Of those initial introductions, David says “I’ve been very blessed being surrounded by some of the most talented people and this was true of Jack.
He was tough, demanding and taught me how to swing. I did listen to all the great Motown, disco and a lot of cool 80’s bands, but found that the rhythm of a swing tune, the sensitive lyrics of a ballad and the colorful harmonies found in jazz really spoke to me.”
David’s continued enthusiasm led him to Cornish College of the Arts where he met internationally renowned vocalist Jay Clayton and other great educators who encouraged him to nurture his natural gifts. It was one vocalist in particular, however, that has encouraged Coss greatly from a far. That was Ella. Although Coss had met her several times and spoken with her, it is her amazing spirit that is with him every time he sings. “She was a wonderful and friendly woman with a big heart. Those few times we met she even gave me a hug! That’s something I’ll never forget.”
A move to New York’s Greenwich Village found David at the epicenter of jazz. He remembers, “It was scary but fun moving to New York. I didn’t know anyone but felt quite at home at the many jazz haunts that were right outside by door. Old timers like the late Al Bundy, who played piano at Arthur’s Tavern for thirty years, would always invite me up to sing. I became part of a big jazz family that made me feel as if I belonged. As a result, I’ve met many of New York’s finest vocalists and musicians.” David would regularly frequent such popular spots as the Five Oaks, The Village Gate, Smalls, and Birdland.
“I’ve been lucky enough to work with some incredible musicians and meet some great peoplelike the late Laurel Watson who sang with many groups including the Basie and Ellington bands. My dear friend Laurel used to come by every week to do some tunes with my band and always offered words of encouragement, telling me to keep that great swing feel alive. Dakota Staton is another who came to visit on several occasions nd would sit in with the band and do some of her great signature tunes. Her mere presence was inspiring, she taught me a great deal.” David cites such influences as: Mel Torme’. Chet Baker, Sarah Vaughn, Ernestine Anderson, Dakota Staton Carmen McRae and Ella Fitzgerald. David says, “I wholly appreciate what each of these great pioneers can bring to a tune. Ernestine’s soulfulness, Mel’s agility and scatting, Chet’s simplicity, Sarah’s textures, Dakota’s musicianship and Ella (for all the above).” He has had the pleasure of working with some of the greatest musicians around including Dena DeRose, Patience Higgins, Christos Rafalides, Virginia Mayhew, Danny Mixon, Jerry Weldon, McClenty Hunter, Corcoran Holt, Fukushi Tainaka, Akiko Tsuruga, Bill Crow, Randy Johnston, Joey Morant, and Dominck Farinacci, just to name a few. Today, David performs every Sunday at his home base, Garage Restaurant in Manhattan’s West Village and now books jazz entertainment for the same room he has been performing since 1997. He is also performing with the Lou Caputo Not So Big Band, Eyal Vilner Big Band and the Cecilia Coleman Big Band. At this point, Coss has performed over 800 regular Sunday gigs and entertained over 100,00 people from across the globe. Coss continues to refine and develop his skills as a vocalist, arranger and producer by continuing collaborations with many of today’s new and venerable talent