Dave Camlin is a musician whose practice spans performance, composition, teaching, socially-engaged music practice and research, driven by the possibility that collaborative art-making can be a resource for people to begin to occupy a more equitable social and political reality as an alternative to the dehumanising wasteland of late capitalism. He is Lecturer in Music Education at the Royal College of Music and Trinity-Laban Conservatoire and was Head of Higher Education and Research at Sage Gateshead from 2010-19. His research focuses on group singing, music health and wellbeing, musician training and Community Music, as well as pioneering the use of ‘distributed ethnography’ as a method for research into cultural phenomena. His philosophy suggests that music is about the performance of ‘relationships’ as much as it is the performance of ‘works’, and that the implicit tensions within these contrasting perspectives can be resolved through a foregrounding of their ‘paramusical’ benefits and effects.
He performs as a solo singer / song-writer, and with a variety of ensembles including vocal group Mouthful and folk / jazz collective The Coast Road. He leads a number of community choirs in the Natural Voice (NVN) tradition, and won the National Trust’s Outstanding Achievement Award in 2019 for an AHRC / Arts Council England funded mountain-top singing project, The Fellowship of Hill and Wind and Sunshine. He is currently a trustee of the NVN and co-chair of a Special Interest Group (SIG) in singing and mental health for the March Network. He lives in Cumbria in Northern UK, leads many outdoor music events, was founding director of music organisation SoundWave, and a co- founder of the Solfest music festival.