"Another major local talent" -- American Music Press
"The most promising local debut in many months" -- The Oakland Tribune
"An unassuming jack-of-all-trades" -- NxNW Music Conference Guide
Zoo Chernos has busked or gigged in almost every type of venue: music festivals, picket lines and police barracades, rock clubs, basements, churches, subways, community centers, auditoriums, trade union meetings, on the steps of government buildings, and in corporate radio stations and pirate radio stations. Whether on piano, guitar, or banjo, Zoo has captivated audiences from San Francisco’s Paradise Lounge to Manhattan’s Arlenes Grocery to the University of Nuremberg to the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis. He's been booed off a stage in Nashville, been arrested at machine gun-point for attempting to play for a particularly unreceptive political audience, and performed for crowds of tens of thousands.
Now in his fourth musical lifetime, Zoo writes harmonically dense piano compositions that are joyous, heart wrenching and transportive.
Zoo's first album (produced by Scott Mathews) under the artist name "Larry Shaw," was in the rock-and-roll/Americana genre, and received airplay on 120 priority college stations and 60 AAA stations.
Zoo’s second album, "In Interesting Times," is a punk/folk banjo affair produced by “guru” of the Strokes, JP Bowersock, released under the name "Jack Chernos." Zoo has sung the songs from this album at hundreds of pickets, rallies, and protests. The album features:
(i) "Sold Down the River," the anti-WTO song played in continuous-loop from the Steelworkers' billboard truck during the 1999 anti-WTO protests in Seattle;
(ii) "The Union Grand," theme song of the Million Worker March on Washington, DC;
(iii) "My People are Rising," homepage theme song of FCC-silenced San Francisco Liberation Radio; and
(iv) "The Silence of Good People," which has been inducted into the National Civil Rights Museum.
(And check out, "Hey, Rich King Midas," which is, sadly, very appropriate for Trump.)
Zoo's third release, "Annedonia," goes beyond traditional banjo harmonies and rhythms to provide an orchestral banjo rhapsody.
Additional artwork by Zoo can be viewed here (click the picture at the top left to see the portfolio).