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Red shirt playing guild

Tommy looking good

    Like his song, "Will I Die Alone", about the poignant fear of putting a revolver to one’s own head; says performing songwriter Tommy Dunlop, “I'm an average guy who's life has taken a natural course of doing and seeing many things. In my travels, I'd always hoped that no matter what path I was on, it would lead me back to writing songs the average person could relate to.” 

    Warehouseman; truck driver; helicopter pilot, filmmaker; father and husband, all roads, dirt or otherwise have eventually led Tommy back to writing and to music.

    Through the Late 70’s and 80’s, Tommy worked in a staff and a faculty capacity with the late Jan Tangen’s On Stage Music, formerly Family Light Music in Marin County, California - (no affiation with the current On Stage Music). There Tommy had the chance to work with such greats as Bobby McFerrin; Brian Auger and Norton Buffalo to name only a few. “I was truly blessed to have had the opportunity to play along side these talented musicians – they shaped my musical world, and for this, I will always be grateful.”

    After taking time out to raise a family; in 1999, Tommy played bass for and toured with Americana recording artist Arthur Godfrey, “The new and improved version” as Tommy says. “Arthur was great to play behind - he never made a mistake. It forced me to keep my chops tight.” Then in 2002, Tommy got back into the local scene and took on the monthly open mic and songwriters night at the Wooden Nickel Bar and Grill in Watsonville, California. Tommy passed the torch onto multi-talented Michael Gaither, where Michael organized the monthly event into something better than any of us could envision.

    Leaning toward a song with a story; Tommy tells the tales of his experiences growing up on the left coast of this great nation. His soon to be released 2008 debut record, "Overdose of Honesty" shoots from a very low place on the hip. An eclectic mix of folk; country and American songs that seem to lend themselves to the paradoxical:  from the ironic consequences of a cheating lover in, “Hell Before China”, to the unrequited love of a high school romance in the title cut, “Overdose of Honesty”, onto how one man can become so overwhelmed with life that his ex-wife lives just one bridge down in, “Homeless in his Own Home Town”, and finally to the tragic tale of one man’s witness to the loss of America’s greatest musical city, New Orleans, in, “Lover Comes A Time.”  

    Besides performing his own material, Tommy performs many songs from celebrated Americana and folk artists from Woody Guthrie to Townes Van Zandt. Currently Tommy performs in and around Santa Cruz, California and is a menber of the Canyon Acoustic Society – check local listings, or go to for more detailed information.

    As a  footnote:  Tommy's screenplay, The john Doe Component, (the fictionalized accounting of how Elvis Presley contracted out his own dissapearance) has made it into the final round of judging of the
Fade In Screenplay Competition

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