The Sour Mash Hug Band; Klezmer Hot Jazz Cabaret

A cabaret jazz band that combines virtuosic gypsy violin with 1920s hot jazz, swing, and Yiddish song, the Sour Mash Hug Band evokes an era that never quite existed.  Paris in the 30s, Harlem in the 20s, New Orleans in the 90s, its hard to say.

With original tunes that invite comparison to Kurt Weill, Tom Waits, and Danny Elfman, and a rotating cast of some of the West Coast’s finest hot pickers and swinging horn players, the Sour Mash Hug Band is not to be missed.  They have toured the West Coast for some 15 years as well as performing in New York, New Orleans, Chicago, Austin, Krakow, and Budapest. Being exposed to many varieties of music in their travels the musicians have developed a unique cabaret style drawing on traditional jazz, hokum, American fiddle music, muzica lautareasca, and Yiddish theatre.

Band Members

Mickey Hayes: Violin, Accordion, Piano, Vocal
Shiri Goldsmith : Accordion, Trombone, Banjo-lele, Vocal
Scott Stobbe : Guitar
Greg Stephens : Trombone
Leo Suarez : Drums, Bass
Juliana Frick : Bass


“An irresistible mix of old-time, gypsy, bluegrass, jazz, and ragtime.” –The San Francisco Chronicle

“Folk Music in the most beautiful sense. They draw from a wide variety of sources, play songs and tunes on an unpredictable lineup of instruments, and make the music their own.” -Robert Blake, Subdued String Band Festival Program

“A true treasure of the Bay Area – that has toes tapping and people dancing for miles around.” San Francisco Bay Times

“A good old-fashioned American act.’ -What’s Up Magazine (Bellingham, WA)

“What Yann Tiersen would have created had he composed the Amélie Soundtrack while drunk. And I mean that as a compliment”—Mission Local.

The Sour Mash Hug Band got audiences up and dancing to music that sounded as if it were straight from the old country”—Vox Magazine (Columbia, MO)