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Captain Squeegee Teams Up With ASU Big Band

Published: Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, November 7, 2012 11:11

Captain Squeegee

Sean Oliver

Danny T leading a rehearsal at ASU.

It’s hard to tell what the mad minds behind local band Captain Squeegee are up to at any given moment. A talented bunch with the imagination of a stoned toddler, their shows are highly entertaining to say the least. Their latest endeavor has them collaborating with Arizona State University’s jazz program. Captain Squeegee singer and trumpet player Danny T briefly chatted with College Times about what happens when rock and a traditional big band mix.

College Times: What can people expect?

Danny T: When people hear the words “big band” in this day and age, they usually just think I’m talking about a popular band. A big band is just like a jazz band, just like the ones you’ve seen behind Frank Sinatra and Michael Buble so many times. This is obviously more on the deep end of interesting writing and “out there” Squeegee music, so it kind of sounds like Frank Sinatra and Frank Zappa had a baby.

Oh man.

We have the band doing a lot of things. Once I realized that we had 12 extra brains, I started writing it in the music. They sing mob vocals with us and they’re stomping and clapping and making bizarre noises and we’re really having fun. We’re using everybody. 

How did it all get started?

A few of our members have gone through the ASU [Jazz Studies program] and I’m involved with jazz in general. I think most of us have played in jazz bands around the city so it only makes sense that eventually we would combine forces with ASU, [which] has probably one of the best big bands in the Southwest.

We had a bunch of charts written for a big band and Captain Squeegee at the same time. We’ve done that in the past but this will be by far the most songs and we’re playing all together with 12 horns. It’s basically us plus 12 horns, which is really intense. I don’t even know how we’re going to fit at the Crescent Ballroom, but we’re going to try.

Have you been rehearsing?

We’ve been rehearsing during their rehearsal time Tuesday and Thursday for the past few weeks. I think they think I’m crazy, because the music is crazy. I like that.

How’s it been working out?

I don’t know. It’s kind of new for the big band because it literally is a rock band. Squeegee no matter what is a rock band. We have elements of jazz, but we’re getting loud and nasty and really nitty-gritty with the band. We have our whole rhythm section, five saxophones, four trombones, four trumpets, and it just sounds huge. I mean it sounds like I don’t know. I don’t even know how it’s going to sound at the Crescent Ballroom. It’s going to fill it up for sure.

How many songs do you have?

We have six songs with the big band, and then the big band is going to play a couple and we’re playing a couple and it’s just going to be one awesome free-for-all.  I had to obviously make special arrangements so we could play the music with them. We had these huge charts with all these notes and staffs and accidentals and all this craziness.

It’s funny. I was nervous with ASU. There’s a bunch of master’s students in there and I’m an ASU dropout. I recommend people check it out. There’s really nothing like it. ASU has one of the most killer jazz bands around. It’s going to be mind blowing. I guarantee it.

Captain Squeegee w/ASU Concert Jazz Band, Steff Koeppen and the Articles, Crescent Ballroom, November 8, 7 p.m., $8 adv, $10 dos

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