David B. Roundsley: Author, Musician, graphic / multi-media designer

Partner at DBR Design, founded in 1983, music producer at Munich Syndrome 2001 onward, owner of Syndrome Sounds label and publisher 2006 onward, co-owner of DBR Design publishing 2018 onward.

David B. Roundsley

Author – Musician – Graphics
& Multi-Media Designer

I have been involved in various artistic disciplines ranging from fine art (painting, pen & ink, watercolor), graphic design, multi-media, writing, video, and music (composing and studio production) over the past 50 years. I have run an independent design company since 1983 and held the Creative Director positions at GetSmart and Fast Find. I have released 15 albums and dozens of singles and EPs (Extended Plays) under the moniker Munich Syndrome.

Along with designing and building well over 50 websites for e-commerce, personal, non-profit, and the arts over the last 30+ years, I have created logos, corporate identities, book covers, illustrations, and album covers. I have also created over 100 videos, ranging from animated to live-action.

Previously, I had always segmented my work areas online: web design, graphic design, photography, multimedia, video, music production, and writing. I’m bringing the various artistic disciplines together under one roof with this website.

Fine Art & Visual Merchandising

My first course of study in college was as a fine arts major. Concurrently, my first job was as lead designer in the visual merchandising department of a major department store chain. I was given free rein to visualize and build engaging signage, props, sets, and anything else to engage the shoppers and increase point-of-purchase sales.

Retail Display

A love of music was also overtaking me, and it was through album art I developed a love of typography, logos, and branding merged with fine art that created an engaging visual hybrid I still appreciate to this day.

During this period, I lamented the demise of posters promoting and memorializing concerts and began designing my own mixed media of watercolor, acrylics, pen & ink, and airbrush.

Posters - Jefferson Airplane, Siouxie & the Banshees, Jay Ferguson, Starz, Bowie, Iron Maiden, Soft Cell
Posters done in pen & ink, watercolor, acrylics, and airbrush ranging in size from 8″ x 10″ up to 22″ x 27″

After completing my fine arts studies and having a very fulfilling and successful run in visual merchandising, I wanted to expand into the areas of commercial art. I returned to school with a Technical Arts & Graphics major at the College of San Mateo, California.

Longing for more precision in what I was rendering, and this course of study provided foundations in typography, drafting, and layout.

Technical Arts & Graphics - The College of San Mateo

I have played piano from a very early age. Around the time I was finishing up my second round of studies, I purchased a couple of synthesizers and a Portastudio and began writing and composing my own material.

Syndrome Sounds Version 1: Sequential Circuits Drum machine and six-track  keyboard, Korg Poly 6.
Syndrome Sounds V1: Sequential Circuits Drum Tracks, Six-Track, Korg Poly 6, and a Portastudio

Time was split between graphic design projects, working with start-ups and small businesses, working on my own music, and working with other local artists assisting with mixing or recording their material.

My next round of education included digital design, web design, multimedia, and audio design.

Graphics and Audio Design programs: Logic Pro X, Adobe Creative Cloud

During this period, I received a call that a start-up, GetSmart.com, needed a quick fix with some functionality and images on their recently redesigned home page. Getting the call at 10 at night and having no base files to work from other than what was currently live on the web, I was able to restructure and redesign the problem areas before sunrise.


Additional requests followed, and it became apparent that it would be more cost-effective for me to join them part-time. I soon joined the company full-time as Creative Director and the main production artist and provided the front-end HTML. Over the course of a year and a half, we redesigned, rebuilt, and expanded the website and business two times. GetSmart became an attractive acquisition target for Providian Financial, which had been unable to gain any traction online despite having a very large art and technology department. Providian had just rolled out a multi-million dollar campaign for an online-only credit card, Aria. Shortly after the GetSmart acquisition, the decision was made to jettison the Aria brand and rebrand it as a GetSmart Credit Card.

