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"A Melting pot of Blues, R&B, Funk, Soul, Rock, some Cajun flavor...AYE! That's what we offer you in our JAMBALAYA of French Horn Infused Good News BLUES!!! It's guarnteed to SASSIFY!!! Come GET YOU SOME!!!"
- The following article is a write-up about the band back in January 2013 by the Knoxville News Sentinel -
Together and evolving for a little more than a year, local blues band Leftfoot Dave and the Magic Hats' strategic formation has culminated in a group of top-tier musicians.
Leftfoot Dave and the Magic Hats were assembled gradually by front man David Overall, a classically trained musician, who has performed with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra for four seasons. The vocalist/French horn player developed the band (consisting of Overall, guitarist Detroit Dave Meer, guitarist Doug Shanklin, bassist Allen Halcomb and drummer Robert "Bob" Dean) through a series of jam sessions at Roger's Place that served as open tryouts and practice runs. Through the course of these sessions, the group was whittled and honed to Overall's expectations and soon began performing sets under its current moniker.
"This was a good way for us to kind of put things together, put things in perspective, to know what we were going to do with the band," Overall explains. "The whole intent, of course, is to go out and play shows, and the blues jam was a good way to not only perform for everybody but to build a rapport with other musicians in the area. ... From the beginning most of the guys in the band were the ones I'd wanted. Over time we just refined the group. Within a couple of months I had the band pretty much where I wanted it. Like all bands, there are always times when you find someone else with the sound or ability you're looking for. That's what I've done."
An accomplished musician, Overall is a lover of all music but points out his gravitation toward genres that run the gamut of emotions. Classical music is known for its wide spectrum of moods, but his beloved blues is most often associated specifically with melancholy. Overall tells that this is not necessarily the case, at least in his take on the style, which fully explores the emotional archive and often erupts into dancing sessions.
"You can find blues in a lot of genres in some form or fashion," Overall points out. "Blues has a sinful nucleus to me. You can find symphonic works that have a lot of angst and just all of the emotions. Strauss, Wagner and Mahler in their writings have all the aspects — good, bad, happiness, sadness, turmoil; they have it all. That's where I find blues. Blues to me is not all about being sad. Blues has all that I mentioned in symphonic works, except the fact that you're more vocal about it. A lot of people think there is a recurring theme in all blues music that repeats every 12 bars, but there really is a lot more to it than that. The music says as much as the lyrics, and you can tell as the folks get out on the dance floor."