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Cherry Poppin' Daddies

Although Cherry Poppin' Daddies became a popular act during the swing revival of the late 1990s, the eight-piece band formed one decade prior in Eugene, Oregon. Vocalist Steve Perry (aka MC Large Drink, a nickname intended to distance Perry from the famous Journey frontman) and bassist Dan Schmid initially crossed paths at the University of Oregon, and a shared interest in punk music convinced the students to leave school and pursue a band. After playing together in the Jazz Greats and St. Huck, the duo shifted gears in 1989 by forming Cherry Poppin' Daddies, a unique band whose lineup gradually encompassed guitarist Jason Moss, drummer Tim Donahue, trumpeter Dana Heitman, saxophonists Sean Flannery and Ian Early, and keyboard player Dustin Lanker. The musicians' dedication to ska, swing, jazz, and jump blues made them oddities in the Northwest, where grunge had already begun its reign. Nonetheless, Cherry Poppin' Daddies enjoyed a brief surge of success several years later, when the popularity of "Zoot Suit Riot" helped launch a nationwide swing music revival.

Once formed, it didn't take long for the Cherry Poppin' Daddies to attract attention in the Northwest. Their performances were riddled with theatrics, phallic props, and lavish costumes, making them the recipients of much curiosity and a fair amount of backlash. Moreover, the music mixed elements of swing and jazz with punky rock & roll, while a horn section populated the group's eight-person lineup. The resulting sound was both energetic and unconventional, but America was in the midst of its love affair with grunge, and Cherry Poppin' Daddies' earliest records -- 1990's Ferociously Stoned and 1994's Rapid City Muscle Car -- proved to be little more than cult favorites.

By the mid-'90s, the country's fascination with formerly neglected musical styles (including easy listening, lounge, and swing) had increased the band's prominence, along with similar groups like Squirrel Nut Zippers and Royal Crown Revue. The band's third album, Kids on the Street, benefited from such increased interest, and its popularity earned Cherry Poppin' Daddies a distribution deal with Caroline Records. Lacking the money to record a new album, the band chose instead to cater to America's slowly building swing craze by compiling the most swing-oriented tracks from their back catalog. The result was 1997's Zoot Suit Riot, a compilation that also featured four new tracks. One such track was the titular "Zoot Suit Riot," which became a surprise Top 40 hit in 1998 and helped pave the way for such revivalist bands as Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and Brian Setzer Orchestra. The album had sold more than two million copies by 2000, but the swing craze had already begun to fizzle out, resulting in poor sales for the follow-up effort, Soul Caddy.

As touring opportunities dried up, the band took a temporary hiatus. Lanker and Schmid turned their attention to a side project, Visible Men, while Perry returned to the University of Oregon to receive an undergraduate degree. Cherry Poppin' Daddies began touring again in 2002, although activity was limited to sporadic shows until 2008, when the release of the Latin-flavored Susquehanna prompted the group to launch their first full-length tour in years. In 2009, the group released the Skaboy JFK: The Skankin' Hits of the Cherry Poppin' Daddies, a collection of ska culled from their early albums.

Over the next few years, the Cherry Poppin' Daddies toured regularly, adjusting their lineup slightly as they went. In 2012, the group started a PledgeMusic campaign to raise funds so they could complete their next album, White Teeth, Black Thoughts. Their PledgeMusic campaign was successful and the album was released in July of 2013. The band's first album of all swing-oriented music since 1997's compilation Zoot Suit Riot, White Teeth, Black Thoughts is also the first Cherry Poppin' Daddies album to include cover songs. ~ Andrew Leahey & John Bush
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Skaboy Jfk

