dan

Panther Style "¡Emergencia!" + June 11th Chicago Record Release Show!

May 31, 2011 brings the highly anticipated debut release from Chicago rock band, Panther Style. The "¡Emergencia!" LP will be available on 180 gram vinyl, digital and CD formats, all including a cover of "Blind Eyes Open" by The Posies.

This project of heavy tasty pop was started by Chicago rock veterans Jeanne McClure, Al Rodis, Dan Lutger, & Melissa Koehl (Mary Tyler Morphine, Siderunners, Dyslexic Apaches, Reptoids) out of a mutual desire to make some beautifully catchy songs that rocked. Drawing influences from The Posies, Big Star, New Order, and U2, along with the seductive feel of in-your- face screaming tube amps and chest pounding bass from The Cult, Fugazi and Failure, their sound brings a refreshing blend of sweet melodies and thick distorted guitars all held together with an air-tight driving rhythm.

"¡Emergencia!" was recorded at B-Side Audio in Chicago with Neal Ostrovsky on a 16-track analog tape machine to capture the warm tones and genuine feel of the band's live sound. All of the music was recorded live with everyone in the same room. It was mastered with Bob Weston at Chicago Mastering Service. "Blind Eyes Open" was also released on the "Beautiful Escape" Posies cover compilation, by Burning Sky Records.

Soon after the formation of Panther Style, Dan and Melissa got hitched. Soon afterwards Dan and Jeanne jumped in to complete the rhythm section of Melissa's other established project, Reptoids. They brought a commanding presence to match Reptoids progression to a heavier sound and will be releasing the "Invasion" EP in the Summer of 2011.

You can learn more about Panther Style by visiting their website.

Joe Deninzon's Exuberance

Progressive jazz violinist Joe Deninzon, is honored to announce the release of EXUBERANCE. Recorded with bassist Robert Bowen, and guitarist Stephen Benson, EXUBERANCE is the essence of three musicians in a room, playing live with no overdubs or production; a completely raw experience.

The group draws influences from jazz stylists including the gypsy explorations of Django Reinhardt and the hot swing of violinist Stephane Grappelli along with rock and pop standards of the past 40 years including songs by Steely Dan, Alice in Chains, Jimmy Webb and Radiohead.  A few choice covers by Radiohead (“The Tourist”), Alice in Chains (“Heaven Beside You”), Steely Dan (“Bodhissatva”) and Fat's Waller's “Jitterbug Waltz” show just how wide the group's range goes.

One of the group's original songs, “Sun Goes Down” (featuring Luba on lead vocals), has been featured in the independent film, “What's Up Scarlet?” and a recent winner in the Jazz category of the Billboard and John Lennon International Songwriting Contests.

The album is also a tribute to Robert Bowen, who was killed when a car struck him as he rode his bike in Manhattan late August.  Live, the band performs with bassists who were friends with Robert, plus drummer Luciana Padmore (from Joe's band Stratospheerius).  The group has donated some of its earnings and CD sales to Robert's children.

Best known for his work on the 7-string electric violin and lead singing with the rock group Stratospheerius, Joe Deninzon plays acoustic violin in this Trio.  Joe has performed as a solo violinist with the New York City Ballet, and on album or in concert with Bruce Springsteen, Sheryl Crow, Jane Monheit, Everclear, Ritchie Blackmore of Deep Purple, Smokey Robinson, and Les Paul.  A 10-time BMI Jazz Composer's grant recipient and a winner of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest, his original music has been used on CMT, MTV VH1, Comedy Central, National Geographic, the Travel Channel and the History Channel.

Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks' Crazy for Christmas out now

Hailed as, “The eternal hipster, purveyor of the drollest and most swingin' tunes the rock generation ever enjoyed” (Minneapolis Star Tribune), Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks have hijacked the holidays and created a Christmas album you’ll enjoy all year long. Released on October 12, 2010 through Surfdog Records, Crazy For Christmas is classic Hot Licks, full of the same dry wit and musical brilliance that has defined Dan Hicks’ music for the past four decades and established him as one of American music’s true cult heroes.

