D.L. Chance (Don to family and friends) is a professional studio and stage musician with a lifetime of experience as an accomplished multi-instrumentalist in every kind of performance situation there is – from small, intimate solo lounge gatherings to major full-band concert events. Don is also an experienced film and stage actor, “big and tall” print model, standup comedian, pen & ink artist, widely published music journalist, and a prolific author of novels, short stories and non-fiction newspaper and magazine articles for a number of print and online periodicals, and one major news network.

“I could never decide on any one thing to specialize in,” he says. “I grew up wanting to be a musician and an actor and a writer and an artist and all the other stuff I’ve done over the years. But even when it seemed like everyone I knew was telling me ‘don’t  spread yourself too thin, now’ or ‘you might be good at one or two things, but no one can be good at everything,’ I knew deep down that I should at least try the things that appealed to me before just giving up on them because someone else thought I should. Besides, as I pointed out many times, I don’t have anything better to do.'”

Though he has worked primarily in mainstream country music with an edgy guitar-driven Southern Rock bite throughout much of his career, which was natural given the strong Southern Rock influences on his guitar playing style, Don has also played short stints with various rock groups such as Strawberry Alarm Clock (the King brother’s short-lived Arizona edition), The Cavaliers (whose hit “Last Kiss” is still a popular cover song) and the endlessly quirky Dr. Hook. And through it all, he looked forward to situations in which he could leave the Les Pauls and Stratocasters in their cases, and bring out his fiddle and mandolin, his dobro and banjo, for the more organic, more earthy kind of music he grew up playing on the porch and at church; where his dad was the pastor. 

“Music should sound like it was made by people, and people just aren’t perfect,” he maintains. “Studio-made music is ordinarily as close to perfect as possible, but so often it loses the personal touch in its perfection. I want the music I play and listen to to be good and, if possible, mistake-free. But as an excellentist, as opposed to being a perfectionist, and someone who’d rather drink from a tin cup than a crystal goblet, I also want it to have the same casual lack of  polished slickness it had when it was all new and exciting to me, and I couldn’t see any end to my possibilities. And exploring all these new directions with different instruments over the years has been so glorious, so gratifying, that I never want it to end.”

Currently, in addition to keeping up with a constant stream of writing projects, his primary musical direction is adding a growing catalog of original songs to his mostly acoustic performances. A published songwriter since his late teens, Don is breaking away from playing other people’s songs in other people’s bands; and even though he still plays covers when appropriate, he is concentrating primarily on the intimate singer/songwriter approach that puts him into closer contact with his audience than he was in dance club or concert situations. He is comfortable writing in a wide variety of styles, grooves and moods – from rock to country to blues to bluegrass – and fans say they find his story-based songs to be especially as entertaining as anything by anyone else.

And as long as the fans are happy, so is Don!