The Lance Harrison Band was born of the desire to bring the songs in Lances head out in such a way that others could hear them the same as he does!
In search of this band, Lance & Donna listened and played with many great musicians. But none fit exactly right. They met Manju through a jam session and as they continued to search, to no avail, for the perfect band, they remembered him as the possible bassist. Giving him a call, they asked if he knew a fabulous drummer and keyboardist. As luck would have it, at this point Manju was part of a band of professional musicians looking for the right front man. It was a perfect fit. The groove, the dynamics, the sensitivity, the thunder was all there! Soon the Lance Harrison Band made its debut headlining at Festival Blues & Jazz um Haff in Merscheid, Luxembourg.
This fresh and exciting band is gaining lots of new fans at their live concerts with a sound and style rooted in the Deep South of North America, where Lance was born and raised.
They are now in preparation for recording the Lance Harrison CD which will feature all new songs in many different tones of blue!
Now a little on each of the band members...
Born in Nashville, Tennessee, on the same day as the famous nuclear test at Bikini Island, Lance exploded into this world on a musical mission. It began when his mother placed a ukulele in his baby bed. A talented singer, pianist and community activist, she made a huge variety of music available to him from Broadway to Blues, Folk to Classical and everything in between. Lance began playing the piano as soon as he could touch the keys, composing songs at age 5. He was dutifully made to take piano lessons, but soon got kicked out for "playing by ear".
Around age 13, after showing great promise on borrowed guitars, Lance finally got his own for Christmas! Lance, his guitar, and the stereo hi-fi were inseparable. Elmore James, Rolling Stones, Led Zep, Muddy Waters, Little Feat and so many more; track by track, groove by groove, Lance dissected their extensive record collection learning all he could about timing, phrasing, tone and the soul of music. Living on the division line of the "white" and "colored" part of the city, Lance found his musical playmates weren't so plentiful on 'his side' of the tracks, so he crossed them. What followed was an intense school of Blues and Soul. Lance was known for his ability to pick up most any instrument and play it fairly well! The favorite game at parties was to "Stump the Lance" meaning to request a song he couldn't play... he seldom lost.
After countless rock, country and blues bands, theater productions, and musical tours, he returned to Nashville where he met Donna. They started a demo studio in the enormous basement of her house on the first hill overlooking famous "Music Row". Life was good until that fateful day, when all was lost sending this duo out into the world on their musical odyssey. Twelve years and twenty-four countries later, Lance & Donna are still amazing audiences all over Europe receiving countless praises for their honest interpretations of blues classics and fresh, original compositions.
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Born in a military hospital outside of Chicago, in exchange for a bottle of whiskey, Donna Rae (Howley) began her amazing lifes journey. A natural beauty, her father wanted her to grow up to be a Playboy Bunny and marry rich, so she was groomed with modeling and acting lessons. She began a theatrical career on stage with Vivian Leigh in the Chicago production of "A Duel of Angels". Active in modeling and acting, she was always on the fringes of the art and music communities, frequenting the best blues & jazz venues and meeting such greats as Johnny Winter; she even double dating with jazz great George Shearing. She never became the Playboy Bunny her father wanted but she did marry well and dropped into a world of country clubs. Three divorces and 4 children later, she found herself with her own business and involved in the art and music scene in Nashville, Tennessee. Donna co-produced the legendary debut album for "African Dreamland" and assisted in the organization of several festival events. Bonnie Raitt, Holly Near, Aashid Little Archie Himmons, Lenny Breau, and many more have all passed through her living room. She's rubbed shoulders with Leon Russell, Wolfman Jack, Waylon Jennings, Peter Rowan, and Bela Fleck. She's been around!
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Paco Saval was born in Tierra del Fuego (Land of Fire!), Chile. He was playing and recording on albums at the age of 15, featuring his own compositions, as well as contemporary American and English cover songs. In 1969 Paco moved to Spain to study audio engineering at the University of Madrid. After graduating, he followed his muse to England where he worked and recorded with many bands and Leeds Music School musicians.
