Whether he is fronting a full band or by himself on an acoustic guitar, Bart is impossible to ignore. He can sell you a bill of love that from anyone else would seem corny and make you believe again - in the long summers of blissful youth, in dancing the night away.
Bart Davenport is the former lead singer of The Loved Ones, much-heralded San Franciscan garage/blues band. Maroon Cocoon is his second release on the Antenna Farm label. Davenport spent a nice chunk of Summer 2004 at his Berkeley house recording Maroon Cocoon. Playing the majority of the instruments himself and working on an eight-track, half-inch tape machine, this is his most stripped-down, carefully honed album yet. Aside from a few guest musicians, Bart's friend and housemate Sam Flax Keener was the only constant presence, contributing his considerable engineering skills and a few riffs on various wind instruments. Starting with the wooden modernity of Bossa Nova as a bases, Davenport blends in elements of British folk, psych, 70s AM soft-rock and the occasional drum machine. Throughout, his primary emphasis is squarely on the art of the pop song.
Having grown up in Berkeley California, Bart spent his childhood years raiding his hippie parents' record collection. Three favorites, Arthur Lee/Love, Gil Scott Heron and the early solo work of Paul McCartney form a holy trinity that inspires much of Bart’s own musical output to this day. At the age of eight he was learning guitar and by fourteen, he was sneaking out of the house for blues jams at Your Place. Sadly, this Oakland juke joint that turned a blind eye to a way under-age blues singer burned to the ground before his twenty-first birthday. By then he had become the howling frontman of The Loved Ones and later bay area supergroup, The Kinetics. Both bands were ahead of every musical curve and their impact is still felt today from Oakland to Amsterdam.
Several years, albums, tours, bands and band break-ups later, Bart stepped out on his own. His self-titled solo debut on Paris Caramel Records in 2002 put him on the map as a singer-songwriter and on the road as a performer. Bart’s eclectic style gave him numerous opportunities to share bills with a diverse roster of acts. He toured with Norway’s Kings Of Convenience and The Cuts, Oakland rock & rollers whose rhythm section sometimes accompanied him on stage. Game Preserve, his second solo album attested to Davenport's ability to lead a wide range of musicians in the studio. Released in Fall 2003 on Antenna Farm, Game Preserve featured accompaniment by members of Call And Response, Cake, Subtle and Dave Gleason's Wasted Days, plus rich vocal harmonies by The Moore Brothers and Nedelle. This, along with tight, no-nonsense, analogue production from Jon Erickson, made the album both classic and pioneering. Never content to be tied to one genre, Davenport followed this release by contributing his funkier voice to DJ Greyboy's Soul Mosaic album, a college airplay chart topper in 2004. Davenport also sings lead for the electro/R&B project Honeycut, a combo featuring French keyboardist, RV (aka General Electrics) and drum machinist, Tony Sevener (due out on Quannum in Spring 2005).