It is not uncommon to come across buskers in the Melbourne CBD. The city is rich in music makers and music lovers, and you will find up and coming artists, bagpiping locals, and people in bunny costumes playing electric guitar performing at all hours.
Because of this, when I was walking through Melbourne Central the other day with a group of friends, I was fairly nonchalant to the young musician sitting near the food court. He had a single mic set up with a couple of speakers, an acoustic guitar in hand and one lying behind him. My friends and I stopped to listen. And not just listen, like you do politely for buskers who catch your eye and make you awkwardly stop, but really listen.
I heard the deep tones of a well-loved acoustic guitar, played incessantly and with conviction. I saw the man nod politely at the scattered applause of onlookers, before seating himself on one of his own speakers and commanding the food court, which had now become his stage. And I observed him become lost in another world full of melodies and beats we could not hear.
I am normally struck by the meaning of a song, the lyrics and how they are delivered. Yet when I met David Knight, a soloist who focuses entirely on his skills playing acoustic guitar, I was able to learn why musicians are so drawn to the instrumental aspect of their work.
It was in the hopeful progression of chords, ushering me back to my childhood in “Coming Home,” and the intricate way his fingers danced across the frets in “With the Wind.” As he covered some of his favorite tunes, he placed his own spin on them, having us believe he could have written them through the minute rise and fall of every chord.
I normally pass by buskers, but the music of David Knight drew me in like a story begging you to reach the last page. It’s hard for musician’s to ‘make it’ in this industry, and it is easy to pass by the ones still doing the hard yards, where the local coffee shop is their arena. David Knight made me pause and see this for what it truly could be: stunning, moving and well-crafted music.
World, meet David Knight. If you happen to pass by, give him a nod and drop a note into his guitar case, or better yet, buy his EP and bring his art home with you. He is one of the artists deserving of a bigger stage, one of the few people who leave you questioning where music ends and the human soul begins.
This is a nod to one of the quiet yet accomplished musicians, playing the blues and roots festivals and the train stations of Melbourne, who believes he has something special to offer the world. Knight is reminiscent of the reasons we all fell in love with the deep base and tinkering of the keys. This is a shout out to a musician who deserves to be heard, not just because he has worked for it like so many others, but also because his music makes you stop and listen.
Enjoy this video of David Knight playing his song “New Day,” and let it take you to another place. You can visit David on his official website, Facebook and Instagram. David is performing at the Melbourne Guitar Show on August 8 & 9.