Dallas musicians to play tribute to Dave Matthews, Tim Reynolds at brewery
A local musician who has performed the music of the Dave Matthews Band for over a decade has combined efforts with one of the area’s premier instrumentalists to create an exciting tribute project.
Dustin Switzer and Aaron Fink, both of Dallas, will play a tribute to Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds at 8 p.m. March 24 at North Slope Brewing Company in Dallas.
Switzer, a long time disciple of DMB joins forces with Fink, former Breaking Benjamin lead guitarist turned solo songwriter, to present their take on the acoustic duo sound that first reached fans in 1999 when Matthews and Reynolds released a live recording from 1996 at Luther College in Iowa.
Switzer said he’s been playing guitar for his entire life but hearing DMB for the first time motivated him to “get aggressive” with learning the instrument.
“Hearing the ‘Crash’ record, I got addicted and started teaching myself guitar to that record,” Switzer said.
Learning Matthews’ unorthodox playing style and unique chord structures gave Switzer a basis for creating original music in a similar vein, and he began studying not only Matthews but also the songwriter’s influences, such as Paul Simon, Sting and Peter Gabriel.
Ten years ago, equipped with a batch of original songs, Switzer began recording at The Clubhouse Recording Studio in Rhinebeck, N.Y. with a pair of talented NEPA musicians and a renowned producer.
“I found out I was having a child, and I decided I needed to work and make as much money as I could,” Switzer said of shelving the project.
Continuing to perform, Switzer fell back on the Dave Matthews tribute acts he began when he had learned enough of the musician’s tunes.
“I did a bunch of acoustic shows, and we did a bunch at the (River Street ) Jazz Cafe where we assembled a whole band,” Switzer said.
Reconnecting with his original music over the last year, Switzer is working toward releasing a record in the summer, which he said will showcase a multitude of sounds inspired by his various influences.
In the meantime, he’s looking forward to working with Fink who has released three solo records — “Saint Sylvania,” “Heavy Feathers” and “Galaxies” — since March of 2015.
“Aaron’s been a hero of mine for a long time,” Switzer said. “We’ve known each other for years, but we’ve only played together a few times.”
Switzer said Fink has constructed an effects pedal board that matches Reynold’s live setup.
“(Aaron’s) a mighty force of instrumentation,” Switzer said. “His focus on his craft is second to none. Rehearsing with him was a real treat. Nobody does their homework like Aaron does.”
Fink said prior to preparing for the upcoming gig, he was familiar with Matthews’ guitar style and some of his songs but had to learn all of Matthews’ parts before “diving into” Reynolds’ “takes on those tunes.”
“Tall order,” Fink said. “I’m a big fan, so it was fun the whole time. Tim is more of a ‘trained’ musician to my ear, even touching on some metal licks. He mixes it up with some slide, lots of echoes and volume swells … very cool textural stuff that floats over top of really great tunes.”
Switzer said over the course of nearly 13 years, he’s become “quite good at putting the Dave persona out there as a character.”
“This is probably the closest replica of the Dave and Tim acoustic show that you can get anywhere in the country, and I’ll stand behind that comment fervently,” Switzer said.
North Slope, a five minute drive from the homes of both musicians, was the ideal choice for a venue, Switzer said.
“I love North Slope, because I don’t think they’ll ever charge a cover,” Switzer said. “They want people to come in and enjoy themselves. It’s local food, local produce, locally owned, and we decided it would be right.”
Reach Matt Mattei at 570-991-6651 or on Twitter @TimesLeaderMatt.
IF YOU GO
What: Dustin Switzer and Aaron Fink perform a tribute to Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds
Where: North Slope Brewing Company, 33 state Route 309, Dallas
When: 8 to 11 p.m. March 24