Cakewalkin’ Jass Band Celebrates 50th

Ray Heitger, leader of the Toledo-based Cakewalkin’ Jass Band, announces that the band is about to celebrate its fiftieth anniversary. Says Heitger, “We played our first gig Friday, December 8, 1967, at the Bonnie Bar on Western Avenue. We started at Tony Packo’s Café Wednesday, July 3, 1968. We’re one of the oldest continuously working New Orleans-style bands in the country.

“We will be celebrating this milestone with a weekend of jazz at the East Side Tony Packo’s Café. The weekend will start Friday, December 8, 2017 (fifty years to the day) and continue through Saturday and Sunday.”

Explore Upbeat Records

The Cakewalkin’ Jass Band features Ray Heitger, clarinet and soprano sax; Dave Kosmyna, cornet; Russ Damschroder, trombone; Betsy Grafing, banjo; Buddy Lopez, drums; Rick Grafing, piano; Bob Miller, string bass; and Nicole Heitger, vocals. They will also appear at Grugelfest in Perrysburg, Ohio (near Toledo), September 8-10, 2017.

Read our review and see pictures of the event: Cakewalkin’ Jass Band Celebrates 50 Years

Find more at

UpBeat Records

Andy Senior is the Publisher of The Syncopated Times and on occasion he still gets out a Radiola! podcast for our listening pleasure.

Or look at our Subscription Options.