Category Archives: chicago dueling pianos

I wish I could do what you do. But I’m not creative.

Many people tell me, “I wish I could do what you do. But I’m not creative.”

Cue the game show buzzer.

Ladies and gentlemen. We are all creative. Come to one of my shows and observe how I can get a room full of people who, in some cases, have never met each other, come together in one unified voice and sing like they’ve been friends for seven lifetimes.

We are all creative. You probably haven’t been given permission or found a safe way to explore.

My wife told me of a friend of hers who decided to take singing lessons in adulthood. She is only doing it now because she was told she wasn’t a good singer when she was younger. She has joined a singing ensemble at The Old Town School in Chicago and is really enjoying it and has joined a band.

We tend to think more inside the box than youngsters do. We have jobs and rules and penalties for not following the rules and lawyers that cost money to get us out of trouble when we do. Or we’re afraid we might fall down and get hurt and then our insurance premiums might go up or we’ll have to wear a bandage on our head to church and we’ll look stupid. But that’s wrong. Incorrect. Totally fake.

That’s F.E.A.R. False Evidence Appearing Real. .

You are creative. Now. Today. No matter how old (or young) you are. I mean honestly …

Is there a time limit?

CUE THE ANNOUNCER

“I’m sorry. You didn’t do it before you turned 30 so you must return to your seat and place your tray in the upright position…. or … off with your head!”

I know. I know.

There is a bit of a hitch. As adults we tend to be much tougher on ourselves than kids are. We feel like if we make a mistake that it’s over. We’re wrong. We can’t undo it.

But that’s why the arts are perfect. There are no rights and no wrongs. Someone will not get injured or killed because we sing a different note than everyone else. It’ll just sound — well, different.

There are no attorneys waiting to litigate you in a courtroom for picking up a guitar or taking salsa lessons.

Arts are great for kids because it allows them to crack that shell of conformity and see what’s inside. It’s ten times better for adults to experiment in the arts. Our societal instincts get to be shattered and replaced with a whole new perspective. Step outside the safety of the herd. Be different. Be unique. It’s risky. But compared to what? Cliff diving in Honduras? Taking up chiropractic medicine on your Gramma?

Sing like no one can hear you. Dance like no one can see you.

I had one woman in an audience at a cabaret show I was doing last week tell me “Oh no. I don’t sing.”

Ha! I told her what I thought of that thought. “If you can talk you can sing,”

So get out of your comfort zone and try something new. Try and do something someone told you you were no good at when you were younger but you want to do it anyway. Just go do it.

I used to be a pretty crappy singer. Some would kid and tell me I haven’t improved much. But I tell them at least I know which notes not to sing. And if I do, I try not to repeat em

But like my piano playing I got better with time. I repeated mistakes and called the good mistakes jazz.

Same thing as a creative writer. For years and years now, I have written countless bits, jokes, plays, sketches, songs, lyrics, commercials, scripts, stories and podcasts. They weren’t always good. Some were perfect. Exactly what the client needed for their product roll out or corporate event.

I have cultivated my creative abilities over time. It has been an occupation to be creative and it has been a choice. Out of either the necessity of the deadline looming over the horizon or out of the curiosity to discover the right combination of music and lyrics, I have developed a system of being creative at will. On demand if you will.

It’s not an original system I use. I learned about it from a woman named Julia Cameron. She wrote a book called The Artists Way.

I can only keep recommending this book for forever. I still use her very clear, loving and supportive direction to develop new projects all the time. I still write piano music both with and without lyrics. Listen to this podcast. PMSPODCAST

Her system of awakening and nurturing our creative beings — that resides in every human being, is effective, safe and possible for everyone. No matter your occupation or position in life.

I can go on and on about the tasks and the methods and the joy and the fears and the breakthroughs and the ecstasy of accomplishment that comes from taking a risk  from trying some thing new. Of being creative. Of being unique and significant and, well, being human.

If you buy The Artist Way through my link l will get a small commission. It won’t cost you anything extra. But I will get paid for my referral.

Be creative because you are.

​​​​To learn more about how I can provide unique and memorable music and comedy at your event, call Amber at (773) 527-7417.

Check out some of my other projects.