“We wanted to have the Hot Licks sound going, with our signature violin and guitar and two girls backing me up and the tongue-in-cheek approach to the material and the delivery. Keeping it swingin’, keeping it light, with lots of good solos and some cool scat stuff,” explains Dan Hicks. “It’s a Christmas album, yes, but first and foremost it’s a Hot Licks album.” Crazy For Christmas covers it all - with Hicks originals “I’ve Got Christmas By The Tail” and the humorous “Santa’s Workshop” nestled in with classics (done Hicks’ style) like “Here Comes Santa Claus” and an amazing original take on “Carol Of The Bells.” Of course, no Dan Hicks holiday album would be complete without a few irreverent parodies including “Christmas Mornin’” (done in the tune of Hicks’ hit “Where’s The Money”) and “Santa Got A Choo-Choo” (a Hicks re-write and salute to “Choo Choo Ch’Boogie”).

Crazy For Christmas comes on the heels of Hicks’ critically acclaimed 2009 release Tangled Tales. The recording, dubbed an “irreverent, rowdy, even dangerous distillation of real American music,” by the East Bay Express, proved once-and-for-all that Hicks’ undeniable musical legacy is still evolving. “Talk about a rugged, all-American individual,” the LA Weekly reviewed, “Dan Hicks has plowed deep furrows through some of the most fertile pop music territory known to man, and during it all has maintained both his own distinct, light yet emphatic touch and a pace that's always kept him more than a few steps ahead of his colleagues.”

Dan Hicks began his career in 1965 as the drummer for psychedelic San Francisco rock band The Charlatans before forming the acoustic ensemble Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks. His unique songwriting and blend of styles, masterful folk-swing guitar playing, and unmistakable sense of humor have made him a cultural icon, landing Hicks on the cover of Rolling Stone twice and provoking Tom Waits to say, “Dan Hicks is fly, sly, wily and dry” while Elvis Costello proclaimed him “an American treasure.”

Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks are on tour this fall with their always over-the-top “Holidaze in Hicksville” extravaganza.

The complete list of tour dates is as follows:

Friday, November 19 O'Shaughnessy Center Whitefish MT

Saturday, November 27 Appel Farm Arts and Music Center Elmer NJ

Sunday, November 28 The Turning Point Piermont NY

Tuesday, November 30 City Winery New York NY

Wednesday, December 1 Barns at Wolftrap Vienna VA

Thursday, December 2 Greensburg Garden and Civic Center Greensburg PA

Friday, December 3 Sellersville Theater Sellersville PA

Saturday, December 4 The Met Cafe Pawtucket RI

Tuesday, December 7 Wood Fire Dowagiac MI

Wednesday, December 8 Wealthy Theatre Grand Rapids MI

Thursday, December 9 Kent Stage Kent OH

Saturday, December 11 McCabe's Guitar Shop and Concert Hall Santa Monica CA

Wednesday, December 15 Belly Up Tavern Solana Beach CA

Friday, December 17 The Center for the Arts Grass Valley CA

Wednesday, December 22 Yoshi's Oakland CA

Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks Release Crazy For Christmas

Hailed as, “The eternal hipster, purveyor of the drollest and most swingin' tunes the rock generation ever enjoyed” (Minneapolis Star Tribune), Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks have hijacked the holidays and created a Christmas album you’ll enjoy all year long. Set for release on October 12, 2010 through Surfdog Records, Crazy For Christmas is classic Hot Licks, full of the same dry wit and musical brilliance that has defined Dan Hicks’ music for the past four decades and established him as one of American music’s true cult heroes.

