Click on photo to listen to Tom's memorial tribute music
Dave was born in Baltimore, Maryland on November 5th, 1950, son to Theodore Edward Dinsmoor and Elizabeth Jamieson Dinsmoor, and brother to Theodore Edward Dinsmoor Jr. David was raised in Maryland until 1959 when his family moved to West Port, Connecticut. Here he attended Fairfield County Day School were he was involved with sports such as hockey, soccer, basketball, baseball, and tennis. During his early childhood David became involved with music. His Aunt Mildred was a concert pianist and his Father worked as a pianist and singer while attending school at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His Mother, Elizabeth, was an artist and Graduate of Boston University. David first learned to play the piano before he turned his attention to percussion. David's love was drums, and he studied with Tony Chirco in New York as a child. In 1965 David and his family moved to Barnstable County in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Here David attended High School at Barnstable High School where he graduated in 1968. During this time David perfected his skills as a percussionist and received many honors for his talent Known locally for performing at many local Battle of the Bands and as a regular entertainer at "The Surf," a then teen favorite hangout.
David joined the U.S. Navy in late 1968 and went on to study music at Little Creek Amphibious Base Norfolk, VA. David was transferred to San Diego, CA in late 1969. He married Marjorie Elaine Sweet on April 25, 1970 at Bedford Air Force Base in Massachusetts. David served off the coast of Vietnam during his enlistment. He was honorably discharged in 1972. David had two children with Marjorie. His son was born David Jamieson Dinsmoor II on March 4, 1975 and daughter Shannon Elaine Dinsmoor on July 10, 1978.
David continued his musical career throughout his life. One of his most memorable times was during the late 1970's when David joined with local San Diego talent Darmy Salmas. David played drums in a lounge act with Danny Salmas at the Stardust hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada in 1977. He was also regularly seen performing locally in San Diego at Anthony's Harborside Downtown, on Shelter Island, and at Vacation Village on Mission Bay into the late 1980's. Some may remember David recently performing with the "Corvettes" and with "Phase 4" at local VFW's in the San Diego area.
David passed away peacefully resting in his home on June 6, 2007. David was a member of the San Diego Community for 37 years. Survivors include his son David Jamieson Dinsmoor II of Virginia Beach, daughter Shannon Elaine Norris of San Diego, grandchildren Carly J. Dinsmoor and Hunter J. Dinsmoor, daughter in law Teri L. Dinsmoor of Virginia Beach, son in law Vince Norris of San Diego, brother Theodore E. Dinsmoor of Cape Cod, sister-in-law Sheila Dinsmoor, nephews Alexander Dinsmoor and Patrick Dinsmoor, and former wife Marjorie E. Dinsmoor.
A memorial service was held June 13, 2007 at Glen Abbey Mortuary in Bonita, CA. The ceremony was conducted by Brother Craig Bramwell. Guest Minister was Howard Kischassey, Pastor of Faith Fellowship Church in Lakeside, CA. A musical tribute was presented by fellow band member Tom Smerk, and son in law Vince Norris surprised the mourners with a listen to a tape Dave had created in his home studio. Many relatives and friends shared memories. The ceremony was followed by an informal gathering at Boll Weevil in Bonita.
We know that David is now reunited with his beloved parents, his former K9 companion Boston, hero's Buddy Rich, Gene Krupa, Ray Charles, Elvis Presley and other great musicians continuing to live peacefully in Gods hands and all of our hearts.
I first began working with Dave around 1992 or 1993 when he was invited to join the "Missing Oldies Band" with Sonny Robins and myself. When my other band, the "Corvettes," needed a new drummer, Dave was my first choice, and fortunately, he agreed to join up with Jim Moore and me. We worked as the "Corvettes" for several years, then added vocalist Toni Lincoln and became "Phase 4" (the fourth version of the Corvettes!). This band was probably one of the finest "3+1" acts in San Diego. We worked off-and-on until 2004. At this time, Jim and Toni formed "2 of Hearts" and I began working as a single act. Dave still kept in touch on a weekly basis and often sat in on congas at several of my gigs. We were writing and arranging jazz music together and hoped to record a jazz album. More recently, Dave and I were rehearsing a new country & blues band with bassist Howard Kischassey. We were just about ready to begin booking gigs when David sadly passed away.
Dave was a drummer without equals. His drumming was so far above anything else anybody was doing. As a musician, when you worked in a band with Dave, you felt the difference right away, and the whole evening was a pleasant experience. I used to refer to Dave as "the best drummer in the world" and he called me "the best guitar player in the world." When Dave and I jammed and played together, it was magic! We were creating sounds that I normally was incabable of reaching. I still don't know how I could play like that, but Dave brought it out in me. I've worked with some of the best drummers around in my career, but I'd have to say that Dave was without a doubt the very best - a "world-class" musician. Goodbye, old friend. I'll miss you more than you'll ever know.
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