Group shows fab love for ex­otic mu­sic gear

CHIL­DREN’S FES­TI­VAL: The Good Day Sun­shine Band in­ter­prets works of Bea­tles, oth­ers through use of worldly in­stru­ments

The Province - - ENTERTAINMENT - sderdeyn@the­p­rovince.com twit­ter.com/stu­art­derdeyn STU­ART DERDEYN

The Bea­tles cer­tainly proved they could play with a sitar — but Moshe Den­burg says the Fab Four re­ally missed out not in­cor­po­rat­ing dan bau into their worldly mu­sic ex­per­i­ments.

“It’s a won­der­ful mono­chord (on­estringed) Viet­namese in­stru­ment which sounds a lot like early Moog syn­the­sizer,” Den­burg says. “And it re­ally adds a great deal to some of the Bea­tles songs cov­ered by the Good Day Sun­shine Band.”

One of the spinoff group­ings of the Van­cou­ver In­ter-Cul­tural Orches­tra (vi-co.org), the Good Day Sun­shine Band brings to­gether gui­tar, erhu (Chi­nese vi­o­lin), dan bau, ac­cor­dion, per­cus­sion, Celtic harp and more.

The group was born out of con­stant re­quests to present to chil­dren in school set­tings, which wasn’t al­ways pos­si­ble for the large-sized VICO.

“We were get­ting regular re­quests from ed­u­ca­tors and our mem­bers are all so busy that we needed some­thing that could be put to­gether with dif­fer­ent con­fig­u­ra­tions, but still have good ma­te­rial ready to go,” Den­burg says.

“Choos­ing the Bea­tles — who re­ally are familiar to pretty much ev­ery­one re­gard­less of cul­tural ori­gin — and adding in songs from the play­ers’ var­ied mu­si­cal tra­di­tions turns into some­thing fun for ev­ery­one and re­ally opens up a world of mu­sic for young au­di­ences.”

An am­bas­sador for in­ter-cul­tural mu­si­cal ex­change and cre­ation, Den­burg laughs about his own mu­si­cal con­tri­bu­tion of voice and gui­tar be­ing over­shad­owed by some of his band­mates’ more ex­otic in­stru­ments.

“I’m stand­ing there with an acous­tic gui­tar and the kids are look­ing right through me when the tar (Persian lute) starts solo­ing,” Den­burg says. “In a song such as Nor­we­gian Wood — one of the first to use sitar — we have ar­ranged it to in­clude tar and dan bau with a re­ally fun Celtic break thrown in. Be­sides be­ing fun, it re­ally en­ables us to demon­strate how familiar ma­te­rial can be han­dled in­ter-cul­tur­ally.”

Den­burg, who has led the band Tz­immes for years, as well as com­pos­ing and play­ing in VICO, thinks that the best de­scrip­tion for the Good Day Sun­shine Band is as “an in­stru­ment pet­ting zoo.”

The group plays mul­ti­ple per­for­mances at the Van­cou­ver In­ter­na­tional Chil­dren’s Fes­ti­val along­side the usual lineup of in­ter­na­tional, na­tional and lo­cal young peo­ple’s per­form­ers — rang­ing from the Potato Needs a Bath pup­pet show to Taqra­lik Partridge’s There’s A Whale In That Pud­dle sto­ry­telling ses­sion of Inuit po­etry, tales and throat singing. The full pro­gram is avail­able on­line.

The Good Day Sun­shine Band brings to­gether gui­tar, erhu (Chi­nese vi­o­lin), dan bau, ac­cor­dion, per­cus­sion, Celtic harp and much more.

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