“We wanted to have the Hot Licks sound going, with our signature violin and guitar and two girls backing me up and the tongue-in-cheek approach to the material and the delivery. Keeping it swingin’, keeping it light, with lots of good solos and some cool scat stuff,” explains Hicks. “It’s a Christmas album, yes, but first and foremost it’s a Hot Licks album.”

Crazy For Christmas covers it all - with Hicks originals “I’ve Got Christmas By The Tail” and the humorous “Santa’s Workshop” nestled in with classics (done Hicks’ style) like “Here Comes Santa Claus” and an amazing original take on “Carol Of The Bells.” Of course, no Dan Hicks holiday album would be complete without a few irreverent parodies including “Christmas Mornin’” (done in the tune of Hicks’ hit “Where’s The Money”) and “Santa Got A Choo-Choo” (a Hicks re-write and salute to “Choo Choo Ch’Boogie”).

Crazy For Christmas comes on the heels of Hicks’ critically acclaimed 2009 release Tangled Tales. The recording, dubbed an “irreverent, rowdy, even dangerous distillation of real American music,” by the East Bay Express, proved once-and-for-all that Hicks’ undeniable musical legacy is still evolving. “Talk about a rugged, all-American individual,” the LA Weekly reviewed, “Dan Hicks has plowed deep furrows through some of the most fertile pop music territory known to man, and during it all has maintained both his own distinct, light yet emphatic touch and a pace that's always kept him more than a few steps ahead of his colleagues.”

Dan Hicks began his career in 1965 as the drummer for psychedelic San Francisco rock band The Charlatans before forming the acoustic ensemble Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks. His unique songwriting and blend of styles, masterful folk-swing guitar playing, and unmistakable sense of humor have made him a cultural icon, landing Hicks on the cover of Rolling Stone twice and provoking Tom Waits to say, “Dan Hicks is fly, sly, wily and dry” while Elvis Costello proclaimed him “an American treasure.”

Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks are on tour this fall, including a run of his always over-the-top “Holidaze in Hicksville” extravaganza beginning in late November. This year, Holidaze in Hicksville shows will feature a live performance of Crazy for Christmas in its entirety, as well as several Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks classics. A complete list of currently confirmed tour dates is included below.

Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks Crazy For Christmas Track List

1. Christmas Mornin’
2. Santa Gotta Choo-Choo
3. Somebody Stole My Santa Claus Suit
4. Carol Of The Bells
5. Run Run Rudolph
6. Santa’s Workshop
7. Old Fashioned Christmas
8. Cool Yule
9. I’ve Got Christmas By The Tail
10. I Saw Mommy Kissin’ Santa Claus
11. Here Comes Santa Claus
12. Under The Mistletoe

Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks tour dates are as follows:

Friday, October 22 The ArtsCenter Carrboro NC
Saturday, October 23 Gibson Theatre Shelby NC
Sunday, October 24 Eddie's Attic Decatur GA
Friday, November 19 O'Shaughnessy Center Whitefish MT

Holidaze in Hicksville performances:

Saturday, November 27 Appel Farm Arts and Music Center Elmer NJ
Tuesday, November 30 City Winery New York NY
Wednesday, December 1 Barns at Wolftrap Vienna VA
Thursday, December 2 Greensburg Garden and Civic Center Greensburg PA
Friday, December 3 Sellersville Theater Sellersville PA
Saturday, December 4 The Met Cafe Pawtucket RI
Tuesday, December 7 Wood Fire Dowagiac MI
Wednesday, December 8 Wealthy Theatre Grand Rapids MI
Thursday, December 9 Kent Stage Kent OH
Saturday, December 11 McCabe's Guitar Shop and Concert Hall Santa Monica CA
Wednesday, December 15 Belly Up Tavern Solana Beach CA

(More dates to be added soon…)

