Danielle Miraglia immerses herself into the music she plays whether it’s her own funky original songs, old blues or folk standards, or rockin’ hits by Prince. At every turn, there’s energy and a zeal that’s hard to match. Danielle plays with passion; there’s no doubt about that. Her love of Dylan comes through loud and clear and his influences are impossible to ignore.
To learn more about Danielle, check out her website.
Here’s a video of Danielle playing “Moment by Moment.”
What was the first Bob Dylan song that you remember hearing?
I’m sure I heard others before this, but I was in high school the first time one of his songs made an impression. It was “Hurricane.” I was drawn more to the story (a black man wrongfully convicted of murder), than I was to it as a song. It wasn’t until later that I got into Dylan’s music.
What were your impressions about Dylan then? And now?
At the time, I didn’t feel a strong need to seek out more. Dylan was an acquired taste. I didn’t come to appreciate him until a few years later, when I got into songwriting.
Have your impressions of Dylan changed over the years?
Absolutely. I guess I wasn’t ready for Dylan in my teen years. Some artists find you at just the right time. When I was fresh off a Creative Writing degree, converting my poetry into songs, Dylan was a holy grail of inspiration. There’s so much to explore and even now, so much I have yet to get into. That’s the cool thing. You can never run out of material with Dylan. There’s always another vein to tap.
Do you have a favorite Dylan song or time period?
I’ve had different favorites at different times in my life. My top 5 favorite albums in random order – Blonde on Blonde, Freewheelin’, Blood on the Tracks, Highway 61, Bringing it All Home.
Have you seen Dylan live? If so, what were your impressions of the show?
The first time was at Great Woods. It was a double bill with Paul Simon. He was at the point then where he was sort of grunting out his words and he was playing solo. Then I saw him again with a four piece band at what was then The Fleet Center in Boston. His voice was in better shape for that one and the band was fantastic. I was annoyed because I was invited by a friend’s work party and we had luxury box seats. Normally, this would be great. But I quickly got the feeling none of these people knew or cared who Bob Dylan was. They were just there for the party. No one was paying attention to the show. They were all talking.
How has Dylan’s music affected your own songwriting and style?
Like anyone who’s ever picked up an acoustic guitar and written a song, I’ve been influenced in multiple ways by Dylan. Finding out who influenced the pickin’ style on “Don’t Think Twice It’s Alright” led me to Mississippi John Hurt, who’s been the biggest inspiration for my playing style. I’ve written a number of songs, using rhyming meters from Dylan’s songs.
The biggest eureka moment for me with Dylan was his autobiography Chronicles. A line he said in that changed everything for me. Something like “I was just trying to get to the truth of things.” It seems like a simple concept, but I still recall it when I’m stuck. That book also highlighted what a true fan of music Dylan was. He spent chapters talking about hearing Robert Johnson for the first time, Dave Van Ronk’s influence on him etc. Proof that in order to be prolific, you need to also have a lot coming in. A great artist continues to be a fan his or her whole life.
What can your fans expect to hear from or about you in the near future?
Well I guess it relates back to Bob. I’ve “gone electric.” Putting out a record with my band “The Glory Junkies” to be released late this Spring.
I am so looking forward to seeing Danielle Miraglia at the Bob Dylan Tribute this Friday at the me and thee. Oh yeah!