Infinity Music Hall & Bistro
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Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem

Infinity Hartford


Sun, April 19, 2015
Hartford, CT
Show at 7 PM

Ticket INFO

Price: $18 - $28

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Americana / Folk
Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem

INFINITY BLOG: Rani Arbo Excited to Showcase ‘Violets Are Blue’ This Weekend in Hartford

Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem mix post-Oh Brother Where Art Thou -bluegrass, country and swing with hard-driving guitar and recycled junk percussion (influences from Bonham to Ghana). The result is a fearless band that tackles 200-year-old and original songs, skillfully blending old and new into timeless music. Lyrically, they favor what they call “agnostic gospel” — songs that ponder the big questions but don’t preach the answers. But in the course of a live show, they also ponder false love, true love, red haired boys, road trips, and much more. Dubbed “playful and profound” by The Boston Globe, Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem explore the nooks and crannies of the human condition with courage, heart, and some fine picking and singing. Join us as we celebrate the group’s 5th release on the Signature Sounds record label on April 19th!

Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem have a knack for plumbing the human condition with an infectious joie de vivre, showcased nowhere better than on their new CD, Violets are Blue. These not-so-starry eyed love songs look at partnership through the kaleidoscope of midlife — finding forgiveness, perseverance and self-awareness in songs that are funny, mindful, resigned, longing, and satisfied. Not surprisingly, the seven originals and five covers display a wide range of moods. Where some pulse with drums, bass, accordion, electric guitar, fiddle and four-part harmony, others hang like spacious webs from the fine thread of Arbo’s alto. Confident and compassionate, Violets are Blue is a bouquet from an Americana quartet in its prime. Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem’s sound is “tight, with stylish, unexpected choices” (Acoustic Guitar), a mix of New Orleans grooves, old-time gospel harmonies, bluesy swing fiddle, and fiery electric and acoustic guitar. All four musicians sing lead; in four-part harmony, they can shake the rafters or hush the room. “Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem dig deep into their collective souls, finding joy in the moment, peace in the harmonies, and rapture in the rhythmic drive.” — The Hartford Courant.

Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem

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Artist Bio

Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem are a steadily deepening, 12-year brew of band chemistry, life experience and musical evolution. In 2007, the San Francisco Guardian called them “one of the most song- and arrangement-oriented bands in a field overgrown with pyrotechnic, jam- and solo-conscious virtuosos.” Nice. And true. But what really sets this band apart is their connection — to each other, to the audience, and to the music. Simultaneously loose and tight, their playing seems to tick by invisible radar; it’s exciting, cathartic, and fun to watch. It’s a band.

On stage, they are Rani Arbo (fiddle, guitar), Andrew Kinsey (bass, banjo, uke), Anand Nayak (electric and acoustic guitars) and Scott Kessel (percussion). Kessel’s percussion rig is 95% recycled, featuring a cardboard box, tin cans, caulk tubes, and a vinyl suitcase in lieu of a bass drum. All the band members sing, and their four-part harmonies soar, whether on a haunting Appalachian ballad, a Springsteen rocker, or a Bahamian a capella song. Many of their songs plumb the human condition, with topics ranging from joy to death (a favorite), loss, aging, blackbirds and red-haired boys. The band has jokingly dubbed itself an “agnostic gospel” revival show, but there’s truth in it; the refrain they hear time and again from audiences all over the country is that their performances really do heal.

Musically, Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem reuse and recycle (but try hard not to reduce) 150 years of American music. They hang a Georgia Sea Islands song on a New Orleans groove. They write lyrics for an Irish fiddle tune and underpin it with an Afro-Cuban cajon. Leonard Cohen gets clawhammer banjo; Springsteen gets bluegrass harmonies. Their originals range from blues, to bluegrass, to Unitarian funk gospel, to crooner swing, to spooky folk-pop. With influences from Doc Watson to Django Reinhardt, from Fiddlin’ John Carson to the funky Meters, Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem celebrates America’s past and takes it into the present. Of their signature style, Vancouver’s Rogue Folk Review wrote, “It’s as hard to classify as it is to praise highly enough…an intoxicating blend of roots music styles, with deep traditional roots and a healthy futuristic outlook. Strongly recommended.”

Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem’s last album, Some Bright Morning was released on Signature Sounds in April of 2012. The band’s 2010 family album, Ranky Tanky (Mayhem Music), won top awards from the Parents’ Choice Foundation, National Association of Parenting Publications, and the American Library Association.

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