Notes and Testimonials

Press and other news…..

“Hoppin’ John Orchestra’s Reunion Days hits the sweet spot between jazz, blues, soul, ska, and swing. From the festive Mardi Gras spirit of “King Cake” to the Latin groove of “El Sueno” to the pop charm of “Hollywood,” this superb album has it all: alluring female vocals, a masterful horn section, pumpin’ piano, and a propulsive rhythm section. It’s addicting!”
– Holly George-Warren


From Philadelphia Weekly 8/1-8/8/08

“After a decade in business, this eclectic local band has a long-awaited self-titled CD  and seems in prime mood to celebrate. Led by bassist/trombonist/arranger Mike Hood, the 10-piece unit bills itself as “Philly’s only Southern-fried jazz orchestra.” That would seem to entail horns galore and a taste for New Orleans second-line grooves, jump blues,  good-time funk, vintage R&B, early jazz and the odd smoky ballad. The CD playlist features a slowed-down “I Hear You Knockin’,” along with Ellington and Charlie Shavers goodies and a helping of Hood’s originals too. With dollops of tuba and banjo and big-band power in a small package, it’s hard not to like.” (D.R.A.)


From the Philadelphia City Paper Blog 3/8/08


Yes, our own secondliners Hoppin’ John, did pull ‘em over there. No seats in front of the stage, so all the blue hairs croweded in where the dancing should’ve been taking place, looking for all the world that given enough time, they were gonna eventually shake it.  Hoppin’ John is reason I’d dream braving those crowds. They are one of this city’s under-utilized forces of nature. Beats? Clean and hotly syncopated. Horns? Blasting and no hesitation on intonation. They’ll be playing daylight hours through Sunday (last day of show)… close your eyes, feel the heat of the crowd, catch the drift of jasmine and gardenia, hyacinth and narcissus in the air and, yeah, you can be in NOLA for a minute.”


From Philadelphia Weekly 12/27/6-1/2/07

“On original material like ‘Melvin Pervis Gets His Man’ and ‘Bayou Biscuit,’ Philly’s Hoppin’ John Orchestra bring home the bacon, raise the roof and burn down the mission. Jamming the blues on equal parts Dixieland, Dixie-funk, traditional jazz and early rock ‘n’ roll, this eight-piece band of local jazz scholars has been mixing styles and blowing minds since 1996. Far from purists, Hoppin’ John count Darius Milhaud and Raymond Scott among their influences, lending a seamless sense of texture and ease to their music that escapes more traditional jazz outfits. Now if only Hoppin’ John would release a CD.”


Other notable news:

Our first CD was released on leap day!  February 29th 2008  

We performed at the 2008 Philadelphia Flower Show.  Shows were 3 times a day for 8 days and included a New Orleans style 2nd line parade and stage performance!

We performed at the 12th and 13th Annual Millennium Music Conferences in Harrisburg PA February 2008 and 2009.

We were selected to perform at the 6th Annual Mid-Atlantic Music Conference in Charlotte NC November 9th and 10th 2007

We were a 2007 finalist in the Disc Makers Independent Music World Series!

We have been the featured performer at the last three (2008, 2009 and 2010) Brewer’s Plate Benefit in Philadelphia.

We performed live on NYC Cable TV on Jason ”Mallet Man” Taylor’s Mallet’s Place TV show in late 2009.

We were excited to be a part of 2009’s Philly Fringe Festival as part of the Big Fun show with the Vaudvillains New Year’s Brigade

We have performed at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts for both New Year’s Day 2010 and this year’s Summer Solstice Celebration!