Five Firsts: Dan Anderson of Diazepam


NAME: Dan Andersen
INSTRUMENT: Bass guitar/vocals

1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … a compilation of great classical music. I don’t remember what the title was but, it had “In the Hall of the Mountain King” (Grieg) and the “Hungarian Rhapsody” (Liszt) on the track-list and I was blown away for the first time hearing music with themes, emotion, arrangement and dynamics. The epic nature of classical music had a huge impact on what my idea of music has developed into.

2. THE FIRST CONCERT THAT I EVER SAW WAS … Incubus opening for Primus. It was an amazing first show. I was just getting into playing bass, and my teacher Al offered to bring me to the concert. I was blown away by Incubus’ live presence and raw jungle-jazz-rock. I sang along at the top of my lungs. When Primus took the stage, it was as if a giant had entered the room. That was my first experience with a rough concert crowd. I felt my chest cavity vibrating from the low bass frequencies, and I realized I loved that feeling of power.

3. THE FIRST MUSICAL INSTRUMENT I EVER OWNED OR PLAYED WAS … a piano in my living room. My older brother played and took lessons and every once in a while I would toy around with the sounds. I am still drawn to and feel a strong connection with that instrument.

4. THE FIRST SONG THAT I EVER PERFORMED IN PUBLIC WAS … “The Warmth” by Incubus. My band in high school played in our school’s variety show, and I was the lead vocalist. It was a rush, and surprisingly I wasn’t nervous. I loved performing.

5. THE FIRST BAND I WAS EVER IN WAS … Vibrant Grooves. The same band mentioned above was together for four solid years, and it was great. I felt surrounded by good people and playing music really opened up a larger community of friends in high school. We played original music and recorded a full-length album and were popular in school. I am very grateful to have had that experience.

Dan Anderson and the rest of the members of Diazepam get together to headline at Pauly’s Hotel in Albany at 11pm on Friday (May 3). Squid Parade kicks off the show at 9pm, followed by the Latent at 10pm. Admission is $7 at the door.

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