ERNESTO CERVINI QT Tonight At Cornelia Street Café

The Ernesto Cervini Quartet celebrates the release of their new album, “Little Black Bird.” The music from the album was written by Ernesto Cervini in response to day to day life split between Toronto and New York City, and the pieces were composed to compliment the incredible skill and sensitivity of the musicians in the band. Joining Ernesto on stage will be the incomparable Joel Frahm on saxophones, as well as long-time collaborators Dan Tepfer on piano and Dan Loomis on bass. Many of the pieces from "Little Black Bird" are written for people, or situations that have inspired Ernesto, including “Nonna Rosa”, written for his grandmother and the title track “Little Black Bird” which was inspired by the verbose birds of Mexico. The album is being released on Orange Grove Records and distributed by ANZIC Records. Drummer Ernesto Cervini plays with such conviction and fire that it's easy to give him your ears and time.

--

Tue  May 25th 8:30PM | Ernesto Cervini Quartet

CORNELIA STREET CAFÉ
29 Cornelia Street, NYC, New York    212-989-9319
between West 4th and Bleecker Sts, Greenwich Village

Crash Test Dummies @ the Boulder Theatre

There is no mistaking Brad Roberts’ voice. He may look like an average guy, now in his mid-40s, but then he opens his mouth and his majestic baritone voice immediately conjures fond memories of such Crash Test Dummies hits at “Mmm, Mmm, Mmm, Mmm” and “Superman.” Perhaps best remembered for the acerbic folk rock sound of 1991’s The Ghosts That Haunt Me and 1993’s God Shuffled His Feet, there have nonetheless been enough hits for the band over the years to merit a couple of greatest hits packages. Through it all, the band with Roberts at the helm has touched on funk and soul, folk, electronic music and even Christmas tunes. Yet it is Roberts’ voice and offbeat lyrical sensibility that have been this beloved band’s calling cards since their founding twenty years ago.

Due for release on May 11, Oooh La La (Deep Fried) is again something of a different animal for the Crash Test Dummies. This time Roberts collaborates with producer/engineer Stewart Lerman, whose many credits include such divergent talents as Antony and the Johnsons and The Roches, as well as filmmakers like Wes Anderson and Martin Scorcese. While longtime CTD member Ellen Reid added back-up vocals and a lead on the closing acoustic ballad “Put a Face,” this album is fundamentally the work of these two creative men.

“I met Stewart and he wanted to just write music for the sake of writing music,” Roberts explains, breaking a five-year writing hiatus to work with Lerman. “I think the music is better than it could have ever been because we were writing it for ourselves – we weren’t aiming at a demographic anyhow – but this couldn’t be a clearer case of us being little boys.” “Little boys” is actually an appropriate term to explain how this album came together—Roberts and Lerman became infatuated with ‘70s-era musical toys, particularly one called the Optigan, and used them to compose much of the music for Oooh La La. Manufactured by Mattel, the Optigan (an acronym for optical organ) looks like a small electric organ but it projects the sound of other instruments using celluloid discs. Somewhat like an accordion, there are buttons on the left side that trigger chords and piano keys on the right that trigger single notes. The discs, with names like “Nashville,” “Swing It!” and “Guitar Boogie,” rotate to produce different arrays of sounds. The process is eerily similar to the digital sampling that is so common today, but the antiquated analog system produces quite a different effect.

“Because we wrote using these discs, we were inspired to do things that we wouldn’t have done,” Roberts points out. “I don’t write big band style, but all of a sudden I had this big band [on disc], so I’m writing in a genre that I normally wouldn’t be writing in. I can’t say enough about how great it is to write on these toys.”

With a little help from a few friends, the guys laid down a collection of beautifully crafted instrumental parts on top of the original toy tracks to create a fully realized production. Listening to the completed tracks you probably wouldn’t even realize that these tunes were started on toy instruments, but those unusual origins are still lurking. It won’t only be longtime CTD fans who will get a kick out of such sonic touches as the `50s doo-wop feel of “Paralyzed” (inspired by another toy called the Omnichord), the manic country feel of “What I’m Famous For” and the big band swing of “Now You See Her.”

