The Danny Morris Band
The Danny Morris Band
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The Danny Morris Band
  Marianne Meyer- The Washington Post - 1/22/04
"Live! Whitlow's on Wilson, Arlington"

      Danny Morris is on the move. The guitar hero, a fixture on the D.C. scene who relocated to Florida 18 months ago, started the new year with gigs in Cocoa Beach, where he hosts a weekly "Surf Party" at the club Coconuts on the Beach. In mid-January he made it as far north as North Carolina, and for the rest of the month there have been gigs scattered around his old local stomping grounds, like Fat Tuesday's in Fairfax and BJ's in Ocean City. But tonight you can catch Morris in what would seem to be the most appropriate setting: the beachy environs of our own Whitlow's on Wilson. After all, as a master of the reverb-soaked sound of surf guitar, Morris fits the casual, sandy vibe of Whitlow's.

      A diverse talent who can handle '50s guitar rock, roots music and blues in addition to '60s surf twang, Morris has been compared to Dick Dale, Albert Collins, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Duane Eddy and the Ventures. At Morris's Web site you can hear 60- and 90-second samples from his three albums on the New Moon Records label: "Storm Surge," "The Golden Prize" and "I Won't Worry."

      The self-taught musician formed the Blue Note Special blues band in 1986 and became the Nighthawks' lead guitarist four years later. The Danny Morris Band was conceived as a side project from the Nighthawks and continued to be so until 1995, when it became a full-time gig.

      E-mailing from the road, Morris reported he's "been working hard in Florida," where last June he graduated from Full Sail Real World Education with an associate of science degree in recording arts. He was working in a post-production facility in Orlando until Thanksgiving but work "dried up."

      "So, I'm back to playing as much as possible again," he wrote. "Still doing a lot of the same type of material, and there's no loss of guitar, surf-type stuff in the show... It's always great to come back to Nova and get together with my old band mates. And see some good friends, too," he wrote.

      If you miss Morris tonight, you can catch up with him tomorrow at Bangkok Blues in Falls Church, and he's in Delaware this weekend, but it'll cost you a bundle to see him after that: He's reuniting with the Nighthawks to tour France and Germany until mid-February.

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