In a musical age where the beats are getting heavier, the production thicker, and the live performances more theatrical, Dustin Jake likes to keep things simple: Just him, an acoustic guitar, and a great song. With his smooth, soulful voice and groovy, Timberlake-esque falsetto, he blends elements of pop, hip-hop, soul, reggae, and jazz.
If there's one element that glues all those styles together, though, it's his acoustic guitar. Close your eyes, and you can hear kick drums, snares, hi-hats, and dynamic guitars. Open them, and you see a guy and his guitar. No pedals. No loops. No backtracks. Just a true solo artist.
And boy has this solo artist been making some noise lately. In June of 2018, he was selected to play at the Temecula Balloon & Wine Festival, one of the biggest music festivals in Southern California, alongside huge acts such as Raelynn, Tyler Farr, and Justin Moore. In November, he was named the first ever Grand Prize Winner of the Wine Country Music Awards (WCMA's), not only beating out hundreds of entrants to win radio play, opening slots for national acts (more on that later), studio time, and more, but doing it in front of industry judges such as Terri Nunn (Berlin), Tommy Tutone, Vinny Appice (Black Sabbath), Joey Allen and Erik Turner (Warrant), and many more.
Over the last 3 years, Dustin has played over 400 gigs, spanning from his home base in Temecula, to San Diego, and all throughout southern California. In September, of 2016 he released his first full length album, titled "As Is", an acoustic collection meant to mimic his live sound, and in June, 2017, his newest song "Mic Check", a fully (and self) produced blend of pop, hip-hop, r&b, and acoustic (not to mention fan-favorite).
Says Hunter, a super-fan from California, "He's one of those rare artists who sound even better live than on the record." It's a sentiment that has become quite common during Dustin's post-show chats with fans: You have to hear him live to fully 'get it'. He's just that good.
Despite everything, Dustin's main satisfaction still comes from his ability to put a story onto a set of chords. He's spent countless days and many late nights pouring over the subtleties of his ever-expanding song collection. Now, with a slew of new grooves - such as fan-favorites "Mic Check", the snarkily titled "I'm Just Not Into You”, and beach-side jam "Manhattan Beach Boulevard" - finally breaking out of the songbooks, he's ready to shed some new layers and tell some new tales.
And he only needs a guitar to do it. It's really that simple.