"The Godfather of Mexican Surf"
Danny Amis, aka Daddy-O Grande is perhaps best known as a founding member of the musical group, Los Straitjackets.
Born in Memphis to a respected newspaper editor, his family moved to Minneapolis when he was 4 years old. His first band,
The Overtones, brought guitar instrumentals to the late 70s Twin Cities punk scene, and was one of the first acts to appear
on the now legendary Twin/Tone Records. From there Amis made a much bigger instrumental splash when he
moved to New York City and joined up with the Raybeats.
Switching roles from Musician to engineer, Amis produced an album for Beat Rodeo before moving on to
Nashville where he landed a job working for the Grand Ole Opry, TNN, Nashville Now and yes, Hee-Haw.
Enjoying his newly found world of paid vacations, Amis took time to travel and became enchanted with Mexico City and the Lucha Libre.
Soon after that, Amis donned a silver and blue wrestling mask and the persona of Daddy-O Grande was born!
It wasn't long after that that Americas Instrumentalists, Los Straitjackets, was formed.
With more than 20 years in Los Straitjackets, Amis is enjoying the success of 16 critically acclaimed CDs,
a Grammy nomination, numerous television appearances, and over 1500 live performances worldwide.
Among those live shows were televised concerts in Mexico City, one in the historic Zocalo in 2005,
as well as 3 appearances at Mexico City’s Foro Sol.
Those concerts were attended by more than 50,000 fans each.
Amis also had the honor of hearing his own Calhoun Surf performed and recorded by his heroes, The Ventures.
Besides performing with Los Straitjackets, Amis also produced the debut CD by Mexicos instrumental sensations, Lost Acapulco,
as well as producing and directing the popular Go-Go Robics DVDs starring The World Famous Pontani Sisters.
Two documentaries about the Mexican Surf Music scene have called Danny Amis the "Godfather of Mexican Surf"
From 2006 to 2010, Amis recorded 2 solo albums, Daddy-O Grande in Mexico with Lost Acapulco
and Mexican Chili Taco Fiesta, and also performed many solo tours throughout South America and Europe.
In the summer of 2010 Amis received the unfortunate diagnosis of advanced Multiple Myeloma, cancer of the bone marrow.
Amis underwent various cancer treatments, but not soon enough to prevent serious damage to the spine.
An outpouring of support from fans and artists through donations and benefit shows worldwide helped in covering medical expenses
and in the summer of 2011 Amis resumed songwriting and returned to the studio in November to record the CD Jet Set,
the best cd by Los Straitjackets in many years.
The fall of 2012 saw Amis return to the stage with Los Straitjackets once again for a US tour.
Although Los Straitjackets continue to tour regularly, Amis' health prohibits him
from maintaining the rigorous tour schedule of Los Straitjackets.
Danny Amis appears onstage with Los Straitjackets only occasionally now, but still participates in the recordings.
Danny Amis now resides in Mexico City.
Citing the great surf-guitarist Dick Dale as a major influence,
Danny Amis has also developed an ability to write about himself in the third person.
Updated October 1st, 2014
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