The crazy music of Copper Box stomps through two very different venues. Apparently the accordion is one mean party instrument. Seriously.
Four generations of accordion players resulted in the family affair that is Copper Box, one of the hottest and most popular bands in Wisconsin - which is led by the accordion player.
Danny Jerabek found the instrument as a young boy. Today, years later, his penchant for playing has Copper Box being chosen to open for a wide range of national acts swinging through Wisconsin.
When the Oshkosh-based quartet appears at the Grand Theater Wednesday, Feb. 7, they're opening for the nationally recognized rock-country band Little Big Town. How that came about was partly a matter of being in the right place at the right time. "We met them at the post July Fourth party Riverfront Rendezvous (in Stevens Point, WI) and hit it off. Our agent saw they were coming through again and we called and asked to play the shows, and they said of course," says Danny's wife and co-bandleader, Michelle Jerabek.
The sounds are vastly different: the pop-country sound of Little Big Town versus the accordion-based polka-rock-zydeco-blues party tunes of Copper Box, but they certainly compliment each other and should make for one helluva show.
Copper Box started out as a tuba and accordion band. Yes, they played those instruments in bars...But as Michelle Jerabek says, it's hard to take that seriously as a rockin' party band. So they added guitars, drums and bass, and began running the accordion through traditional guitar pedals like delay and distortion. "We started with Zydeco and traditional polka songs and evolved from there," says Michelle.
"As for opening the show for Little Big Town, we do play some country songs, but we do it a little differently," says Jerabek.
Having songs in the set that range from the traditional polka to their often-requested cover of Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb" Copper Box is a regular opener in the state's concert halls and arenas as well as around the major music festivals....They're also still very much a party band...but next week puts them on the same stage as a Grammy and Country Music Award nominee.
"When we booked th eshow we did no know about the Grammy's or the CMA's for them," says Jim O'Connell, executive director of the Performing Arts Foundation, about Little Big Town. The CMA nominations came out three days after the PAF confirmed the show. The arrival of Little Big Town and Copper Box to the Grand Theater stage is part of a larger trend of drop-in shows for the local institution.
Copper Box's appearance at the Grand Theater is a great opportunity to show audiences what this band can do in a concert environment. It's also a nice large venue to kick off the release of their new CD, Backyard Party.
Little Big Town with opening band Copper Box play the Grand Theater Wednesday, Feb. 7th at 7:30pm. Tickets are $32 - $37, available at 842-0988. You can also see Copper Box at a more party-friendly venue this weekend at the Arrow Sports Bar....