Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks “Live at Davies”; Sept. 6, 2013


Friday, September 6
Kuumbwa Jazz

There’s no one else who sounds like Dan Hicks, who writes like him, who has that dry sense of humor or has that manner. He’s really one of a kind. – San Francisco Chronicle

“Dan Hicks is imminently engaging, twisting his signature mishmash of damn near every musical style known to man into songs that feel supremely natural…Add to that Hicks’ penchant for writing lyrics filled with a dry wit reminiscent of Garrison Keillor and Frank Zappa, and you’ve got something very strange – very strange and very wonderful.” – Seattle Weekly

Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks continue to tour the U.S. in support of his new album, Live at Davies (Surfdog Records). They make a stop for two shows on Friday, September 6th  Kuumbwa Jazz Center. The album is a fantastic collection of compelling and witty tunes that show why Tom Waits called him “fly, sly, wily, and dry!”  In honor of the eternal hipster himself, dozens of stars appeared on stage to celebrate Dan Hicks’ 70th birthday!  A sold-out crowd at San Francisco’s Davies Symphony Hall enjoyed an incredible evening featuring guest appearances by Rickie Lee Jones, Harry Shearer, Maria Muldaur, Van Dyke Parks, Tuck and Patti, John Hammond, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, and many others! We captured the best of the night with this CD, recorded live by Grammy-Award winning, Kuumbwa Jazz engineer, Jeff Sloan. It includes several of Dan’s biggest hits as well as some never before released live!

In vintage Dan Hicks form, Live at Davies mashes the outlaw swing music, insightful charm and commentary, 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.

Live at Davies showcases 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.

Live at Davies 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, and 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.


Dan Hicks grew up in Santa Rosa, California, with a love for jazz and swing era music. Initially a drummer, by his early teens he was playing in jazz groups and looking to get into the radio announcer business. In 1959, he took up the guitar just in time for the folk music boom of the early ’60s. Eventually, he joined a proto-folk/rock band called the Charlatans. The Charlatans, often credited for kick-starting what became the San Francisco Sound, disbanded after a long residency at Travis T. Hipp’s Red Dog Saloon in Virginia City, Nevada. At that point, Hicks opted out of the electric rock sound to pursue a decidedly retro, acoustic approach. Featuring acoustic guitars, violin, acoustic bass, and two well-harmonized female backup singers, Dan incorporated the influences of Django Reinhardt’s Le Jazz Hot and Bob Wills’ twangy Western Swing, along with elements of bossa nova and boogaloo to spice up the proceedings, and ‘Folk Jazz’ was born.

The original Hot Licks split up at a career highpoint in 1973, leaving behind a hardcore following of fans and several recorded classics, including Where’s The Money? and Strikin’ It Rich. Dan pursued a sporadic solo career for the rest of the ’70s before resurfacing in the ’80s with the Acoustic Warriors, a quartet based on the Licks but minus the Lickettes. The popularity of the Acoustic Warriors eventually inspired him to form a revamped version of The Hot Licks in 2000, complete with a new set of Lickettes. Since then, the New Millennium version of Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks has been going strong with fresh songs (as well as the longtime favorites), fresh recordings, and international tours playing to an ever-growing cadre of fans.

Download new CD:  https://app.box.com/s/ee02riplsydd6huyvnj4

High resolution photo: http://kuumbwajazz.org/media/press-photos/

Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks

DATE:  Friday, September 6, 2013
PLACE: Kuumbwa Jazz Center
ADDRESS: 320 Cedar St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
TIMES: 7:00 and 9:00 PM
PRICE: $22/Adv $25/DoorTICKETS: 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

Media contact:
Megan Lloyd at Surfdog Records
760.944.8000 or megan@surfdog.com

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