Philadelphia, PA-based soul roots reggae jam rocker JAY D CLARK has played music publicly since 2008, amassing fans from around the world online since before he began his live music career. With parents both from Brooklyn, NY, he was raised playing soccer in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area and competed at some of the highest levels possible growing up. Before Major League Soccer existed in America, Jay D was offered professional youth trials with a couple of English Premier League clubs, but didn't realize the opportunity he was offered and declined. His one major regret in life. He began his college soccer career at the previous year's #4-ranked Division 1 Old Dominion University Monarchs. Upon graduation and a college transfer, he decided to focus on his film degree from Temple University, rather than soccer.
Working in the east coast film, video, music, and art scene for years, JDC amassed a wide-ranging repertoire of multi-media skills. He began playing guitar at age nineteen and first recorded five original songs in 2004 at Turtle Studios for the soundtrack of a short film that he wrote, directed, produced and starred in. The film was screened at several film festivals nationally and led to JD releasing the five songs on a myspace page. The music amassed hundreds of thousands of plays and he got over 30,000 Myspace friends and fans before he ever played the songs live anywhere.
For four years Jay D managed Media Bureau, a highly-touted underground multi-media production facility and gallery in Philadelphia. There he met the legendary Chuck Treece, a groundbreaking pro skater and prolific studio and touring musician, while working on his movie project Order of the Quest. Treece, who has worked with acts like The Roots, G Love, Pearl Jam, Bad Brains, McRad, Slightly Stoopid, Billy Joel, Sting, Busta Rhymes, The Movement and others. JD played Chuck his five songs from the 2004 short film, which led to Chuck convincing JD to pursue music more seriously. Treece co-produced, engineered and cut almost all musical tracks on Clark’s first record Fall of the City.
The 2008 record started JDC’s foray into live music shows. Treece guided Clark as a bandleader into the unique situation of playing with talented, different backup bands for almost every show while on tour. When playing in the home region JDC played with either an area band backing him or gathered an unrehearsed group from a sizable, select pool of talented musicians for improv sets of originals and covers. He now jams with a smaller, steadier lineup home and on tour.
The common foundation of every live show is Clark’s well-written, universally upbeat reggae rock tunes, consciously-connected catchy lyrics and strong, soulfully sweet hooks sung with true passion. His raw energy creates a uniquely palpable experience live on stage every time. People can’t help but feel it and dance to the rhythm. His music feels familiar to complete strangers.
In 2011, Jay D began work on his second record Intelligent Design, by putting together two days of recording at Retro City Studios in Philadelphia. Those sessions involved Ray Pirre, John L Langsford, Mark Carson, Adam Flicker & Xande Cruz and yielded three tracks. The second session occurred eight months later with Tony Catastrophe, Ray Pirre, Jay Davidson & Jason Fraticelli, which yielded another three songs. The final three tracks come from several sessions with co-producers Tony Catastrophe and Chuck Treece. The new record was released in October 2013 and has received strong college radio play across the U.S.
JDC has opened for established bands like Ziggy Marley, Beres Hammond, Sizzla, Capleton, Sublime with Rome, Dirty Heads, Rebelution, Matisyahu, SOJA, The Wailers, The Movement, Ballyhoo, B Foundation, Supervillains, Seedless, Echo Movement, Mike Pinto, Turbine, and more. JDC has also played with musicians who've worked with acts like Jay Z, Matisyahu, Bad Brains, Maxi Priest, Sly & Robbie, John Brown’s Body, The Movement, Three Legged Fox, Mariah Carey, Lauryn Hill, Kendrick Lamar, Lenny Kravitz, Brian Wilson, Ween & Whitney Houston.
In his tours, JDC has been backed by over 30 upcoming national and regional touring bands like TreeHouse!, Three Legged Fox, Cheezy and the Crackers, Sun-Dried Vibes, Domino Effect, Of Good Nature, Jahman Brahman, Resinated, Sidereal, Yamadeo, Burning Tree, Si Senorita, 9 Mile Roots & more.
He has played great venues from New York to Florida to California including Sullivan Hall (NYC, NY), House of Blues, A.C. Convention Center, The Borgata Hotel & Casino & Bally's Mountain Bar (Atlantic City, NJ), Festival Pier at Penn's Landing & Mann Center for the Performing Arts (Philadelphia, PA), Bourbon Street Ballroom (Baltimore, MD), Seacrets (Ocean City, MD), House of Blues (N Myrtle Beach, SC), State Theatre (St. Pete, FL), Adventure Island (Tampa, FL), Harborwalk Village Ampitheater (Destin, FL), San Diego Convention Center (San Diego, CA) & many more. Festivals JDC has performed at include the 2014 & 2017 Atlantic City Beer Festivals, the 2014 & 2016 Hemp Heals Music Festival & more.