A few too many beers launched Dan Finnerty's music career, singing I Am Woman for laughs at a karaoke bar. Now he fronts the Dan Band, a deceptively talented group of men performing pop songs made famous by women.
These aren't drag queens on parade. Finnerty wears a mechanic's shirt and a backward baseball cap. His backup dancers and harmonizers are Gene Reed and John Kozeluh, decked out in geek chic suits and eyewear while a four-piece band honks with Zappa-like precision.
The Dan Band is now moving beyond L.A. nightclub fame to national touring, including tonight's gig at Jannus Landing in St. Petersburg.
You may have caught their act at the movies. In Old School they deliver an impassioned and profanely inappropriate version of Total Eclipse of the Heart. In Starsky & Hutch they send up a bat mitzvah makeover of Roberta Flack's Feel Like Making Love.
The Dan Band sounds great on a live CD available online (www.thedanband.com), but seeing is believing. Finnerty sweats through oldies such as Flashdance and an ABBA medley. He'll rip through Scrubs, Genie in a Bottle, Whatta Man and Shoop, shaming those pop tarts who made them hits. Mournful songs like Luka are jazzed up, while Alanis Morrisette's You Oughta Know becomes furious fun.
And some women in the audience will receive full-frontal flirtation from Dan, maybe even taking home his sweaty face towel. Lucky, lucky girls.
Steve Persall can be reached at (727) 893-8365 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Dan Band
8 tonight at Jannus Landing in St. Petersburg. Tickets are $15 and $18. (727) 895-3045; www.jannuslanding concerts.com.