Debriefer: One-Man Band David Homyk
While he's stationed in the city that never sleeps, musician David Homyk can be found onstage charming crowds with his pop songs. No matter where New York takes him, Homyk's still a southern boy at heart and loves his hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia, and its addictive hangover remedies.
Gawker: We're going to imprison you in the city of your choice for the rest of your natural life. You can do anything you want there, but you must stay in that city forever. Where would you choose?
David: Charlottesville, VA.
Gawker: Why would you live in this city forever and not somewhere else?
David: The natural and social environments are maximally conducive to the unadulterated expression of the human spirit in its freest form. It's ideal for hit song writing.
Gawker: In what part of the city would you reside?
David: I would live downtown in the Woolen Mills/Belmont district, which captures the Zeitgeist of the 1950s characterized by the union of residential and commercial real estate. After that, cities bifurcated into Urban-Suburban, and America started making the structural transition into commuter culture. Again, the vibe is just perfect of writing masterpiece hit songs.
Gawker: Where and what would you eat?
David: I would gorge myself on Mexican, Italian, or general comfort foods. Best local recommendations are Guadalajara, Anna's Pizza #5, Blue Light Grill, Bodo's, C&O, and Gravity Lounge.
Gawker: What would you do for fun?
David: Bonfire parties; 20-foot-high fire 'smore 'n beer gatherings in wide open farm land at night featuring crowds of hundreds of all sorts of individuals and dozens of back to back live bands. [There's also] night tubing; riding tractor inner tubes down river stretches in small groups in the dead of night (it's dangerously high-performance, please be mostly sober). [Virginia's also great for] motorcycling. The city actually has highway stretches famous for some of the best biking on the East Coast.
Gawker: Where would you go for a night on the town?
David: Lot's of spots. Biltmore Grille, Buddhist Biker Bar, Michael's Bistro, South Street Brewery, Gravity Lounge, Blue Light, Rapture, Coupe DeVilles, Orbit Billiards and Cafe, O'Neill's, and have breakfast and a bottomless coffee at The Tavern.
Gawker: What kinds of shops are worth going to?
David: There's great health food/supplement shopping, wine, and vintage clothes digging in Charlottesville. That captures the vibe of the place.
Gawker: And on the flip side, what city would you never, ever visit again, if you had a choice?
David: ... hmmm I'm thinking "Where am I comfortable being ostracized from ever touring again?" Honestly, I've never had a bad experience anywhere in the US, and I've been on the road and explored every state profusely.
David Homyk's top places or spaces in Charlottesville, VA:
Gravity Lounge attracts great musicians from all over and the decor, food and drink are all fantastic; the Buddhist Biker Bar - the name says it all; Michael's Bistro has the best micro brews in the state of VA; Blue Light Grill is truly the unwritten Charlottesville centerpiece and must be cited; The Tavern -- how many hangover remedies can you make out of butter/egg/flour combinations? The Rotunda is the Thomas Jefferson-designed meditation spot. You can sit on the steps and otherwise weighty life-structural choices reveal themselves effortlessly.
Gawker: You're pretty much your own one-man band; how do you handle the entire process by yourself?
David: I love composition/songwriting and sound engineering the most. Nothing is more satisfying than designing and tweaking a drum formula that pops just right, and then laying the David Homyk vibe onto it. I get this ineffable "it's Alive!" zing; totally exhilarating. It's really a divine experience.
Gawker: Home is in Charlottesville, Virginia, but you're living in New York City; what's been the biggest adjustment between places?
David: Yeah, I go home when I can, definitely wish I could get back there more often. There's a tacit brilliance that all people carry in Charlottesville that I have yet to find here in NYC. It's some kind of God-connectivity that is lost in the pace of things up here. Adapting to an environment that doesn't have that has been quite a shock.
Gawker: What's on your iPod playlist at the moment? What can't you stop listening to?
David: Jordan Sparks, Elliot Smith, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Cam'ron, John Coltrane, The Power of Now (audio book), Jo Jo, Janis Joplin.
Gawker: Of the cities you've played, which has had the best audience? Where has been your favorite place to perform?
David: Definitely NYC. It's so much easier to be out of your head in a city like this and just kill it on stage! Send me a request on myspace to keep in touch.