by GREGG ADAMS
Darren Skanson and Gregg Hansen of Skanson & Hansen know a thing or two about music in Northern Colorado. With more than 50 years of combined experience, the two have not only co-fathered a unique style called ‘double-finger’ guitar, but are embarking on an exciting new project – ‘Skanson & Hansen’s Magical Mystery Adventure’. We recently talked with both about their endeavor.
Gregg Adams: Tell us about your upcoming project ‘The Magical Mystery Adventure.’
Gregg Hansen: “The audience request we hear most often is for a full CD of Beatle’s arrangements. So we went to work to uncover the musical roots and inspiration that made each song timeless. For example, ‘Help!’ at its roots is a country song and ‘A Hard Day’s Night’ was influenced by the blues.”
Darren Skanson: “For the adventure, we wanted to do something unforgettable to commemorate our 50 combined years as musicians. We decided to record these arrangements at Abbey Road Studios London, England – in the same Studio Two where the Beatles recorded all their music.”
GA: Fans can join you on the adventure, what will the experience be for them?
GH: “It will be living eight days in a week! After we complete our recording sessions, Skanson & Hansen and any fan that wants to join The Adventure will hit the road in London & Liverpool visiting historic Beatles and English landmarks.”
DS: “In London, we’ll play ‘(All You Need Is) Love’ in front of the guards at Buckingham Palace…, sing a chorus of ‘Obla Di Obla Dah,’ and maybe even do an impromptu concert in front of Big Ben. We’ll take the train to Liverpool where we’ll perform a concert at the Cavern Club, where the Beatles got their start. We will be your sight-seeing and dining companions.”
GA: You’ll be recording at the legendary Abbey Road Studios. How difficult was it to reserve time at one of the most famous studios in the world?
DS: “Let’s just say lots of hoops! My initial vision was to invite the fans to join us in the studio. But Abbey Road said only the band will be allowed.”
GA: How are you funding this project?
GH: “‘With a little help’ from our friends! Darren and I gig constantly, so we can afford some of the costs. We are also hoping folks can give us a hand via our crowd funding campaign at Indiegogo.com and magicalmysteryadventure.com. This is a once in a lifetime recording/trip and it will be the world’s first double finger-style Beatle recording.”
GA: How did you guys first connect musically?
GH: “Darren owns CCM Recording Studios in Denver and he is a great engineer and producer. A friend of mine was recording a CD with him and I was asked to be the guitarist on a few songs on his project. After the session, I decided to record a CD with Darren. 13 years later, here we are!”
GA: Who were your musical Influences?
DS: “Both of us are heavily Beatles influenced. Gregg saw the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show and knew that is what he wanted to do with his life. For me, my very first guitar book was ‘The Songs of Lennon & McCartney’… I realized how rich and complex a lot of their music is.”