Granite Planet, in some form or another, has been playing music together here on the NH seacoast for 14 years. Our music is mostly upbeat, danceable rock and pop, ranging from the 60s to today. We pride ourselves in having something for everyone, both young and old. From Linda Ronstadt to Sex Pistols to Darius Rucker to B52s to The Stranglers to Black Keys, we keep our set list quite diverse. We also like playing unique versions of familiar songs. For example, everyone knows Ring of Fire by Johnny Cash, but ours stays closer to the Social Distortion version.
Steve Chaisson: vocals, guitar, keyboards
Ever the procrastinator, Steve started playing guitar in 2002 at the age of 40. After learning a few chords, he invited his friends to join him and jam. Like Steve, many of them hadn’t learned to play until later in life also, and each regretted waiting so long. Along with his friends, Steve coordinated the first BYOI (Bring Your Own Instrument) Night, which raised money to help kids learn to play music while they are still young. BYOI Nights became the genesis for the band known today as Granite Planet.
Over the years, Steve has added keyboards and harmonica to his repertoire to help add to the diversity of Granite Planet’s playlist.
Steve’s musical interests run wide: Rock, Pop, & Country. He enjoys the hits of the 70s and 80s but likes the hits of today as well. His radio is always tuned to Independent Radio 92.5 The River.
Steve grew up in western Massachusetts, and moved to the Seacoast in 1988. He and his brother, Cary, are co-owners of Allegra Marketing Print Mail of Portsmouth and Bedford. Steve now lives in Manchester with his lovely wife, Anna.
Gideon Butler: bass guitar, vocals
Just to prove how diverse the Seacoast area is Granite Planet has it’s very own Brit Bass player!
Gideon lives on the seacoast with his bossy cat and charming wife Fiona. He started playing bass in London in the ’70s, taking his lead from the idea that anyone could play if they just tried hard enough. Then he found out that his favorite bassist was also an accomplished classical guitarist, so he had to start practicing.
Dyanna Smith: guitar, mandolin, vocals, egg
Dyanna’s been playing guitar and singing since she was sixteen, when she taught herself to play on an old 12-string Epiphone at summer camp in Ohio. She tried song writing back then, but really, who could do better than Me and You and a Dog Named Boo?
A biologist by trade and training, Dyanna recently put away the microscope she’s been carrying around since she was 4 to dabble in glass art in her spare time. She finished her PhD in Environmental Studies and works with local conservation groups–that is, when she’s not at practice sassing the rest of the band.
John Hazekamp: drums
John is a reformed perfectionist who likes to make music, but doesn’t take it too seriously; despite the obvious biting of his lower lip as he hums along playing his drums. His fascination with circular objects has taken on new meaning, as of late, as he combines his 40 years of experience within the Graphic Arts industry and a newfound spirituality to create unique “focused energy” healing mandalas on his computer.
John has more recently returned to drumming after retiring his kit in 1986 when he married the love of his life, Carol, and helped her raise their family; both were active volunteers within their community and school system. Then, with the onset of the “empty nest” period of their life together entered, he pulled out his Ludwig Blue Sky Pearl – Club Date kit and started playing again. First he formed a cover band in 2012, “The Senior Executives ( aka: Sr. Execs / SrXX )” which lasted just over a year; then he joined an originals band in 2013 called “R & R” that was also together for about a year. After these two attempts at returning to his love of drumming, late in 2014 he redirected his focus inward, satisfying a newly realized spirituality interest, and began to hand drum within drum circles. In the course of pursuing his new outlook, happenstance events led from one thing to another and he found himself occasionally sitting in part-time with several popular local cover bands, before permanently settling in here with Granite Planet in March of 2016. John’s one of those, “everything happens for a reason,” philosopher types whose faith in one’s own destiny is unwavering; we’re just happy fate dumped him on our doorstep and away we go…