David Lindley


Oral History Information

David Lindley grew up close to the Folk Music Center in Claremont, California, where he was exposed to stringed instruments from around the world. He also worked for Berry Grassmuek Music in Pasadena, CA, which had a large selection of world music recordings that he would take into their listening booths and play during his free time. These early experiences helped shape the foundation for one of the most noted studio musicians and multi-instrumentalists in recording history. David can be heard on thousands of records including those with Bob Dylan, Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt, Crosby Stills and Nash and Warren Zevon. During his NAMM interview he spoke of his early career and the influences of such diverse artists as Ravi Shankar and Mississippi John Hurt. David also provided great insight into the early days of adding contact microphones to traditional folk instruments such as the oud and tanbur. Fittingly, David’s interview took place at the Folk Music Center where the founder’s daughter, Ellen, still runs the business. At the end of the interview she asked David to play a 1920s Weissenborn Guitar, which we included in the above video (thank you Ellen for a wonderful idea!).