The Lowertown Line


Nicholas David

A top three finalist on season 3 of NBC's hit television show "The Voice," Nicholas David is a vibrant , soulful and prolific singer-songwriter who incorporates multiple genres, instruments and influences into his music. He also uses his musical talent as an agent for social change, whether it be raising money for local public schools, as an ambassador for "Smile Work International," or with...

AIRED: August 27, 2017 | 0:26:46


(Nicholas David) I've never claimed one path,

you know, be it Christianity,

be it Buddhism as a philosophy, be it Hinduism,

you know, be it any way that people try to explain

what they can't explain, you know.

Even science, where they have the facts to explain it

are still missing some gaps, you know,

and some people call that faith.

So I feel like the gaps in one

are filled by the truth in another,

and if we can expand not only our hearts

but our minds to see that,

they really are kinda sayin' the same things.

There's this term that hits me a lot

saying that there's many rivers that lead to the ocean,

but don't confuse the river for the ocean.

[guitar, bass, keyboard & drums play the introduction to "Monsters Sleep"]

♪ ♪

♪ Do you see me in the evening ♪

♪ Guarding you while you're sleepin' ♪

♪ Protecting you from the monsters ♪

♪ When you close your eyes ♪

♪ Dream dreams can't lose their sound ♪

♪ Who's to say which way's up way's down ♪

♪ Who's saved or not pure pagan or political ♪

♪ It's all sacred ground ♪

♪ Return to what we know ♪

♪ We rest we grow ♪

♪ Everybody's running out of steam ♪

♪ Return ♪

[keyboard & guitar solo]

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Do you remember that you're beautiful ♪

♪ Exactly where you need to be ♪

♪ We can color this place ♪

♪ Any way you'd like or ♪

♪ We can go it together or ♪

♪ We can we can we can go alone ♪

♪ There's really no difference 'cause I am still here ♪

♪ Return ♪

♪ To what we know ♪

♪ We rest ♪

♪ We grow ♪

♪ Everybody's ♪

♪ Running out of steam ♪

♪ Return return ♪

♪ ♪

♪ We rest we grow yeah ♪

♪ Everybody's running out of steam ♪

♪ Return ♪

[keyboard & guitar solo]

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

[cheers, whistles, & applause]

Thank you kindly, ladies and gentlemen!

[cheers, whistles, & applause]

Music was always, always in my life.

I come from a really large family,

on my dad's side of the family and my grandfather,

you know, the king of that castle, he'd be

banging on the accordion or playing on the piano, you know,

every party, I'm one of 26 grandkids, it was just,

it was a way to celebrate life.

[keyboard plays softly]

♪ ♪

When my other grandfather, my mom's dad, got sick--

they had a piano in their basement,

it was kinda outta tune and broken down a little bit,

but I'd play, and it'd travel through the vents.

And my grandfather was bedridden,

so like, that music became medicine.

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

Being able to play music is a gift.

You have a voice, you have an opportunity to say something,

so I try to say something again, you know,

that's related to spirit, that's related to heart,

to practice that gift, to hone that gift,

to evolve with that gift

and to use that gift for the greater good,

you know, and to share and spread my light.

♪ ♪

Playing music as a profession, you can swim

through the echelons of society, I mean, you can play

for punks on the street or whatever, to homeless people

to doin' a corporate event, you know,

not to say one is greater than the other,

but to swim through the different classes, I mean,

that's a pretty magical boat,

it's a pretty magical ship you can ride.

Music can break through any, you know, any barrier,

be it language, be it class, be a job, be it, you know,

what level of society you're in, you know-- a heart's a heart.

