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F EED THE WHOLE FAMILYTTM
Budding singer-songwriter shares his
tunes at the Soundboard.
n the midst of moving from Ann
Arbor to Chicago, Dan Henig is
stopping in Detroit and singing a
hopeful outlook for the city. That will
be the subject of one song in his open-
ing act for 3 Doors Down, headlining
Sunday evening, Feb. 9, at the Sound
"I'll be performing about 30 minutes
of my original material," says Henig,
23, who describes his style as folk-
influenced pop-rock. "This will be my
first time with this group and my first
time at the venue.
"The song about Detroit is titled
`Detroit: It's about the Detroit that was
in the 1950s, the Detroit that is today
and the Detroit that can be [in the
More personal songs also enter his
"Natural Disaster," written with
Lauren Duski, describes a person
wanting something that isn't naturally
good for that person and delves into
relationships. "Falling," which can be
experienced through a music video on
YouTube, is about wanting a relation-
ship that has ended.
"Although my home base is in Ann
Arbor, I'm mostly living in hotels
because of the number of shows I'm
playing on the road," Henig says.
"I'm moving to Chicago because it's
a major hub for the college shows I do
and because of work for a production
company in writing songs, generally
commercial music, for other artists:'
When Henig was a student at
Pioneer High School, he was immersed
in contact sports, but a broken neck
suffered during a rugby game stopped
"I dove headfirst into music," he
says. "I had done music as a hobby all
throughout high school but had not
been serious about it. Then, I decided
to go to Chicago's Columbia College.
"I went for only a year because I
didn't like being told how to make
music. I just liked doing it.
"From there, I kept evolving my
craft. Tim Patalan, a producer based
in Saline and member of the band
Sponge, has been my mentor and
helped me become the writer-per-
former that I am:'
Last year, a fan base developed after
a Henig video went viral on YouTube.
It has had more than 8 million views.
"Because of that, I keep getting
shows," he says. "I'm having the time
of my life doing what I love:'
Henig, who celebrated his bar
mitzvah at Temple Beth Emeth in
Ann Arbor, has traveled to Israel
many times to visit family. He lived in
England for six years because of his
dad's work as an automotive engineer.
"I don't wait for inspiration to hit
me before I start writing a song," says
Henig, who has concentrated on guitar
but branched out to piano. "I sit down
and keep working until I think what I
have is good.
"When I work on lyrics, I work sole-
ly on lyrics. Sometimes a melody will
help me find lyrics, but I'm lyrically
driven. Finding a story and the right
way to tell the story is more important
than the melody:'
Henig, whose entertainment career
has become full time with songs avail-
able on iTunes, enjoys reading as
relaxation. He just finished The Fault
in Our Stars by John Green.
"I would love to be on a national
tour for a big-name artist," he says.
"I want my songs to start hitting the
radio, and I'm releasing a new EP that
I hope will do that. I want to write and
record the best songs that I can:'
Dan Henig will perform, opening
for 3 Doors Down, at 8 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 9, at the Sound
Board in the MotorCity Casino
Hotel, 2901 Grand River, in
Detroit. $32-$40. (313) 309-
4614; soundboarddetroit.com .