Dave DeWhitt is a singer, songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist. Dave hails from a musical family and started musical training at an early age. His mom is a highly-regarded musician, composer, and piano teacher, and Dave's grandfather was a renowned chorale director, known to the local community in the town where Dave grew up as "Mr. Music".
Dave started on piano, taking formal lessons for many years, but quickly fell in love with guitar after hearing Van Halen's raucous, high-energy recordings. "I loved how Van Halen's albums and videos showcased virtuoso performances by outstanding musicians and yet they still managed not to take themselves too seriously." Over the years, Dave's focus shifted from being guitar-centric to being more about songwriting and crafting interesting productions, but the "let's not take this too seriously" approach to music has always resonated with Dave.
Dave spent his college years at the University of Delaware playing in local cover bands. "We covered music by a hugely diverse range of artists and styles, but always tried to put our own twist on the songs. I had been writing original music for awhile, but that was when I really started to care about song structure and production - how to develop interest over the course of a song and keep it building up without making things too repetitive or boring." That was also the beginning of Dave's singing career, with Dave handling the lead vocals in addition to guitar duties. Dave graduated from the University of Delaware in 1994 with a degree in Economics, but his love of songwriting and recording led to an interest in computers and recording technology, which eventually led to a career in Information Technology.
Dave is married with two beautiful daughters, and he currently enjoys songwriting, recording, and other creative pursuits in his free time. "I'm lucky enough to have a nice basement studio that I built over the course of several years, and the technology these days is just amazing for recording hobbyists - it's an awesome time to be into music and recording."
Regarding the album, Signs of Life, Dave says, "It's the culmination of a two year project that started on a whim, which turned into a goal, which quickly developed into a minor obsession." Dave wrote and recorded all of the songs in his basement studio between 2009 and 2011, and then recruited Paul Lanahan to record drums on the tracks in 2011. The recording was completed in October 2011, and Dave sent the tracks to Jan Ohlhorst of Fine Mastering to have everything mastered for commercial release. Dave started Midnight Muse Media publishing company in November 2011 and self-published Signs of Life on the Midnight Muse label. The album is available on iTunes, CDBaby, Amazon.com, and from many other online retailers and streaming music outlets.
Paul Lanahan began his musical career at an early age, studying classical piano in the Suzuki style, and listening to a wide variety of music while learning songs by ear. Paul is one of five siblings, all of whom excelled in both music and athletics. Talking about his childhood, Paul says, "It would be a rare day in our house if we weren’t going to an athletic event, or a concert, or a show. Someone was always performing something somewhere."
When Paul’s brother started a band and needed a drummer, Paul began playing the drums using an old hand-me-down set. "I instantly fell in love with the drums. I practiced nonstop, playing along with some of my favorite bands and drummers at the time - John Bonham, Alex Van Halen, Neil Peart, Mitch Mitchell, and many others. We played all types of music from The Doors, to Zeppelin, to Hendrix, to Van Halen, to the Police. You name it, we played it." Throughout his teenage years, Paul played drums in several bands, not only learning covers, but also working on original material.
During high school, Paul continued to study classical music and theory, and developed an interest in Jazz Piano, learning tunes from musicians like Scott Joplin, Thelonious Monk, and Marian McPartland. He soon began playing jazz piano in small cocktail venues to hone his improvisational skills. Paul also played soccer and lacrosse in high school, and it was a lacrosse scholarship that eventually brought him to the University of Delaware, where he played for the Blue Hens and earned a degree in Economics. "Playing a sport in College was challenging. It didn’t allow time for much else besides practice and studying, so I put music on hold for a while.”
After graduation, Paul accepted an Information Technology position in the banking industry with the intention of moving into a business career, but the challenges and rewards of working with technology kept him in an IT role, which he still enjoys today. Paul is happily married, and he shares his love of sports and music with his three children, coaching their teams and attending games in his free time.
Paul met Dave through work, and when Dave mentioned he was working on an album of original tunes, and had been banging out drum parts on a keyboard with software instruments, Paul offered to play drums. They immediately hit it off musically, and spent several months recording drum tracks, struggling to find time in their schedules to sneak in recording sessions. Signs of Life was completed in late 2011.
Paul Lanahan is currently busy playing drums and working on new material with Dave DeWhitt and bassist/singer Paul Zotter. The trio plans to release new original material online soon!
Paul Zotter (aka ZMan!) has been rocking from Connecticut to Maryland and everywhere in between for over 20 years. Whether in intimate rooms playing original progressive rock, or in large halls playing wedding music, one thing remains constant, Paul’s unabashed passion for music.
Paul grew up in a family that loved to sing, and he started performing at a very young age in churches, concerts, and plays. Zotter started playing guitar at age 14, and took lessons from Richard Drueding. “My main influences were Pink Floyd, Rush, Yes and, of course, the full compliment of 80’s hair bands. I also have to "tip the hat" to Barry Manilow, he was one of the best ever.” Paul went on to study guitar and voice at Millersville University in Pennsylvania. Early in his career he performed in groups ranging from classical guitar ensembles to progressive rock original bands. Most notably: Surface Tension (vocals, guitars); The Really Neat Squadron; and Ten Feet Tall (guitars and backing vocals).
Working in the business world by day, Paul resumed his musical journey in 2001 as a featured vocalist and acoustic guitar and keyboard player for a premier entertainment group that performed at the Jersey Shore and at weddings up and down the east coast. Paul stretched his abilities and found new challenges in singing and playing cover songs that spanned 4 decades of music and multiple genres. Currently, you can catch Paul performing live in various acoustic formats in the Philadelphia region, and Paul has also recently completed his first CD of original music, Guitars and Cars, which is available for download from iTunes, Amazon, and other online retailers.
Paul Zotter met Dave DeWhitt in 2013 through a mutual acquaintance (thanks, Mike Feuda!), and after watching Paul sing and play bass while entertaining the crowd in the FnZ acoustic duo, Dave realized that Paul would be the perfect fit to complete the vision that Dave and Paul Lanahan had for an original power rock trio. Happily, Zman agreed, and the three started working on original music. Zotter is shouldering the bass guitar and background vocal duties in the trio, but with a band full of multi-instrumentalists and singers, who knows where things will end up!
Zotter lives in West Grove Pa. with his two sons who keep him busy with travel ice hockey and expand his musical horizons in ways he never possibly imagined. Thinking about the next steps on his musical journey, Paul says, “My phone is always on and I'm waiting patiently for the call inviting me to Darryl Hall's farmhouse! Seriously though, I'm very excited to be spending so much time on original music again, and I'm looking forward to that continuing on.”