[playing softly]

♪ Late at night ♪

♪ I close my eyes and think of you ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Oo oo oo-oo-oo ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Late at night ♪

♪ I close my eyes and think of you ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Oo-oo oo ♪

♪ It won't be long ♪

♪ ♪

♪ I won't be long ♪

♪ ♪

♪ 'Cause I'm longin' and I'm lonely for you ♪

♪ ♪

♪ I'm not afraid anymore ♪

♪ I've got two hands ♪

♪ I've got two hands ♪

♪ I know death is at our door ♪

♪ Mine's open ♪

♪ 'Cause I want to be with you ♪

♪ Don't leave me lonely in the fog ♪

♪ I can meet you when you're gone ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Will you be there even when I'm wrong ♪

♪ When you hold me everything disappears ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Ooo oo-oo ♪

♪ Oo oo oo-oo oo ♪

♪ Oo oo oo-oo oo oo ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Oo oo oo-oo oo ♪

♪ Oo oo oo-oo oo oo ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Late at night ♪

♪ I close my eyes and think of you ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Oo-oo oo ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Late at night ♪

♪ I close my eyes and think of you ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Oo-oo oo ♪

♪ It won't be long ♪

♪ ♪

♪ I won't be long ♪

♪ Because I'm longin' ♪

♪ And I'm lonely for you ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Because I'm longin' and I'm lonely ♪

♪ Lonely for you ♪

♪ Because I'm longin' and I'm lonely ♪

♪ For you ♪

♪ Because I'm lonely ♪

♪ ♪

[cheers, whistles, & applause]

Thank you ladies and gentlemen!

Look at that.

This was in the backyard at my graduation.

Sweet Peter, that was our band.

Our first like, show we played

was a block party in Deerwood.

[chuckles] We played 3 songs, and then we took a break,

we took an intermission,

and we went in like, the parent's kitchen.

I've been blessed to play music around the Midwest for some years,

and in the middle of that I was doing a show at the Cabooze

and kinda playin' with my voice.

It was like [in DJ voice] this next number is a tune.

And then I was approached by this gal, she goes,

I work for Moore Creative, do you want to do voiceover work?

I said can you get me a job being a Disney character?

She was like, we gotta start smaller than that, kid, and I was like alright.

She was like, you should try out for "The Voice."

I was like, absolutely not.

And she's like, I think it'd be a really great opportunity,

so she submitted a video where I'm playin' guitar in the snow

and they're like, we want

the bearded guy in the snow with the guitar.

♪ When you're outside the palace ♪

♪ Be careful what you wish for ♪

Man it was a trip.

Being on network was like kinda like the best music school ever.

I mean, the production stuff we learned, you know,

from set design to dancing, wardrobe, and hair and makeup

and stuff, I mean, I had my beard flat-ironed. You know what I mean?

Like just stuff I would have never done.

I remember one time I had a Samurai ponytail

right up in the middle, and they were like awesome job

after the run-through, and some of the producers come to give notes

but they're like, "NBC wants you to lose the Samurai ponytail."

So it would be stuff like that but again, it was like

that NBC has even asked me that, and I'm even in the scenario

where I could even entertain a Samurai ponytail

and take it down because I'm singin'

in front of millions of people and hittin' their hearts,

it's like, it's not a problem, it's all, it's all a gift.

♪ I could be your ♪

♪ Honeycomb flower I could be your ♪

It's like this weird dance

'cause it's like part of what got you to the place

is luck, timing, yes, always the hard work, skills,

talents, but part of what got you there is to be yourself.

But then when you're there, and you're on this different level,

you almost have to be a version of yourself

that's almost not yourself,

and that is a dance in itself. [laughs]

♪ Oh I never thought forever ♪

♪ Would wind up today ♪

♪ If I ever made you lonely if I ever scared you true ♪

♪ Please forgive me it may take forever ♪

♪ But I'll make it up to you ♪

♪ Please forgive me it may take forever ♪

♪ But I'll make it up to you ♪

♪ ♪

♪ For I lose ♪

♪ Myself in you ♪

♪ For I lose ♪

I remember when I first started, I was more like an artist.

I never claimed to be a music businessman,

but I had to learn that.

What before was all like artistry, it's like well,

if you want to have that artistry, there needs to be a foundation

or a business underneath it to support that

so you can, you know, express yourself.

