Dan Menzone
Gig Seeker Pro

Dan Menzone

Charlton, Massachusetts, United States

Charlton, Massachusetts, United States
Band Country


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Erika Brady"


I just got the promo - *great* material. I hardly know where to start playlisting...I will probably start with Clara's Reel, because it's so beautifully developed, but there's lots to choose from.
- Producer - Wester Public Radio

"Dave Higgs"

Hey Dan,

Many thanks. A sparkling solo debut, an arresting collection of powerful originals full of tasty melodic twists and turns along with a few surprises along the way. The recording quality is rich and warm and the picking on the highest level. I especially like the title track (Menzone Drive), "Deck Speed," "Restless" and "Stone Bench."

Thanks again for the killer project. - Nashville Public Radio

"CD Review"

Menzone is a very competent New England 5-string banjo picker...who ventures primarily into the more "melodic" and progressive style of music-lots of notes, minors and quick chord changes. But, he can also pick the fire out of a straight bluegrass tune like DEAR OLD DIXIE, and some of his compositions - especially DECK SPEED in "D" tuning - stand out. He is tasteful and under control and he really hits the bullseye. - Countysales.com


Dan Menzone has been a northeastern-based banjo picker for a lot of years...Menzone is of the melodic school of banjo picking and spent eight years studying with the great Tony Trischka in the Big Apple. But when he decided to put this new solo effort together, Menzone headed south, ending up at Rice Recording Studios in Damascus, VA.
For this project, Menzone surrounded himself with four bluegrass all-stars with Wyatt Rice on guitar, Rickie Simpkins on fiddle, mandolin and viola, Ronnie Simpkins on bass and Roger Williams playing resonator guitar. The good news is that this album is a real group effort where the same five musicians play on every song. And to Menzone's credit, he shows up with eight originals for the musicians to wrap themselves around.
The album starts off with "Menzone Drive," a rollicking bluegrass cut that features excellent solos by Menzone, Rice and Roger Williams. The musicians take their time and don't get in each other's way, and that makes for a bright sounding tune. "Clara's Reel" is a pleasant, "driving through the countryside on a sunny day" type of tune that features excellent fiddle and mandolin work by Rickie Simpkins, lest we forget Simpkin's talents on the latter instrument. This is not an album full of barnburners, however. Most of the songs have an easy going tempo about them. Other highlights include "Stone Bench" and "Deck Speed" (a song written by Menzone because he "always wanted to write a solid, traditional tune in D"). The two cuts here that are not originals are Flatt & Scruggs' "Dear Old Dixie" and "Nerissa," written by Menzone's TrueGrass bandmate Peg Harvey. - Bluegrass Unlimited

"CD Reviews"

Unsung banjoist Dan Menzone stands out among a group of fine instrumentalists here. He's a strong and versatile player, comfortable with hard driving Scruggs style picking, the melodic style and the musical flights of Tony Trischka. - Bluegrass Unlimited, 1994

"Bill Crawford"

Danny's cross between straight ahead and melodic styles provides the listener with a good toe-tapping bounce. Whether it be back-up or lead, he always seems to bring it to the limit.
- Banjo Newsletter, Volume XVIII No 3


Frostbite - Dan Menzone
Menzone Drive - Dan Menzone
Lonesome Without You - Traver Hollow
By Request - Traver Hollow
Live in Holland - Traver Hollow
Another Sleepless Night - Traver Hollow



I was born and raised in Dudley Massachusetts. I began playing the guitar at the age of 7 and was drawn to the banjo at 13. Back then, the banjo seemed to be everywhere - TV commercials, Deliverance, The Beverly Hillbillies - I knew that I was destined play the banjo. My first banjo, bought by my father, was a Kay, which I still own today - hanging on the wall in my music room. After one year of lessons, I attended the Berkshire Mountain Bluegrass Festival. There I heard banjo legends JD Crowe, Ralph Stanley and Tony Trischka. I upgraded my Kay to another a late 1970's Aida.
From there, I began to study under Tony Trischka, travelling to Manhattan on a regular basis.
I started playing with local bands in the early 80's - playing various styles on the banjo: including bluegrass, rock and roll and easy listening. In 1983, I purchased a custom banjo from Geoff Stelling, the Stelling Sunflower, which is still my primary banjo today.
Also in 1983, I was asked to do a "fill-in" show with Traver Hollow, a Connecticut based bluegrass band. In 1985, Traver Hollow called me up again and asked if I wanted the banjo position. I worked with Traver Hollow for 19 years. During that time, I toured the European Bluegrass scene, Canadian & Novia Scotian festival networks, and the East Coast from Northern Maine to the tip of Florida, westward out to Illinois.
Traver Hollow allowed me to develop my solid, traditional bluegrass base. During the 19 years with Traver Hollow, I recorded 4 albums, one DVD, numerous television shows and radio shows. Traver Hollow had the distinction of being the first bluegrass band on Danish Television.
My music composition started with Traver Hollow, working with fellow band mates creating melodic back-up and breaks for original vocal and instrumentals.
Over the years, I have always been inspired to write my own tunes. It was a natural step to move from the band arena and into the solo world.
Currently I play banjo with the Connecticut based bluegrass band Truegrass. Truegrass focuses on the lesser known compositions from the early years of bluegrass and country music.
Over these years, I have developed a style of banjo playing that has been defined as "crackling banjo," "hard driving Scruggs style picking," "cross between straight ahead and melodic with a good toe-tapping bounce."
My biggest accomplishment was the production of my solo CD - Menzone Drive. I was extremely excited that Wyatt Rice, Rickie Simpkins and Ronnie Simpkins came on board for the project. This recording features 8 of my original banjo tunes.
Currently, I am in the process of producing a 2nd solo CD. This CD will feature vocals as well as instrumentals, including 6 original tunes.