By tia Lynn Ivey
It’s 2016, but for one night, Madison’s Town Park was alive with the old-time sounds of America’s jazziest era. The Hobohemians, an Athens-based band, filled the Town Park stage with their retro musical fusions, which harken back to the 1920s and 1930s.
According to the band’s website, “The term ‘Hobohemian’ denotes a unique form of Americanized vagabond-style bohemianism which guides the group’s approach towards popular American and European roots music of the 1910’s, 20’s, and 30’s: a potent mix of proto-jazz, blues, and folk.”
The band is comprised of six eclectic and talented members. Antoon “Antman” Speters, who contributes vocals, lead guitar, dobro, mandolin and banjo. According to the Hobohemians website, “He has played music professionally for over 40 years. He’s well-known in the Athens area as a member of String Theory, Green Flag, North Georgia Bluegrass Band, and formally of Short Road Home and Curley Maple.”
John Amoss plays piano, accordion, rhythm guitar, ukulele, xylophone, harmonica and sings vocals. Amoss is presently from Gainesville. John has been a member of The Decatur-based Nervous Ticks, The Gimmees, and Gainesville’s The Terminal Degrees.
Bill Hollingsworth Oglesby plays baritone sax, flute, vocals and gong. He is also a member of The Knockouts, Incatepec, The Nairobi Trio, The Soul Pleasers, and has played and recorded with Deerhunter and Packway Handle.
Susan Staley sings and plays guitar, ukulele, snare and “thwacky things.” She has been part of the Solstice Sisters, String Theory, and hosts Athen’s Folk and dance Society’s monthy music show, The Hoot.
Dick “DDBass” Daniels sings and plays acoustic standup bass. He is also a member of String Theory, North Georgia Bluegrass Band, The Wampus Cat Skinners, The Downwind Boys, and others. Joe Ellison sings and plays the drum kit and various “percussion thing-a-majigs.” He is a member of Klezmer Local 42, The Original Screwtops, and The Artie Ball Swing Band.
The Hobohemians will next perform in Athens on September 7 at Creature Comforts at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.