Dave Matthews is an American singer/songwriter who is known as the frontman and lead singer of the popular US band Dave Matthews Band, founded in 1991. He is a self-taught musician who started playing acoustic guitar at the age of nine.
Below you will find all the other facts you should know about the South African-born American singer and two-time Grammy award winner.
Dave Matthews Biography
Dave Matthews was born David John Matthews on 9 January 1967 in Johannesburg, South Africa. He is the third of four children of John and Valerie Matthews.
At the age of two, Matthews’ family moved to Yorktown Heights Westchester County, New York, after his father was employed by IBM. However, the family moved back to Johannesburg after Dave’s father died of lung cancer in 1977.
In order to avoid South African conscription, the family left South Africa after high school in 1986 for New York, the USA. There he worked for IBM for a short time before he went to his mother in Charlottesville, Virginia.
In Charlottesville he did several jobs in order to survive; at one point he was part of a local music community, he even worked in various local productions. During his time at a jazz club, where he worked as a bartender, he started dreaming of starting his own band.
Dave soon began performing on stage with Tim Reynolds after the two met through a mutual friend – Nic Cappon. After working with Reynolds for some time, he was persuaded to record some of his own songs, and this led to Dave’s first professional musical appearance at a modern dance performance, put together by the Miki Liszt Dance Company.
After writing several songs, including Recently, I’ll Back You Up and The Song That Jane Likes, he had the idea to form his own band in 1991, and in early 1991 Matthews formed the Dave Matthews Band together with Peter Griesar (who left in 1993), Carter Beauford, Boyd Tinsley, Stefan Lessard, and LeRoi Moore.
The band’s first performance took place in March 1991 at the Trax Nightclub in Charlottesville as part of a benefit event for the Middle East Children’s Alliance.
With the help of the band’s manager, Coran Capshaw, who used grassroots marketing, the band soon made it to the national stage and soon began playing in fraternity houses and beach clubs across the country.
In 1994 the band released their first major-label debut, Under The Table And Dreaming, – which Dave dedicated to his older sister Anne, who was murdered by her husband. The album climbed to #11 on the Billboard 200, and their second album Crash was released two years later and reached #2 on the charts.
Dave Matthews took a break in 1997 to return the following year with another studio album Before These Crowded Streets, which debuted at number 1. The next album was not released until 2000 and within 10 years (2000 – 2010) the band sold more tickets and earned more money than any other act in North America.
In 2012, the band released another album, Away from the World, becoming the only group to release six consecutive studio albums that climbed to #1 on the Billboard charts.
Dave also tried his hand at acting, and it turned out well. He made his acting debut in 2003 when he starred in the Disney film Where the Red Fern Grows. In 2005 he starred in Because of Winn-Dixie alongside Eva Marie Saint and Jeff Daniels. He also starred in I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry, You Don’t Mess with the Zohan, Just Go with It, among others.
He is a two-time Grammy winner for Best Rock Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group – So Much to Say (1997) and Best Male Rock Vocal Performance – Gravedigger (2004).
Who Is Dave Matthews’ Wife, Kids, Sister, Family
Dave Matthews’ wife is Jennifer Ashley Harper, whom he married in 2000 after they had been together for almost a decade. The couple has three children (two daughters and a son). The girls (twins) named Stella Busina and Grace Anne were born on August 15, 2001, and their son Oliver was born in June 2007.
Dave, his wife Ashley, and three children live in Seattle, Washington. As mentioned earlier, the talented singer, songwriter, and actress had an older sister, Anne, who was murdered by her husband in 1994 (who subsequently committed suicide).
Anne left behind her two children, for whom Dave and his younger sister Jane took responsibility after her (Anne’s) death.
Dave Matthews’ Height And Other Facts
Dave is really tall, he is at 6’4″. Information about his weight and other body measurements is not easy to find online.
Matthews is also a farmer. In 1999 he bought more than ten acres of land in Albemarle County, Virginia, which he called Blenheim Farm. Originally he did not intend to turn the place into a farm, but he decided to do so to preserve its historical significance and began planting grapes on the property.