Big Bad Voodoo Daddy Tickets for Sale

The 1996 film Swingers brought the West Coast Swing Revival scene to the rest of the country. Big Bad Voodoo Daddy were the house band for the club in the film, and they were quickly signed to a major label as a result. Like other retro bands -- Cherry Poppin' Daddies, for instance -- their sound seems to owe as much to old cartoons, rock 'n 'roll, and Oingo Boingo as to '40s (or even '50s) Swing music.

The most immediately successful exponents of the new swing boom that swept the southern Californian marketplace in the late 90s, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy established their reputation with a weekly residency at the Derby dancehall in Los Angeles. Though they had been around for some time, their profile increased substantially when they made a cameo appearance in the 1996 independent movie, Swingers. The band had been founded in Ventura, California, in 1989 by vocalist and guitarist Scotty Morris, an established session musician in the area.
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His first exposure to big band swing came, aged nine, when he heard Cab Calloway's "Minnie The Moocher" sung during a Betty Boop cartoon. Big Bad Voodoo Daddy finally gave him the chance to pursue the style further, after he had become disillusioned with the local music scene. The group grew from a trio to eventually include Dirk Shumaker (bass/vocals), Kurt Sodergren (drums/percussion), Karl Hunter (saxophones), Glen "The Kid" Marhevka (trumpet/vocals), Andy "Lucious" Rowley (saxophone/vocals), Jeff Harris (trombone) and Josh Levy (piano/vocals).

They played gigs throughout the west coast, and released two albums on their own Big Bad Records. Their biggest break, however, came when they took over the Wednesday night residency at the Derby from previous incumbents the Royal Crown Revue, in 1995. The director of Swingers, Jon Favreau, became a regular visitor and befriended the band. Their signature tune, "You & Me & The Bottle Makes Three Tonight (Baby)", was included on the movie soundtrack, while "Cruel Spell" was featured in the same year's Party Of Five. The attention focused on the swing revival by the success of Swingers led to the band being contacted by producer Brad Benedict, of Capitol Records' Ultra-Lounge compilation series.

As a result, Benedict was inspired to start up the EMI/Capitol Records' subsidiary Coolsville, with Big Bad Voodoo Daddy's third album (their second to be self-titled) becoming its first release. The album featured several winning Morris originals, including "You & Me & The Bottle Makes Three Tonight (Baby)" and "Mr. Pinstripe Suit", and a perfunctory cover version of Calloway's "Minnie The Moocher". The album went on to achieve gold sales and be nominated for a 1999 Grammy Award. The follow-up, This Beautiful Life, was released in October of that year.
DISCOGRAPHY: Big Bad Voodoo Daddy (Big Bad 1994), Whatchu' Want For Christmas? (Big Bad 1995), Big Bad Voodoo Daddy (Coolsville/Capitol 1998), This Beautiful Life (Coolsville/Capitol 1999), Save My Soul (Vanguard 2003).