Bananafish Dance Orchestra is an 9-piece powerhouse groove sensation, with a 4-piece horn section, a 4-piece rhythm section, and a vocalist up front. This group will never stop you from dancing, especially since they have been rumoured to play sets up to 4 hours non-stop! All members are enrolled or have already graduated from the VIU Bachelors of Jazz studies degree.
This, of course, is where the band met, and from there began playing all over Vancouver Island. The horns section consist of Phil Hamelin on the Trumpet, Ron Gaucher on Tenor Sax, Sarah Deno on the trombone and Dave Lawson on the Bari Sax. Playing lines influenced from Tower of Power to Buena Vista Social Club, this erotic balance enables the group to really dig into various styles of music with the horn section being the icing on the cake!
Now for the meat and potatoes of the band: we have Duncan Symonds on guitar and percussion, Josh Gellman on keys and clav, Nic Sheasgreen layin’ down the slap licks on the bass and Brendan Holm on the drums. These guys are a non-stop groove combo that will keep it coming as long as the crowd is there to feed them the energy as they serve up some of their favorite stuff from influences inlcuding Lettuce, The Cat Empire, Sergent Garcia and more.
The Faces of Bananafish are one of many colors. Niall Harvey founded B.D.O just over a year ago and is now well on the path of becoming the musician he wants to be.
Composing the majority of the tunes, playing the timbales among other sorts of percussion, holding down lead vocals and even picking up the trumpet on a few occasions to battle it out with lead player Phil Hamelin, Niall is thrilled with the current lineup of stellar musicians.
Bananafish has been around for only two years and has already headlined at Vancouver island music fest, Victoria jazz fest, paradise meadows and more. this summer they are playing at Victoria skafest, Victoria blues bash and Brand new festival coming to denman island.
There album has been out for almost a year now and has already had a huge success. From Cuban to Funk, Jazz Fusion to Upbeat, and Reggae to Soul, B.D.O. has proven they will keep you moving!
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