Daniel Jones began playing steel in 1972. From the very beginning, he found himself drawn to the sounds of non-traditional players. His first big opportunity to pursue that interest came through playing with the Norton Buffalo Stampede in 1976-1978, doing lots of eclectic and original material. After leaving Norton, Daniel felt the desire to pursue a formal education in music. On this path, he completed a BA in music at Sonoma State University, and then moved to Boulder, Colorado to do graduate work. He wrote a Masters Thesis on western swing steel and ultimately completed a PhD in Musicology. Since 2000, Daniel has served on the faculty of the Honors Program at CU Boulder, and has played with various Denver-area groups, including Runaway Express, Lannie Garrett (as Patsy Decline), the Always...Patsy Cline theater production, and Dakota Blonde. As of 2010, he once more launched into pursuing non-traditional sounds on the pedal steel, now in a more jazz-inspired way, through his work with the quartet, Standard Deviations.
Chris Kennison has been performing professionally for 40 years. He displays his talents with performances on pedal steel guitar, acoustic and electric guitars, dobro, banjo, fiddle, mandolin, ukulele and Hawaiian lap steel. He performs in Arizona, Hawaii and Colorado. Chris has performed on radio, on TV, and has worked with the Fort Collins Symphony, Doug Kershaw, Dan Seals, and at most major venues in and around Northern Colorado. He also leads a Hawaiian swing band called “Book-Em Danno,“ whose recordings have been featured on the Hawaii Five-0 television show. Chris is also an audio recording engineer and, for 25 years has owned and operated a commercial recording studio in Fort Collins, Colorado. His love of steel and Hawaiian music has led him to serve on the Board of Directors for the Hawaiian Steel Guitar Association where he helps raise money for scholarships for young musicians learning steel, and he produces concerts and conventions showcasing international steel players.
Chuck Lettes has shared the stage with many touring artists including LeRoy VanDyke, Doug Kershaw, Asleep at the Wheel, Vince Gill, Johnny Lee, Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown, and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. He was the staff steel guitarist for Denver’s longest running musical, “Always…Patsy Cline.” Chuck performs locally, often with Lannie Garrett. In addition to musical performances, Chuck has written for The Pedal Steel Guitar Association’s Newsletter since l984 and has earned the magazine’s Reader Appreciation award for his column, “New Instrumentals for the Steel Guitar.” A recent inductee into the Colorado Country Music Hall of Fame and also a member of the Nebraska Country Music Hall of Fame, Chuck has presented steel guitar seminars and concerts at many of the steel guitar conventions across the United States. He continues to love and to further learn the steel guitar, but since his retirement as a high school English teacher, Chuck has also taken up the tenor saxophone. Who says there are no second acts in life?
John Macy has been producing, recording and playing steel guitar for over four decades. He has received Grammy awards, Gold and Platinum records and other awards with artists as diverse as the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Gary Morris, Big Head Todd and the Monsters and Los Lobos. Other notable artists John has worked with include Michael Martin Murphey, Richie Furay, Ricky Skaggs and many others. John currently owns and operates Macy Sound Studios in Denver, Colorado and runs Coastal Bend Music, a record label and production company, based in Texas. He currently plays with Leslie Tom and Larry Nix.
Rich Parker (The Real Deal) started playing drums when he was 11 years old after being inspired by the Beatles’ first appearance on the Ed Sullivan show in 1964. He started out playing in the Rio Grande valley of south Texas with a group of neighborhood kids. By age 14, he was playing TexMex, Tejano and Texas swing at local clubs with many different bands and artists, including Freddie Fender and Country Roland. He left Texas in the late 60s and moved to Colorado. He played in several clubs in Denver including the Caravan, 4 Seasons, Zanzibar, and later the Grizzly Rose. Over the years he played for several country bands, including some guest stints with Doug Supernaw and Susie Bogguss. In the early 90s, Rich was one of the founding members of Derringer, a country rock band that released their first CD in the mid 90s and opened for many popular bands at the time, including The Pirates of the Mississippi, Kentucky Headhunters, Ricky Lynn Gregg, Rick Trevino, Doug Supernaw, Michelle Wright and others. He currently lives on a ranch in Fruita, Colorado and enjoys playing drums with The Real Deal band from Grand Junction, Colorado. Although he has a new DW drum kit and other drums, while on the road he often still plays the same 1963 Ludwig drum kit that he first played when he was 11 years old.