An hour before singer/songwriter David Olney played his final show last month in Florida, folkie Dan Navarro embraced the Americana artist.
“I told him that it was good to see him, I liked his beard and that I would see him in New Orleans,” Navarro said by phone from his Los Angeles home.
Olney suffered a fatal heart attack in the middle of his set, while in a guitar circle with his peers.
“David didn’t fall down or scream,” Navarro said. “He said he was sorry and sat peacefully with his head tucked back. That’s how I want to go — onstage. It would be a great way to go, surrounded by people who are into your music. It’s not a bad way to say goodbye.”
Navarro, 67, who was one-half of the duo Lowen & Navarro, is more active now than when he was part of that enduring act.
“Eric (Lowen) and I played to about 200 to 700 people a night, but we only played about 40 or 50 shows a year,” Navarro said. “I play to about 50 to 200 people a night, but I play more than 100 shows a year.”
Lowen and Navarro were professional hitmakers during the ’80s and ’90s. They crafted the pretty and pensive “We Belong” for Pat Benatar.
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“It’s been good recently for me (with royalties), since ‘We Belong’ has been part of nine TV shows or movies over the last year,” Navarro said. “It’s been on ‘This is Us,’ ‘Stumptown’ and even a Pepsi commercial. It was used in a Hallmark movie the other night. I love it.”
Lowen and Navarro were hired to write songs for the Bangles’ third album, “Everything.” They crafted tunes that appeared in such films as “Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol” and “Casual Sex?”
“We had a great run,” Navarro said. “We were together for a long time (almost 30 years).
But Lowen was stricken with ALS in 2004 and died in 2010.
“It was terrible,” Navarro said. “Eric was gone at 60.”
But Navarro still is grinding it out.
“I continue to be inspired,” he said. “I know people my age are supposed to slow down, but I can’t. I have too many songs coursing through me.”
Navarro is almost ready to release a new album and will preview songs when he performs Feb. 20 at the Lisbon Library.
“I’m about two songs shy of a new record,” he said. “I’m having fun playing new songs like ‘Horizon Line.’”
The catchy tune captures the way Navarro feels about himself at the moment: “I can’t slow down my wheels are spinning/It don’t matter if I’m wasting time? I’m going to set my sights on the next horizon line.”
“Most of my songs are set up so people can escape,” Navarro said. “I’m not going to hit you with the political. We’ve had enough of that with the caucus, which I’m tuning out.”
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Navarro’s new songs aren’t political but they’re about morality. “Walking on a Wire” touches on veiled dishonesty and the ability to spin. “All is Quiet” is about building walls to keep groups apart.
“I can’t help but write about something,” Navarro said. “But I’ll take you away when you come out and see me. You’ll see a guy who is excited about his future, which is interesting since most people my age are winding down.”
Will the future include a possible Navarro & Navarro since Jane’s Addiction guitarist David Navarro is his cousin?
“We had one conversation about it in 1997,” he said. “It wasn’t the right time and it hasn’t come up since then. I adore him and love what he does. What’s funny is that I don’t experience him as a rock star but as my little baby cousin. I would take a bullet for him.”
Navarro taught David Navarro basic chords when he was a kid.
“I was living with my brother back then,” Navarro said. “I moved out and when David was around 12, he was this guitar monster. Music runs in the family. It’s what I’m all about. That’s the way it’s going to be until I die. You can expect me to be on the road performing until it’s all over for me.”
• What: LilFest presents Dan Navarro
• Where: Heritage Hall, Lisbon Library, 101 E. Main St., Lisbon
• When: 6:30 p.m. Feb. 20
• Tickets: $15, Dannavarro.bpt.me/
• Artist’s website: dannavarro.com/dannavarro/home.html