Aria Credit Card - GetSmart Credit Card

At this point, the company shifted, and I was suddenly in one of the largest company-wide creative departments in the private sector. When GetSmart was a start-up, we could go from meeting to mock-up to design implementation in a few days. Suddenly, there would be meetings that lasted weeks over a particular shade of blue in a banner ad that would only run for a quick cycle.

Leaving Providian in January 2002, I rebuilt my audio studio (Syndrome Sounds V2), and began writing and recording earnestly. An opportunity presented itself to score some short movies shot in France, and those soundtracks became the basis for my first commercial release under the band name Munich Syndrome, Sensual Ambience.

Munich Syndrome - Sensual Ambience soundtrack: Sensual Ambience (Paris Movie), Cathedral Interlude, Endless Possibilities, A Night in Paris, Quiet Atmosphere
Soundtrack Songs gathered for Sensual Ambience

Primarily down-tempo electronica with jazz inflections, many of the songs from this album have been licensed commercially, including Quiet Atmosphere, which was used by L’Oreal for their Pureology brand.

Sensual Ambience (with the electro EP) - the debut album from Munich Syndrome. Words & Music by David B. Roundsley
Sensual Ambience (with the electro EP)

In 2004, the SVP I reported to at GetSmart began a new start-up, FastFind.com, and I came on board as Creative Director. I also provided the front-end and intranet HTML, web design, and supporting graphic materials.


Subsequently, we built out several vertical offerings (from the core business model of matching lenders and borrowers) within a few months of going live. FastFind became an acquisition target by BankRate.com about a year after we launched.

After the acquisition, website tweaks slowed to a crawl, and I transitioned to doing hundreds of online banner ads. Some of the ads I designed during this period had the highest conversion rates Bankrate.com ever had up to that point in time.

Syndrome Sounds - Record Label and Music Publishing via ASCAP
Syndrome Sounds – Record Label and Music Publishing
Syndrome Sounds / ASCAP

In 2006, I left Bankrate to concentrate on music. Along with releases by Munich Syndrome, I established the independent label Syndrome Sounds, which is also my music publishing; Syndrome Sounds / ASCAP.

Munich Syndrome
Sensual Ambience through The HOA
2006 – Present

I created and established a Munich Syndrome Video Channel on YouTube, releasing 15 albums (and counting) as Munich Syndrome and establishing Syndrome Sounds. There are currently 100+ videos (and counting). If you like any of them, please subscribe to be notified when new ones go up.

Bad Blood: A Life Without Consequence
The Story…

Bad Blood – A Life Without Consequence Kickstarter Campaign

At the beginning of 2007, a talk show about adoption reunions came on. Being adopted, I paid attention. At the end of the show, they displayed a website. They said if you entered your personal information, you might be reunited or connected with a relative.

I entered the information, and about an hour later, I received a call from a search angel. She said she knew my birth mother’s maiden name and where she was currently living. What I thought might be a reunion or some basic information turned into a 13-year search that led me to several states over thousands of miles and many phone calls, emails, and letters. During the journey, many of the people I encountered all said this would have the makings of a book, and I should document and memorialize it.

Available now directly from the publisher, and SAVE $3 over Amazon’s pricing!

Bad Blood: A Life Without Consequence
Bad Blood: A Life Without Consequence by David B. Roundsley

My most recent endeavor is a novel – “The HOA,” a humorous farce about life in a fictional homeowners association. Along with the novel is a companion listening experience, “The HOA,” the album.

"The HOA" - the debut novel from David B. Roundsley
“The HOA” – book and album by David B. Roundsely

The HOA is available on all major online sites (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.). But you can order it NOW directly from the publisher and save $3 over Amazon’s pricing:

The HOA - Hardback BUY NOW and save $3
The HOA – Hardback Buy NOW

Also available – The HOA trade paperback

The HOA - Trade paperback $17.00
The HOA – Trade Paperback

Available from Amazon in Hardback, Trade Paperback, and the Kindle version!

Next Steps…

For any media or sales inquiries, please go to our contact page!