Even aside from the toys, there is a distinctly different vibe afoot with this record. “Songbird” opens the album with a somewhat haunting but still undeniably beautiful acoustic melody and uplifting arrangement. Then there’s the third song “And It’s Beautiful,” which is a full-blown love song. “Happy songs are hard to write, especially love songs,” Roberts says. “This is territory I couldn’t have touched as a younger man without making myself sick.”

Yet this is still the unique (some might say warped) perspective of Brad Roberts and the Crash Test Dummies, nowhere more in evidence that with a few of the darker songs on this disk. “You Said You’d Meet Me (In California)” can’t help but make you think of a carnival side show. The Tin Pan Alley-inspired “Not Today Baby” is actually a Frank Sinatra reference. Legend has it that one day Sinatra walked into a studio full of engineers, staff and musicians at the ready, turned around and walked right out with a simple, insouciant “Not today, baby.” The reference was irresistible to Roberts and Lerman, as they recorded their tracks in Frank’s hometown of Hoboken.

Roberts has come a long way from 2004’s dark Songs of the Unforgiven, as a listener will pretty easily hear in “Now You See Her,” a song that Roberts proudly calls “Light and cheeky.” A happily married man who blogs at www.crashtestdummies.com about, among other things, the wonders of his wife, Roberts just seems happier and more balanced than he has been in the past. The image of a happy artist may be antithetical to the “great art demands suffering” mentality, but in the case of Brad Roberts it’s a welcome change of pace that has left him invigorated. Roberts has been so revitalized by the making of the new record that the band will tour this summer for the first time since 2004. Crash Test Dummies will perform as an acoustic trio with Ellen and Brad singing and old friend and tour partner Stuart Cameron playing acoustic guitar, much in the spirit of album closer “Put a Face.” Rather than try to recreate music that was created with some rather cranky toy instruments never meant for the rigors of a tour, Roberts has opted to present these songs in a straightforward, stripped-down manner. It’s a curveball, but the test of a great song is its ability to work in different formats, and these songs, along with classic CTD hits, undoubtedly pass this test.

“I think that when you are dealing with popular music, unless you have a strong melody, sympathetic chords, and a good set of lyrics you ain’t got nothing,” Roberts points out. Foreshadowing the highly entertaining shows for which he is so well known, Roberts adds “I want to have a little room to digress into an anecdote while Stuart strums the guitar, if that’s what I feel like doing.”

----------

97.3 KBCO Presents
CRASH TEST DUMMIES | June 13th
The Boulder Theater |  Boulder, Colorado
www.bouldetheater.com | ON SALE NOW

The Motet perform "The Best of Halloween"

We are very excited to announce that on January 22nd and 23rd The Motet will be performing "The Best of Halloween" at CERVANTES' MASTERPIECE BALLROOM'S Grand Re-Opening 7th Anniversary Party. For these shows we will be featuring the fantastic vocalist JEN DURKIN (Deep Bannana Blackout, Mickey Hart Band, Bernie Worell Band) and the slamming east coast horn duo of Sam Kininger and Ryan Zoidis (Soulive, Lettuce), aka "THE SHADY HORNS".  Get ready for these guys to blow the roof off the joint!  We are also extremely excited about the virtuosic guitarist DAN LEBOWITZ (ALO, magicgravy) coming in from San Francisco to join us for these two epic nights of great music!

And as this is somewhat of a reunion gig for us, don't be surprised to see our old friend and guitarist Ryan Jalbert (Brett Dennen Band) up there rocking out. Also, flying in direct from Portland Oregon will be vocalist exraordinaire Jans Ingber. And, per usual, we will have Motet regulars: Garrett Sayers on bass, Joey Porter on keys, Dave Watts on drums, Scott Messersmith on percussion, Gabe Mervine on trumpet, Kim Dawson on vocals, Matt Pitts on bari, and perhaps a few others yet to be named...

