Category Archives: anniversary party

Great Party Ideas That Create Lifelong Memories – The Cure for Presidents Day

So I have finally found one of the most perfect party ideas AND it will cure your next President’s Day.

Throw a party. Yes. That would be throw a party during Presidents Day and bring in a piano player and a award winning chef and see where that would lead.

I have many items on my bucket list. I frequently get new party ideas along with all my new song ideas and lyric ideas. But I don’t think I ever came up with throwing an afternoon party on Presidents Day. 

entertainment for events, party ideas, birthday parties, private party,

No Need To Wait Until Next Year for Great Party Ideas

Well it happened for me yesterday. And what a success! Not a lot of people. Only about 10, maybe 12 folks. A few of their kids showed up. We ate great food, we sang some great songs, we sat down with friends and made great memories. You can too.

Plus, and here’s the good part, you don’t have to wait until next year’s Presidents Day. Start thinking about your outdoor BBQs and your graduation party ideas and your anniversary party ideas. We can make this another fantastic event filled and life long lasting memory creating event that will last a lifetime.

Call me to see what kind of ideas I can come up with for you and your memory tank.

How Do You Spell 60th Birthday Party Ideas?

Everyone Loves A Good Celebration — Birthday Party Ideas 

party ideas, surprise parties, piano entertainment, piano music,

Celebrate Now!

Celebrations are to be remembered. With all that can happen in the course of life, the good fortune to be able to come together with friends and family to commemorate a milestone like a birthday or an anniversary is to be relished with a party. But what can I say? I’m a professional entertainer. So there’s that. 

With that said when I get invited to come to your event as a piano player, I am humbled to know that first of all, you value good music, and second of all that you have allowed me to be a part of an intimate family memory that will last a lifetime.

That is exactly what happened last year in the summer when George and Colleen invited me to their home to celebrate George’s 60th birthday party. A little back story first …

George is happy to be celebrating anything above ground. Especially a 60th birthday party. George had had a major heart attack a year earlier. Like as in MAJOR. The weird part is George is one of those health nuts. Apparently he is quite active riding his bike and taking long tours for fun. He’s been doing this for years. In fact, George looks like one those guys who is healthy. Fit, tall, muscualar and full of life and energy.

If you were to put George in a line of 20 other men his age, you would pick him last as a candidate for “The Big Grabber”. But you would have picked wrong.

At the fateful moment he was blessed to be around his family and his wife, who is a registered nurse and knew how to administer CPR, thus keeping him alive long enough to get him on the table and get his operation that allowed him to live.

Now jump ahead a year later and everyone is happy to celebrate a surprise 60th birthday party for him.

So as part of his surprise party his wife, Colleen, and his kids, now grown, prepared this party under the radar. The misdirect (every surprise party needs a misdirect – where you get the celebrant out of the house long enough to get everything prepared) was to take him on a “short” bike ride down around Chicago to the lakefront and back. Nothing too strenuous.

We were all assembled in the backyard when he came around back towards the garage on his bike when we yelled “SURPRISE!!!” to which George was startled so severely that he fell off his bike.

It was then that we immediately realized maybe this whole “SURPRISE!!!” thing might not be good for his health lest we wanted to inflict another hear attack on the unsuspecting birthday boy. 

BIRTHDAY PARTY, 60TH SURPRISE PARTY, PIANO MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT,

No … THANK YOU!

All was well though. Laughter and some memorable video footage will be enterted into the family archives for future laughs.

I was invited to be the piano player because George loves the Beatles and good music all around. Hence, the addendum at the end of the thank you note I received.

As you can see music reaches and heals all of us no matter where we are at. It helps during celebrations as well as times when Mother Nature rears her inevitable patterns.

So when considering party ideas, whether the good celebrations or the not so good, remember music will touch the soul of everyone who is there. It is an honor to not only play piano music for your birthday party ideas but also to be invited to your intimate family event. Thank you.

Dan – your performance not only touched & thrilled me,
it reached everyone’s soul who was there.
Love George”

Quick Retirement Party Ideas

I had a call last week for another custom writing job. It was to be part of a long list of retirement party ideas.

