Drawing on influences such as Jelly Roll Morton, Bob Wills, Louis Armstrong, and the black string bands from the South (Mississippi Sheiks, Charlie McCoy), the Zapf Dingbats deliver unique arrangements of traditional jazz, blues, and folk tunes.
Zapf Dingbats’ improvisational performance will have you thinking variously of Dawg music, Gypsy Jazz, Second Line parades, Speakeasies, and Juke Joints. The band’s melting-pot of musical influences is the source of it’s unique sound.
Leader David Bandrowski (guitar) sets the tone of the band with his amazing musical vocabulary and background of Early Jazz, Second-Line and Traditional music. Chris Clarke (mandolin) is steeped in Old Time, Folk & Country-Blues traditions. Doug Walker (bass) is a master of Contemporary and Progressive Jazz. Dane Terry (harmonicas) adds a little soul from Gospel and the Blues. The four combine to make a rich, spicy, savory, and altogether original recipe based on a broad (and deep!) variety of American traditional influences.
David Bandrowski has taught workshops at Chicago’s Old Town School of folk music, and has played with Dr. John, Natalie Merchant, Donald Harrison, the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, Mike Seeger, and with band members of the Harry Connick Jr. Big Band, Fats Domino, The Allman Brothers, Merle Travis, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Galactic, and many other well known and lesser known entertainers. He has also composed, produced, and placed music in many commercials, films, and television programs.
Chris Clarke is a life-long student, performer and teacher of traditional, southern Appalachian heritage music. Born and raised in Virginia, Chris has been playing old-time, country blues, bluegrass and folk music since the late 1980s. His style is rooted firmly in tradition, his interpretation is authentic and he has the ability to connect with the audience with colorful stories (some even true). He has shared the stage with Dr. Ralph Stanley, Mike Seeger, and performs regularly at festivals and venues around his home in Southern California.
Dane Terry has been around music all of his life, and caught fire with the blues as a young adult. A self-taught player, Dane draws his musical inspiration from the Gospel, Country and Jazz his parents exposed him to from birth, and from American Blues music of the 1930s to the 1960s. In addition to Zapf Dingbats, Dane performs regularly around San Diego with his swinging original and vintage blues band, Cadillac Wreckers.
Doug Walker is one of the few left-handed acoustic bassists in the country. Originally from Sacramento, CA, his interest in music runs farther back than he cares to remember. Although he first studied alto saxophone as a lad, he picked up the electric bass at age fourteen and quickly became serious about the craft. His interest in jazz and the acoustic bass flourished as he immersed himself in dozens of professional & academic ensembles. Doug now holds an M.M. in jazz from SDSU, where he studied with world-class bassist Bob Magnusson. Based in San Diego, he continues to teach, compose, and perform amid a circle of exceptional musicians.