The Best of the Midwest Road Show
The Best of the Midwest Variety Hour
The Art of Care
This collection of music was written and recorded during my yearlong stint as a traveling nurse, in which I spent three months at a time in various hospitals across the United States. Before I embarked on this ‘tour de healthcare,’ I invested in a humble two-channel recording rig and a few multipurpose microphones. Every one of these songs was tracked and mixed while I was on the road using this setup*. My studios were the upstairs room of a house in Milwaukee, an A-frame cabin in the woods of northern Illinois, a cozy apartment east of Prospect Park in Brooklyn, and a flat near Balboa Park in San Diego.
This story is ‘the man goes on a journey’ and ‘a stranger comes to town.’ Yes, every cliché is abundant: the self-discovery, alcohol, food, high-flying adventures, planes, trains, automobiles, open roads, romance, danger, friendships new and old, celebrations, too much alcohol, too much food, and of course, a magical situation involving New York City at Christmastime where everyone learns a valuable, family-friendly lesson. My personal journals are laden with the happenings of the year that I could attempt to detail in writing, but I’m going to let the music speak for itself. Although not a cohesive concept album that goes into great detail about my travels, the songs touch on most of the thoughts and emotions of the ride. Plus, much of the instrumentation is carefully selected to emulate the aural and visual stimuli that accompanied the journey. These cherished sounds and sights will stay with me forever; I wish to share them with you, the listener, in the best way I know how.
Special thanks to my family, my friends, Invader Zim, the Bad Assettes (Dan Padley, Carlo Kind, Jonathan Birdsall, Blake Shaw) and other musicians I know in Iowa City and all over the world who constantly challenge and inspire me, my people (and pets!) in Milwaukee, New York City, and San Diego who did their darndest to make those cities feel like home, team RSCCU, The Newman Center, Matt and Liz for editing this blurb, Chad at Pony Creek Studios for mastering the tracks, Luke at Flat Black Studios for recording and mastering “Dance with Her” and “Tea Trees,” Lewis for his contribution to “The Night,” and River for his collaboration and co-write on “Under the Sun.”
Thanks so much, and enjoy!
*The songs “Dance with Her” and “Tea Trees” were recorded at Flat Black Studios in Lone Tree, IA and released as a single/b-side before I started traveling in 2016. Since they were never included on a physical release, I’ve added them at the end of the album as bonus tracks.
Dan DiMonte is a San Diego-based multi-instrumentalist, singer/songwriter, producer, music director, and nurse originally from the southwest suburbs of Chicago. Always at home on the road, Dan currently moonlights as a nationwide traveling night nurse, with assignments in Milwaukee, WI, Brooklyn, NY, and San Diego, CA to his name. Performing solo, leading Dan DiMonte and the Bad Assettes, and as a trumpet player in other groups, Dan has toured the Midwest circuit, playing shows in Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, South Dakota, Kansas, Missouri, and Minnesota. Iowa City's Dan DiMonte and the Bad Assettes released a debut LP entitled "The Runner, The Ends, The Space Between". They followed that record with a single/B-side release entitled "Dance with Her". While on the road, Dan travels with a mobile recording rig, and a 6 track album of that material entitled "The Best of the Midwest Variety Hour" was released July 5th, 2017. You can currently find him hanging around Southern California playing trumpet with Los Angeles-based band Red Pony Clock, crooning his own tunes, and night nursing all over San Diego.
Dan DiMonte /// Vocals, Trumpet, Guitars, Keyboards, Bass, Percussion, Production
Dan DiMonte Trio
O.C.E.A.N. /// Vocals, Bass Guitar
Alan Ellis /// Drum Kit, Vibraphone
The Bad Assettes
Dan Padley /// Electric Guitar
Jonathan Birdsall /// Vocals, Tenor Saxophone
Blake Shaw /// Basses
Carlo Kind /// Drum Kit
River Glen /// Vocals, Mandolin, Guitar, Fiddle
Red corduroys. A cutoff t-shirt. The American flag embroidered onto his bandana with sunglasses attached. Where others might feel awkwardly out of place playing at a jazz festival, he stands squarely in the middle of the stage as he and his bandmates perform a music set that squarely lands in the realm of rock music...Many of the greatest stories we tell involve the most distinct and dynamic people we know. In that sense, Dan DiMonte certainly doesn’t disappoint.
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