Photos by Tyler Goble Zen Focus Photography
Since their inception in 2013, Maryland progressive funk rock band LITZ has continued to evolve. Not only have they been refining and adding to their unique sound, but their lineup has changed somewhat over the years too. Before their Leap Day party on February 29, 2020 at The 8×10 in Baltimore MD, The Jamwich got the chance to talk with their newest member, guitarist Dan Gellerman, about joining the band, his relationship with the other members, life on the road so far, and a little bit about himself.
The Jamwich: Hey it’s Galen here at the 8×10 with the Jamwich. I’m talking with Dan Gellerman, LITZ’s newest guitarist. So Dan,just for the folks that don’t know you, what projects were you involved with prior to LITZ?
Dan Gellerman: I used to play in a band called Jack Funk. Then right before I joined LITZ I played some shows with Natalie Brooke and the Band. But I primarily played with Jack Funk and had a really awesome time.
JW: Before joining LITZ did you have any sort of musical relationship with Austin Litz? And if so, can you tell us about that a little bit?
DG: Oh yeah! I’ve known all the guys since before LITZ was even a band. I used to hang out with them all the time and jam. We became pretty comfortable musically with each other right away so as I was playing with them it felt natural.
JW: Yeah, it seems to be a great fit. What’s your favorite classic LITZ jam to play so far?
DG: Hmm. Probably a tie between “Japanese Love Affair” and “Tailspin.”
JW: “Tailspin” is a real fan favorite and people are happy you’re bringing it back. What is your favorite town you’ve played in so far, and if not a town, in what region of the country do you think is the best to play?
DG: There’s so many that it’s hard to list and I can’t choose a specific town. But I’d say for a general area, probably Ohio. Our Ohio fans are like super die-hard and show us lots of love. They really show up and on the road that’s definitely my favorite area.
JW: So what are some of the artists that influence your playing style?
DG: Definitely Jerry and Trey are big for me, beyond that a huge influence is gonna be Ed Wynne from Ozric Tentacles. David Gilmour is huge and I’m super into Andy Summers from The Police right now.
JW: What artists are you listening to right now?
DG: The Police, I’ve liked The Police before, but now I’m diving real deep into them and I love them. Yellow Magic Orchestra, that’s a big favorite for the LITZ guys, those are pretty big for me right now.
JW: If a fan wanted to buy you a drink what would you prefer?
DG: I like IPAs, good sours, good stouts, but really they should just buy me a Whiteclaw.
JW: Any good stories from being on the road with the band so far?
DG: There’s so many. My favorite experience so far on the road was on the first long tour with LITZ, when we went out to Utah and experienced Moab. Utah was like the craziest thing in the world; it’s like being on Mars out there. We got to spend some time with some people out there living on the edge in the desert. It was a perspective changing experience.
Jw: Alright! Well last question just for fun, who’s the worst driver in the van?
DG: Austin, hands down.
JW: Great. Thanks so much Dan!
DG: Sweet! Hell yeah dude!
LITZ treated the crowd at The 8×10 to an unforgettable night of music. Desmond Jones opened the night with a funky fresh set, featuring a sit in from the man Austin Litz himself, that had everyone’s dancing warmed up. Before LITZ took the stage the fans were greeted by a message from none other than Father Time himself. Speaking in rhyme, he reminded the audience about the very concept of time that we all experience and how strange it truly is. Then LITZ came out and busted into a remarkable cover of Pink Floyd’s “Time”. The rest of the set list ran the gamut of classic and new LITZ songs that delighted fans new and old. The band showcased new tunes like “5th Element” and “Midnight Bus”, which are featured on their newest EP, The Bigger Picture Vol.1. The band also played fan favorite classics as well like “Infrared” and “Morning Dew.” The night became even more memorable with a sit in from original LITZ member Mike Litz on drums and percussion. He moved the crowd into a serious dance party reminiscent of the classic Go-Go sound that inspired LITZ. The night came to an end with a very time-themed encore of “Round Trip Ticket,” ”Tomatoes,” and “Funkin Problem.” Time truly is on LITZ’s side as they continue to delight and mesmerize fans up and down the east coast and beyond. This is truly a night that will not be forgotten until next leap year; four years from now!