From the class to the stage: a musician’s journey

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Story by Gisselle HernandezAssistant Features Editor

As a child, he often dreamt of the stars. As a college student, his heart breathed photography. For a while after that, politics piqued his interest. Now, Daniel Martin Moore will perform his first show at Murray State in honor of his fifth folk-indie album, “The Golden Age,” on April 12 at Pogue Library.

His path as a musician took Moore by surprise since he thought he would always have a career in the sciences, having been in love with astronomy and biology as a child. While he never actually studied music in an academic setting, Moore received his degree in photography and later was interested in public policy. He eventually chose the musical route when the idea of singing and songwriting as a career appealed to him. Moore said he just wanted to play and didn’t really care how, as long as he was making music.

“I was fortunate enough to have a knack for music, so I just chartered my own path across the keyboard,” he said.

Moore said he is against the Gov. Matt Bevin’s opinions on the lack of importance of studying humanities and arts – especially music – as his own show at Murray State approaches.

“I think it’s nonsense,” he said. “It shows the general ignorance and lack of understanding about what education is and about what it is to be a human being.”

James Duane Bolin, professor of history, invited Moore to perform at Murray State. Bolin is having a book signing on his new book, “Home and Away: A Professor’s Journal,” and after seeing Moore sing in between readings at another book-signing event, he asked Moore to do the same at his own on April 11 at the CFSB Center.

An actual concert was also arranged for the following day in Pogue Library, which would be a nice venue for Moore to play, Bolin said. He also agreed with Moore on the vitality of having the humanities and fine arts as part of someone’s life, and he said passionate students should pursue those fields, regardless of the money.

“To be called to be a writer or a singer-songwriter like Daniel Martin Moore is every bit as important as to be called to be an engineer or scientist or mathematician,” Bolin said. “You have to follow whatever your first love is.”

Bolin said being flexible is the key to opening up to new experiences, especially with statistics showing people change occupations three or four times in a lifetime.

Being a vocational chameleon, Moore fits this criterion since he said he already thinks his career in music might not last forever. He still possesses a passion for photography – and who knows what interests might lie ahead. The singer-songwriter said he admires people who shift gears and try something new. With non-STEM departments being looked down upon by some, Moore believes the greatest intellectuals of our time were also exceptional artists and musicians.

“I think we can be many things in our lives; you can’t just have one facet as a person,” he said. “That [person] would be the most boring person who ever lived.”

Moore’s thirst for the unconventional has led him to play in an underground cave in Ireland, one of his most memorable experiences. His passion for helping other lesser-known artists like him inspired him to have his own record label, a brainchild that can be attributed to his stubbornness and refusal to accept market reality, he said. Moore’s haunting, gorgeous voice will hopefully bring out some people to come see him on April 11 at the CFSB Center and on April 12 in the Reading Room in Pogue, Bolin said.

As for the professor’s thoughts on music majors and humanities majors being downplayed, those are actually the things that make life worth living, he said.

“You go to university to prepare for an occupation and to prepare to make a living,” Bolin said. “But it’s even more important to go to college or university to make a life.”