Clown Band entertaining for people of all ages

Aug 2, 2011


There’s the crazy outfits (from dresses and nighties to baggy pants and funky suspenders, and even a helmet with antlers), the outrageous props (I especially like David Ladd’s toilet plunger), and the fantastic music that always gets my pulse pumping and my hands clapping.

Listening to their rendition of “The Stripper,” when one Clown Band member dances around waving his feather boa seductively before exposing his Slinky-enhanced tatas — talk about a wardrobe malfunction. Anyone who’s witnessed it will never be the same.

They belt out “Tequila” and “The Saints” with the best of them, but the song that really lifts my spirits is the trumpet-heavy tune “Basin Street Blues.”

Monday, my family and I had the chance to see another side to the Scottville Clown Band as they held their annual USCG Festival Concert at Waterfront Stadium, and all six of us left the show thoroughly entertained.

First off was a tribute to acclaimed conductor John Williams, who has composed the soundtracks for such well-known movies as “Star Wars,” “Jaws,” “Superman” and the “Harry Potter” saga. My boys, ages 7 and 4, were thrilled to hear a pair of songs off the “Star Wars” soundtrack — “The Imperial March” and “The Cantina Band.”

My 8-year-old daughter wouldn’t have been truly satisfied unless the band played a few Taylor Swift songs. Still, she was excited to recognize a few of the tunes — including the theme song to “The Muppets.”

My wife and I enjoyed the bantering between master of ceremonies George Wilson and various band members — most of which was way over the heads of our kids, thankfully — as much as the music. Many of the jokes were about small towns they’ve visited (“We’re never going back to Hesperia”), and they even took a fun dig at Grand Haven (“You can’t swing a dead cat without hitting someone from Chicago” — a statement which was later retracted).

We loved the Clown Band’s rendition of various college fight songs, especially “On Wisconsin,” the words of which the band members do not know (and don’t want to know, so don’t tell them).

Most moving was a series of songs recognizing the various branches of the military. The Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard anthems were played — with veterans from each standing as their songs were played.

It really comes down to this — the Scottville Clown Band is simply too much fun to experience only once a year, so having a chance to enjoy the band on Monday night was a fantastic kickoff to a wonderful week of honoring the Coast Guard here in Grand Haven.


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