Monday, September 23, 2013

Progressive Field Dixieland Band, Including 95-year-old Bandleader, Ready For Playoffs

The Progressive Field Dixieland Band played their last gig of the regular season yesterday. But if the Indians make the playoffs, they’ll be back, performing in the food court outside the team shop, as they have for 19 seasons.

The band, led by 95-year-old clarinetist Andy Veres, romped through a set of Dixieland jazz standards yesterday. Their signature song: “When the Tribe Goes Marching In,” a slight rewrite of a New Orleans classic. They added another twist to the lyrics yesterday: “I want to be in that number/When the playoffs go marching in.”

Veres also led the band through “Sweet Georgia Brown,” “On the Sunny Side of the Street,” the Browns fight song, “Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” and a few polkas so the accordionist could shine.

Veres and a rotating cast of musicians have played stadium home games since 1995. But if you usually get to the gate just before the first pitch, you may have never seen them. They play from a half-hour before game time until the National Anthem at Friday, Saturday and Sunday home games – and at all home playoff games.

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