1. Skaboy Jfk

2. Hi And Lo

3. Soul Cadillac

4. Sockable Face Club

5. Slapstick

6. End Of The Night

7. Pool Shark

8. Cosa Nostra

9. Don Quixote

10. Hammerblow

11. 2:29

12. Say It To My Face

x

Track List: Susquehanna

1. Bust Out

2. The Mongoose And The Snake

3. Hi & Lo

4. Blood Orange Sun

5. White Trash Toodle Oo

6. Julie Grave

7. Roseanne

8. Hammerblow

9. Tom The Lion

10. Wingtips

11. Breathe

12. The Good Things

13. Arrancate

x

Track List: Soul Caddy

1. Diamond Light Boogie

2. Swinging With Tiger Woods

3. God Is A Spider

4. Stay Don't Just Stay

5. Grand Mal

6. Soul Cadillac

7. Irish Whiskey

8. So Long Toots

9. My Mistake

10. End Of The Night

11. Bleeding Ceremony

12. Uncle Ray

13. Saddest Thing I Know

x

Track List: Zoot Suit Riot - The Swingin' Hits Of The Cherry Poppin' Daddies

1. Zoot Suit Riot

2. Ding-Dong Daddy Of The D-Car Line

3. When I Change Your Mind

4. Here Comes The Snake

5. Mister White Keys

6. Come Back to Me

7. Brown Derby Jump

8. Dr. Bones

9. Pink Elephant

10. Master And Slave

11. Drunk Daddy

12. No Mercy For Swine

13. Cherry Poppin' Daddy Strut

14. Shake Your Lovemaker + Zoot Suit Riot (Spanish)

Comments

Report as inappropriate
Males me want a zoot suit.
Report as inappropriate
xmfrederique
OMG!!! You guys so-o-o-o rock my world with those beats, those rythms, those swingin progressions . . . . oh-h-h-h.... and those horns, those guitar, lol. You know.... you make make me wanna....
Report as inappropriate
drew1286
All of their songs have a good tune to them! I'm a fan.
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Email me back ty
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Iam looking for the song about A murder that happened at sleepy Lagoon it was apart why the roits started
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giantbabykit t y
I'm in love ������������
Report as inappropriate
IMPOSSIBLE to sit still when these cats play...... Dance on...
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Da Snake was a good friend of mine........
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In the words of Thomas O'Malley the alley cat, these cats can swing
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Saw them in 98 at a small venue in AZ opening for the specials...b e s t night ever pre camera phone days
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mcdriver1
I dig this music can't stay still
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God!! I just love them so much!!!!!
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ubergringo
I'm still digging on the Daddies. Trying to get the local karaoke DJ to get some for me.
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This is living!
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bn21502
My husband was so surprise that dancing to their music, my legs went up the wall. When you dance you dance to the beat. I love it. I wish my children would learn. Music makes me very very very happy.
Report as inappropriate
If you think these guys are a swing revival band, you're missing the point. These guys can cut it in multiple genres--funk , punk, etc. Filled with hardcore social commentary and a scathing sense of humor.
Report as inappropriate
A reminder of one of the most powerful eras in music.
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Swing makes me happy.
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I saw these guys at the peak of the retro ska/swing era at the Bluebird Theater in Denver. Awesome show! Nice bunch of dudes too!
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redxdestiny
Steve Perry is quite the gentleman. Met the man in person a few years ago. He is a total sweetheart!
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zorkoff
THAT IS SOME GOOOOD STUFF!!! GO MAN GO!!! YEAH!!!
Report as inappropriate
pnwfwp
Just saw CPD last night in Tacoma, WA! Even got Steve Perry's autograph as the band was leaving the stage!! Excellent music!
Report as inappropriate
When are zoot suits going to come back in style for people other than pimps?
Report as inappropriate
They played in Tennessee in June and they put on a great high energy show that just makes you want to jump jive and wail.
Report as inappropriate
yalgh
Zoot Suit Riot? Yeah.. Letss..Go... Y E A !
Report as inappropriate
Perfect RX for any blue day.
Report as inappropriate
The Daddies are down n dirty up front in your face music. I went to school with most of the original members. I saw them a month ago, and they still rock.
Report as inappropriate
swingggggggg g g g g g g baby
Report as inappropriate
royal crown revue is best by far but swing is everywhere ethan dl, just gotta know it. check out big sandy and his fly-rite boys too. good western swing band that still plays alot
Report as inappropriate
Man, why isn't swing everywhere all the time? Out of all the artists I've heard in swing, these guys are some of the best.
Report as inappropriate
I haven't seen them in forever but the Daddies are still so fun to listen to.
Report as inappropriate
boxpan9
DAMN'RIGHT! I DON'T THINK "WHO" ARE "THE DING DONG DADDY OF THE D-CAR LINE."
Report as inappropriate
Hell yeah.
Report as inappropriate
i love this band they make want to get up and dance
Report as inappropriate
Love this group!! They have a great live show - very entertaining . "Soul Caddy" really swings

"Swing the Damn club!"

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