a string and brass band playing really old dance-music from New Orleans
Formed in New Orleans in from several street performing groups, Frog & Henry perform and record old dance and jazz music from the early 1900's on brass and string instruments, with several singers and vocal harmony. Most of our repertoire was obtained by digging up forgotten songs from the dawn of recorded music, in the form of early dance tunes, and from even earlier 19thc sheet music.
What makes us a "string and brass band" is that every musician in the group is able to several instruments: brass and its string counterpart. For example: violin lead is as common in our repertoire as saxophone and clarinet; sometimes we feature trombone and at other times its role is taken over by slide guitar or tenor banjo; over the course of a song you'll hear sections alternating from double-reed counterpoint to violin and mandolin-banjo harmony; the rhythm section, while typically tuba, washboard, and guitar will occasionally drop out for solo piano or guitar and mandolin-banjo over baritone sax as bass. And we've designed a foot-operated tuba that allows one person to play tuba and guitar simultaneously.
The instruments we bring to our shows: tuba, baritone saxophone, violin, clarinet, banjo-mandolin, six-string and tenor guitars. Our typical 5 members can be increased to 8 or 10 if requested.
2018's concert series in W.Europe represents the result of active playing, traveling, and research over the past ten years - of living, partying, and peforming in New Orleans - and finally arriving at an ensemble sound that comes as close as we've ever been able to acheive to that of the earliest N.O. jazz and dance bands.
Frog&Henry's members also play with The Hokum High Rollers, The Loose Marbles, Tuba Skinny, The Cable Street Rag Band (click links to listen).
Some of our influences: The Dixieland Jug Blowers, Frenchy's Stringband, Lionel Belasco, Leecan & Cooksey, Sara Martin, King Oliver, Johnny Dodds and others (click on links to listen).