It’s always a pleasure to see an act that is completely unique. Something they do is without a doubt nothing like any other group that you have ever seen. Their show, their gimmick, their music, takes you on a musical journey letting your mind roam freely. Within the band Strictly Jug Nuts, they have captured a live music show that is incredible, original, and leaves a warm feeling within you after they are done.
Strictly Jug Nuts came out to wow the crowd and show off their talent as they always do. Band leader Skip Landt hasn’t been playing banjo for a long time, but he has advanced well on his instrument of choice. For the kind of music being played it may not be the most technically difficult pieces, but to your ears it is magical. Landt helps lead this group of ten musicians into a masterful presentation every time they play.
The group covers some old songs such as “Summer-time” and “My Blue Heaven” that are done in their own style. They move along, chugging through music so effortlessly and always leaves a smile on the face of the onlookers from ear to ear. What an incredible act to see and they continue to amaze audiences.
In 2009, Strictly Jug Nuts was the winner of the Battle of the Jug bands competition. They beat out some great groups during their run for the head spot, but no one could’ve beaten them. The group is just that good. For the 2010 competition, they were invited back to lead off the competition with an unfortunate rule. The previous year’s winner can play as an exhibitionist, but they aren’t eligible to win. The group took the stage at the Irish American Heritage Center (4626 North Knox Avenue - Chicago, IL 60630) with their heads held high. All ten of them were proud to be back and they played as if they were going for the win. If they would’ve been able to qualify, they would’ve been in the running for the main spot again.
They played a few songs leaving your jaw on the floor. The song “Ragmama” was a great little number that had a nice feel to it. The song flowed as it was driven by the musicians. People tapped their feet to the sounds as the songs moved along. They also played three other wonderful numbers; “Richmond Woman Blues,” “You Shouldn’t Say That,” and “29 Ways.” It was a perfect selection of songs for this crowd that came out. Everyone was happy to see this group perform.
Five incredible bands entered the competition with the winner based on audience votes. Bands that entered the competition were: One More Thump, The Schticklers, The Hump Night Thumpers, The Slap & Tickle Band, and The Barehand Jugband. In the end, The Schticklers, claimed the top seat and Strictly Jug Nuts had to pass the torch on to a very deserving band of musicians.
In 2011, Strictly Jug Nuts will be back in the competition fired up and ready to go. As they practice their music and prepare for each and every show, they do so as if it is a competition. They pour their hearts and souls into the music; living their dreams of being a working musician. They are one of the most unique groups in the city of Chicago and really something to see. Strictly Jug Nuts is just awesome. Next years competition can’t come soon enough.
Musicians in the band Strictly Jug Nuts are:
Skip Landt – Banjo, Vocals
Chuck Krauser – Guitar, Vocals
David Kachelon – Harp, Vocals
Fran Landt – Jug, Kazoo, Vocals
Andy David – Guitar, Vocals
Ginny Morin – Spoons, Kazoo, Vocals
Richard Stowell – Mandolin, Vocals
Jacob Fishman – Washboard, Vocals
Petrie Fishman – Kitchenware, Vocals
Steve Brownstein – Electric Washtub Bass