I’ve had these calls before. An executive of seasoned tenure is about to retire. The accolades will be forthcoming. The revealing anecdotes will be told. … and … in this case, a special song parody will be written and recorded for the celebrant.

The gentleman going into the golden years of his life was a life long salesman. He had founded his company, mentored many young professionals in his time and was looking forward to go off hunting and fishing. The perfect choice was a song parody of the Kenny Rogers hit The Gambler.

The interview process is a simple one for gigs like this. I have a 2 page questionnaire I have the contact fill out. They usually send it around to the other executives and co-workers around the office. They become our eyes and ears.

The process is going to take at least two days. I get all the info. I write up a few verses. 5 or 6 to be exact. I’m only going to use one or two. Then I get the chorus to go along with the plan.

After that I get the studio all cranked up. Fire off the essential parts. Arrange it for timing of the jokes and then I get a quick demo out the door. Once the customer signs off on it, I know I’ve got a winner. Then I just re-record it, mix it and master in the studio.

Listen to the final product. How did I do? Let me know.

Lickety split, Super quick Retirement party ideas will last a lifetime.

Car Trouble After A Live Music Gig

Right after I finished another live music gig:

It happened. I don’t like to admit that it happened to me.

But it did.

It’s not like it hasn’t happened before.

It’s just that it hasn’t happened in a long, long time.

Car Trouble. Yup. My truck didn’t start after the gig.

Thankfully it happened after the gig and not on the way to the gig.

I was finished. All done. All loaded and ready to go and boom. Then it happened.

Put the key in.

Turn the ignition.

Nothing.

Don’t you hate that?

It used to happen all the time. You know, like, 30 years ago. When I was a college student and I relied on $50 cars to get me through the winter.

Now it hasn’t happened in ooohhh I don’t know probably 15 years? Maybe longer.

I bought this truck because I needed reliable transportation for our gigs.

Playing live music is expensive.

You’ve got to keep the gear working in all kinds of weather here in Chicago. digital music equipment is fragile. You’ve got to have reliable transportation. And when the cold winds blow, you know the odds rise up against us.

So you stay on top of things. I replaced the battery before the beginning of this winter. I always carry a pair of jumper cables, just in case.

I’ve been trained by The Boy Scouts. Be prepared.

I have a blanket in the back of the truck. I don’t know if I have flairs but I think they’re back there by the spare tire as well. I replaced all 4 tires on her before last winter’s party season. Snow tires. That way I wouldn’t dependent on that spare tire or a tire jack that could get fussy. 

Good thing. Last year was a snowy one. We’re not as snowy this year. But we’re sure getting a lot of cold weather. What’dya expect? It’s winter. 

Here is a picture of our beloved cargo van on the back of the tow truck.

car trouble, cargo van, happened, happens, mechanic,

Not A Sight One Likes To See

This ole girl has been great. We named this van Vicki. My girls called it ‘The Man Van’. The boys said it looked like it belonged on an episode of Law and Order: SVU. My accountant loves it because it has no windows so I guess that means it’s a solid write off.

I love her. Vicki. Yes I always name my vehicles after girls. We figured that one out when we were teenagers. They’re prettier that way. And we all know every girl, like every vehicle, has an inherent beauty to it that must be named.

So let’s see what’s up with Vicki. I’ll let you know. My mechanic is awesome. I can give you his name if you want it.

He’s always been great. Because he never charges that much. He is always fair on what he charges and because I have another big corporate event coming up this Thursday. He said Vicki will be back up and running again by then. Phew!

Maybe its something simple like a starter. Oh well . . . . . it happens. At least it happened after the gig.

When People Hire Us To Play Wedding Band Music, I Have To Admit …

… I wonder if they’re going to make it ….

A perfect marriage is just two imperfect people
who refuse to give up on each other.”

My In-Laws Ginny and Terry Cory
who just celebrated 60 year of pure marital bliss.

wedding band music,

Happy 60th Anniversary

Yes. You heard that right. 60 years. An amazing feat in any endeavor. We had the great opportunity to help them celebrate this monumental occasion with an anniversary party last weekend.

