Dan Truman is the keyboard/piano player for the band, Diamond Rio. Dan is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sometimes casually called the Mormon Church. Dan was educated at Brigham Young University and continued classical piano training. While at BYU, he performed with the Young Ambassadors.
Since its foundation, the group has comprised the same six members: Gene Johnson (mandolin, guitar, fiddle, tenor vocals), Jimmy Olander (lead guitar, Dobro, Danelectro, banjo), Brian Prout (drums), Marty Roe (lead vocals), Dan Truman (keyboards, organ, synthesizer), and Dana Williams (bass guitar, baritone vocals).
Dan met Marty Roe in 1984 at Opryland USA in Nashville. They formed the Grizzly River Boys, a bluegrass group later known as the Tennessee River Boys. Olander and Johnson, who previously worked with Keith Whitley, joined a year later, followed by Prout and Williams. The band's name was finally changed to Diamond Rio, because others had thought that the previous name made the group sound like a gospel music band. The name Diamond Rio came from the names of two truck manufacturers, Diamond T and REO (the latter of which became misspelled in the band's name (Wikipedia.org).
Diamond Rio signed with Arista Records, and released their first single "Meet in the Middle" in 1991. It took its place in the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks #1 spot. They have since come out with several more #1 hits: "How Your Love Makes Me Feel", "One More Day" and "I Believe". They have recorded many albums, 3 of which have been given RIAA's platinum certification in the U.S. Diamond Rio also received 4 Group of the Year awards from the CMA's, 2 awards for Top Vocal Group from the ACM, and 13 Grammy nominations.
"One More Day," Diamond Rio's sixth studio album, was released in 2001, shortly after the death of NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt. A radio station in New York began playing the song as a tribute, and other stations soon followed suit. Dan loves performing the title song from this album: "Watching and feeling the crowd's response to this song is an amazing thing. We have truly been blessed by the song and its power."
Diamond Rio signed with a Christian label, Word Records, in 2007, and released a Christmas album A Diamond Rio Christmas: The Star Still Shines.
In 2010, Diamond Rio received nominations for the GMA Dove Awards, and the Dove Award for Country Album of the Year. In 2012, the band received the prestigious White Hat honor in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The band was the recipient of the 2013 AutoZone Liberty Bowl’s Outstanding Achievement Award.
Truman has been with The Nashville Tribute Band since its creation in 2005. The Nashville Tribute Band is a revolving group of talented artists and musicians pulled together by award-winning songwriter and Nashville record producer Jason Deere, also an LDS musician. Deere describes the band’s genesis:
- I was called to teach early morning Seminary. We were covering the Old Testament that year, and I immediately had this crazy fascination with The Restoration. I was teaching Exodus in the morning and reading everything I could get my hands on about The Restoration in the evening. I was immersed in both subjects and something started to change in me. Suddenly, songs about the Restoration started coming out of nowhere. I wrote two or three, and then called my friend Dan Truman, of the country supergroup Diamond Rio. I went to his house and played him the songs. We knew we had to do something. We had no idea what the world would think of redneck Mormon songs, but we knew that we had to make an album – for us, if for no one else. In a few weeks, I had written all but one of the rest of the songs for the album (the last song, a song about Hyrum Smith, came as songs sometimes do – on the morning recording sessions were to begin).
The Nashville Tribute Band released albums in 2005, 2007, 2011, and 2014. The band has performed over 500 shows for audiences in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and China since 2004. They have performed in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City as well as given several performances in the Tabernacle on Temple Square.
See also MormonMusic.org