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...with a Big City Heart.

"The grass isn't always greener on the other side". I always read this line as a warning. But, then I took a look at the "other side" and the grass was definitely greener. We forget the part of the line that says "isn't always" which is the part that tells us "sometimes it is". That's when you Play Them Cards and take the leap. My story is about creating the life you want and not apologizing for it and allowing those people who celebrate YOU into your world so you can celebrate them BACK! Heart is where the Home is ... 

DEANN's Story

DEANN never really liked her name. She was the youngest and only girl of 3 children all with names that start with the letter D. As her song Big City Heart states, she was surrounded by boys and was always trying to find her voice. A Kansas native, DEANN moved to the Kansas City area in 1997. She married and had two beautiful boys and lived the next 15 years focused on her family. She had the near perfect life, then she went and joined a band. And it became even sweeter.

DEANN learned piano and saxophone at a young age and took part in different choirs from middle school throughout college. Once focused on family, all that went to the wayside. So, to find 4 other neighbors who wanted to start a band proved to be a catalyst for the rest of her life! In 2012, The Heather Stones band formed and it was the typical basement band that just wanted to play for fun. The band played several weddings, clubs and charity events over the past 14 years. The band grew to 7 members and collectively, the members have decided 2024 will be the last year for The Heather Stones band to play publicly. 

7 years ago in 2018, DEANN made the decision to go to a local Wed night Jam Night. It was at Jam night where DEANN met Michael Small (keys) and Jerry Bayton (drums). They asked her to come to a rehearsal for a new band they were forming and from there the 6 person band was solidified. Jerry was the founding member of Superstar Mafia. He studied percussion at Indiana State University and was a bedrock of the Kansas City community where he served as captain of his firehouse for many years. He passed away in August 2019 after a long battle with multiple myeloma. He will always be remembered as an exceptional talent and band member, but even more importantly as an incredible friend. Superstar Mafia members made the decision to forge ahead as Jerry would have wanted. They added Scotty McBee on drums/vocals and had ramped up over 50 gigs for the year 2020. All of those 50 gigs were canceled in March of 2020 due to the pandemic and lockdown. Fortunately for Superstar Mafia, they found an online app that allowed the band to continue playing/rehearsing remotely. Today you can find Superstar Mafia actively playing at the top nightclubs and stages in KC with multiple private events bookings.

DEANN, like many other artists during 2020, had an opportunity to re-set, focus and create. At the time, DEANN was working and traveling full-time for a healthcare temp agency. During the lockdown, when she was not working her day job (remotely), she was focused on her album. The album was written, produced, and mastered 100% from lockdown remotely during the COVID pandemic. Being the youngest of 3 and only girl, DEANN’s father would often play a simple card game with her to show her how to navigate life (and keep her busy). DEANN asked her father to record a speaking part for the title song on the album, "Play Them Cards", which he did. In March of 2021, DEANN's father lost a 4 week battle with COVID, just 3 months before the album was to be released. The album release party was on Wed, June 2nd, 2021 at Kane Family Farm. DEANN feels honored to have captured her father's voice of encouragement for others to also hear. 

In June of 2021, DEANN was contacted about starting a Joan Jett tribute which would be one of 4 tribute bands going to Sturgis, SD. She said YES, and the Lone Jett tribute debuted that August at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally at the Full Throttle Saloon stage. This led to starting a full tribute to Joan Jett called Lone Jett & the Brokenhearts. A year later she added Blondage KC, a tribute to Blondie. Both tributes have been actively playing at clubs/festivals in the Midwest for the past 2 years.

In addition to the 4 bands listed above, DEANN has two duos called Off the Record. These duos consist of two members of Superstar Mafia (Joseph Ranaghan & Scotty McBee) and can be found playing around KC. DEANN is also co-founder of a project called Lyrical Belles which is an all original female songwriter's round. Currently, Lyrical Belles has a monthly residency at Knuckleheads Gospel Lounge. 

DEANN has grown to love her name and she has found her voice. DEANN's hope is that her passion, vision and storytelling give listeners the opportunity to connect on a personal level, be it from their past, future or current reality. Music is her full-time employment and passion. She Played her Cards, took a leap and it ended up being greener on the other side. 

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