Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks, Thurs. May 10
Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks
Thursday, May 10
“Dan Hicks is an American original…” – NPR’s All About Jazz
An early pioneer of the San Francisco psychedelic scene, singer-songwriter Dan Hicks blends elements of swing, jazz, folk and country music to give him the moniker of the reigning “King of Folk-Swing.” Having recently celebrated his 70th birthday with a big bash at Davies Symphony Hall, Hicks is plunging full steam ahead championing an amalgam of styles pioneered by Jimmie Rodgers, Django Reinhardt, and Bob Wills. It’s all rolled into an entertaining string band format, complete with plenty of dry wit, and traveling a musical trail that has won a loyal following of “Hixsters” from around the world. As one of Dan’s songs puts it, “You got to believe!” Crazy for Christmas and Tangled Tales are his most recent recordings.
Growing up in Santa Rosa, California, Dan Hicks’ first instrument was drums. By his early teens, he was playing in jazz groups and looking to get into the radio announcer business. He took up guitar in 1959, just in time for the folk music boom of the early ’60s, eventually joining a folk/rock band called the Charlatans. The Charlatans, after a long residency at the Red Dog Saloon in Virginia City, Nevada, became an early participant in the San Francisco Sound of the mid-’60s. But Hicks had other ideas. He opted out of the electric rock sound to pursue a decidedly retro, acoustic approach. Incorporating acoustic guitars, violin, acoustic bass, and two female backup singers, Hicks pulled-in the jazz influences of Le Jazz Hot’s Django Reinhardt, the twangy Western Swing of Bob Wills, and the sophisticated harmonies of Swing Era vocal groups. For a broader rhythmic palate, he drew on elements of ’60s bossa nova and boogaloo, sprinkling them in with the traditional 4/4 swing beat. Put it all together, into one toe-tapping groove, and ‘Folk-Jazz’ – as Dan now calls it – was born.
The Hot Licks split up at a career highpoint in 1973, leaving behind several recorded classics, including Where’s The Money? and Strikin’ It Rich. Hicks pursued a solo career for the rest of the ’70s. He resurfaced in the ’80s with the Acoustic Warriors, a quartet based on his earlier style, but minus the backup vocalists. The popularity of the Acoustic Warriors eventually inspired Dan to form a revamped version of The Hot Licks in 2000, complete with a new set of Lickettes. Since then, the millennium version of Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks has been going strong with new songs (as well as the longtime favorites), new recordings, and international tours, playing to an ever-growing cadre of fans.
Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks
DATE: Thursday, May 10, 2012
PLACE: Kuumbwa Jazz Center
ADDRESS: 320 Cedar St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
TIMES: 7:00 & 9:00 PM
PRICE: $22/Adv $25/Door
TICKETS: Logos Books & Records, 1117 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz (831) 427-5100 and online at: http://www.kuumbwajazz.org
MORE INFO: http://www.kuumbwajazz.org or 831-427-2227
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