Gigi Dover and The Big Love
North Carolina, United States
Rock / Funk
Hits make trends – Trends do not make hits.” These are words of wisdom that producer Elliot Mazer once shared with Gigi during a lunch conversation in NYC. She has adhered to that advice; as it well describes the artistic path she continues to follow. Doing it her way – drawing from musical influences absorbed as a kid, growing up in North Carolina, in a household of diverse musical tastes.
Gigi is a soulful, southern songstress, a brilliant songwriter and a breath of fresh air when she takes the stage to deliver the goods. Gigi Dover is the real deal.
Her roots are evident in every facet of her music. She offers up a healthy dose of southern mystique that can only occur naturally. Thru imagery and melody, Dover weaves sonic warmth, mystery, charm and even a bit of humor into her music, then delivers it with the passion, conviction and presence of a veteran rock chic. Gigi’s voice is at once sultry and steamy as a hot august night, as smooth and richly layered and textured as fine chocolate, or wine – whichever you prefer. It’s as clear and powerful as a boisterous choir of southern angels – and in a blink, can turn as haunting and resonating as Edgar Allan Poe verse. Comparisons might bring to mind Ann Wilson, Grace Slick and Etta James, to perhaps Mississippi soul-queen, Cassandra Wilson. Her songwriting influences cover a wide range as well …from Lucinda Williams to Marvin Gaye, from John Hiatt to Annie Lennox. The songs are for the most part, personal - like snapshots - sometimes the lenses is in full focus, other times it reads a bit more abstract. Still, if you ask any of her fans, they will likely tell you that Gigi stands alone, without comparison. She never lets the listener down, and never fails to deliver.
Fronting, and co-founding her band Rank Outsiders, a regionally known Americana act, they recorded and released two cd’s – 1995’s “One Man’s Trash” and 1997’s“Checkpoint”, they reached #11 on the Gavin Americana Chart that year. While touring to support Checkpoint, Gigi began writing material that would eventually lend itself to the start of her solo career. In 2000, she recorded a 4-song demo with Grammy winning producer John Jennings, followed by two full length solo projects, 2002 -”Unpicked Flowers”; 2004 - the self-titled “Gigi”. Both recorded and co-produced by Tim Coats, also include notable players and co-writers such as Jim Lauderdale, Billy Livsey and Garry Tallent (E-Street bassist). In the fall of 05, Gigi and her band The Big Love, in response to fan and radio requests, released a live collection of songs from both solo cd’s, simply titled LIVE2345. It includes duo, trio, quartet and quintet performances.
These days, rolling under the title Gigi Dover & the Big Love, it is safe to say that one genre simply does not contain the sound. Stylistically, GDTBL blurs the lines of rock, r&b, country (not new or alternative) and jazz – with a southern, soulful vein consistently running thru the middle, truly a composite of roots and influences.
GDTBL primarily travels as a trio – featuring Eric Lovell, multi-instrumentalist extraordinaire and background vocalist. Eric draws the listener in with his fluid fretwork and tasty licks, that wind their way in and out of frenzy – bringing to mind Hendrix, Jeff “Skunk” Baxter, along with the versatile and eclectic, David Lindley. Fasten your seatbelt when he plays the sitar – or hit the hookah and climb aboard your magic carpet, either way, you are in for a ride! David Clark “#6 “represents the bottom end, on bass. “6” lays down the driving rhythms and solid grooves that are the platform for Gigi and Eric to easily move around on. He doubles as the bus driver, and upon hearing him play, one might conclude he obviously practices Grand Funk RR and RUSH licks at the breakfast table. When the venue allows – GDTBL appear as a full-on 5 piece – adding Jason Atkins on keyboards, and rotating James Zogzas and Chuck Lee on the drummer throne.
GDTBL are currently in the studio, writing and recording new material slated for a fall 2006 release. A natural evolution is once again occurring, with the combined creative talents and efforts of Gigi Dover and Eric Lovell – in their own’ Blue Bubble Studios’. The sound leans towards the funkier and forceful in places, jazzy and smoky in others – think Chrissi Hynde meets Sly and the Family, with Steely Dan pulsing through the subconscious.
“I believe creativity is a tremendous gift we’ve all been given a slice of – I keep an open eye, and an open ear towards whatever might come my way … always trying to ‘write what I know’ and ‘surround myself with great players’ – to help me learn, and grow inside the music” ~ gigi