Now, we weren’t always the first choice for dueling pianos in Colorado. Everyone’s gotta start somewhere…
Jack and I are classically trained pianists and childhood choir nerds who grew up sharing stereos, piano teachers, and bunk beds, developing a shared musical language from the start. As kids in Fort Collins, we were shuttled from piano lessons to choir concerts while Billy Joel indoctrinated our impressionable minds in the back seat of the minivan. Our folks may not have intentionally hatched a master plan to raise a dueling pianos act, but no one would blame you if you accused them of it. And they’re sure not complaining about it now, so…maybe.
Our first collaboration was borderline coercive. While I was studying composition in Greeley and Jack was in high school, I gifted him a bass guitar for Christmas, an instrument he didn’t play at the time. And I had already booked a show for the following week…surprise! With the addition of Andrew Holcombe on drums, our piano-rock trio Copper String Theory recorded a record and played across Northern Colorado from 2009–2011.
While I was fulfilling my starving artist destiny in Brooklyn, Jack spent his own time at the University of Northern Colorado. During that time, he began a four-year run of music theater shows at Candlelight Dinner Playhouse in Johnstown and BDT Stage in Boulder. This included an epic stint as the lead in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. In 2016, I chased a girl to Boston and Jack joined the next year for a change of pace. Our first attempt at dueling pianos took place in 2018 at Faneuil Hall’s legendary street performer program in downtown Boston on the 21st night of September, and you can guess what song we opened with.
After that, the built-in chemistry was immediately apparent. Having done plenty of cover gigs over the years, we can both attest to the fact that the sum is greater than our parts. Together, we deliver near-telepathic piano arrangements, genetically engineered harmonies, and the kind of snarky banter that only stage-hogging siblings can offer.
BACK TO COLORADO
After moving back to Colorado at the beginning of 2019, we hit the ground running. We played dozens of bars, breweries, and birthdays in Fort Collins, Longmont, Loveland, Greeley and beyond. Since migrating to Denver we haven’t looked back. We’ve been growing our network and adding weddings, corporate parties, and fundraisers along the way.
With the prospect of a pandemic fog lifting, we are raring to go in 2021 — ready to bring dueling pianos to every corner of Colorado.
For your consideration, we present our infectious, high-energy dueling show which honors the piano bar singalong classics, and puts an original spin on contemporary pop and 80’s/90’s throwbacks. Heck, Andrew Holcombe is still around, so why not add a drummer and get the band back together with us? We can’t wait to party with you — you bring the requests and we’ll bring the tip jar. See you soon!
— Dan Barton