27 September 2021

Daidrum: Drumming Up a New Audience

By Lark Music

Meet Daidrum. You may know him better as David Foster, Aston Lark’s Executive Director in the Private Clients division, who has just written and produced his first album, The Wild Winds Coldly Blow. Here, Daidrum shares his story with Lark Music.

“I was always a frustrated drummer but working in insurance, ironically, was less risky. I played in a rock band for a year after I finished at Cardiff University in 1986 – we weren’t bad – but we didn’t make any money.

Drumming has always been part of my life and I play in a band, National Funk Service. Song-writing, though, was new to me and the catalyst was a combination of semi-retiring (I now work one day a week), plus being at home due to the pandemic.

A major jolt in my life came three weeks into lockdown when my wife Helen suffered a brain haemorrhage. Lockdown probably saved her life because our daughters and I were at home and called the ambulance. It’s all about speedy treatment with brain injuries. We live in Finchley, and she was taken straight to National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosciences, in Queens Square.

This was shocking, but she has made a brilliant recovery. I wrote the song, Blood Runs Through Our Veins, all about that experience. I was quite pleased because it was the first one I had seriously attempted since my student days. I wrote another on the back of that and felt, yes, I can write songs.

I recorded it on Garage Band, a digital audio workstation, using some software instruments and guitar, and then I realised I needed to sing! I am a drummer first; I am an okay guitarist and can sing a bit, but it takes a few takes to get my voice working properly.

My studio is not hi-tech – it is half of my garage which I cleared out and insulated. My equipment includes MIDI keyboard, a couple of nice studio monitors, headphones, microphone, a MIDI box to plug in my electric guitar and play straight onto a digital workstation. I can plug my keyboard into my Mac so there has not been a huge financial layout.

The single Distant Traveller came out in June and the album, The Wild Winds Coldly Blow, which I am really pleased with, was released in July. My daughter Hannah, 22, is lead vocalist on two tracks and backing on others. Working with her was a dream because she is a diploma-level flautist and has a degree in music performance. All three of my daughters are musical – Emily, 23, is a pianist and Katie, 17, is a grade 8 saxophonist and she also plays on the album.

I also had to find myself a name so went for Daidrum, combining my name in Welsh, Dai, and including favourite musical instrument. It’s also an old student nickname of mine! As Daidrum, it is all about getting my music heard and I now have over 1,000 listeners across all social media streams including Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.

There’s a nice online community of musicians who want to help each other and I have been getting some good and thoughtful feedback from across the world!

Music redefines who you are and I feel a different person; as a soloist I am now building up courage to play live, perhaps in the local pub, but there’s a world of difference sitting behind a drum kit on the stage to being on your own, relying on your voice and guitar. It is a scary prospect.

I am used to standing in front of an audience at Aston Lark events, it is what I have done in 30 years of business, but then I am very, very prepared and know my stuff inside out.

Now, at the age of 57, it’s about wanting people to hear my music and wanting to know I have produced something they like and enjoy.

I want my music to be listenable, not hardcore on any level, just writing songs as well as I can without getting too hung up on genres.

It has been a fabulous learning experience. First the writing, the production and mixing, and the performance aspect. It’s a host of exciting new skills and I’ve even let my hair grow a bit longer!”

Listen to Daidrum here or on Spotify and visit @Daidrum Music on Facebook or Instagram @dai.drum

Do you need musical instrument insurance?

No matter how big or small the investment in your drum kit, Daidrum (David Foster) recommends it is important to be adequately insured.

If you are looking to insure your drum kit, our team is happy to help. You can get in touch by clicking here, or alternatively you can get a quote online for your drums or any other type of musical instrument insurance.