David Latto is a singer songwriter from Kirkcaldy, Scotland. David's honest and engaging voice has earned comparisons to Jackson Browne and Ryan Adams. He has always found inspiration in American music and weaves threads of country, folk and pop into his own work.
“Growing up in semi-rural Fife there wasn’t much else to do except play guitar and I became obsessed with the instrument. I formed a band with my friends and, for some reason, I was nominated the singer. We played all over the country and in lots of places where we were underage. It was a great eye-opener. All of a sudden I was in this strange adult world of pubs and clubs”
The band would go on to achieve some success including a slot at Scotland’s biggest music festival.
“A&R scouts from major labels would come and see us perform but the industry was changing and our heads weren’t really screwed on right at 20. I’m glad it never happened for us. We were all living in a shared flat in Edinburgh and it was great fun but pretty intense, I kinda wanted out and I had been writing solo stuff for a few years so it was something I was thinking about pursuing...”
“ … I wasn’t sure what to do so I travelled to Canada to follow some strange notion I had about being a ranch hand and did that for a summer, I travelled through the states and when I came back I started working on some songs which would make up my first E.P. The title track of the record was about the Shetland singer Thomas Fraser and it seemed to strike a chord with people. The track was played on BBC radio and for the first time I thought- I might actually be able to make something of this”
On the back of this EP came more shows, an eponymous album ‘The David Latto Band’ and two European tours, one with respected troubadour Phil Lee. Things were picking up steam and in 2015 the band sold out two nights at the Edinburgh Fringe. It should have been a positive time for the band but David felt differently.
“I didn’t know what it was that was bothering me at the time but I knew that something didn’t feel right. I was running low on self confidence and I felt like a lot of what I was producing was technically ok but lacking something. I had started to write for an imaginary audience and was neglecting my own sensibilities. At the same time I had taken an interest in writing pop music. This was a great learning experience but writing with or for others never scratched that artistic itch. Making music had become an exercise and I was bored with it”.
The band dissolved and David went back to the drawing board.
“A lot changed in my life after this and I no longer had the same time for music. I was ok with that at first but soon it started gnawing at me, I was still writing songs but I knew it would take a while to find my voice. I was really trying to get in touch with that feeling of being younger and excited by my own creations again. I wanted to create with more freedom and I started learning about what it means to be an artist and about following your instincts. It’s so easy to get sucked in to what you think you should be doing and that can be really dangerous.”
After two years of working on new material David is gradually setting the wheels in motion
“It should be daunting to feel like I’m starting all over again but I’m just excited. I feel like I’m getting closer to where I want to be artistically and that’s really motivating. The feedback I’ve had has been good and plans are in progress to make a record in Nashville next year. This is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time and now I feel like I’m going to be able to do this opportunity justice”.
His next record is planned for release in late 2019