Dan Zanes and Friends
Zanes headed up the Del Fuegos in the 1980s. After the birth of his daughter, he did what all other musician parents do he enlisted the help of neighbors and friends, some of them famous folks, to help him make family music that doesn't suck. He'd spent years listening to banjo songs, traditionals, folk music, and cowboy tunes. At the hands of Zanes and his companions, "Polly Wolly Doodle" becomes a rock 'n' roll shake-your-boogie song. And "Over the Rainbow" is turned into a sweet pause in our hectic lives.
On stage, Dan and his band perform what he calls "exuberant, handmade music for enthusiastic crowds of kids and kid sympathizers." Zanes sings and plays mandolin, banjo, harmonica, Autoharp, and electric guitar. Joining him on stage are backup vocalist Barbara Brousal on acoustic guitar and mandolin, Cynthia Hopkins on saw and accordion, Yoshi Waki on upright bass, Colin Brooks on drums, and Jamaican rapper Rankin' Don, aka Father Goose.
[Originally published in March, 2005.]