Busted Jug Band
The all-acoustic Busted Jug Band (thebustedjugband.com) harkens back to the Black Street Bands of the early 20th Century in Southern Cities such as Memphis, St. Louis, and New Orleans. Also known as “Juke Bands,” “Spasm Bands” and “Hokum Bands,” these resourceful musical organizations featured homemade and dime store instruments such as the kazoo, washboard, and “gut-bucket” (or washtub) bass; alongside harmonica, mandolin, banjo-ukulele, squeeze box and a trunk full of musical oddities and noisemakers. These acts were very popular in the 1930’s, influenced early Blues and Swing groups, and inspired mainstream novelty acts of the 1940’s and 50’s such as the Hoosier Hotshots and Spike Jones and his City Slickers.
The Busted Jug Band’s music is a festive romp through time featuring strong group vocals, swinging rhythms and sharp instrumental work. The group plays music of the classic Jug Bands of Memphis, String Bands of Mississippi, and Swing Bands of the Urban North. These include early Blues and Rhythm & Blues, novelty tunes, standards, New Orleans jazz and Hillbilly music. The Busted Jug Band pushes the “Jug idiom” beyond its historical confines. Homemade instruments are used and also modified with modern techniques for maximum impact. Vaudevillian sigh gags, bad jokes and colorful stage attire round out the show, and fun reigns supreme.