And I found that with the opportunity from the show,

it really expanded my platform, so when I have their attention

and I play the songs, you know, from the show,

that they want to hear-- the soul tunes that they love--

I sing some of my original music, so I'm finding ways to,

ways to insert that artistry as well as play the game.

[playing smooth jazz/rock]

♪ ♪

Kinda of a theme in life is the balance, you know?

How do you be yourself but at the same time, you know,

adjust and evolve to what, you know, what the,

what the situation or the moment,

you know, is asking you to do.

♪ Mother mother ♪

♪ There's too many of you of you cryin' ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Brother brother brother ♪

♪ There's far too many of you of you dyin' ♪

♪ You know you know ♪

♪ We've got to find a way ♪

♪ To bring lovin' and understand ♪

♪ Here today yea yea yeah ♪

Every opportunity, even the opportunities

that one would deem hurtful or bad or sad,

it's such an opportunity for growth.

Sometimes I think those moments of suffering and pain

are like almost some of the greatest gifts

because they force true change, you know.

When things are in a routine or they're workin', you know,

it's like you get complacent and you get almost, you know,

just walkin' in the same circle, but when something comes

and just totally rocks your world, all you can do is change.

[guitar plays softly]

♪ Well there's another plate ♪

♪ When my table is full ♪

♪ I'm finally getting somewhere ♪

♪ Now it's time to go ♪

♪ There's an unwritten chapter ♪

♪ And the pen is ♪

♪ The pen is still dry ♪

♪ Things are changin' forever ♪

♪ Too busy to ask why ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Well how long can I listen ♪

♪ How long will I care ♪

♪ Where can I run when you're already there ♪

♪ I can sing my songs slowly ♪

♪ And dance in the night ♪

♪ Running from forever when I know that it's not right ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Not right ♪

♪ Ooo oh-oh-oh ♪

[guitar solo]

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Well the weight is too heavy unable to sink ♪

♪ ♪

♪ I still carry your name softly ♪

♪ More often than you'll think ♪

♪ ♪

♪ And the sun is still settin' ♪

♪ And maybe us to ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Well think what you can do what you do ♪

♪ ♪

♪ While I sing my songs slowly ♪

♪ And dance in the night ♪

♪ Now running from forever when I know it isn't right ♪

♪ How long can I listen ♪

♪ How long will I care ♪

♪ And where can I run when you're ♪

♪ All already there ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Already there ♪

♪ There ♪

[guitar solo]

♪ ♪

♪ Mm mm mm-mm oh ♪

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Now how long will I listen ♪

♪ How long will I care ♪

♪ Where can I run ♪

♪ When you're already there ♪

♪ I can sing my songs slowly ♪

♪ And dance in the night ♪

♪ Running from forever when I know ♪

♪ It's not right ♪

[cheers, whistles, & applause]

Thank you, ladies and gentlemen!

[cheers, whistles, & applause]

[guitar plays softly]

The life of a musician-- it's beautiful on one hand,

the traveling, 'cause you know you get to experience

something new, and it's always changing,

but then at the same time, there's nothing really familiar,

maybe what's familiar is the uncertainty.

It's work for sure, but I mean,

the adventure itself keeps it fun.

It's like, how could it not be fun when you're driving

across the country with your friends, with your brothers,

playing music that you love, and you're seeing

what it's doing to people and, you know, you're driving

up and down Highway 1, the 35 or anything,

seeing what this awesome country has to offer,

you know, how is it not fun?

The hardest part is to just be away from the family,

it never becomes easy.

It never becomes easy, but again, in that struggle,

it's such motivation to succeed in what we're doing.

Like if I'm away from my family, it better be something of value,

and it better have to be something of meaning,

and it better be making a difference, you know,

not only in my life, but in the lives of other people.

My children taught me to look at the world like it's new.

