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Composition #2: Describing
Howard “Sundanze” Dunston is one of those suave smooth talking blues musicians, like in the movies from the 1920’s where people would go to juke joints and speakeasies for a good time. When he speaks, words flow from his lips like a melody, in a low husky tone, drawing his listeners in for more. Danze is a tall lean black man in his early 60’s with a smooth milk chocolate complexion, a shinny bald head that he always has a blue bandana wrapped around, and a full silver beard. As a young man Danze was a talented athlete he played baseball at his local high school. At the insistence of his baseball coach he tried out for winter sports and was a running back for his local high school. He was injured during a football game in an illegal play breaking his leg in three places, at the age of sixteen. The injury robbed him of playing sports. Unable to continue sports his godmother bought him a guitar to practice during the 11 and half months he was in a cast. With talents like Jimmy Hendrix, Wes Montgomery, and Quincy Jones inspiring him, Danze practiced on his guitar for twelve and fourteen hours a day. His hobby became a passion, and later an obsession. It would be the leg injury from a fateful night on a football field that forever changed his life; he was becoming a talented musician! That summer he started his basement band, Delanian Bonnie. He explained to me “I just felt it within myself that I would be a musician, which is my calling.” Music is a universal language transcending both time and culture. Music is the key that opened doors for Sundanze, bridging the racial gap in pre-segregated America and taking him around the world to perform with legendary icons like Joe Cocker, BB king, and Thirty Eight Special. Playing a gig at a local bar with his fellow band mates he caught his big break. Al Sanford, a musician manager saw him playing that night and at age 17, invited him to perform as the opening act, with Joe Cocker and the Mad...
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