Frankie Fontagne & the Ramblers

6:00 PM Saturday on the Local Scene Stage

Born in the small mid-west town of Monmouth, IL, Frankie Fontagne began her career early, as most soul singer/performers did, singing in the church choir. It was here that her natural ability was given the roots that would later flower into its current soulful state. Not only did Ms. Fontagne sing in the church choir, but she became a student of music. From 1982-1993, Ms Fontagne became a student of the Monmouth, Warren County music program, headed by Dr. Edward Sheckler. It was there that she flourished as an awarding winning percussionist. Those years were the beginning of Ms. Fontagne’s proving ground.

Realizing that her hometown didn’t provide the opportunities she needed, Frankie packed up and headed west to California where she began to ride the “circuit” dabbling in gospel and doing hooks for various west coast rap groups throughout the 90’s. Though not very lucrative, these escapades paid off in the form of studio experience as well as chances to arrange and produce.

From 2003 to current, Ms. Fontagne has been a recording artist, song writer, and lead singer of Two-Tone (founded Ms. Fontagne), N-Deep, and Frankie Fontagne & The Ramblers.

Bob "The Real Deal" Rosenstiel doesn't play - unless you are talking about bass. In which case, he plays a lot - in and around Blues, Jazz, Funk, Country, Rock, Bluegrass and Celtic. Bob plays upright and low down electric bass with a variety of bands. He has recorded in Southern, Central and Northern Illinois. And, he is a lawyer - But nobody's perfect.

Despite growing up on the outskirts of a small farm town in central Illinois (El Paso), Andrew Durham was immersed in music from a young age. This was all thanks to his father’s (Tim) involvement in the Normal, IL based rhythm & blues band, Hip Pocket. At the age of 10, he picked up the alto saxophone and started learning in the school band. It wasn’t long until he discovered that the sax was the tool to recreate the sounds that had been in his head all these years. After high school, Andrew moved on to pursue a degree in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University in Peoria, IL. Attending college marked a turning point for him not only scholastically but musically as well. During these years of college, Andrew also propelled himself back into the blues, by adding harmonica and guitar (slide) to his arsenal of instruments

Born into a musical family, Shawn "Young Skoy" Harris began playing guitar as a teenager. Deeply in love with blues and classic rock he studied the music of artists like Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Albert King and many others. Throughout his early 20's he helped create and performed with family band The Harris Collection. Young Skoy has had the opportunity to play with blues stars such as the legendary Billy Branch, Bernard Allison, and Alligator recording artist Gloria Hardiman to name a few. Harris continues to grow as an artist and looks forward to his future as a Rambler.

When Jamie Hopkins was about 10 years old, his father who was a drummer, handed over the keys to the pro level kit and from that day he has been totally immersed in the craft of creating rhythm. Having played on stages all over the world for over 32 years, performing the widest range of musical styles, Jamie embraces the role of accompanist creating comfort and energy for his band mates. As a Rock & Roll radio station manager Jamie absorbs all facets of life.

Frankie Fontagne and the Ramblers combine the stripped down deep vocal feature sound of 60’s and 70’s soul with a powerful syncopated saxophone funk. Displaying groovy Rock & Roll and lush spacious ballads, this band commands attention with original songwriting and arrangements with depth and personality. Frankie Fontagne (Dee Peoples) takes you to church with muscular vocal chops. Andrew Durham harnesses immaculate tones on tenor sax. Shawn "Skoy" Harris rips leads on electric guitar. Bassist Bob, "The Real Deal" Rosenstiel is always on-base and never loses feel, but always brings something extra with unorthodox zeal. Drummer Jamie Hopkins, as steady as a clock, ignites while he excites the sounds of Blues, R&B, Soul and Rock.