Big Sky Mudflaps

 
    The Big Sky Mudflaps are celebrating 40 years of performing together!!  Their unique sound-- a blend of jazz, swing and rhythm & blues with a healthy dose of Latin percussion -- has won them national acclaim.  The Mudflaps have earned praise from the New York Times, the Village Voice, Billboard, Esquire Magazine, and many other publications. 
    The Big Sky Mudflaps have shared concert billing with such internationally known artists as Ray Charles, Muddy Waters, Dizzy Gillespie, Dave Brubeck and Riders in the Sky.  They have made featured appearances on the NBC Today Show, as well as on National Public Radio's "Prairie Home Companion." 
    Their festival appearances include the KOOL (Newport/New York) Jazz Festival, the Telluride (Colorado) Jazz Festival, the Port Townsend (Washington) Jazz Festival, the Northern Rockies Folk Festival (Sun Valley, Idaho), and the Flathead Festival (Montana), among others.
    The Big Sky Mudflaps have recorded five albums:  "ARMCHAIR CABARET,"  "SENSIBLE SHOES,"  "SHAKE, RATTLE & ROLL,"  "ARMCHAIR CABARET LIVE," AND "COLD DUCK TIME."  All are currently available on CD from SPUD RECORDS. 
ORDERING AND CONTACT INFORMATION:  
BIG SKY MUDFLAPS, 408 VILLAGE PLACE, MISSOULA MT 59840  / 406-543-7966 / email: lohorgan@yahoo.com



BAND PERSONNEL:

Rich Brinkman ---- drums & vocals
David Horgan -----  guitar & vocals
Beth Lo ------------   bass& vocals
Maureen Powell ---  bass & vocals
Bob Packwood / Jim Rogers (only one at a time!) -------   keyboards 

Chuck Florence ---   saxophone & clarinet
   

 

Big Sky Mudflaps 
BOOKINGS OR CDS CONTACT:   
       David Horgan
        408 Village Place 
        Missoula, MT 59802
        (406) 543-7966  // 
email: lohorgan@yahoo.com

                
                          On the NBC TODAY SHOW (with young tom Brokaw) 1981
 

                               At the Top Hat Lounge, Missoula, MT  (with washtub bass) 1975

Big Sky Mudflaps expanded edition, 2012 /  Steve Powell (1951-2013) 2nd from left, front row
Big Sky Mudflaps History
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Big Sky Mudflaps
THE HISTORICAL ARCHIVES
 
    THE Big Sky Mudflaps FORMED IN 1975 (YES FOLKS, THAT'S 40 YEARS AGO!...AND COUNTING!!) IN HAMILTON, MONTANA.  ORIGINAL MEMBERS WERE DAVID HORGAN ON GUITAR, MICHAEL LEA ON DRUMS, BETH LO ON BASS, DEXTER PAYNE ON SAXOPHONE, MAUREEN POWELL ALSO ON BASS, AND STEVE POWELL ON PIANO.  THE GROUP PLAYED ROADHOUSES AND CLUBS UP AND DOWN THE BITTERROOT VALLEY AND IN MISSOULA, AND WITHIN A SHORT TIME BRANCHED OUT TO PLACES LIKE SPOKANE, BOZEMAN, HELENA, BILLINGS, & THE SEATTLE AREA.  THEY PLAYED AN ECLECTIC RANGE OF CLASSIC AMERICAN MUSIC, FOCUSING ON SWING AND RHYTHM & BLUES, AND FOUND THAT AUDIENCES LIKED THE SOUND.  
   
THE FLAPS RELEASED THEIR FIRST ALBUM, "ARMCHAIR CABARET," IN 1979, WHICH WAS CRITICALLY ACCLAIMED AND OPENED THE DOOR TO A WIDER AUDIENCE.  THE GROUP BEGAN TOURING NATIONALLY, APPEARING AT CLUBS, COLLEGES, AND MAJOR JAZZ AND FOLK FESTIVALS.  THEY MADE TWO LIVE APPEARANCES ON THE NBC "TODAY SHOW" IN 1981 AND 1982 AND FOR SEVERAL YEARS WERE SEMI-REGULAR GUESTS ON NPR'S "PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION."   THEIR SECOND ALBUM, "SENSIBLE SHOES", WAS RELEASED IN 1983 AND WAS SELECTED BY BILLBOARD MAGAZINE AS ONE OF ITS NOTABLE ALBUMS FOR THAT YEAR.  THESE FIRST TWO RECORDS FEATURED APPEARANCES BY SINGER JUDY RODERICK AND VIOLINIST ROB SANDERS, BOTH MEMBERS OF THE GROUP IN THE LATE 70S / EARLY 80S.  THE BAND PERFORMED FREQUENTLY ON THE EAST AND WEST COASTS, AND RECEIVED RAVE REVIEWS IN THE NEW YORK TIMES, VILLAGE VOICE, LOS ANGELES TIMES, ESQUIRE MAGAZINE, & OTHER PUBLICATIONS .
   