Also, Happy Valentine’s Day everyone. I know it’s a big holiday now and yes it falls on Saturday night this year (2015) and I heard we are going to be sold out this weekend for both shows. And I know a lot of people don’t really like Valentine’s Day for all kinds of reasons but I guess the biggest one would be if you’re alone and you want to be with someone I could see how this holiday would kind of suck. wedding band music.

But I’m going to tell you this story anyway because Valentine’s Day is my mother in law’s favorite holiday. I’m not sure about my father in law. He doesn’t have to express his opinion on the subject one way or the other which is probably one reason why he has been married for 60 years.

Ginny and Terry got married in January, 1955. They didn’t really get married. They eloped actually. They sat down with the preacher, who did the honors, for an hour and a half before he gave them their vows. I’m pretty sure he thought he was looking at a pair of dumb kids. And more than likely he probably was. But they made it through. 4 daughters and 7 grand kids later. I’ll bet they didn’t have wedding band music at their elopement … 

So I guess if you’re with someone now, way to go and keep on going. And if you’re not with someone and you want to be, hang in there. No one was meant to be alone who didn’t desire the company of another.

Of course some of you women out there you may be like Marie Corelli who said,

I never married because I have three pets at home that answer the same purpose as a husband.

I have a dog that growls every morning,

a parrot who swears all afternoon,

and a cat who comes home late at night.”

Or maybe you’re thinking … 

“Bigamy is having one husband too many. Monogamy is the same.” Erica Jong

Happy Valentine’s Day one and all.

Happy Anniversary Ginny and Terry!


Party Ideas Piano Music

We get a lot of calls for varied and sundry entertainment for events. We try to handle all of them. Birthday parties, anniversaries, wedding and wakes. It doesn’t really matter to us. Music is music and a gig is a gig. Everyone loves a good song sung at the piano, right?

The phone rings a lot this time of year for our high quality, professional party entertainers. Unfortunately we can’t handle all the requests. So sometimes we have to send in a sub.

But I just want to go on the record as saying I can promise you we WON’T send in any dogs. Some performers can be a real bitch. Or they only sing the blues. Like this one …

Unless of course you like her, then we can talk about a contract

Did You Have As Much Fun This Weekend As Me While I Played Piano Music?

I had yet another fascinating weekend playing piano music last week that I would love to tell you about if you give me about 5 mins of your time.

This last weekend I played a series of gigs that reminded how, as an entertainer I get to see all kinds of cool stuff. I get to view the power of
piano music on a daily basis.

Thursday I provided charity event entertainment in the Sears Tower (a.k.a. the Willis Tower, but I’m from Chicago so I still call it the Sears Tower). People came together to raise money for detection and prevention of some very rare disease that tragically took the life of a teen aged boy a few years back. The father of the boy gave a moving speech about the tragedy and the ensuing life saving research that has been come out of his son’s dying wish; to find out what happened to him and to save others’ from contracting his disease. They have raised over $100K to date. And this Fall their findings are going to be published in a major medical journal. They have already saved hundreds of lives.

Oh yeah … there was a sunset that night above the rain clouds I witnessed from the 67th Floor that I will remember forever!

sunset_sears_towerFriday night I played a party for a family celebrating Dad’s and daughter’s birthdays. The young lady was 17 (the same age as our oldest daughter). Her friends we’re all into music and dance and theater and were charming and talented and polite and knowledgable about different genres of music. Of course, we all know what youthful energy looks like. But to see it firsthand from the piano bench on the bandstand is, once again, a reason to keep playing live music.

Instead of just playing solo piano and singing, I had the phenomenal guitarist, Chris Winters, onstage with me that night. Chris and I rambled through a menagerie of popular music ranging from current Pop hits to ancient R&B, Jump Blues, Classic Rock hits back to Ballads and everything in between. The kids knew several American Classic Songwriters like Cole Porter and Hoagy Carmichael and all the words to Bohemian Rhapsody. They had a choreographed bit they did to Footloose.

The reason I mention all this is in case you were worried about the youth of America these days — don’t! They are in good hands from the music teachers in public schools in the western suburbs.

