DAVID HB DRAKE has been called "a gentle troubadour" and "elemental
folksinger". His music is inspired by his voyages across Midwestern
prairies and the waters of the Great Lakes. He has performed for more
than twenty-five years in a wide variety of art forms for all ages.
David was named "Folk / Acoustic Music Artist of the Year 2002" and
"Family Performer of the Year 2001" by the
Wisconsin Area Music Industry and
the 2001 Arts Wisconsin
Community Arts Development Award for service to the arts. The
Folk Alliance Region Midwest
presented the "Lantern Bearer" Life Achievement Award in 2003 and his
album received a "Parents'
Choice" award for outstanding children's music.
Rainbow Summer, Performing Arts Center,
Milwaukee WI :
Photo by Sky Schultz
A native of Milwaukee WI, David has written more than 200 songs of the
Midwest. They are frequently heard on
Wisconsin Public Radio's "Simply Folk," Higher Ground," and on
public radio networks across the nation including New York radio's
"Woody's Children," the nationally syndicated "Sing-Out Songbag" and as
far away as Holland. His songs appear on the albums of several
Midwestern folksingers. In addition to his own music, David has a vast
storehouse of songs at his fingertips. His eclectic repertoire
includes sea shanties and songs of the Seven Seas and Great Lakes, Irish
ballads, children's and family songs, environmental music, vintage
tunes, novelty songs, traditional folk music and folk classics from the
David is a regular performer at regional folk festivals, Irish Fest,
Summerfest, Wisconsin State Fair, Old World Wisconsin, coffeehouses,
colleges, community centers, libraries, and nature centers throughout
the Midwest. He is also a frequent visitor to schools and elder care
centers, where his
WISCON-SING show, an official Wisconsin Sesquicentennial™ event,
takes a musical walk through Wisconsin's history. David's
program presents the history of our neighbors "south of the border" in
Illinois. David is frequently seen performing benefits for a wide
spectrum of social causes including the "Living
Activism" series raising funds for Native American food pantries,
the "AIDS Walk," the WAMI children's music education effort, for
Pier Wisconsin environmental
education events, and for "Peace
Action" events promoting social justice and world peace. David is a
song leader for the
Congregation of the Great Spirit, a Milwaukee Native-American
David has been a professional dancer with Betty Salamun's
DANCECIRCUS and the Milwaukee
Ballet, actor, troubadour and swordsman with the "Ring of Steel"
theatrical combat troupe, stage lighting designer, and minstrel. David
has performed as part of Wisconsin's Heritage Ensemble. He has toured
with "The Rose and Dragon" performing sea-shanties and waterfront songs,
"Sweet Survivor", a duo specializing in Christmas songs, and "Dangerous
Folk" presenting the classic folk music of the 60's. He performed
onstage at Milwaukee's Irish Fest
for 25 years. He roves Irish/Celtic events as Troubadour "Carrie O'Tunne"
and Pirate Festivals as "Graybeard, The Ancient Mariner". David is the
author of "Graybeard's Advice for Lubbers" column in Pirates Magazine.
Living his dream, David served as shanty man on the movie tall ship "HMS
Bounty". David has been both performer and crewman alongside Pete
Seeger aboard the environmental ship "Clearwater."
He has served as shantyman / historian / on-board educator
/ crew for the Wisconsin flagship
Sullivan" and Pier Wisconsin
David can be seen on YouTube and his original songs heard on Spotify by searching "David HB Drake"