Boogie down to RiverFestWritten by Vicki L. Kroll | | firstname.lastname@example.org
David Maffei recently found an old photo of himself. He was in a rock band, sporting long hair, ripped jeans and a T-shirt proclaiming anything but love for disco.
“Twenty years later I have really short hair and play disco music,” the guitarist said. “I’m a white guy who wears an Afro wig — I kind of look like Neal Schon from Journey.”
Of course, Maffei dons flashier clothing to become Sonny “D” Lite in Disco Inferno. And he appreciates the music more.
“The first time around, disco was a threat to people because it was associated with an alternative lifestyle,” he said last week from his Cleveland home. “The second time around,
people know it’s just great dance music.
“And if you listen, you realize it’s very good musicianship — it’s not super-easy music to play. It’s songs you can dance to that appeal to young and old. People of all ages know the words to ‘YMCA’ and ‘Dancing Queen.’ ”
You’ll be able to dance and jive, see Disco Inferno, and dig the free scene at RiverFest at 5 p.m. Sept. 3 in Promenade Park. The band is one of many disco groups that features rotating members from Perfect World Entertainment.
“There was such a demand, one band couldn’t keep up with it,” Maffei said. “There also are Disco Infernos in California and Florida.”
Maffei has been in the mood for dance since 1996. And having the time of his life.
“What makes it fun for us is it’s kind of poking fun at the ’70s,” he said.
And after every set, Sonny changes his clothes.
“When we first started in 1996, retro clothing was coming out. I’m not a tall guy — I wear about a size nine in women’s clothing — and I went to Rave and Gadzooks and picked up some nice-looking bell-bottoms and stuff,” Maffei recalled. “Then a girl in Pittsburgh came on stage and was wearing the exact same outfit.
“I couldn’t have that — I’m the most flamboyant in the band,” he said. “I buy my own material and have outfits custom-made by a seamstress in Cleveland.”