A New Zealand singer, songwriter and guitarist who has a handful of albums, with bands and solo.
- Single Be Mine Tonight penned by Dave and released as the debut single for Th'Dudes the band he was in in 1979. Won single of the year at the 1979 music awards when the Th'Dudes was picked Top group.
- Formed Dave Dobbyn's Divers in 1980. Later renamed DD Smash which recorded Cool Bananas produced by Ian Morris. It debutted at #1, stayed in the charts for 24 weeks and went triple gold. Devil You Know was but one of the great hits from the album. The sound was guitar-driven and based solidly in performance---they toured almost continuously. The scooped the pool at the 1982 record awards.
- Live: Deep in the Heart of Taxes was released in 1983 based on a live broadcast on Radio with Pictures.
- 1983 also saw the release of Outlook for Thursday, a song that still gets airtime around here.
- In 1984 DD Smash released The Optimist produced by Charles Fisher. Whaling and Magic (what she do) were the big singles, but at a concert ``poorly chosen'' words resulted in Dave being charged with inciting a riot.
- In 1986 Dave Dobbyn, solo, produced the theme music for the film debut of New Zealands national cartoon, Footrot flats by Murray Ball. The single Slice of Heaven did very well and the album even went to number one in Australia (Australia and New Zealand are traditional and long term rivals in the artistic and sporting worlds).
- In 1988 Dave Dobbyn released Loyal with the single Love You Like I Should making it big and the single Loyal having lasting popularity. He toured extensively with Crowded House and the Black Sorrows.
- 1989's Space Junk album, a theme for a new cartoon series, was a complete flop.
- After a long break Lament for the Numb was released in 1993, with the singles Belle of the Ball and Lament for the Numb.
- With 1994's Twist album Dave came back up to full power. Working with the likes of Mitchell Froom, Neil Finn (member of Crowded House) and Ross Burge and Alan Gregg of the Mutton Birds there were a slew of popular singles (but none that I personally liked).
- In 1996 Dave Dobbyn was part of a musical event known as ENZSO led by Eddie Rayner, in which the songs of Split Enz were arranged for the full New Zealand Symphony Orchestra with a number of different singers, including Dave. It was wildy popular, selling 45000 copies in New Zealand and 200000 in Australia.
- 1998 saw another album called The Islander in the vein of Loyal with the singles Waiting and Hanging in the Wire.
- 1999 saw the release of the Overnight Success- the definitive Dave Dobbyn collection best-of collection. Personally I see best-of collections as an admission on the part of the artist that they're over, but that remains to be seen ...
- A self titled album was produced in 2000 on which he worked in Ian Morris, as he had many years ago. Nothing that really rang my bell, but on the tour (and he did tour every pub in New Zealand) he played lots of his good old stuff.
If the songs appear to be focused on Annaliesje, the woman I married, they are. She appreciates that, but she also
appreciates that I'm not just writing for her, I'm just in love. And I'm becoming
more and more in love with the idea of
being in love. I won't change. I get a sense
of frailty while I'm doing those things
because I'm moved emotionally, but what
the hell. I love the way it hits me, and I
like hitting people with an emotional thing.
Whether they take it to their heart or throw
it away is up to them, but I'm prepared to be that honest about myself.
I was getting quite punch-drunk. The Australians didn't really want to
know, I was always on the back foot as a New Zealander. And I was looking
for success in all the wrong places. It really only came right a couple of years
During the Footrots period I got all this gear and suddenly I had the mechanics to do things that were always
sitting there, and I was exploding to do them. I learned a lot of things in a very short time. Writing discipline.
During that period I became an arranger, something I'd never been. During DD Smash we bumbled through arrangement and were quite brash about it. It
For years, I felt this weird feeling each time I came back to Auckland. But then it just vanished. At the time of the
(inciting a riot) trial I was staying in the De Bretts Hotel - completely drunk all the time, it was
the only way to handle it. And my mother-in-law gave me a bit of advice: 'If
you plant the seeds of bitterness, they will consume you.' And that stuck with
me. I'd met a lot of bitter and twisted people and that was the last thing I
"I was quite bewildered by what happened. It was really frightening, especially
when I learnt that the prosecutor had put Arthur Allan Thomas away three times. It was a
hellish time. I'd only just recovered from a bad, gangrenous appendix thing, I was in
hospital for six weeks and almost died. The same year Mushroom Records bought up
a roster of Australian acts and we were relegated. That knocked the stuffing out of
me. And I felt musically I'd turned into this
vaudevillian act. So I was a bit betwixt - which
remained for a few years, really." - Dave
"There's a lot of contrived tracks on that album (The Optimist), lonely tracks like 'Tobacco Indian', which I'm still proud of, but at that
stage I hadn't developed an empathy with people I could communicate with. It was like I wanted to show everyone my
chops, to show that I was capable of singing and playing jazz or rock and roll and many different styles. Totally
experimental." - Dave Dobbyn
I have very fond memories of the band, though I can't remember 1979.
Because of Th' Dudes I became more outgoing. I was doomed to be a shy
Note that all ``music awards'' referred to are the New Zealand music awards.