Make us your home page

Plant City native brings dash of Nashville to Novemberfest

Plant City native Daniel Sprouse and his band get a prime slot at the festival.

Plant City native Daniel Sprouse and his band get a prime slot at the festival.

BRANDON — Plant City native Daniel Sprouse rocked a captive Monday afternoon crowd with some country tunes at last year's Novemberfest. This year he returns with a full band, a prime time slot and big dreams.

Athletic, intelligent and musically inclined, it's not a surprise that he seems to be easing toward his dream of making a name for himself in Nashville. Sprouse will display all of those attributes when he takes the Novemberfest stage at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.

A homegrown son of a strawberry farmer, Sprouse grew up in a musical house led by his father, who, in the late '80s lived in Los Angeles and pursued a music career among hair metal bands.

After Sprouse's interest in music sparked him to play violin and jazz guitar in middle school, his parents bought his first guitar when he was just 13.

"Every now and then he would ask me to show him something specific," said Sprouse's father Mark. "But over the years it's just been that he's been around me and other musicians so much that he just learned from being around us and absorbing what we were doing."

During his time at Tampa Bay Tech, Sprouse perfected his pitching as part of the baseball team, but his focus shifted around his 18th birthday, when his father invited Srouse to join him at an open mic night at O'Brien's Irish Pub in Plant City.

"When I started playing guitar, at first I was just kind of doing it for fun here and there, but then I started going to open mic nights with my dad," Sprouse said. "I'd play and people just kept telling me, 'Hey man you need to keep doing this.' So that's when I really started pushing and taking it serious."

Last year, he traveled to Nashville for six weeks to immerse himself in the singer/songwriter culture of the Music City.

"It took me two weeks to get hired in any of the bars down there but once I got hired I was able to play and I ended up playing in almost half the bars in downtown Broadway," Sprouse said. "It was the coolest thing to be able to wake up every day and just go play music even during the week for awesome crowds."

After returning to Plant City, he was given a last-minute invitation to play at Novmberfest as a solo act, which he was happy to participate in. Event coordinators and crowds loved him so much, they invited him back to play This time he'll be on at 7:30 on Saturday night, with his full band in tow.

Sprouse is currently majoring in criminology at the University of South Florida and plans to finish his education before making the move to Nashville to focus on his music full time.

With a single under his belt titled Too Many Miles Away, Sprouse is slowly gaining the resources to continue working with Curb Record producers.

"That's where a lot of people get noticed and discovered," Sprouse said. "So I'll keep writing songs and keep recording songs whenever I have the money and hopefully I'll be around the right people and put myself in a position to get noticed."

For now though, he is representing his hometown well and making his family proud.

"He's always been musically talented and he's really smart and genuinely a very nice young man," Mark Sprouse said. "I really think he's got everything it takes. He's got the look and he's got the sound and he's very personable.

"But of course I'm his dad, so I'd probably say that anyway."

Contact Kelsey Sunderland at

>>If you go

Food, fun and bands on stage

The community carnival and food extravaganza at Nativity Catholic School, 705 E Brandon Blvd., runs through Sunday and features daily entertainment, including Southern Train Band at 7:15 p.m. Thursday, Soul Circus Cowboys at 7 p.m. on Friday, Daniel Sprouse Band at 7:30 p.m. and John Rhey Band at 9 p.m. on Saturday. For more information and to purchase advance tickets, go to,

novemberfest or call (813) 681-4608.



feast for vegans

Bring a vegan potluck dish to feed eight people, including an ingredient list (or pay an additional cost if not bringing food) to the tenth annual ThanksVegan celebration, sponsored by Florida Voices for Animals. Cash or check only, plates and utensils provided. Volunteers needed for setup or food prep. 1:30 p.m. Thursday at Unitarian Universalist Church of Tampa (UU Dome), 11400 Morris Bridge Road. $7 adult with vegan potluck dish, $19 without dish, seniors, students and children by donation. Call (813) 758-7419.

Plant City native brings dash of Nashville to Novemberfest 11/19/15 [Last modified: Thursday, November 19, 2015 10:37am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Equality Florida leader honored at Tampa U2 concert


    TAMPA — Equality Florida director Nadine Smith couldn't attend last week's U2 concert in Tampa, but she can tell you which of her friends had great seats for the June 14 show at Raymond James Stadium.

    Nadine Smith, Equality Florida founder and CEO, received a unique distinction last week when U2 included her in a montage of photos saluting activism and women leaders.
  2. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for June 23


    Leslie Odom Jr.: A solo concert by the Broadway star who won a Tony for his performance as Aaron Burr in Hamilton. 7 p.m., Ferguson Hall at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. $35.50-$55.50. (813) 229-7827.

    Leslie Odom Jr. accepts the award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical in "Hamilton"  during the 70th Annual Tony Awards  on June 12, 2016.  (Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)
  3. Han Solo movie now in the hands of ... Ron Howard?


    Dear god, I love Ron Howard movies. All of them. Especially Cocoon and Night Shift in the '80s. Particularly The Paper, which is the most accurate comedy I've seen about the newspaper biz. And even Rush, which I was sad to learn was not about the band but instead about Formula 1 …

  4. Take your vacation! Being a work martyr doesn't help


    The traditional start of the summer vacation season always produces vacation-themed reports. This year's theme is "vacation shaming."

    This year’s theme is “vacation shaming,” the common workplace condition when employees leave paid vacation time unused because they’re afraid to take time off.
  5. Celebrate Pride with this playlist of LGBTQ musicians


    I first came out over a decade ago, early in the torments of middle school and deep in the cornfields of suburban Indiana. To say I was lacking classmates who were out and local queer role models — let alone national ones — feels like an understatement. The school and public libraries offered few LGBTQ …

    Tegan and Sara perform during Splendour in the Grass 2016 on July 24, 2016, in Australia.  (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)