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Santa Fe Performance Exchange
Bringing local and national musicians to Santa Fe venues
Donna Dean

Friday, Sep. 6, 2013, 7:30 pm Donna Dean Admission: $15 | $20 at the door

Donna Dean grew up in the suburbs of Auckland, New Zealand. She was born Donna Kouka, second eldest daughter of seamstress-musician Joan McLean and merchant seaman-truck driver James Kouka. Donna comes from a long line of musicians and singers, a family whose cohesiveness was deeply rooted in music. Her grandfather, Neil Mclean, AKA ‘Banjo Mac’, was a banjo player who doubled on lap steel and was a member of the Neville Carlson Revue who entertained with dancing troupes, magicians and comedians around Auckland in the 1930’s. Donna’s musical ability was obvious by the time she was 6 years old when her mother taught her to play Ukulele. Once Donna mastered the tiny instrument to her liking, she pestered her mother to teach her a few chords on the guitar.

Her mother Joan, an accomplished guitarist, played the major role of introducing Donna to American country music by the Carter Family and Jimmie Rodgers. Joan had long dreamed of one day walking onto the stage of Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry. As the years passed and Joan’s dreams began to fade, Donna’s own hopes fanned the embers until fantasies of taking a guitar and her songs to the US weren’t just a flicker, but a blaze.

Donna started her career as a solo artist. She was a member of NZ country band Rio Grande from 1992 to 1996 and since then various incarnations of the Donna Dean Band have played live and recorded with her. She recorded her first album Destination Life, in 1998, her second, Between You & Me with American country rock band The Amazing Rhythm Aces, and her seventh and most recent, Tyre Tracks & Broken Hearts, released December 2012, features legendary artists Albert Lee, Amos Garrett, Redd Volkaert and Gurf Morlix.

Joining Donna for this show are John Egenes on dobro, guitar, banjo, mandolin and harmony vocals, Jane Clark on fiddle and John Dodd on bass and harmony vocals.

Santa Fe’s own Jono Manson opens.