Digger Dan’s journey on the electric guitar began on the 22nd of February 1990, when he purchased a red and white Squire Stratocaster from the Long and McQuade that was right across the border in Surrey, from his hometown of North Delta, BC. It was merely a hobby until the 10th of October 1998 when Dan severed his spinal column after slamming into a tree on his mountain bike. Dan’s journey has been relentless and dizzying and he can say with absolute clarity that his “disability” has improved his musicianship a thousand percentage points. Dan is based in the blues, but he also loves Latin rock, boleros, ballads, some classic rock, and playing around in various styles like reggae, country, pop, and funk. Dan has been in bands since 2008, and has been a full time musician since 2012.
Dan’s musical wings were flapping in the Okanagan and he had the joy of playing with Lee Holland (bass), Darren MacDonald (drums), and Chris Doucette (keys). Some of Dan’s inspiration were local artists such as Danielle Savage, Dan Engelland (RIP), and Scott Thielmann.
When Dan came back to Vancouver after a dozen years in the Okanagan he hooked into the Vancouver Adapted Music Society and players around that non-profit such as Dirt Brigade members Dave Symington (drums) and Graeme Wyman (bass). Combining gigs with farmers markets and busking, Dan has been extremely busy these past years playing guitar four to six hours a day, four to five days a week, since 2016. Dan had the pleasure to share the stage with one of his heros, Jim Byrnes, through VAMS.
The picture on the left shows Dan with one of his biggest fans during his COVID playing at Kits Beach, Virginia Quental, the founder of the Emily Carr School of Art & Design.