danHere are two things you should know right off about Dan Zanes.  Two things that set him apart from the huge and festive field of people who have in the past few years begun making music for families and people of all ages in a way that is changing the face of America, or the sound of it at least. First, he is making homemade family music and encouraging his friends and neighbors to do the same. Second, he is the guy who is always interested in singing along with people everywhere, which brings us to his mission, if you can call it a mission: Zanes is introducing his musical friends to his neighborhood friends and then showing everybody not just that they can play together but that they can also feel pretty good while doing so. In this sense, Zanes is a twenty-first century version of the guy, who in the old days, used to conduct the town band from the gazebo though in lieu of a gazebo he’s playing places like Carnegie Hall and the Melbourne International Arts Festival where no matter how you say it, good music is good. He is a ringmaster, introducing new songs and reconnecting people to songs that have always been there, and still are—it’s just that people forgot about them.

 



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colin

colin brooks (drums)  is from Little Rock, AR. he started playing piano at age 5 and started on the drums when he was 7. after jamming with his father, a self-taught guitarist, he began to form and play in bands with various schoolmates. he moved to Brooklyn in 1998 to join the band Skeleton Key.·

After their demise, he traveled to New Zealand and Australia as the drummer for Bic Runga. after stints with various New York based singer songwriters, drumming on jingles, and playing with the Brooklyn band Sea Ray, he found himself drumming in the off-broadway musical BETTY RULES. that is where he met Dan Zanes in 2003. he has been drumming with Dan ever since. outside of that, he still makes records with the Little Rock based band The Big Cats and records songs of his own in his bedroom. he would like to thank Dan and the friends for all of the fun musical adventures.


john

john foti (accordian) Born in West Cadwell, NJ, John's first musical experience was figuring out the Sesame Street theme song at a young age. Inspired by his father and older sister, he went on to take piano lessons through college - even when some of the kids said it "wasn't cool" to play piano. John thought it was cool and kept playing. He's been playing with DZAF for over 3 years and is thrilled to always be learning new songs and instruments, all while being surrounded by such good friends and musicians.

Hobbies include: thinking, listening to/writing music, sleeping, worrying about what the Yankees score is, traveling, and being forced to try new foods while touring (thanks to the band)! John is involved in several musical groups and often plays around the NYC area when not on tour with DZAF. You can say hello to John at www.johnfoti.com


saskiaBorn and raised in San Francisco, Saskia Lane (bass, vocals)began her classical training on the violin at the ripe old age of 4, and took up the bass the day she turned 11. Her musical path eventually put her on a train bound for New York City where she received her Masters Degree from The Juilliard School. After graduating, Saskia began exploring other genres and now has her hands in jazz, rock, pop, folk, klezmer and hip-hop. This curiosity for all things music is how she met Dan Zanes. They bumped into each other on the streets of Brooklyn and have been jamming away ever since! In addition to playing with Dan and all his friends, Saskia can be heard playing in and around New York with her new band Hey Sailor! and with her beloved cocktail-pop quartet The Lascivious Biddies. She can also be seen sharing the stage with a wild cast of characters from the likes of Jay-Z, Beyoncé and Enya. 

Saskia is also active in education and outreach via Carnegie Hall's Musical Connection program, performing in homeless shelters, hospitals, correctional facilities and senior centers. This coming season she is developing a children's show for CarnegieKids.
To read more about Saskia's music and projects visit www.saskialane.com


soniasonia de los santos (vocals, guitar & mandolin)  was born and raised in Monterrey, Mexico. In 2000, she joined the rock band Esphera as the lead singer and collaborated in their debut album Reflection. As an actress, Sonia has toured nationally in Mexico with the musicals: Jesus Christ Superstar, Fiddler on the Roof playing "Hodel", "Lucy Harris" in Jekyll & Hyde and "Connie" in A Chorus Line. Sonia can be seen in the film Off Jackson Ave as "Semka" and in the short film Furore in the leading role of "Mia". 

She was the lead singer in the rock n' roll tap dancing show Revolution in their national tour and at the Joyce Theater in 2007. Sonia is thrilled to have been touring with Dan Zanes And Friends as a singer and guitarist since 2007. She appears on their latest albums ¡Nueva York!, The Welcome Table, 76 Trombones and the DVD The Fine Friends Are Here. Lately, Sonia has been recording at home songs she learned as a child in México inviting old and new friends to join her!

Sonia studied musical theater at Circle in the Square Theater School in New York City and holds a BA in Communications from the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey. www.soniadelossantos.com


elenaelena moon park (violin) Hailing from Oak Ridge, TN, Elena began playing the violin and dancing at a young age. She played classical music for many years, until college drew her attention to traveling to far off places, going on long hiking trips, learning music and dance from other countries, and studying American history. After her adventures, she was anxious to add music back into the mix. Although she moved to NYC primarily to complete a Masters degree in Urban Policy, she was also very excited to meet and play fun, spontaneous music with many different kinds of musicians along the way. Now she is happy to be playing fiddle and trumpet (and some mandolin & ukulele!) with DZAF. Elena lived in the hills of Tennessee and the flatlands of Chicago before proudly calling Brooklyn, NY her home. Her interests include dancing, singing, teaching, picture-taking, helping to achieve equitable development in urban America, supporting the arts, and Sam Cooke's "A Change is Gonna Come."


rankinrankin don a.k.a father goose (vocals) Rankin Don recalls that when he was a young boy his sister was persistent that he should be involved with music. Being too young to go to the clubs and fetes, he recalls his first experiences and interactions with music as using a mic and singing off of versions. All this before the age of thirteen! That is when it all started.
Notorious Bugs from Gyasi Record Label urged him to record for the mainstream. Rankin Don was already an underground superstar in Jamaica and the streets of Brooklyn. That is where and when he recorded hits like "Cant Find Me Love" and "Sex You Up"? and the big hit "Baddest DJ" which sold over 100,000 copies in the US and abroad.

A year after "Baddest DJ," Real McCoy was pressed. Known for its unique flavor and jovial hook (Ah! Ah! Ah! Ah!) it took the Caribbean and the US by storm, selling over 250,000 copies. He also recorded The Big Race with Roundhead, Screchie Don, General B, and Baja Jedd. Rankin Don has also performed with the best of the best, including, Freddie McGregor, Gregory Isaacs, 2002 Grammy nominee Beres Hammond and past Grammy award winners Shabba Ranks, Shaggy and Beenie Man.

Rankin Don is now a producer for Rock Tower Studios, known for its rich history in the foundation of reggae music. In his other life as Father Goose, he appears on many releases by Dan Zanes.