Like Virginia Woolf’s ‘Orlando’, Bart Davenport has seen many an era. He’s been a mod, a bluesman and a softrock troubadour. With shirts from the 60s, guitars from the 80s and the timeless voice of a real crooner, he crafts a one-of-a-kind hybrid of paisley pop and sweet soul. One foot in reality, the other firmly planted in the fantasy world within the three minute pop song, Bart tells of life and love in the modern world with sincerity and a subtle sense of humor. In 2012 Davenport migrated to Los Angeles to form a new band lineup with the help of bassist, Jessica Espeleta. She brought in Dream Boy, Wayne Faler, whose signature jangly guitars weave their way impeccably into Bart’s songs, while drummer Andres Renteria lays down a soulful beat. This is the sound of an artist at his peak backed by an accomplished team of like-minded musicos.
A native of Oakland California, Bart Davenport’s roots are in the 90s garage and blues scenes. His first band, The Loved Ones performed a rawkus style of r&b, opening for the likes of Junior Wells and John Lee Hooker. In the 00s Davenport went solo and turned the volume down but not the intensity. Whitest Boy Alive and Kings of Convenience singer, Erlend Øye, has called him the “best one-guy-and-guitar performer there is”. Bart’s decision to perform solo was born out of pragmatism. Traveling light made touring possible and performing alone helped the artist to hone in on conveying subtle and meaningful material. The recording studio was another matter entirely.
Released in 2002, Bart’s self-titled solo debut was an indie pop layer cake filled with drums, organs and vocal harmonies. He quickly followed that in 2003 with ‘Game Preserve’ on Antenna Farm Records. Next came ‘Maroon Cocoon’ in 2005, a carefully honed lo/hi fi record. In 2007, a side project called Honeycut released ‘The Day I Turned To Glass’ on Quannum Projects. Their tune, ‘Exodus Honey’, was featured on an iMac ad campaign as well as the installation disc for Mac OS Leopard and Snow Leopard. Bart Davenport returned in 2008 with his fourth solo album, ‘Palaces’. Featuring production help from psychedelic main man, Kelley Stoltz, the album would be referred to by Sylvie Simmons of MOJO as “a fine example of San Fran’s vinyl and thrift shop culture, turning stuff people throw out into something new”.
Between Fall 2010 and Spring 2011 Davenport released three European records and spent much of his time touring the continent. There was a covers album, ‘Searching For Bart Davenport’ (Tapete Records, Germany) and two from side projects; ‘With All Due Respect’ by Incarnations (Lovemonk, Spain) and ‘Comedians’ by Honeycut (Discograph, France). In 2012. Bart Davenport’s ‘Someone2Dance’ b/w ‘Cheap Words’ saw the return of longtime compatriot, Sam Flax, as Producer. The Flax production opened a new chapter in the Davenport saga, with drum machine, synth and guitar lines reminiscent of early 80s new wave and power pop. Following that, Davenport relocated to Los Angeles where he gathered together the band that would eventually record ‘Physical World’, released on Lovemonk and Burger Records in March 2014. Bart and the band are currently recording with producer, Aaron Olson (L.A. Takedown) and with any luck, will release something new in Fall, 2017.