Dan Davis (B.M.- East Carolina University; M.M.-North Carolina Central University) was born in Lexington, N.C. and was exposed to music at a very young age. He began playing drums at age 11 and was soon influenced by drummers such as Charlie Watts, Ringo Starr, John Bonham and Steve Gadd. After high school, Dan received the A.J. Fletcher music scholarship to study percussion with Harold Jones and Mark Ford at East Carolina University. He was the 1987 M.T.N.A.-Wurlitzer competition national winner in percussion and performed Darius Milhaud’s Concerto for Percussion in New York City as part of the M.T.N.A. winner’s recital. In 1988, Dan won the E.C.U. concerto competition and performed Paul Creston’s Concertino for Marimba (3rd mvt.) with the E.C.U. symphony Orchestra. At this time, Dan worked with Jazz pianist Paul Tardif and became increasingly influenced by drummers such as Elvin Jones, Tony Williams, Max Roach, Art Blakey, and Jack Dejohnette.
In 1990, Dan moved to the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area and began a long association with many of the finest musicians in the southeast. He has performed and recorded with N.C. notables such as Scott Sawyer, Ray Codrington, Jim Ketch, John Brown, Dr. Steve Anderson, Dr. Ira Wiggins, Will McFarlane, Cyril Lance, Steve Haines and Adrian Duke. He is an active educator and clinician and from 2002-2005 was a band director at the Durham School of the Arts in Durham, N.C. receiving the Claus Nobel educator of distinction award in 2005. Dan currently maintains a full schedule of students and performs in many different styles of music.