Dave Firestine is a versatile musician known for his clean rhythmic style and his gift for getting the most out of a tune. He has a knack for syncopation and drive on reels, but also a poignant sense of timing on quieter sets such as O’Carolan pieces. Dave is the primary host of the Tucson Irish session and he has a talent for leading sessions in many settings so that all attending can participate and enjoy playing together. He is well known for leading great jams at the Walnut Valley Festival Carp Camp jams in Winfield Kansas, where he often brings tunes that have a unique twist, or sets that introduce interesting changes of tempo or keys.
Dave also brings the experience of playing within a band setting. He is a member of three bands, two Irish and one old time. His primary Irish band, Round the House, recently performed at the North Texas Irish Festival and just released their third CD “Safe Home.” Dave has been teaching mandolin and bouzouki both privately and in group settings at festivals throughout the Southwest for nearly 15 years. He is a regular teacher at the California Traditional Music Society Summer Solstice Festival and has taught workshops at the Claremont Folk Festival, the Durango Meltdown and several Arizona festivals including the Dewey Dulcimer Festival, the Tucson Folk Festival and the Sharlot Hall Festival. This year he will also be teaching at the Colorado Roots Music Camp in Colorado.
His teaching emphasizes the importance of consistent pick direction to bring out the inherent rhythmic phrasing of tunes. He also works with chord progressions, developing variations, and incorporating rhythmic backing into the tunes. In addition to playing mandolin, Dave plays bouzouki, tenor banjo, guitar, and bodhran.
Instructor – Mandolin