When Istvan starts rocking kids can’t help but join in, sometimes on stage, while their moms and dads cheer them on and enjoy the original tunes, an irresistible mix of interactive rock ‘n’ roll, country, pop punk and sing-alongs that get heads bobbing. A longtime member of Chicago’s alternative music scene, Istvan started penning children’s tunes after the birth of his daughter, Evie — who often accompanies him on stage.
“When my daughter was 2, she loved puppets,” says Istvan. “While we played, she would always demand that I ‘talk ’em!’ One day I ran out of things to say, so I had a frog puppet pluck the E string of my guitar and sing what became my first children’s song. Before I knew it I had a bunch.”
In person, Istvan brings those songs to life and always tries to involve the crowd, whether it’s playing freeze dance mid song, inviting them up to sing along or having them ring out the rhythm on a tambourine. When it comes to the band there is nothing imaginary about its possibilities. No matter what size the venue or gathering, Istvan tailors the group to almost any situation or show. From strumming solo on the acoustic guitar to dynamic duos and trios or to the full five-piece rocking band. It’s not surprising why Istvan & His Imaginary Band have become kid and family music favorites.