Loan Star Retrobates

The Lone Star Retrobates is a boot-scootin’ wingtips-flyin’ dance band specializing in authentic West Coast Swing. If Jazz is America’s musical taproot, then this roadhouse-swing fusion is its west-facing branch.

Featuring trumpet, sax, twin fiddles, both standard and pedal steel guitars, drums and standup bass, rich four- and five-part vocal harmonies and even trick yodeling on demand, the Retrobates sashay from hot swing to honkytonk. Let’s say Ella and The Inkspots were to gig with Billy Jack Wills at the corner of Louis Jordan and Ray Price, and say Johnny Mercer and the Pied Pipers were sitting in — that’s the Retrobates in a nutshell. Oh, and with laughing gas piped in — these guys have a lot of fun.

The Retrobates show pleases all comers: retro-roots for the youth, jump-boogie for the hipsters, classic swing with new arrangements for granddad, and good tight original arrangements and vocal harmony for the many musicians who like to drop by and sit in on their shows. If they are not zootin’ it they’ll like as not be rootin’-tootin’ it or sliding easy-like into a belt buckle polisher.

With a freshly retooled show featuring a kicking all-star horn section — each horn man a bandleader in his own right — the Retrobates are making a stir in the Bay Area alt-country and retro-roots scene, with bragging rights on singer-songwriter Emily Bonn, swing veteran Mylos “Boogie” Sonka and big-band vocalist Ray Green.
Loan Star Retrobates

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