Salon du Swing™
The music, everything, was perfect.
In my experience I have always been pleased and amazed at how perfectly Pete Leinonen understands and accommodates my musical event needs. I have called Pete many times and referred friends to him over and over and he has always gotten rave reviews from both hosts and guests alike. I love the way he can put together a custom band to fit the occasion and provide the top notch quality players that he does. A joy to work with and a true professional, Pete's number is the only one I need.
...a real plus in Seattle.
I'm going to pass along your email to Pete Leinonen, the master bassist and lead musician I think will put together an excellent ensemble for your wedding and the party. My advice is to use his experience and expertise to the hilt, which means I'd strongly suggest involving him in helping shape both the music for the ceremony, the music for the party, and the specific instrumentation (based on what he knows about the musicians). Pete has been to hundreds more weddings that any of us and knows a lot about what works, what doesn't, and what ends up sounding great but then doesn't work. He's really a pro, and easy to work with.
—Dean Paton, Living Traditions
Radio Rhythm Orchestra™ comments from early CD purchasers
The two-disc album is wonderful. Holte's musicality amazes me.
We may be ordering more CDs because we absolutely love Radio Rhythm. It's such happy music and would make a great gift for friends.
What a great tribute to John! A labor of love, lovingly put together. The cover art and notes plus the program are so impressive. This is about the sweetest thing I can think of, and so much feeling… just the most beautiful thing!
comments from critics
This music has held me captive from the first time I put it into my CD player. How this music is not
better known is beyond me.
---Gary Bannister, Victory Review, June, 2005
astounding authenticity... irresitably bouncy jump tunes with all the tricks of dynamics and
instrumental contrast that characterized the originsal swing bands...breathtaking degrees
chordal and melodic sophistication without sacrificing accessability.
---Doug Bright, Heritage Music Review, July, 2005
We simply think this classy big band is the swing dancer's best friend.
northwest dance network winter/spring 2006 newsletter
Fun, reverent, spontaneous and anarchic...something they call "post-modern classic jass". It's roots-rattling New Orleans-style jazz with a big sound that leaves plenty of room for even bigger imaginations. The group is known for parading through the audience and turning the show into a Mardi Gras-style party.
—Cathy Ragland, Seattle Times, December 21, 1987
Unique...the way Frank Zappa would play it if he were to start a brass band.
—Federal Way News
Brassy, boisterous rags, marches, and two-steps.
—Carla Sabotta, Seattle Times
A parading horn band, Muskrat Rabble added a true taste of New Orleans traditional music. Even the ever-present homeless seemed to be having a good time.
—Roberta Penn, Seattle Post Intelligencer
Olde Seattle Rhythm Band™
Joyful jump swing!
—Victory Music Review, August, 1988
The Pete Leinonen Band™
Pete Leinonen on bass is a real talent and should emerge as one of the region's top players.
—Victory Music Review, December 1976
This is not toy jazz; this is the real thing!
—Mile Nestrovich, legendary hi-fi designer, 1980
—The Rocket, Best of 1981
PETE LEINONEN: REAL JAZZ MUSIC OUTLIVES RELICS
by Steven J. (Jesse) Bernstein
reprinted from Arts Focus, with permission
Jazz is not a school of music, it is someplace to go, and the jazz musician is the driver. The jazz nightclub is like a depot. People hang around with their baggage, kissing, talking, getting on board and going for a ride. That's how it is, and how it's made to act on the soul.
Much of the generation which grew up listening to and living with jazz (so many of whom are now stuffed into a static blend of memory and ambition) visit jazz clubs these days as if they were visiting a familiar museum to refresh the details of the past. They buy tickets to see a stunted, atrophied statue of something that is, in fact, alive and well someplace else. For whatever you've heard to the contrary, jazz is alive and it's about the same age as it was when it was born.
In other words, jazz is not some curious relic. It's still pumping blood, which is one reason why a new audience — younger and more often associated with other types of music — is showing up at the less stiff clubs to listen.
One of the best places to catch a ride is anyplace where Pete Leinonen's band is playing. A tight, original, 100-percent all-business band, Leinonen and company can take a tune from the '40s, shake it out like a bed sheet, and show you that it's still brand new. And they don't do it by distorting the work or mixing some kind of fake modernizing on it. They do it by playing the music.
This band isn't stuck in an era any more than jazz is. There is no distinction between the freshness of a work from the '30s and music written two days ago. In fact, the band features a lot of original compositions by Leinonen, who is also bandleader, arranger and bassist for the group. And if you've never seen Leinonen work this bass, that's a ride all by itself. •