DaVang (pronounced: zah vang) is a progressive metal band that was originally formed by Nguyen Dat (Vocal & Guitars) in Vietnam in 1990. Nguyen is the leader of the band, and has accomplished quite a bit for DaVang since the bands inception.
DaVang won second place in the “Best Band” award in 1991 at Pop-Rock festival at Youth Culture House in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon). In addition, Nguyen Dat and original guitar player Hoang Tuan won first prize in the "Best Guitar Players" contest at Ho Chi Minh City Pop-Rock Festival that same year. DaVang is extremely well-known and recognized in Vietnam, especially for their songs “Bach Dang Giang,” and “S.O.S.”
Nguyen Dat arrived in the States in 2010 and spent two years putting together his perfect line-up. Currently the band has three International members and a Cucamonga, (as Ross Knapp likes to joke about since he is from Rancho Cucamonga, CA.) including:
· Nguyen Dat (Vocals, Guitar)
· Phil Nguyen (Bass)
· Ross Knapp (Vocals, Drums)
· Khang Tran (Guitars)
Since re-forming in Orange County, DaVang have opened for national touring acts Dokken, Uli Jon Roth, and Adrenaline Mob, and have headlined some of the most prestigious clubs in West Hollywood including The Whisky and Viper Room. DaVang are currently looking for tour opportunities in 2019.
Cosmick View: Hello Ross! Welcome to the COSMICK VIEW. Thank you for taking some time out of your day to chat with me, it is greatly appreciated.
Ross Knapp: It’s great to be able to tell the DaVang story. And it’s an exciting one to tell. I am Ross Knapp the drummer and newest member of DaVang but the one who should tell you about DaVang because culturally in Vietnam you really do not speak about yourself or your band. That’s bragging and distasteful. Thank God in the USA shameless self-promotion is more of an art form than boasting.
CV: What was the Heavy Metal climate like in 1990 in Vietnam when DaVang first formed?
RK: When DaVang began in Vietnam it was a time when there was strict communist rule and censoring. Dat Nguyen our band founder was a lead guitarist and vocalist at the time. Bands at that time either played traditional Vietnamese music or cover tunes of Western bands. Dat began in a Deep Purple tribute band but he wanted to write and play his own music. The communist censors did their best to persuade Dat not to write his own tunes but when that did not work they tried their best to control his writing. They even tried to guide the musical style. But most importantly the content could not go against the Communist government. I think few of us in the USA could have survived under those conditions but Dat was never discouraged. Even after songs were complete and recorded and he was directed to make changes to the songs. DaVang was the first Metal band in Vietnam and paved the way for bands that play there today. Even to this day Dat will be approached by Vietnamese fans for autographs. It just happened last year at the NAMM Show when I was with him. I have watched videos of Dat on Youtube playing for 30 and 40 thousand fans. He was voted the best guitarist in Vietnam at the time and his band number two at a time when Metal Music was not the norm.
CV: What prompted the move from Vietnam to the United States in 2010?
RK: Dat moved to the USA to be with his father and mother who had already migrated. He stepped up his English by attending school full time and began his search for Vietnamese players to carry on the DaVang sound in the USA
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September 29th - (with Graham Bonnet Band) Malone's - Santa Ana, CA.
October 20th Centerfield Dat's Birthday Bash!!!
October 27th 5 Star Bar Los Angeles
November 3rd World Famous Doll Hut
November 10th - Bancrofts (with Corners of Sanctuary) San Diego
December 29th - 5 Star Bar Los Angeles
January 24th - Randy Rhoads Remembered - The Yost Theater