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Genres You Will Love
Jazz: Jazz Vocals Pop: Power Pop Moods: Solo Female Artist Moods: Mood: Christmas Rock: Retro-Rock

By Location
United States - Wisconsin

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Arena Venus

Madison, Wisconsin guitarist Dan Hicks and vocalist Courtney Collins instantly bonded over their mutual love of old-school power pop. Joined by drummer Dave Ross and bassist Andrew Yonda, they formed the band Arena Venus.

Hicks' roaring power chords and classic arrangements are augmented by Yonda's melodic and insistent bass lines. Yonda's knack for pop is only complemented by Ross's precise but big beat, which provides the foundation for the playground that is Arena Venus. Collins ties it together with her protean contralto, bright melodies, and multi-entendre lyrics which are usually delivered with tongue planted firmly in cheek.

The band's debut EP, "Plucked," has been reviewed as a "smart, catchy disc," with "gritty guitars" and "sultry, dreamy legato" vocals. Arena Venus took a temporary departure from power pop to record a Christmas album. "Yuletide Swank" combines lounge, rockabilly, and traditional stylings - upright bass, vibraphone, Christmas bells, rocking guitar, organ, and smooth female vocals make it both retro and fresh.

Two tracks from Yuletide Swank were featured in the online "CHAD VADER" Holiday Video Card from YouTube. Chad Vader is the short comedic film series that's become an internet hit with over 150 million downloads to date.

To purchase COURTNEY COLLINS'S solo albums "Hinterlands" and "Violet Night," or her "Welcome To Christmastown" album with Jeremy Ylvisaker, J. T. Bates, and Michael Lewis, go to:

And also visit and for more projects from members of Arena Venus.

"Let's get this out of the way straight off - this is the best Christmas album I've ever heard - anywhere. Brilliant arrangements and sublime musicianship...with a pristine recording and mix, delivering one of the best albums of the year." - Rick's Cafe, South Central Wisconsin's Regional Music News

" ...Yuletide Swank is pure pop pleasure. It's a fun ride for a broad audience of holiday music lovers. Take a seat in the lounge, and enjoy!" - Carol Swanson,

"The band candy-coats its usual guitar rock edge and gives yuletide favorites an 'indie lounge' feel that goes down as smooth as spiked eggnog at your holiday party." - Rob Thomas, The Capital Times

"Arena Venus could likely succeed in any genre, the elements from each of the individual players are that in tune and that cohesive." - Christine Holm, The Badger Herald