Danny Chaimson & The 11th Hour
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Danny Chaimson & The 11th Hour

| INDIE

| INDIE
Band Pop Singer/Songwriter

Calendar

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Dec
31
Danny Chaimson & The 11th Hour @ House of Blues

Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA

Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA

Dec
29
Danny Chaimson & The 11th Hour @ Pianos

New York, New York, USA

New York, New York, USA

Dec
11
Danny Chaimson & The 11th Hour @ Amp Lounge

chicago, Illinois, USA

chicago, Illinois, USA

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Music

Press


"The disc is an uber-catchy blast of laid-back, pop-based soul-funk, as if Billy Joel's been staying up late listening to Curtis Mayfield."
- Redeye Chicago


"the band is tight and play a blend of soul and funk that is seldom heard these days. Think Jack Johnson on amphetamines." - SongsIllinois.net
- SongsIllinois.net



"The specters of Little Feat and Dr. John cohabitate with those of Steely Dan and Randy Newman – without discordance or gratuitousness. The groove – thick and lumpy like long simmering gumbo – is accented tastefully by Chaimson's icy hot Fender Rhodes, and when the organ, angelic choir and Chaimson's rubbery, twangy vocal are all thrown in the pot, somehow the past, present and future of soul music are all evoked simultaneously." - soulmusic.com


Discography

LP Young Blood, Old Soul released in September of 2009
"L.A., L.A." single released in September of 2009

Photos

Bio

Young Blood, Old Soul (on newly launched L.A. indie Cold Classic), the accurately titled debut album from emerging writer/singer/musician Danny Chaimson and the scintillating band he’s dubbed the 11th Hour, is both a booty-shaker and an eye-opener. Although Chaimson remains below the mainstream radar, he’s long been regarded as a top-tier player by his fellow players and discerning SoCal fans. His specialty is the Fender Rhodes electric piano—“I just love the sound of the instrument,” he says—although he’s adept at other keyboard instruments and guitar. Keyboard magazine noted in a feature story about Danny that “he brings an impressive variety of influences...with a unique vibe created through the diversity of his playing style…skillfully [meshing] both his technical and experimental stylings.”

The album’s sound is anchored in its deep grooves and rhythm, but Chaimson’s subject matter vividly captures the zeitgeist of the present moment. His songs dig through the debris of the American Dream, finding dysfunction, anxiety and melancholy, but also a gritty determination and an unquenchable urge to keep moving, no matter what.

Opener “Sittin’ by the Bayou” pairs a second-line groove worthy of the Meters with a narrative about an elderly woman in the Ninth Ward waiting for her husband to return home as Hurricane Katrina descended on the city. “Bobblehead Girl” bumps along with the careening gait of its title character, a Hollywood club chick who measures success by the number of cocktails dudes buy for her as they break out their pickup lines. “L.A., L.A.” is a corrosive account of the workings of the latter-day music biz that rings all too true, as Chaimson laments over a fractured beat in the manner of Little Feat, “I want it just as bad/But all these lies just make me sad/And all these stars would seem just as glad if they could keep from falling down.”

Danny banged out “L.A., L.A.” in 35 minutes, so that he’d have something to perform at an audition for a big-name producer who was in the process of putting together a manufactured group. It wasn’t the sort of sentiment likely to charm the producer, who might as well have been one of the song’s targets; needless to say, he didn’t get called back.

Other songs ponder larger issues. “A lot of the album is about people my age—I’m 32 now—who dress the same and act the same in their early 30s as they did at 16,” he explains. “A lot of them can’t understand why they never grew up.” Riding a narcotic groove in the mode of Sly Stone’s “Family Affair,” “This Is Life” is an unflinching look at Chaimson’s generation, whose dreams have given way to a sheer struggle to survive. “You know you ain’t old but it feels so wrong,” he laments, “All your first times have come and gone/And their memories keep playin’ on and on, like the words to your favorite song.” A Few songs later comes “Speed,” a ballad that evokes The Band at its most poignant, right down to Chaimson’s Rick Danko-like lead vocal. “These times are changing once again/There ain’t much difference between boys and men,” he sings, “It’s where we live that makes us friends/Feels good to know someone who knew me when…”

The Chicago native was a piano prodigy at age 4, poring over the music of jazz greats Oscar Peterson and Bill Evans. Though he started writing his own music at the age of 10 and started his first band at 12, Danny was equally passionate about playing basketball. In fact, he describes himself during adolescence as “an athlete who played music.” (That hasn’t totally changed; his Facebook page lists the band’s interests as “playin’ music and shootin’ hoops.”) Nonetheless, after graduating from the University of Wisconsin, Danny headed to L.A. to pursue a musical career, establishing himself as an up-and-coming player. He toured as a sideman with acts like O.A.R., Mike Doughty, Shwayze and Jem—none of whom had much, if anything, to do with his own stylistic or thematic approach, although each situation broadened his experience. He was also a member of the ambitious and highly respected indie-rock band The Southland. But it wasn’t until five years into his L.A. run that he began singing his own songs.

Chaimson found his voice—literally and figuratively—while performing with his L.A. funk band The Greasy Beats, who were part of a throwback underground scene that also included such bands as Orgone, Breakestra and the Lions, whose flexible lineups featured the same crew of core players. Oddly, there was not a single singer among this posse of young hotshots, so Danny (who had sung backup in all his other projects for years) gave it a go one night, breaking out his soulful original “Raise ’em Up,” and was gratified by the reaction of both his bandmates and the crowd. From there, he stepped up to his newfound role as frontman, and that experience generated the bulk of the material that wound up on Young Blood. His material was clothed in the soul and funk he’d soaked up in the scene, but his l