Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Vol. CLIV, Issue 4
Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Ska band Danger Mermaid returns for another round

Perhaps it started with a housemate’s Guitar Hero name.

Perhaps the flyer posted on a North Hall bulletin board searching for band members got it all going.

Or perhaps it all began when Reel Big Fish and The Mighty, Mighty Bosstones were blasting on the radio all through junior high.

Either way, Danger Mermaid is here to bring you ska beats to dance to.

Whitman band, Danger Mermaid, which became a house party staple last year is ready to hit the campus scene again.

“I think it hasn’t really gotten going yet this year because we really haven’t been able to find many times when we could all get together this semester,” said senior and bass guitarist Seth Zippel.

“Things definitely took a backseat to The Raptivists because we actually had a real gig [opening for the Blue Scholars] that was a pretty big deal,” said senior drummer Nick Gottschall, who along with Zippel and senior Wes Price is a member of both Danger Mermaid and Whitman rap group The Raptivists.

The current manifestation of Danger Mermaid consists of Price on guitar, Phil Collins and Caitlin Tortorici on vocals, Ysbrand Nusse on kazoo and trumpet and Jesus Vasquez on trombone, all seniors.

The band played one show at the interest house block party but has otherwise been dormant the rest of the semester.

“We mostly need a good show that we’re really excited about to get us going,” said Gottschall.   With the stress from fall sports and The Raptivists beginning to fade and a Halloween show at Rossacs House on the horizon, Danger Mermaid is ready to rock again.

In true care-free, ska-style, the band members seemed relatively nonplussed about the lack of Danger Mermaid thus far this year, mostly looking forward to a chance to jam and get people dancing.

“There’s something to be said for performing music for people who really want to be there,” said Gottschall. “And to have people dancing, too,” added Zippel.

The band first began to take shape when founder Nick Landau, who graduated last spring, posted flyers around campus looking for anyone who wanted to play in a ska band.   Price and Zippel, who had always enjoyed ska and jamming, responded to the flyer.

“We had two practices and then it went into remission for a year,” said Zippel.

Then, last year, the band re-formed; ready to play gigs and with the name Danger Mermaid.

“Nick [Landau] suggested…I think he got it from his housemate’s guitar hero name,” said Zippel.

“We had one show and it was really fun and I guess it just snowballed from there,” said Zippel.   The band ended up adding numerous members, playing numerous parties and events, gaining at least two highly devoted fans and even ended up with t-shirts.

“My dad got really excited that I was in a rock band on a college campus,” said Zippel. “Then one day there were boxes with 40 t-shirts in them from my dad that he’d mailed to me.”

Danger Mermaid focuses on energetic, upbeat songs and crowd-pleasers. “We do a lot of covers of middle school songs that everyone loves,” said Gottschall.   While the band is working on more original material, the covers are often the most fun.

“I just love it when you play the first few chords of a song and you hear people say ‘I love this song’ or you have everyone singing and dancing along,” said Zippel.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Whitman Wire Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *