Posted By: Molly Smith
Danielle Anderson, better known to the music community as Danielle Ate the Sandwich, says her favorite kind of sandwich is grilled cheese or veggie, but she is much more than a sandwich eater. She is a whimsical, lovely and quirky folk singer who entertains crowds with her bare honesty and self deprecating humor. The performance that Anderson and her assisting band members gave at the Lagoon Summer Concert Series last Wednesday was filled with two hours of singer-songwriter goodness.
Behind the girl that playfully makes fun of herself for being so vulnerable on stage, especially about topics like love, lies a person who “over a series of years and performances” is still “a very dramatic and sappy person.”
“What’s true in rap music is true in folk music,” says Anderson. “Don’t listen to the haters!”
Anderson, though she isn’t classically trained, has grown up with music. She participated in choir and was a closeted songwriter as a shy kid. Once she reached her twenties, she became more comfortable performing in front of crowds, but considers herself a lifelong learner. She says, “I am constantly learning now by playing with other musicians of various skill levels, recording and writing songs for different projects as well as performing in new and exciting places!”
The Lagoon Summer Concert Series has existed in Fort Collins for 18 years. Each Wednesday night, community members of all ages bring their blankets, lawn chairs, dinner and pets along with them to enjoy local music among the backdrop of Colorado State University’s campus. This is a great symbol of the union between CSU and Fort Collins as a whole and the way the two support each other. There will be five more weekly Lagoon concerts this summer.
A CSU graduate herself, Anderson considers herself an “ambassador” between the Fort Collins music scene and other regions far and wide. “I…play most of my shows outside the state of Colorado,” she says, “but I am proud of where I come from and mention where I live at every show!”
“Two Bedroom Apartment”, the title track off of the album released in 2010, opened the set on Wednesday night. Anderson was accompanied by a bassist named Dennis whom she chatted with quite frequently between songs. The combination of the simple, foundational bass and Anderson’s ukulele was perfect. “17 and 53” was widely recognized by the audience, or as Anderson called them, The Extraordinary League of Lawn Chairs. The song focuses on existential questions and the inevitability of old age. Many themes throughout Danielle Ate the Sandwich’s lyrics revolve around loneliness: wanting a loved one to return home or to be close to someone far away. She also challenges our social structure, authority and reflects upon adulthood and its responsibilities.
About five songs in, they played a cover of TLC’s “Waterfalls” where Anderson had a chance to show off her pipes and silly rap skills. Other cover songs included “My Girl” by the Temptations and “I Want to be Like You” from the 1990’s Disney movie, The Jungle Book.
After a short intermission, an incredibly talented musician named Chris joined in on the violin and Danielle switched to the guitar. Chris had an opportunity to truly showcase his skills in “The Have-Nots”, a song about religion. The lyrics capture the uncertainty, loneliness and tragic hope of our generation.
My favorite song was a new one called “Bad Habit” that has not yet been featured on an album, but has gone viral on YouTube.
The next step we can expect from Danielle Ate the Sandwich? A soundtrack for a documentary about the artist Edith Lake Wilkinson. More updates can be found on her Facebook page.
Be sure to check out Danielle Ate the Sandwich on social media as well as on her YouTube channel!