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Dave Hosley Is No Diamond In The Rough

By Jake Levin

Music is Diamond Dave Hosley's lifeblood.

Growing up in Connecticut, Hosley cut his teeth as a musician as a drummer in high school bands before attending the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he majored in percussion. Traveling up and down the east coast in his 20s, Hosley took up singing to supplement his drumming, citing the ability to land more work.

He eventually graduated from the drums to the piano, where he continued to perform as both a singer and pianist at various solo gigs in little bars and restaurants.

Upon turning 30 in 1986, he split for the west coast and settled in the San Francisco Bay Area. Not three weeks later he earned a substantial gig playing five nights a week at a restaurant and lounge in the East Bay town of Lafayette called Petar's, where he remained up until 2013.

"It was quite a run," Hosley said.

He recently released a pair of vocal jazz albums, which are entirely different from the music he has traditionally performed in his acts.

"Artistic speaking, you might say that those albums are a little more of a personal musical statement from me," Hosley said.

One night you could hear Hosley playing some Justin Timberlake or Brunos Mars tunes; the next night, you might hear some Frank Sinatra, Bob Marley or Snoop Dogg. As long as the crowd is happy, he's happy.

"When it comes to entertaining, the music I enjoy doing most is whatever music gets the crowd going," Hosley said. "You must make the connection with your audience or it's just a waste of time. It all depends on what the audience wants and I do my best to deliver that."

As such, Hosley has provided the entertainment at countless weddings and corporate events over the last 35 years, all with the client in mind. Nearly every event he's worked has come via referrals, whether through someone seeing him perform at a club, a wedding, or some other type of event.

"As far a selling myself, I always just let my performance do the talking," Hosley said. "If people dig it, great, if not, no worries; I'm sure they'll find someone else that fits their needs."

But make no mistake about it: Hosley loves nothing more than making a connection with his audience. It's what he's enjoyed the most throughout his life.

"Music is such a powerful thing," Hosley said. "Life can be a struggle, as we all know, and music can lift the soul even in the toughest of times. It's like a legal drug I suppose. So when I see the dance floor packed with people dancing, lost in the music, it's just the greatest feeling in the world."

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