When he moved to Hollywood, Dan Finnerty’s career goal was “to be the sloppy neighbor on a (TV) sitcom ... come in every five or six pages, say something funny and leave and have a dressing room.” He had no rock ’n’ roll fantasies, so being the titular leader of the comic group The Dan Band has been something of a surprise.
“Everything has been, like, a mistake, which is probably why it’s worked,” says Finnerty, 38, whose acting roles include “Old School,” “The Terminal” and “Starsky & Hutch.” The Dan Band, meanwhile, has become a local and increasingly national sensation by covering songs made famous by female singers — including Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart,” Tony Basil’s “Mickey” and Kelis’ “Milkshake,” then adding its own profane touches.
“I wasn’t overthinking anything about this (band). That’s my big lesson here; if I’d set out to do this, I’m not sure it would’ve happened. I probably would’ve second-guessed the whole thing, and because I didn’t take it seriously, it worked. It kills me to look back and say, ‘This is all from doing drunk karaoke ...’ ”
The Dan Band has released three albums, with 2007’s “Ho: A Dan Band Christmas” scheduled to be re-released this year. The group has logged several TV and film appearances of its own, including a spot in “The Hangover” that vastly increased the troupe’s profile.
“When I read the script, I thought it was going to be as funny as ‘Old School;’ I thought for sure (director Todd Phillips) would hit it out of the park again,” says Finnerty. “Then the reaction at the first screening told me it was going to be a huge movie.
“Believe me, I’m just glad when Todd calls and lets me do something. He’s great; he let’s me do what I want — ‘What do you want to sing?’ — and we pretty much work it out. I get to do what I think is funny in those movies, and I’m just happy they end up in them.”
The Dan Band, Eastside Elvis & the Motor City Mafia and the Prime Ministers perform at 8 p.m. Saturday (Sept. 19) at the Royal Oak Music Theatre, 318 W. Fourth St. Tickets are $22 in advance, $25 day of show. Call (248) 399-2980 or visit www.royaloakmusictheatre.com.
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