There are many words that could be used to describe Melbourne band The Hornstars. Funky. Danceable. Loud. Quirky (have you seen that video?). But above all else, the Hornstars are about fun. This is a band that knows how to have a good time, and it is infectious.
The Hornstars sound is big, brassy and hard to pigeonhole. The current lineup of Clancy Cullen (vocals), Daniel Bardan (trumpet), Bruce Cousins (trombone), Russell B Myers (tenor sax), Joey Mount (drums), Mike Holloway (bass), Rob D’Alessandro (keys), Mark Morand (guitar) and Eric Morand (alto sax and percussion) bring a wide range of influences to the mix. Jazz, soul reggae - it may not all be funk as we know it, but it is definitely funky.
The Hornstars formed in 2016, legend has it, after founding members were kicked out of their ska band for allegedly being “too funky”. What came next was inevitable. The band quickly recruited a full 9-piece lineup and confected a set of catchy and danceable songs, which they took to the pubs and bars of Melbourne and beyond.
The Hornstars debut album, featuring these initial tunes, was launched in March 2020, immediately before their beloved city of Melbourne was plunged into lockdown, as the pandemic took hold.
During the COVID-enforced hiatus, band members continued to write, getting together when restrictions allowed. The band’s song writing continued to evolve, sometimes reflecting what was going on in the world outside (witness the hard funk grooves of "No Gigs" and "Half Way There"), and at others expressing aspirations for brighter post-pandemic future ("Touch", "Say Goodbye").
Emerging from lockdown in 2021, the Hornstars have been greeted with an enthusiastic reception and sold out shows. And while we are living in uncertain times, here is one thing to be sure of - The Hornstars are still having fun in 2021, and so should you.