Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - COMMUNITY CLASSIFIEDS -

MU­SI­CIAN Bud For­rest played for a lot of US pres­i­dents over the 30 years he was in the United States Air Force Band in Washington DC, but now finds his big band show In the Mood more re­ward­ing.

“It was al­ways a thrill but hon­estly th­ese days I’m more in­ter­ested in play­ing to that el­derly woman who looks up at our sailor danc­ing on the stage and re­mem­bers how her hus­band used to be just like that,” For­rest said from his home in Wil­liams­burg, Vir­ginia.

“That’s more im­por­tant to me than all the other stuff; I know that we’re touch­ing peo­ple in a way that’s hard to de­scribe but I can see it.

“It’s not what I set out to cre­ate, it’s just a by-prod­uct of what the mu­sic and lyrics stand for.”

For­rest is the cre­ator, pro­ducer, artis­tic di­rec­tor and pi­anist for In the Mood, an allsing­ing, all-danc­ing, all-Amer­i­can cel­e­bra­tion of swing jazz fea­tur­ing his String of Pearls Orches­tra that trans­ports au­di­ences around the world to Amer­ica in the 1940s with a set list in­clud­ing Chat­tanooga Choo Choo and Boo­gie Woo­gie Bu­gle Boy (of Com­pany B).

The show will tour Aus­tralia for the third time in Septem­ber af­ter more than two decades on the road.

For­rest said the pro­duc­tion was by no means an overnight suc­cess.

“I was in Washington DC in 1988 work­ing as a free­lance mu­si­cian and de­cided to put to­gether a singing group fo­cus­ing on the mu­sic of The An­drews Sis­ters be­cause I felt like they had a lot of piz­zazz and en­ergy,” he said.

“I found three young ladies and started it for fun, but the fun part be­gan to get work and be­fore I knew it we needed to per­form the Boo­gie Woo­gie Bu­gle Boy but didn’t have a trum­pet player, so I added a nine-piece band, a male singer and more mu­si­cians.

“In 1993 we were asked to per­form as part of World War II 50th com­mem­o­ra­tive ac­tiv­i­ties and in 1994 we started go­ing out on tour, never know­ing that in 2016 I’d be speak­ing to you in Perth.

“Peo­ple come up to me and ask how many times can I pos­si­bly play Boo­gie Woo­gie Bu­gle Boy and I tell them if there’s one per­son in the au­di­ence who I’m play­ing it to for the first time, it makes it all worth­while.”

Boo­gie Woo­gie time: The cast of In the Mood.

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