I always love the feedback!

All the best,

Dan Gillogly

773-527-7417

Glo Glee Music, Inc. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC. Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

More On Chicago Mayoral Election Results 2015

Hi There and Welcome to Another Installment The Piano Bench Blog Cast:
Chicago Mayoral Election Results  

Today’s broadcast comes in the form of some more great piano music and comedy. Our topic? Chicago mayoral election results. I certainly hope you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed writing and recording.

Chicago politics has no shortage of great comedy material. So tune in regularly.
And be sure to contact me, Dan, for your custom written music and comedy for your client appreciation night, your corporate event or hospital visit.

Warm Weather Means Chicago Dueling Pianos At Navy Pier

Chicago Dueling Pianos at Navy Pier must mean …
The warm weather is here?

It’s the first warm day of spring here in Chicago. I think we may be close to 70º. I took my walk outdoors today instead of on the treadmill like I usually do. I saw the robins out in earnest. The smell of BBQ was prevalent throughout the entire neighborhood. A sure sign that Chicagoans are ready for the warm weather to appear and the snow blowers and salt to disappear.

Dueling pianos, entertainment for events,

Chicago Dueling Pianos Show

We are down at Navy Pier tonight for a dueling pianos show at a corporate event. Entertaining in front of several thousand people. We’ve got the traditional dueling pianos fun; sing along, dance along, laugh along live music entertainment. Yet tonight we have added a new wrinkle. We’ve added a drummer to the festivities.

That’s one of the reasons why Chicago Dueling Pianos are one of the most versatile party ideas. 

We can take your requests so that you get to decide which music you want to hear. But we can add a full band, or just a drummer like we’re doing tonight. We can add a featured vocalist. It just gives the extra added dimension to our regular piano music entertainment for events. chicago dueling pianos 

So after we do load in and sound check, I think I’m going to go for an additional walk down around Navy Pier and enjoy this beautiful weather. You never know how long it is going to last. Because you know what they say, If you don’t like the weather in Chicago, wait 5 minutes. It’ll change.

Call us for your live music entertainment at your next corporate event, charity events or backyard BBQ. We love BBQ! HeckFire … we’ll c’mon by before it hits 80º. We’re not picky. Live music and comedy goes with every kind of weather. So does Chicago Dueling Pianos for that matter … 

What can we say? We’re Chicagoans! Give us a call. 773-527-7414

We can GUARANTEE … You Will Look Good B’cuz We Sound Good!

Alcohol with Your Piano Music Entertainment? Aghast!

Alcohol was invented so the Irish would not rule the world.” – Irish Proverb

When I’m out playing piano music in public, many folks ask me questions that are quite similar. They range in similarities like, “What do you do during the day for work?” and “What does your wife think of what you do for a living?”; things like that. I would love to write an entire blog post about each of those questions.

But in honor of the great St. Patrick’s Day coming up this week, I would like dedicate this holiday blog post to the patron saint of Ireland with a post about alcohol.

Alcohol is the great social lubricant.” – Also Irish Proverb

A couple of questions I get asked all the time would be:

  1. Where are you playing that we can go see you?” I don’t play out in bars all that often. But when I do, I like Dos Equis …. oooppppss Sorry. I do play out public sometimes when the schedule opens up. But for the most part I like to concentrate on company events and corporate gigs. They’re not as easy to perform at as a bar gig. They require a little more finesse and a whole lot more restraint. Certainly neither of my two favorite things to do in the whole world; restraint and finesse that is.I like the raucousness of a bar gig or restaurant. People cutting loose, cracking jokes, laughing at things that are not normally funny in polite company. But isn’t that the point of going out drinking with your friends? No need to be polite.At company events and corporate functions where we are providing live music entertainment, people tend to hold back a bit because they have a level of decorum they need to uphold in the course of daily commerce. No sweat. People want to keep their jobs.

    For when the wine is in, the wit is out.” – Thomas Beacon

    But that brings us to the next question I get a lot:

  2. Do you think that we need to serve alcohol at our event to be able to get people to sing louder?The answer is a resounding, “No!”“How so?” you ask.I answer thusly.Have you ever heard a room full of kids sing loudly?Of course you have.

