Thank you for visiting my website. I hope life is good, wherever you are reading this in our big old world. It must be said that if there’s one thing the planet doesn’t need, it is yet another website! However, for those wanting more information, American writer, journalist and biographer Charles Strohmer interviewed me and compiled a biography for your interest.
After a childhood filled with sacred classical music whilst a choral scholar at Peterborough Cathedral under the guidance of Dr. Stanley Vann, David taught himself to play guitar and played for local bands while still at The Kings School, Peterborough. Following college and university studies in ceramics, music and education, he signed his first record deal with Red Bus/EMI in a folk duo. His second contract was with PVK records, where at the signing ceremony he was introduced to legendary blues guitarist Peter Green (from Fleetwood Mac), who was by then pursuing a solo career and also signed with PVK. A lunch to remember!
Following on from a season playing guitar for The Cast, he joined Indie rock band Sensible Jerseys and moved to London. Early in the band’s career they were discovered and championed by BBC broadcasting legends John Peel and Janice Long, eventually signing with Virgin records. When the band members went their separate ways, David went on to play guitar for WEA/East West artist Tanita Tikaram, recording and touring with her across Europe, Scandinavia and the USA. He was then invited to play guitar for Irish jazz/blues artist Mary Coughlan, promoting her latest album and touring Ireland, the UK and Europe.
In the early 1990s, David played for EMI artist Steve Booker, recording a BASF award-winning album, touring Europe and opening for acts including Bob Geldof, Suzanne Vega, Clannad, and Steve Earle & the Dukes. During this period, David met Steve’s co-producer, Andy Piercy, former lead singer of British rock band After The Fire. They discovered a shared a vision and passion for new directions in liturgical and sacred music and began writing contemporary sacred music together, also playing for the music team at their local church, Holy Trinity Brompton. When not busy with sessions and production projects, the two met at Andy’s flat in Notting Hill Gate to write, new songs. This creative period resulted in the recording of two ground-breaking albums of their time: ‘Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow’ and ‘Psalms, Hymns and Spiritual Songs.’
During the ’90s and early 2000s, David recorded and toured with Virgin Records artist Julia Fordham, playing Japan, the Far East, Europe and the USA. Of this period, David has said that recording Julia’s “East West” album, produced by Michael Brook and recorded in Hollywood’s legendary Ocean Way studios, was a particular highlight. Another high point was the year 1997, when Julia and David toured with Sarah McLachlan on the Lilith Fair tour, followed by opening dates on Sheryl Crow’s world tour. On Julia’s next tour of Japan, they were very honoured that Eric Clapton came to one of their shows, joining them backstage afterwards, and invited them to his concert at Budokan stadium later in the week.
In 2005 and 2008, David worked in South Devon on the creation of electronica albums ‘Pulse’ and ‘Flight’ with electronic artist Mr. Don (John Donaldson). Also on the co-writing front, in 2009 David enjoyed the rustic surroundings of a 16th-century barn-studio in Surrey, the location for writing and recording with Grammy award-winning producer Kipper (John Eldridge) for Esther Alexander’s ‘Long Way Home’ album, collaborating on several songs with singer-songwriter Judy Tzuke.
In November 2009, David crossed the Pond, moving to Knoxville, Tennessee, to accept the invitation as director of music and creative arts at Apostles Anglican. English accents gave way to American ones every day, and David thoroughly enjoyed his sojourn in the USA, with several creative projects completed and ongoing ones underway.
‘It’s been very inspiring living here in Knoxville,’ he said. ‘It’s a great music city, in a beautiful part of east Tennessee. I travelled back to England regularly to see family and friends, and to record and play back home. Living in the States has given me more time to write and record my own projects, to work on art, and to write and produce other artists. It has been a privilege to reconnect with American musician friends in Nashville and Los Angeles.’ Work has included new material co-written with Phil Keaggy and Phil Madeira amongst other musician friends. ‘I also learned Appalachian claw-hammer banjo with East Tennessee’s very own banjo genius Matt Morelock. As I often say, never a dull moment! On the wider artistic front I tried to make time for sketching (developing ideas for oil and acrylic works) and to keep up with pottery and ceramics. Mucking about with mud, basically!’
In September 2020 he was appointed artist in residence at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford, bringing him back home to England for an exciting new creative chapter of music and art.
* MARBLE CITY SKYLINE. OUT NOW! David’s new folk and acoustic songs album is currently being promoted worldwide. Tracked with the help of Scott Minor at his vintage Wild Chorus studio, using a restored vintage MCI tape machine, original vintage outboard effects equipment, a Neve desk, and utilising CLASP recording technology. Mixed by Ben McAmis, and mastered by Richard Dodd in Nashville, Tennessee. Marble City Skyline
* FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT. OUT NOW! The string quintet and piano project, ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ is here! It was released on the 9th September 2019, on CD, digital download and streaming. A limited edition vinyl LP version is also available at the Little Room store, along with all the sheet music. More information: Fruit Of The Spirit
All Digital Streaming, Store and CD versions of recordings (and vinyl version of Fruit of the Spirit) can be found at:
Ambient Guitar recordings
* ‘The Unintended Consequences of Architecture’ (2018), ambient abstract guitar instrumentals.
* ‘Improvisational Duets with Guitar,’ Vol. 1, David Clifton and George Middlebrooks (2017), performed live at the Pilot Light, Knoxville.
Up-coming Recording Projects
* David is producing and recording a traditional folk album for Charlotte Smith. English, Irish and Scottish folk songs. It is now mixed and sounding fabulous! Tentative title: The Tree In The Wood.
* Modern liturgical sacred music. Recorded live at 5th Avenue in Knoxville, with Will Reagan engineering and co-producing the tracking sessions. Work continues on this project with Ben McAmis on the recording and mixing sessions. Overdubs and edits are taking place throughout the year. Out soon!
Session work over the years has included work with a wide range of artists: Julia Fordham, Steve Booker, Pele, Madness, Mickey Harte, Paul Heaton, Tanita Tikaram, Helen Watson, Delirious, Matt Redman, Sheila Walsh, Robin Mark, Graham Kendrick, Paul Wilbur, The Woodthieves, Kim Hill, and many others.
Record Label: Little Room Recordings.
Music Publishing: IQ Music Ltd. London and Liverpool, England, UK.
Little Room Music: Administered by IQ Music Ltd./Wixen Music USA.
New Album Tracks c/o iPluggers: Radio Play Downloads Marble City Skyline
UK and Worldwide Radio Single: Song Of Farewell, c/o: RadioPluggers