When he left school (presumably a long-ish time ago), he began a musical career as a trainee piano tuner before going on to the retail world of drum salesmanship.
As a drummer, he began with a lengthy stint with a dance hall big band, as well as playing with a variety of UK-based Jazz groups.
In 1969, Dave joined the soon-to-become legendary Folk group, Fairport Convention.
After leaving in 1974 and rejoining the band in 1985, he was asked to appear as sensitive percussionist, drummer and keyboard player on the semi-acoustic tour "A Little Light Music" with Jethro Tull in 1992, which produced the live album of the same name. The tour was recorded each night in a wide variety of "exotic" locations and was Tull's first live album since "Bursting Out" in 1978.
Dave Mattacks finally left Fairport in early '98 to work with a number of different folk, pop, and jazz artists with whom he continues to record and tour. He now lives just outside Boston, Massachusetts. He is currently the drummer for Mary-Chapin Carpenter.
For more on Dave, see his official website at www.dmattacks.co.uk.