IN 1984 DEXTER PAYNE LEFT THE GROUP (OR TRIED TO) AND WAS REPLACED BY CHUCK FLORENCE ON SAXOPHONE.  CHUCK HAS REMAINED WITH THE GROUP FOR (YIKES!) 32 YEARS.  THROUGH THE LATE 80'S AND 90'S, THE MUDFLAPS TOURED PRIMARILY IN THE NORTHWEST.   IN 1987 THE GROUP RELEASED A THIRD ALBUM,  "SHAKE, RATTLE, & ROLL," WHICH FEATURED A NUMBER OF HIGH-ENERGY DANCE TUNES FROM THE MUDFLAP REPERTOIRE.   
 
THE 90'S AND 'AUGHTS WERE BUSY DECADES, MUSICALLY AND OTHERWISE.  SEVERAL MEMBERS OF THE BAND LAUNCHED TEACHING CAREERS AND BEGAN REARING THE NEW GENERATION OF MUDFLAPS.  IN 1997 ANOTHER RECORD WAS RELEASED,  ENTITLED "COLD DUCK TIME," FEATURING A FULL RANGE OF THE GROUP'S VARIED MUSICAL STYLES.   
   
IN 2000 THE GROUP CELEBRATED ITS 25TH ANNIVERSARY WITH A SERIES OF CONCERTS FEATURING MUDFLAPS PAST AND PRESENT.  THEY ALSO RELEASED ANOTHER CD, "ARMCHAIR CABARET LIVE",  A RECORDING OF A LIVE RADIO BROADCAST ON MONTANA PUBLIC RADIO, FEATURING SONGS, COMEDY, AND APPEARANCES BY MUDFLAP ALUMNI. 
   
IN THE NEW MILLENIUM, THE 'FLAPS ARE STILL GOING STRONG.  FOR A STRETCH OF SEVERAL YEARS THE HORN CHAIR WAS OCCUPIED BY TRUMPETER LEON SLATER, AND CONGA DRUMS WERE PROVIDED BY LIZ SLATER.  RICH BRINKMAN HAS MANNED THE DRUM SEAT FOR OVER 15 YEARS.  TROMBONIST TOM WOGSLAND SITS IN FROM TIME TO TIME, AS DOES ALUMNI SAXOPHONIST DEXTER PAYNE, DRUMMER MICHAEL LEA, VIOLINIST ROB SANDERS, PERCUSSIONIST CODY HOLLOW, SAXOPHONE PLAYER TAI HORGAN, BASSIST DONALD MAUS, AND OTHERS.  THE BAND'S OPERATING PHILOSOPHY IS "ONCE A MUDFLAP, ALWAYS A MUDFLAP."   SPUD RECORDS HAS RE-RELEASED ON CD ALL FIVE OF THE BAND'S HIGHLY ACCLAIMED ALBUMS, "ARMCHAIR CABARET,"  "SENSIBLE SHOES," "SHAKE RATTLE & ROLL", "COLD, DUCK TIME," AND "SHAKE, RATTLE, & ROLL." 
   
SADLY, THE GROUP'S FOUNDING PIANO PLAYER, STEVE POWELL, PASSED AWAY IN 2013.  STEVE'S AMAZING POSITIVE SPIRIT STILL GUIDES US AS WE CONTINUE TO MOVE FORWARD.  
   
IN 2015 THE BAND CELEBRATED ITS 40TH ANNIVERSARY WITH A SERIES OF GALA CONCERTS,  FEATURING MANY GUEST STARS AND MUDFLAP ALUMNI, SUCH AS ROB SANDERS, MIKE LEA, LEON AND LIZ SLATER, CODY HOLLOW, & BOB PACKWOOD.   GOOD FRIEND AND BITTERROOT VALLEY CITIZEN HUEY LEWIS ALSO JAMMED ALONG FOR SEVERAL MEMORABLE PERFORMANCES.
THE MUDFLAPS CONTINUE TO EXPLORE EXCITING NEW MUSICAL TERRITORY.  SOME OF THEIR CURRENT MATERIAL IS FUELED BY THE FIERY RHYTHMS OF CUBA AND BRAZIL.  IN CONCERT PERFORMANCE, THE BIG SKY MUDFLAPS LIKE TO PRESENT THE FULL RANGE OF THEIR STYLISTIC REPERTOIRE, FROM KANSAS CITY SWING TO HAVANA CHA-CHA-CHA.  ALWAYS THEIR HOPE IS THAT THE AUDIENCE WILL HAVE HALF AS MUCH FUN AS THE BAND.


LINKS!

Dexter Payne  Still around!  

Read about about 2015 Mudflaps show with HUEY LEWIS! --  http://missoulian.com/news/local/huey-lewis-makes-surprise-out-to-lunch-appearance-with-big/article_736c87b2-edc8-5f84-928a-d14ba1833126.html