In 1978, he moved to Germany and one year later, with the band "Santiago", erupted on the German music scene. Soon after, his first solo album "Borderline" was released. In1980, he became a member of the legendary "Foodband", later known as "Wolf Maahn - Die Desateure"
As producer of "Band of Gold", Paco composed the song "Love Songs Are Back Again", which was in the American TOP 50 Charts for several weeks.
His second solo LP "Pina Colada" also did well.
Paco has been integral in a variety of projects including:
She and the Band, the Soul Cats, Viva la Diva, the RTL Nightshow, "Music for Unknown Movies", Sally Oldfield, Burning Man Blues Band, and many more.
He's also produced TV jingles and advertisements for Pro7, SAT3, RTL, among others.
A talented composer, arranger, keyboardist and singer, Paco lives for the music. As he says, "The most important point is that the music affects the heart and soul. "
Paco is full of heart and soul, and isn't that what it's all about?
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At two years of age, Ralph was already arranging wash powder boxes and lampshades into a drum set. Soon he added pots and pans. His family understood the message! At age six, he got his first real set of drums. At 10, he began taking formal drum lessons, continuing to explore his chosen instrument. By 13, he was playing in big bands and local rock bands, jazz bands, and all the sessions he could find. He was driven by his love of rhythm.
Ralph released a Drum Loop Sampler CD to great success.
He has worked as a popular session and touring musician for a long list of acts including such greats as Johnny Cash and Nina Hagen as well as four years as a member of the famous RTL Nightshow house band, the "Soul Cats".
Ralph is still driven by the rhythm. "Its the heartbeat of life."
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.....the mysterious Manju B
Manju is a traveler, always has been. His family was transferred "from hither to yon" giving Manju an interesting world perspective. At four years of age, Manju was already seriously studying piano, and soon he began singing in community choirs. His musical search led him to study classical flute and classical guitar. Although his musical studies concentrated mainly on classic technique, he nurtured very diverse musical tastes.
A pivotal moment came in the time of the "Neue Deutsche Welle". While in Zurich, Manju met the band YELLO, and touched a bass guitar for the first time! It just felt natural in his hands; thus his love affair with the bass guitar began. His beginnings include playing in a Spanish pop band and an "instant composition" jam band among others.
Manju studied at "Joe Heider Jazz School"Munich, but later quit because it was "too square". So, in 1987 Manju journeyed to India for both musical and spiritual inspiration. There he played with "Deuter" and with "Airto" the famous percussionist of "Weather Report"
In 1990 he returned to Cologne full of new technique and ideas.
At some point in the path of discovery, one begins to search for the roots and so it is, that Manju fell in love with the blues.
"Everything comes out of the blues and everything will return there."
We LOVE to play live! And we love to play all sizes of stages and venues. There is real magic in music, and "live" is where it all happens!
eep breath...... thinking... that's a hard one! I have listened, studied, disected, digested, felt, explored, experienced so many different genres of music that it would easily fill this page. We just returned from 3 1/2 months in SE Asia exploring and listening to the different traditional musics offered there. Muddy Waters to Steve Reich to Grateful Dead to Khmer folksongs to MC 900 foot Jesus to Swedish polska.... I LOVE IT ALL! Influences... all of them have helped form who I am. It's like the song says, "all you touch and all you see, is all your life will ever be..." (Breathe - PF) But I have to say, when I pick up my guitar to play, I always come back to the blues. It's the music of the soul. Music is the connection to the devine.
1957 Oahu lapsteel, 1990 Gibson ES335, 1972 reissue '52 Fender telecaster, Fine Resophonic Koa resonator (custom made), TL Bennett (handmade) acoustic guitar, Tech 21 60W amplifier, Boss ME50.
Korg ME1, custom monitoring system, 2 Lesley simulators.
Sadowski Basses, Gorilla 8 10 cab, custom amping
We are truely the best band you've never heard!
Listen for yourself!
Feel free to comment!