    Well they can certainly get pretty loud. And I don’t think ALL of them have been drinking. Do you?

    You answered “No. Probably not ALL of them Dan.”

    So I repeat myself. No. You do not need to serve alcohol at your company event to be able to get people to sing along loudly.

    Does it help?

    Hell yeah!

    It also helps if you’ve got the winning lottery ticket in your pocket. But it’s not going to solve all your problems.

    You will need to hire a professional entertainer (like me, for instance) who knows the tried and true formula for a successful evening of piano music entertainment. Someone who knows how to get people interacting knowing that they won’t be embarrassed come Monday morning around the water cooler, or feel like they’re the only on who knows how to have fun after hours. No.

    If you are not going to serve alcohol at your event, then might I make my professional recommendation that before you start your party, make sure the sun has gone down and that you just gave them all raises.

    But No, you do not need alcohol to be served in order to have a good time with live music entertainment for events at your company party.

Thanks for playing along and I’m certainly glad you’ve decided to read this far. Maybe you would indeed like to go a bit further. Give me a call at 1 773 527 7417 to see how affordable live piano music can be at your event.

Happy St Patty’s Day one and all! 

The whole world is about three drinks behind.” – Humphrey Bogart

piano music entertainment and green beer celebrations

Happy St Patty’s Day

A Wide Awake Nightmare for One of Chicago’s Best Piano Players

Chicago is filled with the best piano players.

Everyone of us are filled with awe for anyone who is talented. With us piano players, it is more than a mutual admiration society. We all know each other and we all look out for each other. So it is with a mixture of shock and horror mixed with a sense of duty that I need to post this to my site.

http://www.gofundme.com/mzkafg

My good friend and fellow comedian Dave Allen recently had brain surgery to remove a lesion that has left him with limited use of his right hand and has seriously hampered his speech.

http://www.gofundme.com/mzkafg

Many of you who also know Dave, know what a tremendously talented man he is. His ability to deliver spot on impersonations in a wide variety of settings is second to no one that I’ve ever worked with. And you know I’ve worked with a lot of very talented people.

Dave has established himself as one of the best piano players in Chicago for years now. He has been working professionally as a piano player in the area since his teens and he has probably forgotten more tunes than I have ever known.

I sat across from him on one particularly slow night in a bar on a dueling pianos gig and watched him fire off the entire White Album from the Beatles.

I don’t know with any certainty what you were doing with your teen aged years. But I now know for sure what Dave Allen was doing with his.

One winter we took a long drive out to some corporate gig out in Iowa. All the way out there Dave was speaking in a new accent he was working on. His boys were totally into some new movie at the time. If I’m not mistaken, (and I’ve known to be from time to time) it was the first version of ‘Cars’ and Dave was working on some slow tawkin’ redneck voice. Every conversation was peppered with a response in that lawng particular drawl. 5 hour trip. There’s Dave munchin’ on pistachio seeds and spittin’ out colloquialisms.

http://www.gofundme.com/mzkafg

On the way back – all 5 hours – he was working on an Indian voice. Some middle eastern guy who owned a quickie mart or something. I don’t even know what he was talking about but it made a long road trip with no radio in the truck disappear like the best dessert you’ve ever tasted. 

best piano players

Dave Allen one of Chicago’s Best Piano Players

best piano players

Dave Allen and Jake

He is a loving husband and father to his two boys. When you see them together you know he connects with them the way he does with an audience; deeply and with sincerity.

So please contribute to Dave. He may be out of work for a long time. But with your love and prayers (and knowing Dave) he’ll be back before we know it.

So if you can’t send money, even just $100, then send positive vibes.
He’s a really good guy and the entertainment world needs him back.

We all do. Thanks

These Guys Are Funny …. Looking! Comedy Music and FUN!!!

Comedy Dueling Pianos

Shhhh!!!! Don’t tell anyone. We don’t want the word to get.

These guys are in need of serious plastic surgery and until they get it no one should see them. They’re so funny — looking — that you will laugh until tears run down your face and then you’ll laugh some more because you’re laughing so hard at the people around you laughing. So please don’t come and see these guys until they get some reconstructive surgery to fix their funny looks.

