Dan Dugmore

Steel guitarist Dan Dugmore has been touring and recording in the music industry for nearly 40 years. In case you’re wondering what 40 years looks like to an A-list session musician, just take a look at his credits and discography. It’s so long and so impressive, it’s nearly impossible to read in one sitting. (Really, we dare you.)  A country-rock pioneer on pedal and lap steel, Dan has recorded and toured with both James Taylor and Linda Ronstadt since the early 1970s helping to define the sound of genre and generation. When he moved to Nashville in 1990, Dan quickly established himself as a first-call steel guitarist.

Over the years, Dan has recorded with legends and newcomers including Stevie Nicks, Neil Diamond, The Civil Wars, Hank Williams Jr., The Band Perry, Alabama, Passenger, Bon Jovi, Holly Williams, Faith Hill, Dierks Bentley, Brett Dennen and Taylor Swift. On any given day, you can find Dan behind his pedal steel, with his signature silver locks tucked under a baseball cap – mostly quiet, but ready to lob a well-timed joke or story into the mix. Dan is one of the few select steel guitarists featured in the 2012 documentary “Men of Steel,” and there’s one other man of steel he played with we forgot to mention: Oscar the Grouch. Yep. Dan has been all over the world, and that includes a stop on Sesame Street.

Music + Vitals

  • Video
  • Gear
    • Pro Tools 11
    • Sho Bud Pedal Steel
    • Fender Pedal Steel
    • Fender Lap Steel
    • Dobro Mandolin
    • 1953 Gibson J200 acoustic
    • Gibson Banjo
    • Martin Ukelele
    • 1958 Martin D28 acoustic

CHARLIE’S TIP : Upgrade to the Premium Accountand receive the inside story on how Dan and I record together, including gear, signal flow, and techniques we’ve perfected over the years. I’ll give you lots of game-changing tips on how to get the most out of your session with Dan. P.S., when you book Dan for your session, ask him how he knows Leo Fender never intended for musicians to play Fender guitars in the key of Ab.

Charlie Peacock on Dan

I honestly don’t think I’ve ever been on a session with Dan that he didn’t play the right thing on the first pass. It makes sense though. In Singer-Songwriter, Country, Alt-Country, Rock and Folk-Americana, producers and artists are still mining the deep well that Dan and a handful of others pioneered in the 1970s (with artists like Linda Ronstadt, James Taylor, Poco, Jackson Browne and the Eagles). BUT, it must be said, don’t think Dan is about recycling the past because he’s not. You want to get experimental with your pedal and lap steel sounds? All you have to do is ask and he delivers. I hope you get to work with this legendary musician soon, whether remotely, or via tracking and overdubs here in Nashville.

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EXCLUSIVE: the inside story on how Dan and I record together