2019 INDUCTEES >> DENNY STOREY
Category: Matousek Family Lifetime Achievement
Denny Storey was born October 31, 1943, and lived his entire life in Dickens, Iowa. He took a significant interest in the musical field at age nine when he started teaching himself to play guitar by ear. By the time he was 14, Denny had put together his first musical group. They would regularly perform in Dickens at the establishments on Main Street and during the school’s sock hops.
Denny spent the next seven years honing his musical skills and playing in several bands. In 1960, he was introduced to Danny Nicol, a high school drummer from Milford, IA. Danny then introduced Denny to Duane Rehborg from Harri and John Senn from Spirit Lake. This foursome—The Rhythm Aces—provided Denny the platform to develop and showcase his tremendous talent. In 1963, Denny helped establish a successful Iowa/Minnesota group called The Chevelles. It was there where Denny got his first taste of playing drums. The Chevelles’ first Minneapolis recording of Blue Chevelle is an excellent example of Denny’s drumming skills and was recorded after only four months on the drums.
The Vietnam War and college left the Chevelles with two remaining players—Denny and John. In 1964, the two formed Dee Jay & The Runaways. The group became one of the most successful recording-and-touring musical groups of the 1960s.
In 1965, Dee Jay & The Runaways recorded Peter Rabbit. The record vaulted the group into the national spotlight, with appearances on the Dick Clark show "Where the Action Is," the "Upbeat" show, as well as other regional and national television shows. This top 40 song remained on the national charts for 12 weeks. From 1964 until they officially disbanded in 1968, no other Iowa group accomplished as much in so short a period as this group.
On August 13, 1967, Denny married Linda Hinders in Arnolds Park. They lived in Dickens and raised three children, Dennie, Jamie, and Christina. After Dee Jay and the Runaways disassembled, Denny started his one-piece band playing all around northwest Iowa and southern Minnesota for several years. Denny eventually met up with Bill Rauhauser, Dean Aakhus, and later, Al Kline and Lee Henderson where they were known as Denny Storey and The Runaways, and then just The Runaways. They played throughout the ‘80s and ‘90s, entertaining at weddings, firemen dances, bars, and restaurants.
Denny’s life was the music business. Even while he was semi-retired, he remained very active, making appearances and playing with former band members, as well as singing karaoke and entertaining at his favorite establishments.
Denny was inducted with Dee Jay & the Runaways into the Iowa Rock ‘n Roll Music Association Hall of Fame in 1997, the Minnesota Hall of Fame in 2003, and the South Dakota Hall of Fame in 2012. Denny is being honored posthumously after his death on September 13, 2018.