Contis, France 2015
Photo: Dan Herbert
Raised in a small beach town outside of Tampa, Florida, Dave Herrero was introduced to the local and national music scene though a family friend, sneaking out of military school at age 15 to regularly to see bands like the Arc Angels and Johnny Winter, and to go to a local blues jam at the Green Iguana on Monday nights, where local heroes like James and Lucky Peterson would frequently pop in.
Herrero got his start as a professional touring musician in 1996 in Jacksonville Beach, Florida, then moved to Austin, TX and joined Archie Bell and the Drells (of "Tighten Up" fame). In Austin, he quickly immersed himself into the Austin music community, playing with the likes of Gary Clark Jr, Charlie Sexton, Lazy Lester, Matt Powell, Seth Walker all the while starting the Blues Society of Austin with friends, Mark "Kaz" Kazanoff, Nancy Coplin and Nicole Shiro. It was in Austin that Dave honed in on his guitar playing, singing and songwriting skills, that he then took with him to Chicago.
In Chicago, Dave teamed up with his brother, acclaimed hip-hop producer Mike Hero, and old friend and accomplished songwriter, Felix Reyes. While Dave, Felix and Mike produced Dave's second album, "Austin to Chicago", which garnered a nomination for the 2009 Illinois Blues Blast Award Debut Artist of the Year, Dave and his brother started a production company, TrackForce Productions, and began making music for Harpo Productions (The Oprah Winfrey Show / The Dr Oz Show). It was during this time that Chicago Blues / Soul legend Jimmy Burns asked Dave to co-produce his album, "Stuck in the Middle".
Since his move from Austin to Chicago, Dave has toured Europe countless times, started a blues in schools program with Foundations of Music and has been blessed to share the stage with many of hs heroes, including the man who inspired him to make music his life, Mr. Buddy Guy. "I like to stay busy", says Herrero. Aside from starting and running a television music production company with his brother Mike, he has found time to play bass on tours with Nikki Hill, has engineered and did horn arrangements on her debut album, "Here's Nikki Hill", has shared the stage with the likes of Gary Clark Jr. and Robert Randolph, and has played drums on Mississippi Gabe Carter's album, "Until They Drag Me Down". If that weren't enough, he has played guitar, bass and co-produced countless hip-hop records with Chicago rap architects PsychoDrama and Ready. Dave is currently a session guitarist for Stockholm / L.A. based SONY/ATV producer "Jake Oh", and has played on many European hit recordings.
He recorded his latest release, "Corazón" (2013) which seamlessly blends psychedelia, blues, rock n' roll, and singer songwriter music. Most recently, Dave was honored and humbled when asked to play on Playing For Change's tribute to 50 years of the Grateful Dead, "Ripple Effect".
Herrero is fond of saying that music is in his blood. “My grandfather, with a third grade education, was arranging for large orchestras in Dominican Republic by the age of 13, and arranged several important songs of the day that his brother Samuel wrote in La Romana, where they grew up. He played at the silent movies for a dollar a day. When he went to New York, it was right in the midst of the great depression to chase a better life for his family, and to chase the music." His band, Luis Herrero & The Dominican Serenaders, played the famed Storck Club, the Cotton Club, and the Worldʼs Fair in NYC in 1939 on one of the first color broadcast television shows. His orchesrta worked with many greats of the time including, Machito, Desi Arnaz and Davilita. "The way I see it, Iʼm carrying on a family tradition. My grandfather used to say, 'the United States will treat anyone well. All you have to do is work hard and behave yourself'. If that's all it takes, we gonna be all right", Herrero says with a smile.
Dave is currently working on an EP of original material due out Spring of 2016 and is excited for the next phase in his musical journey. Besides playing performances solo, Dave is also working on a folk / rock / electronica project with Anne Harris (of the Otis Taylor Band) and is working on a new album with the Austin, TX based rock n' roll band, The Texas Cannonballs.
TrackForce Productions, L.L.C.