After four years with local blues-rock band Brave Weather, Dani Harness is reinventing herself as a solo artist following the band’s breakup.
“Seasons change,” Harness said. “All that stuff happens for good reasons, I think. So I’m excited to see what else comes. It’s really freed me up.”
Harness got her start in church music in seventh grade — a style she said she can hear elements of in her acoustic music, although the religious aspect is gone. Then, the 31-year-old transitioned into harder progressive blues rock as she started to join bands. Now, she said she hopes to be more true to herself with an “acoustic southern homey feel” while incorporating “classic-rock-meets-gothy vibes.”
Eventually, Harness said she would like to be part of a band again, but for now, her focus is finding her place “style-wise.”
“I hope it grows into something I’m not expecting,” she said. “I don’t wanna pigeonhole myself and say, ‘This is what I wanna do.’ I hope it turns into something like, ‘Wow, I never thought I could do that.’”
Inspired by Stevie Nicks, The Cranberries and Lucius, Harness is drawn to powerful female lead singers and has plans to collaborate with other local female musicians
“We’re all so strong and we need to remind each other that were strong instead of trying to bring each other down,” she said. “That’s so archaic. We need to love on each other and let each other shine.”
Harness said collaboration will play a big part in her upcoming projects. She recently moved in with her close friends, Wonder Doug and Walta Yoseph, both of whom are Columbus comedians, hoping to facilitate creativity and collaboration.
“It’s really exciting to have this new creative place for all of our passion projects,” she said.
The creativity has already begun — last week Harness and Wonder Doug wrote a song together while unpacking.
“I had this guitar riff and I’m like, ‘Hey I want you to hear this,’” Harness said. “Then we just kind of sat down and wrote a song in an hour about kind of where we were in our lives and how we were feeling toward certain situations.”
Although Wonder Doug said he “dabbles” in poetry, he has never collaborated with a musician in this way before.
“I feel like it’s going to be a good spring living with her,” he said.
When she’s not playing music, Harness can be found working full time as a jewelry buyer at Short North adult emporium The Garden — somewhere she said never expected herself to work, but has grown to love.
In her free time, Harness also loves to paint “really weird abstract spiritual kind of stuff” on wood, using the grain of wood as inspiration. Harness said she has toyed with the idea of using her artwork as an album cover, but for now it is something she does purely for personal joy.
With tentative plans to release new music this summer, Harness’ debut show will be June 5 at Spacebar. She also will be performing in a Wonder Doug Variety Show May 4 at The Shrunken Head.