When David Vogel takes the stage at the Pleasantville Music Festival on Saturday it promises to be the most meaningful performance of his young career.
The 20-year-old singer/songwriter, who was one of three winners of the festival’s Battle of the Bands this year earning him an appearance at the 14th annual daylong event, is thrilled for the opportunity after receiving such positive reaction during the competition.
“It was just really cool to see how many people came out to support me and how the crowd really quieted down and listened to what I was singing about,” Vogel said. “It was just so cool and heart touching.”
Vogel, who was raised in Valhalla in a music-loving family, spent most of his childhood singing at his mother’s request. It wasn’t until he attended church that he learned how to play different instruments and started to develop his sound.
“I began on drums, but I wanted to impress girls so I played guitar,” Vogel said. “I taught myself guitar and then piano came and now I’m all piano. I love playing the piano more than anything.”
Eventually Vogel gravitated to songwriting, citing artists like John Mayer and Ed Sheeran as his influences for his earnest soft pop style. Soon after, Vogel employed his talents by learning to produce music using GarageBand, a computerized music creation studio. Eager to develop that craft, he attended SAE Institute, an audio engineering school in New York City.
“I felt that was the right path because I loved that aspect of making music, not just writing it but recording, soundboard and making arrangements. It just made sense and I loved it,” Vogel said. “It was a great time and it’s helped me produce my own EP and hone in on my craft.”
While Vogel said it’s taken him several years to find his musical identity, he’s anxious to release his five-track alternative pop debut album, “Until My Lungs Give,” this summer.
Vogel didn’t anticipate revealing his tracks to the public so soon, but he credits his friend, David Whoie, from the Lagond Music School in Elmsford for supporting his talent and encouraging him to enter into the Battle of the Bands competition earlier this year.
“I owe everything to my friend who made me do this,” Vogel said. “He’s the man.”
After his performance in the Battle of the Bands, Vogel has had a surge of confidence.
Vogel isn’t awed about opening the festival’s Chill Tent Stage at noon on Saturday and he is ready to stand on his own and entertain the crowd with his passionate lyrics and smooth instrumentals.
“I do love playing with a band, but I just want to own myself and who I am,” Vogel said. “Performing has become so natural and so easy, so I’m not nervous about performing. I’m just really excited.”