Dave Naves | Drummer and Percussionist
I was born in Seattle, raised in Sacramento, worked for many years in Los Angeles and now I’m back in Northern California.

I was 18 when I began playing drums and percussion professionally. (I’ve been playing since I was six) I’ve played in many bands, recording artists and worked as a session player in the Los Angeles music scene for film and television scores. I currently record and play here in Northern & Southern California with local groups and various recording artists.

In college I played percussion in the symphonic band and drums in the jazz band. OK, I’ll even admit that I played in the pep band during football games. We even managed to sneak in tunes by RUSH, the FIXX, as well as a few originals. =) During this period I met some great musicians, who became my best friends and we formed a popular band named FDR. We played together for many years in many different venues. (some of the members went on to get signed by Quincy Jones and his label Quest/Warner as “Agnes Stone“)

After college I went on to follow my dreams by moving to Los Angeles as a road warrior and LA session player. I was lucky enough to play on a number of great albums, performed and wrote a handful of TV and movie scores and was also involved with many bands. I started out by networking with many players and businesses. One of my good friends, Ken Allardyce (and successful music producer/engineer) hooked me up with Ross Garfield, The Drum Doctor. Ross owns a successful drum cartage/repair/rental shop that maintains gear for the finest drummers in the world. So I was selected as one of 4 guys that would tech for some of my biggest heroes! This included, Jeff Porcaro, Vinnie Colaiuta, Jim Keltner, Peter Erskin, Terry Bozzio, Lars Ulrich, Tommy Aldridge, Simon Philips, Chad Smith and Curt Bisquera… to name just a few.

This was a huge help in getting my start in LA as a player. It was also humbling, enlightening and inspiring…


I’m inspired by so many elements in my playing. My first inspiration was definitely watching my grandpa Harold Naves play drums in his jazz band “The Seniors.” He was amazing, having played for over 70 years of his life. Whenever I went to visit the grandparents he always set up his orange sparkle kit and let me bang away for hours… I miss you GPA!

Whether it comes from other musicians, friends, family, dance, sounds or nature… they all make up parts of how I approach playing music. Although I have studied drums and percussion extensively, there has been no greater influence for me than to simply use what has been given in life. (as corny as that may sound, it’s true.)