Doug Mattingly


Composer, lyricist, vocalist, guitarist, keyboardist, bassist – in music, Doug Mattingly leaves nothing uncovered in his quest to discover the sounds and words that touch his listeners. With insightful lyrics and a sound built from a wide variety of styles, this multi-talented musician’s unique singing voice and diverse musical background have already gained him a loyal following.

His latest full-length CD LOVE and LOGIC draws on his own life experiences and showcases his multi-dimensional ability to play, write and create a sound that reaches a wide variety of listeners. “I don’t write music as a cathartic experience. I write about things that I’ve experienced and the lessons I’ve learned from them, and by writing about that I can offer someone an insight into their own life.  With this new album, I feel like I’ve really tapped into some strong visuals lyrically.  I’ve also expanded the scope of my themes to where I’m talking about how our lives intersect with the rest of our modern media saturated world and vice versa.  The songs “Live” (the CDs first track) and “Give It All Away” (the last track) are perfect bookends for the themes LOVE and LOGIC touches on.”

In addition to constantly honing his craft as a guitarist and vocalist, Doug is a prolific songwriter, penning from thirty to fifty songs a year.  “I write a lot of songs because I’m committed to each album being as good as I can make it.  It all starts with great songs.  You can’t write fifteen songs and expect to have 12 or 13 of them be up to snuff for the CD.  I don’t believe in filler.  I want to take my listener on an emotional and sonic journey from beginning to end.  I feel like I owe that to my audience.”

And while he humorously describes his lyrics as “existential”, Doug also describes himself as a “music first kind of songwriter”.  “We live in a world where everything, not just music, seems to be getting shorter, less detailed, more bottom-lined.  I don’t want to write or play or produce like that.  When you listen to a Doug Mattingly song, I want you to be able to put on the headphones and enjoy the world that’s been created there.  I pay a lot of attention to detail- structure, the sounds and tone colors of every instrument, layering, background vocals, phrasing, counter melodies, fills.  These are the kinds of things I’m drawn to in other artists’ music.  I say this all the time, but I make the kind of records I’d want to listen to.”

Before taking on a solo career, Doug spent time as an LA sideman playing clubs, recording for other artists and touring the United States. He’s shared the stage with some of the biggest names in the music business. “Playing for all those different people and in all those different styles and seeing parts of the country that I hadn’t seen before really helped me bring something deep musically to my own solo work. It all helped me understand why people connect with music, and I’ve been able to incorporate that into what I do.  At this point as a songwriter, I know that anything I come up with is going to be strong musically.  It’s going to make sense.  That’s the easy part.  The challenge is to make a song that’s memorable and rewarding to hear over and over again… and that will have a wide appeal.”

Doug also draws on musical training at the prestigious University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music, where he received his Master and Bachelor degrees in guitar performance, studied with jazz guitar legend Joe Diorio, LA Guitar Quartet member/composer Andrew York, and studio ace Steve Watson, and was a member of the award winning ensemble Superaxe. While working as a singer/songwriter/performer, he also reaches out to other aspiring musicians as a college instructor of guitar, songwriting, jazz and classical music history.

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