You know, they've taught me to remember the magic

no matter how hard it gets, you know,

and getting' ready to come out today, my youngest son is like,

"I jam out with ya, I jam out with ya to your music?"

They come down to rehearsal,

the younger two say they're gonna be in my band.

Later the older one says he's gonna be a scientist

at a marine biology place in Florida, so...

But he says I can come and maybe play there, so that's a plus.


I think before going anywhere

you have to define, you know, your version of success

and what it is to be successful in this business.

On one hand, I define success by the gifts you've been given,

if you can live those gifts out and those gifts

are helping people and in turn feeding your family,

I think that that's success right there.

You know, if what you're trying to do is communicate

and express yourself in an artistic form like music,

and it's received, and it's creating an interaction

and exchange of energy, I think that's success right there.

I mean, lately it's been this really wild exchange of energy

and being sensitive to that, it's like,

people are hangin' on the words and the melody

and it is just this really beautiful exchange.

It's like when we were younger and playing music

it was more of our job to get people dancing and move people,

but it's like now I feel we really are moving people,

but almost on the inside, and it is, it's a true treat.

Thank you very much for comin', we appreciate it, man

from the breadth of our hearts, thank you very much.

We're making TV!

[playing in bright rhythm]

♪ The streets are filled with walks and talks ♪

♪ Days gone by and things around the corner ♪

♪ I still find myself saying to myself ♪

♪ It's easy ♪

♪ Mm mm mm ♪

♪ It's easy oh oh-oh oh-oh ♪

♪ It's easy ♪

♪ To feel free again ♪

♪ The ways in the night in the wind ♪

♪ ♪

♪ The opportunity ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Opportunity ♪

♪ I can't remember when ♪

♪ The sky was so blue ♪

♪ Drips turn to drops turn to thoughts ♪

♪ It's really happenin' ♪

♪ Oh oh-oh oh-oh ♪

♪ Oh everything runnin' in its course ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Enjoy the ride enjoy the ride enjoy the ride ♪

♪ Enjoy the ride enjoy the ride enjoy the ride ♪

♪ Enjoy the ride enjoy the ride ♪

♪ Enjoy the ride ♪

♪ Enjoy the ride enjoy the ride enjoy the ride ♪

♪ I've been chasing love ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Now she'll dance with me ♪

[guitar solo]

♪ ♪

♪ I've been afraid of love ♪

♪ I've been afraid I've been afraid of love ♪

♪ Now it radiates from me ♪

♪ Um mm-mm ah ♪

♪ Um mm-mm ah oo ♪

[guitar solo]

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

♪ Laid out for what it is the effortless compassion ♪

♪ Dripping with honesty ♪

♪ Knocking down walls like you couldn't imagine ♪

♪ How blessed I feel to know your name ♪

♪ Our love is constant ♪

♪ Our love is constant as the river rolls ♪

♪ The stories told the days gone by ♪

♪ Gonna hold hold still as time ♪

♪ It comes and goes grows stronger every day ♪

♪ Stronger every day ♪

♪ Stronger every day grows stronger every day ♪

♪ Stronger every day stronger every day ♪

♪ I've been I've been ♪

♪ I've been chasing love but now she's gonna dance ♪

♪ Gonna dance gonna dance with me ♪

♪ Hm hm hm-hm hm hm ♪

♪ I've been afraid ♪


♪ I've been afraid of love ♪

♪ And now it ♪

♪ Radiates ♪

[cheers & applause]

♪ From ♪

♪ Hm hm hm-hm hm ♪

♪ Hm hm hm-hm hm-hm ♪

♪ Oo-oo oo-oo oo-oo ♪

♪ Oo-oo oo-oo ♪

♪ Oo-oo oo-oo oo-oo ♪

♪ Oo-oo oo-oo oo-oo oo-oo ♪

♪ Oo oo ♪

[cheers & applause]

CC--Armour Captioning & TPT

(woman) This program is made possible by

The State's Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund

and the citizens of Minnesota.

[orchestral fanfare]