Music: Classical Country

Danny Click leads string quartet on new album

Since moving to the North Bay from Austin, Texas more than a decade ago, guitarist and songwriter Danny Click has made a name in the local scene with his outfit, Danny Click & the Hell Yeahs!, delivering sizzling, countrified Americana rock.

In fact, Pacific Sun readers recently voted the Hell Yeahs! Best Band in Marin for the second year in a row in our annual Best of Marin readers’ poll.

“People must like what we’re doing,” Click says. “It’s nice to have people come to shows. Someone described [our shows] awhile back like going to church, so I started calling it the electric church.”

This month, Click unplugs and shows off a different shade of music when he unveils a new live album, Live at 142 by Danny Click & the Americana Orchestra, featuring a string quartet backing his band in an all-acoustic recording.

“I wanted to do something different than what we usually do,” Click says.

The album was actually recorded nearly four years ago at Mill Valley’s Throckmorton Theatre, though the project took a back seat when Click had the opportunity to work with legendary producer Jim Scott (Tom Petty, Rolling Stones, Wilco) to record a studio album.

That recording became Holding Up the Sun, which was released in 2015 to universal acclaim. Click spent the next two years touring and playing in support of Holding Up the Sun, almost forgetting about his Americana Orchestra until recently.

After finishing the mixing and mastering process last year, Click is ready to share the new live album when he performs a record-release show on Friday, May 4, back where it all began at Throckmorton Theatre in Mill Valley.

On the album’s 10 live tracks and one bonus studio track, Click reworks some of his most popular tunes and adapts classic songs like Bob Dylan’s “Girl from the North Country.”

Live at 142 by Danny Click & the Americana Orchestra achieves plenty of lush, beautifully melodic moments of music that may surprise Click’s fans. Even Click admits that he got chills while playing with the string quartet.

“Having those intimate strings right there in my ear while I sang these songs almost choked me up,” he says. “To me, it was kind of like being in heaven for a little bit.”

Danny Click & the Americana Orchestra perform with opener Mark Goldenberg on Friday, May 4, at Throckmorton Theatre, 142 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley; 8pm; $30-$35; 415/383-9600.

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