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Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem to Bring “New Roots” Sensibilities to MUSIC for a CHANGE

Posted 09/08/2010
Posted by David Isgur

Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem, purveyors of "new roots" music, will return to the MUSIC for a CHANGE benefit concert series for a performance on Saturday, Sept. 25, at 7:30 p.m. in the University of Hartford's Wilde Auditorium, Harry Jack Gray Center, 200 Bloomfield Ave., West Hartford. Tickets are $20 for this general admission show.

Local musician Paul Tieger will be opening the show.

Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem have "a rare gift for fashioning hip, sleek sounds from the solid cloth of vintage American music," says the Boston Globe, calling the band's music "neo old-timey with cosmopolitan splashes of contemporary pop and jazz."

All of roots music is a stage for daisy mayhem, and this four-piece string band loves nothing more than choreographing a jubilant mix of traditional, original, and contemporary sounds. With Arbo's bewitching alto at the helm, stunning vocal harmonies, a 100 percent recycled drum set, fiddle, guitar, and bass, daisy mayhem "has a grand knack for pumping new blood into old music," according to the Boston Globe. Imagine, for example, a pre-civil war song from the Georgia Sea Islands sung over a New Orleans-style groove. Or, an old Irish fiddle tune with new lyrics, capped with a solo on a South American box drum. A Sondheim tune done jug band style? An original Unitarian funk gospel song? You begin to get the idea.

With influences from Doc Watson to Django Reinhardt, from Ghanaian drumming to the funky Meters, and from Fiddlin' John Carson to Bob Dylan, daisy mayhem celebrates America's rich musical past and brings it into the present with good humor, impeccable musicianship, powerful songwriting, and a clear love of playing together. Here are four musicians who pick up what's lying around-from tin cans to old songs and wry observations of modern life-and create something new.

The University of Hartford launched the MUSIC for a CHANGE series in the spring of 2000, with the goal of using music as means of helping the Hartford community. To date, more than $150,000 has been raised for a number of Greater Hartford nonprofit organizations.

For tickets to the concert, call the University box office at 860.768.4228 or 1.800.274.8587, or purchase them online at For more information about the MUSIC for a CHANGE concert series, go to