But if you do come out, bring money with you cuz plastic surgery isn’t cheap anymore. It used to be when no one knew what it was. But now the word has gotten out and they can’t raise enough money to fix their funny looks. So if you are planning on coming out to see some great live music and laughs with comedy music that you can laugh at till you go home, Then be sure to bring lots of money.

BBQ Dueling Pianos with A Country Music Flair

We have another in town dueling pianos show coming up

Wednesday, March 18 2015

We will be singing and playing piano at Bub City. That’s right. It’s a country bar. Great BBQ to go with some great live music too. Chicago dueling pianos in a bar setting. Rare for us. Fortunate for you.

We usually perform our dueling pianos show for corporate events and fund raiser entertainment. But this night is different. This is a public show in a fantastic country bar that serves phenomenal BBQ.

So when you do the math dueling pianos chicago featuring country music. How does that work?

We do the same interactive live music show only we’re adding a new wrinkle to the dueing pianos set up — we’ll performing with a fiddle player.

Are we going to see you there? Sure hope so.

Check us out out here at Bub City 

435 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 610-4200

Come for the BBQ Stay for the Live Music

How Do You Spell Mardi Gras Dueling Pianos?

Mardi Gras.
God’s gift to help us get through the winter.

Wait. That can’t be right.

Mardi Gras is a pagan Holiday. designed to help us sinners get it together before the miracle of Easter.

Oh … forget it … I’m just a mixed up Catholic who hasn’t been to church in a while. Either way you look at it … and I look at it as an Ambassador of Fun would look at it … An Emcee of Party … a professional piano entertainer would look at it … LET’S SING SOME SONGS!!!

Plus, we’re going to be raising some money for the Kankakee County Chamber … again! I think this is our 3rd or 4th year in a row providing charity event entertainment for them? I’ve lost count.

entertainment for events, charity event entertainment,

Mardi Gras Dueling Pianos in Kankakee 2015

Dueling Pianos with a Mardi Gras twist, a tinge of The Big Easy, A taste of the Le Bon Temps Roulé. Can you resist it any longer? 

This winter is getting longer and longer and spring is still a few 6 weeks away. So let’s embrace the ice! Let’s dance in the darkness. Let’s do the night the way the night should be done .. with live music in the form of dueling piano mardi gras.

We’ll be there. Where will you be?

Knights of Columbus Hall, 187 South Indiana Avenue, Kankakee, IL 60901 — Doors open at 6 PM

Support businesses in Kankakee County IL We help each other to improve business by building a better community.

For tickets and to make a donation click here 

Or cut and paste this link:
http://business.kankakeecountychamber.com/events/details/3rd-annual-mardi-gras-dueling-pianos-872

Bring some friends … We know you got some!

Dueling Pianos with A BBQ Flair

We have another in town dueling pianos show coming up this week. Wednesday, January 28, 2015

We will be singing and playing piano at Bub City. That’s right. It’s a country bar. Great BBQ to go with some great live music too. Chicago dueling pianos in a bar setting. Rare for us. Fortunate for you.

We usually perform our dueling pianos show for corporate events and fund raiser entertainment. But this night is different. This is a public show in a fantastic country bar that serves phenomonal BBQ.

So when you do the math dueling pianos chicago featuring country music. How does that work?

We do the same interactive live music show only we’re adding a new wrinkle to the dueing pianos set up — we’ll performing with a fiddle player.

Are we going to see you there? Sure hope so.

Company events after The Holidays?

What a great idea. Company events don’t always have to be during Christmas season. Holiday parties after New Years are a great idea too. You’re probably going to have better attendance. You can invite more friends. People are going to have more time to show up because they don’t have as many commitments. Plus, you’ll probably get a better rate at your local venues.

Company events with live music is going to provide way more long lasting memories than with a just a DJ. So give us a call. Great piano music, great dueling pianos entertainment and great live music and comedy. Laugh all night long.

piano music piano payer

Piano Player Dan Gillogly

So think about it for next year. Or better yet, just do it this year. Get your people together for a memorably fun night of live music and comedy. Piano music with style. Chicago Piano player Dan Gillogly travels all over the place to bring more fun than is legally allowed by law. Do it now.