Jayne Ann Bugda
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy will open the season at the Wiltsie Center at the Historic Castle in Hazleton with a performance on Friday, Oct. 18, at 8 p.m.
Tickets for the event, which is sponsored by Mericle Commercial Real Estate Services, will go on sale to Castle Club members on Wednesday, Aug. 28, and to the public at 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 31. Tickets may be purchased through the Wiltsie Center’s website at www.wiltsiecenter.org or at Ticketmaster retail outlets, including select Boscov’s and Walmart locations. Tickets range in price from $19 to $45.
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy hit pop music superstardom with their appearance in front of millions during the halftime show of the 1999 Super Bowl, while their 2003 New Orleans-inspired album “Save My Soul” shifted focus to playing theaters, performing arts centers and large outdoor venues to selling out shows at the Hollywood Bowl, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Lincoln Center, Chastain Park and Constitution Hall, to name just a few. The band often plays more than 150 shows a year and has appeared as special guests with many of the great American symphony orchestras including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra and U.S. Air Force Band.
The band has built a career through relentless touring and an impressive discography that includes the platinum-selling Americana Deluxe and follow-ups “This Beautiful Life,” “Save My Soul” and “Everything You Want For Christmas.” Their music has appeared in countless films, television shows and trailers including “Swingers,” “The Wild,” “Despicable Me,” “Family Guy,” “Phineas and Ferb,” “Malcolm in the Middle” and “Ally McBeal,” as well as multiple uses of songs for dance routines on “Dancing With The Stars” and “So You Think You Can Dance.” The band’s songs have also been featured in multiple Olympic gymnastic and figure skating routines (including Carly Patterson’s 2004 gold medal win) and have been widely used for years as part of television broadcasts of high profile sporting events including the NFL, NBA, MLB and PGA.
2013 marks the 20th anniversary of Big Bad Voodoo Daddy’s remarkable arrival onto the music scene. In the band’s first years, having secured their legendary residency at the Derby nightclub in Los Angeles, they reminded the world—in the middle of the grunge era, no less—that it was still cool to swing, big-band style.
Today, the high-energy nine-piece ensemble continues the party and takes things to the next level with the release of “Rattle Them Bones.” The follow-up to the much lauded 2009 release, “How Big Can You Get?: The Music of Cab Calloway, Rattle Them Bones” still urges their millions of fans worldwide to shake and move to their inimitable grooves while also expanding their horizons with new musical inspiration and influence.
The band, co-founded by Scotty Morris and drummer Kurt Sodergren, made their debut in their hometown of Ventura, Calif., in April of 1993, helping to usher in the swing revival founded on a colorful fusion of classic American sounds including jazz, swing and dixieland mixed with the energy and spirit of contemporary culture. They proved to be among the standout groups that launched the new swing era in the ’90s. The group, whose core lineup has been in place since 1995, includes Scotty Morris (lead vocals and guitar), Kurt Sodergren (drums and percussion), Dirk Shumaker (double bass and vocals), Andy Rowley (baritone saxophone and vocals), Glen “The Kid” Marhevka (trumpet), Karl Hunter (saxophones and clarinet) and Joshua Levy (piano and arranger). Joining them on the road are Anthony Bonsera Jr. (lead trumpet) and Alex Henderson (trombone).
Although music by other composers has been featured on each of the band’s albums, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy has always focused on original music, producing an impressively diverse songbook, while embracing the past and today’s times with current perspective and new stories to tell. The band’s originals rocketed the group into its first phase of stardom when “You & Me and the Bottle Makes Three (Tonight)” and “Go Daddy-O” were featured in the 1996 indie film landmark “Swingers.” The film launched the careers of Vince Vaughn and Jon Favreau and established Big Bad Voodoo Daddy as a cultural force beyond their home base of L.A.
The Wiltsie Center at the Historic Castle is located at the Alice C. Wiltsie Performing Arts Center at Hazleton Elementary/Middle School, 700 N. Wyoming St. in Hazleton.
For more information, visit www.wiltsiecenter.org or www.facebook.com/wiltsiecenter or call toll-free 1-855-WILTSIE (1-855-945-8743).