Oliver Avenue

I was born in Tennessee, and lived there until I was 7 years old and made the move up to Iowa.

I grew up on the South Side of Des Moines, IA. Even at an early age I loved music, dance, magic, and other forms of entertainment. The first instrument I picked up to play was the saxophone in 5th grade. I made a transition from saxophone to percussion in 8th grade, because I wanted to be just like Guy Patterson from Tom Hanks' film, "That Thing You Do!"

I began writing music for the drumline at my high school, LHS. Soon after that, I found interest in the guitar, and started to write music with lyrics. A lot of Beatles influence can be heard in my early music.

After high school, I attended Drake University, where I received a B.A. in Music Education with emphasis in percussion. While in college, I loved my music theory courses where I wrote the piece, "Reflection", which can be heard on my album.

Fresh out of college, I played in a retro-rock group, The Atudes. Together, we played original songs (about half of them mine) of many styles, and recorded and released an album, "Rumor Has It", on iTunes. The album was recorded in Lovilia, IA at High Octane Audio using a 16 track reel to reel machine, which left no room for error. No computers to fix the mistakes. The Atudes played many shows in our 3 years together, including: 80/35 where we opened the main stage for internationally known acts Spoon and Modest Mouse, Dam to Dam, local radio stations, and even some of the nearby public schools.

I, Mr. Oliver (as I'm known to my students), am currently teaching middle school music in DMPS where I seek to inspire more young performers and composers and teach them that anything is possible if you set your mind to it. I also do many recording projects which have been for TV (WHO-Channel 5), radio (STAR 102.5 "Ken, Colleen, and Kurt in the Morning"), and companies (IowaWorkforce, FBL Financial Group).