Inspired by the swinging, hedonistic atmosphere of the one American city that overcame the Great Depression, the Kansas Smitty's House Band stands apart from all other groups currently populating London's booming 1930s music scene, achieving an authenticity of style and virtuosity without rival. Perhaps the only London jazz band to own their own bar, the Smittys are fast becoming the UK band best known for recreating the true atmosphere of the USA prohibition era.
Their primary style is instrumental swing, incorporating the sounds of New Orleans Dixieland, classic big band swing and straight-ahead 1950s bebop. Their enormous repertoire also encompasses Parisian gypsy swing masters such as Django Reinhardt, the Latin and Cuban street sounds of New Orleans Mardi Gras, and an array of influences from blues to bossa nova. The band features anything from four to eight players, covering repertoire from giants of the genre including Count Basie, Fats Waller, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstong and Sidney Bechet.
The Smitty's stage presence is pure dynamism, combining a deep, collective understanding and love of the jazz tradition with a lightness of touch and a sense of adventure. Bandmates rejoice in each other's playing and push one another on to higher ground in their improvisations. They have quickly established themselves as the most exciting young jazz band in London, enjoying residencies at venues including Ronnie Scotts, the 606 Club, the Vortex Jazz Club, Mayfair Arts Club, Shoreditch House, Servants Jazz Quarters, Vault Festival and many more.
Possessing authenticity, sophistication and a sense of fun in equal measure, The Kansas Smitty's are a one of a kind proposition for weddings, parties and private events. As consummate masters in their craft, they know how to blend what they do to suit your event whilst exuding the cool glow of critical acclaim. As a client seeking the best in live music for a private or corporate market, you couldn't be in safer hands. The Kansas Smitty's Big 4 (4-piece) and House Band (5-8 piece) are now available for private & corporate events.
THE KANSAS SMITTY'S HOUSE BAND
This is the band's primary incarnation and is a sure fire way to guarantee your event takes flight. Playing classics from the entire jazz tradition, the line up ranges from 5 to 8 piece, comprising soprano sax/clarinet, guitar, trumpet, piano and drums, then expanding up to an 8 piece with upright bass, alto saxophone, and tuba. The band is suited for a wide range of events, as their experience, virtuosity and instinct for a party allow them to instantly read a room. They are able to create an infectiously lively atmosphere for dancing as well as provide a more background ambiance if required.
SMITTY'S BIG FOUR
Smitty's Big Four is the feisty little brother of the House Band, specialising in ragtime and early jazz. The Big Four's unique combination of trumpet, soprano sax/clarinet, guitar and bass, separates the group from traditional Dixieland groups with the omission of drums and piano. This streamlined formation allows the band to navigate New Orleans and swing standards with unparalleled energy and tightness while maintaining the melodic integrity of the canon.
This line-up is lightweight and functional. Being completely acoustic it is perfect for background music or can equally well provide an eclectic focus of entertainment.
SMITTY'S ROAM FREE
Various configurations of Kansas Smitty's are able to offer a roaming or wandering musical experience for guests at events. This is particularly charming for garden parties or drinks gatherings where people may themselves be spread over a large space. The band is able to interact with small groups in a delightful exchange which always receives rave reviews. Kansas Smitty's have even performed as part of large parade events - a spectacular visual and musical experience.
The Kansas Smitty's have the energy of Kerouac, the spirit of Mephistopheles and more raw talent than the Renaissance.
They are such talented musicians and set the tone for the evening perfectly.
I have rarely enjoyed working with a band more than Kansas Smitty’s Big Four. All of the members play sensationally well - and are darned nice with it! If you get a chance to book them – do. You won’t regret it.
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