in my rear view, I felt defeated and hopeless. I debated giving up countless times, but the love for it kept me coming back. I have a song on Spotify/Apple Music etc called “Nashville” all about this.

I’ve always been persistent and done the best I could with what I had. I suppose that’s the best any of us can do. It is still difficult at times and I still have those dark days, but again, when you love something enough, you’d be surprised on what you can endure. “Success” is in the eyes of the beholder. I’m now of the opinion that if you’re happy and doing something you love, you’re already more successful than the majority of folks.

If you had to pick the TOP 3 people you’d want to meet that could take your career (or business) to the next level…who would those 3 people be?

I can’t say I have 3 specific individuals. In every case thus far, the people who have elevated my career/business the most were the folks sitting right beside me; family and friends. They’ve encouraged me to keep going when I was at the end of my rope and they’ve connected me with other like-minded artists and musicians who give that same love to one another.

Our little community has kept each other going. So, I guess I’d like to meet 3 more of those folks. Three real relationships that are built on mutual love and respect and not on a desire to further ones career.

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Vianka Petines
Vianka Petines
Vianka is a bright, savvy, and capable marketing publicist. She brings a breath of fresh air with a very sound approach to strategy and campaign development. We're excited to have her on the team :)


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