About the Music
High atop the Highland Rim on the Cumberland Plateau, in the small city of Jamestown, TN, a little boy was learning to fall in love with the sound of country music. This is the setting of the beginning of a dream, while he was fast asleep on a pallet at WDEB radio station. Beneath a tower blinking in the early morning hours of 4am, his dad was disc jockeying the morning show featuring music from early greats, the likes of Johnny Cash, Vern Gosdin, Ernest Tubb, and Bill Monroe. This early love was fostered by his father's vocation, but his mother also introduced him to early rock and roll and the easy listening sounds of the 70's and 80's.
His passion for music was set, but singing publicly was not his intention.That is with the exception of a rare occasion when he was bribed to sing something like an old Kenny Rogers tune for the telephone repairman or someone else who was willing to offer up a quarter or fifty cents to hear what sounded like a grown up voice coming from a 5 year old. Music has always been a part of his life. Recalling a memory at the Grand Ole Opry House, when Skeeter Davis encouraged a 9 year old Danny to accompany her on the stage of legends, he still looks back at that special moment in a tattered picture he holds as a favorite memory. The music was his escape, finding his way in and out of the emotions in each story with just the push of a button.
Finally, at 14, he was spurred by a Clarkrange High School choir director to put his voice to the test at the school's country music show which sparked a local following. From that day forward, he could not hide the fact that he had a voice people loved to listen to. Following, upon the push from those that say, "a talent worth hearing should be heard," he entered into the county fair talent contest,and each year walked away affirmed that he belonged on stage, microphone in hand.
He went on to place in national competition such as the Dottie West talent show two years running, where he was accompanied by his father for the first time on stage, playing the acoustic for Danny. At 18,with a loan from the bank, he bought his first guitar, a cedar belly Seagull, and a capo. Calluses began to form on his fingers from learning to cord and on his heart from the emotional music that was about to pour out from Danny and a couple of close friends. College days were upon him, and songs of country music personalities like Keith Whitley, Merle Haggard, Ken Mellons and George Strait were streaming from the hollows of that Seagull around campfires, in friends living rooms, and on the occasional visit to an open mic night in Cookeville, TN. Those musical influences, along with other favorites like Tracy Lawrence and Daryle Singletary , found their way into his voice and helped to shape the vocal style that is soothing with a touch of real grit.
The emotionally charged songs of the college years were written with Troy Taylor, by way of Byrdstown, TN and another Clarkrange native, Joey Cravens. Together, these three swam the depths of life and saved each drowning thought on paper, and the compilation of the album "You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet" was formed in 2002. "We were just writing about real things, things we were facing, or a thing one of us was going through," said Joey Cravens. " Danny was the instrumentalist and we all contributed to the words.."
The Nashville Palace was another place Danny made his presence known. This is the famed establishment where the singing dishwasher, Randy Travis, and singer/songwriter Alan Jackson would awe the crowd before they were stars. Danny frequented this legendary "Palace" on talent night, facing off some of the best talent in Music City, and he walked away with a prize of coming back to headline on Thursday night. Before one trip, he and a friend made a stop by the Gibson Theater , hearing of a writers night, which ended with the gentleman that actually produced the showcase inviting the two to his table to talk. He couldn't believe the content of the songs came from the two young men before him.
On the back deck of Troy Taylor's Dixie Avenue apartment, the lost love songs of "Something Blue" and "Just to get the Ride" ,along with "I Love you Still" ,and "Tumblin Stumblin",were written on nights when the guys weren't working. They would write, over these few years, the album "You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet",. which is full of emotional highs and lows for the three writers, but the common thread was that the other two trusted Danny to introduce these stories and ballads to those that would attend with a hearing ear. The three remain friends and still write music together to this day though they live many miles apart.
Now, some seventeen years later, after many traveled roads and changes, the album entitled "Actual Miles" is here. It holds some original works, some flavor from other local songwriters and some of Danny's favorites. This album also highlights the road he has traveled to bring his music to the people that have learned to love his powerful voice. It includes a little help from a new generation, his children , carrying on the country tradition. He touches every facet of what a country music fan desires to hear. So we invite you to listen close. Each title track is in line with the story of Danny Howard. So we invite you to kick the tires and check out the