Yes folks! You heard it right, this will be a 13 member band including a four piece horn section, three vocalists, two guitars, and percussion. The concept, of course, will be for us to perform music by the artists of our past Halloween shows: Talking Heads, Tower of Power, Jamiroquai, Prince, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Sly and the Family Stone, and Herbie Hancock. This is going to be a once in a lifetime band, so please get your tickets soon.

Now as a added bonus, MAGICGRAVY, the ever exciting trio of Dave, Dan, and Garrett will be opening both nights! Be ready for some mad-improv-soul-jazz insanity to warm your body up...

This will also be the grand re-opening of Cervantes. They are putting a lot energy into upgrading the P.A., the stage, the restrooms and overall appearance. So, please come support one of the best live music venues in America!!

Dan Hicks & the Hot Licks Release New Album

hicks In vintage Dan Hicks form, Tangled Tales mashes the outlaw swing music, insightful charm, and brilliant melodies that have endeared him to audiences and fellow artists for four decades with his signature understated melancholy that could only be born from a creative genius. Featuring a world-class collection of musical talent including instrumental virtuosos David Grisman, Charlie Musselwhite, and slide-guitarist Roy Rogers, and produced by Grammy-winning roots music producer Chris Goldsmith, Tangled Tales delivers 8 great new original tunes that feel like instant Dan Hicks classics (and some choice cover tunes too).

Also available is a limited edition vinyl version of Tangled Tales, with cover art and packaging designed - as always - by Hicks himself.  For forty years Dan has created all of his own album art and promotional materials - cutting and pasting and drawing and illustrating - all by hand. Hicks has always had a clear idea of the aesthetics that best compliment his music.  In fact, the visuals are essential for Dan to further communicate the message of the songs, and he considers them an extension of the musical vision of each album. Family and friends who visit his home know this first hand, as remnants from magazine clippings, pieces of his drawings, old photographs, pages from books and atlases, and more can be found on his floors throughout; clippings that, more often than not, find their way into his work.  Need proof?  Check out Dan's new video here.

Look for Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks on tour this spring.  The list of currently confirmed dates is as follows:

March 25 Belly Up Tavern Solana Beach CA
March 26 El Rey Theatre Los Angeles CA with Special Guests Van Dyke Parks and The Ditty Bops
March 28 Yoshi's San Francisco CA with Special Guest David Grisman
April 03 One Longfellow Square Portland ME
April 04 Bull Run Shirley MA
April 05 Iron Horse Northampton MA
April 06 BB King's Blues Club New York NY
April 07 Turning Point Piermont NY
April 09 Stage One at the Fairfield Theatre Company Fairfield CT
April 10 Sellersville Theater Sellersville PA
April 11 The State Theater Falls Church VA
May 12 Uptown Grill's Playlist Theatre LaSalle IL
May 13 Logan Square Auditorium Chicago IL
May 14 Turner Hall Ballroom Milwaukee WI
May 15 Majestic Live Madison WI
May 16 Cedar Cultural Center Minneapolis MN

Additional dates to be announced.  Visit www.danhicks.net for information and updates.

Tangled Tales is a more-than-worthy addition to Hicks' already massive body of work.  It is an irresistible nod to Dan Hicks' undeniable musical legacy, and a potent reminder of all of the musical inspiration that this Great American Songwriter has spawned. Revered by and also having collaborated with such legendary artists as Tom Waits, Elvis Costello, Bette Midler, Brian Setzer, Willie Nelson, Jimmy Buffett, Rickie Lee Jones -- Dan Hicks serves up his unique fashion, attitude and swagger that are embodied in his eccentricity and totally unique sound. His counter-culture appeal, which has twice landed him on the cover of Rolling Stone, has always been rooted in his songwriting. His lyrics have been touted as some of the sharpest-tongued, driest-witted, and subtly hilarious bits of irreverence ever committed to rhyme. He sets these lyrical gems to quirky tunes that trade on a bagful of jazz chords and an irresistible rhythm.