Saturday afternoon I played at a Moose Lodge. I hadn’t been in one of those in years. I started out many moons ago playing Moose Lodges and VFW Halls. This week I was hired by a gentleman who (let’s see if I can get this right) was “installed as a Pilgrim for the Moose Hearts.” It took 35 years of charitable works to achieve this level. Whew!

I played some background solo piano music and believe me if I had let my false pride get in the way I would have found this gig kind of boring. But as I said earlier I have found the power of music to be truly enlightening.

The crowd was generally older. But there were middle aged men and women there as well. I must have received 30 compliments from the possibly 40 people in attendance. I received applause after numerous songs and medleys throughout the evening. When I play background piano music, I don’t expect applause. That’s the whole point of playing background music. Be in the background

What I’m saying is people appreciate good live music. “It is rare to hear it much these days, except at weddings or funerals”, one lady told me. Our guest of honor told me later, “You filled the void that could not have been filled any other way. Thank you.”

No. Thank you David for all you do for your community.

Later that night I played a “hip and trendy” restaurant gig where the majority of people didn’t even realize I was there through all the lights and glitz.

Then Sunday night I played a house party in the NW burbs, my old stomping grounds. I was invited by the children of a woman celebrating her 70th birthday party. I was a surprise.

Since she is a student of the piano, she was appreciative of what I do on the instrument. I had ’em all singing along and, of course, dancing in the living room. The grand kids joined in including the toddlers. The Cute Quotient was at an all time high that night. But that was not the highlight.

At the beginning of the music hour, young 12 year old Emma sang ‘Desperado’ to her Gramma. She was very talented and a little nervous and she did an excellent rendition! When she finished there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.

I could say this was a normal weekend and on some levels I would be right. I get to see these occurrences on a daily basis. Live music is usually celebrated at happy occasions; birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, charity events, etc. You invite me into your homes and to your private family events.

But this weekend had some major evidence presented to me that what we do week in and week out as musicians is important. People need live music, bands, piano music, dueling pianos, jazz trios more than they realize. It doesn’t matter where or when or how.

We all need music. I know I do.

I need to perform. I need to play piano. If I don’t, I don’t feel right.

And so I want to thank everyone of you, especially those of you who called and hired me and the other musicians this week. Thank you. You allow me to do what I was put on the Earth to do. And you make my life fuller by allowing me to come enrich yours.

Piano Entertainer Anniversary Party – Private Party

Get a great piano entertainer at your next party.

Different than a piano player 

Party ideas range in all kinds of live music categories 

This one is the best. 

This is how you take it a step further. First you get to have …

Live music. Then Piano Music. Better yet … Piano music entertainment

piano, piano music, piano music entertainment.

Piano Music In Your Home

Birthday Party Entertainment Ideas Piano Music at Villa Filomena

I will be going to a 40th birthday providing live music and party entertainment Ideas like this are really spot on for small gatherings and festivities. I can bring everyone together in song singing arm in arm by the end of the night. Background music filters in through the conversations throughout the night with comedy mixed in with live music on the piano. Singing piano entertainers can really bring a party together. Call to see how we can help you create lasting memories of the good times.

Chicago Piano Players

Appearing down at The Redhead Piano Bar

World Class Party Entertainment for Your Events

are some of Chicago’s best piano players. They not only sing and play piano exceptionally well, they are also quintessential entertainers. Appearing regularly on Thursday Nights is Dan Gillogly.

 

But it’s not about how these musicians entertain. It’s how much fun everyone has.

You can bring anyone of these great piano entertainers

Party entertainers Allow you to have more fun than is Legally Allowed!

for events to your office party or house party.

It’s simple and quite affordable. But if you’re planning an event, you will always need to call soon. The quality party entertainers definitely get booked early and often. This is Chicago after all.

Doesn’t matter if it’s a surprise party or a company event, most of the professional piano players have digital portable pianos available for your party entertainment.   Especially since the Holiday Season is just around the corner (depending on when you read this) Call now. We have the best entertainers available to travel nationwide.

Thanks for reading!