How many bands are there in the United States at any given minute? How many of them are any good? Probably more than is worth counting.
Cover bands, bands that play music created by others, are a dime a dozen and some of them are pretty good. Many cover bands produce music that is indistinguishable from the original songs. They spit out duplicates of the original songs and we are entertained.
1 Night Stand played at the newly renovated Seasons Pub in Oak Bluffs Friday night and they are pretty darn good. They play “mostly cover tunes,” according to their lead singer Dan Panico, who lives on the Vineyard and is the owner of the Computer Lab. Their Facebook site claims they are “an intense four-piece rock/top 40 cover band playing radio hits that people know and love.” But unlike most cover bands, they craft their songs into versions that in many cases are better than and often unrecognizable as the originals. Mr. Panico said that they play a wide range of songs and try to incorporate the latest hits into their repertoire with their own twist.
1 Night Stand is made up of four musicians. Mr. Panico sings, plays tambourine and an occasional harmonica. He has a clear emotive voice that can take a ballad apart, wrap it around your soul, and put it back together and have you dancing the night away. And he can push the occasional hard rock tune with the best when required.
Canadian Andre Lamarre from Quincy plays a wonderfully understated guitar and his vocals compliment Mr. Panico’s.
Kumari Miker is one of the more accomplished bassists I have heard in a long while. She drives the rhythm section with her intensity and she sings.
Their harmonies are spot on and their musicianship superb. Kenny Issacs is the band’s regular drummer. The excellent drummer Jay Trevor filled in for Mr. Isaacs at Seasons on Friday, May 14.
Mr. Panico claims the band is “a high energy dance band,” which they in fact are, but they produce a lyricism and melodic center that goes beyond being just a dance band. I heard the Byrds, Lifehouse, and Gin Blossoms as well as Bad Company, Aerosmith, and Pearl Jam in their stylings and I know there are other influences that I just can’t put my finger on.
Their professionalism and comfort level with each other belies the band’s name. Mr. Panico said that they have been together for two and a half years. They are very good and it is a good thing that they are not just a one-night stand. They will be back at Seasons Memorial Day weekend. While most of their gigs have been in and around Boston, they plan to play a number of other dates on the Vineyard this summer as well.
Seasons’s summer schedule is not yet set in stone but according to managing partner Mike Santoro, they will have live music three or four nights a week, karaoke three nights a week, and some comedy. Mr. Panico is the karaoke MC on Tuesday nights. Mr. Santoro said he is proud of the new menu and the renovations at the Circuit Avenue restaurant and bar.