Jacob Dillan Summers, the musician behind Avid Dancer, has been the recipient of immense critical acclaim since the release of his debut full-length album, 1st Bath. Folksy psychedelics and sun-drenched grooves paired with sweet vocals and honest lyrics made for a thoughtful effort that has been lauded as one of 2015’s finest, alongside comparisons to the Velvet Underground, the Pixies, and Tame Impala.
Effortless as his pop sensibilities are, it’s then interesting to note that Summers’ entrance into the world of popular music has been an remarkable one, if not unlikely. Summers grew up in the South, raised in a strict fundamentalist Christian household and forbidden to listen to secular music until his late teen years — no internet and definitely no MTV. As a result, musical discovery is still very much an ongoing process for a guy who, upon sending early songs of his to his friends, was compared to bands like the Kinks before even knowing who they were.
After pursuing a degree in music at the University of Tennessee, Summers dropped out to join the U.S. Marines and played in the elite United States Marine Drum & Bugle Corps, where he became a world champion drumline drummer. Following his service, love brought him to Alaska. Summers eventually relocated to Los Angeles and settled in Venice Beach. His vast array of accumulated experiences came together to shape the songs that would go on to make up 1st Bath. Early demos caught the attention of producer Raymond Richards (Local Natives, Ferraby Lionheart), and together the pair began recording at Richards’ Red Rockets Glare Studio.
Avid Dancer provides a way for Summers to express himself to his very core. With 1st Bath, he puts all of himself out there — quite literally, his blood, sweat, and tears. “This music represents my entire existence up to making this record,” he explains, in a press release. “I wanted to really let people in, so I decided to paint the album title in my own blood. I actually jabbed myself until I got a big enough pool to write with. I mean, what could be more ‘me’?”
Avid Dancer is currently on tour with BØRNS and performs in Vancouver at Fortune Sound Club on November 19.
When: November 19, 2015
Where: Fortune Sound Club – 147 East Pender Street
Tickets: Sold out