Fraser / Live Music: Treanor trio mixes it up with Afrosippi blues
January 22, 2009
If soulful rhythms and gutbucket blues are your thing then blues ambassador Dan Treanor has a healthy serving of the real deal ready for the Fraser Valley.The blues are brewing up at Frasers Rocky Mountain Roastery as Treanor and the Afrosippi Blues Band pour out the next Java Mic Night feature. The event is also a fundraiser to help send the group to the International Blues Challenge as a representative of the Grand County Blues Society.Harmonica, blues harp, Mississippi saxophone, pocket rocket, whatever you call it, the instrument is a favorite of the Denver blues musician, who also plays guitar, dobro, banjo, bass, keyboards and cane flute. He has been playing the harmonica for at least 40 years.Originally from Pueblo, Treanor started playing the harmonica while serving in the infantry in Vietnam in 1969 and has since been blowing up a storm. These days, he is considered one of the top blues harp players in the business.The veteran blues man is no stranger to Grand County. Hes been a longtime Grand County Blues Society supporter and has hosted several blues educational workshops at East Grand schools. Treanor started the BITS program for the Colorado Blues Society in 1998 and has volunteered for the GCBS program for about 15 years. He estimates hes taught more than 60,000 kids about the blues and the harmonica.Several years ago, Treanor also started to hand build African string instruments, originally to be used in the BITS presentations. They quickly made their way into his live shows, introducing a new style of blues called Afrosippi Blues. It takes Afro beats, African string instruments, Delta blues grooves, harp, guitar and soulful vocals and blends it up into one gumbo, Treanor said.In the fall of 2003, Treanor put band African Wind together (with R&B legend Frankie Lee). Critics declared 2004 CD African Wind one of the best blues CDs of the year and it was nominated by the Independent Music Awards as the Blues CD of the year in 2005. Then, about a year ago, Treanor formed the Afrosippi Blues Band out of the African Wind Band, when his guitarist and drummer moved to Louisiana.Now, with Jodie Woodward (bass), Peter Gregory (drums) and Randall Dubis (guitar), he heads to the IBC (Feb. 5-7) in Memphis, Tenn. as the GCBS representative, joining more than 150 blues acts from around the nation. Its a pretty big deal, Treanor pointed out, adding that hes looking forward to it and considers it a great honor.For the Java Mic Night performance the group will have a new CD Juke Joint Confessions available to help raise funds for the trip. Copies include 10 songs and are $15. Some of the new material will be a showcase of the Java Mic Night performance (which includes Treanor, Woodward and Gregory).Every Friday night through the winter season, the Roastery is hosting diverse talent from throughout the Grand County area and Colorado region. Season tickets are available. Schedule for the event’s fifth year includes Yaniv Salzberg and Mike Music Jan. 30, The Really Serious String Band Feb. 6, a collaborative jam Feb. 13, Jasco Jazz Feb. 20, Brad Pregeant Feb. 27, Open Mic March 6, open events March 13 and 20, Haas ‘n’ Friends March 27, and Ali ‘n’ Friends April 3.