Jeff Thomas’ All Volunteer Army

Lancaster Roots & Blues RETURNS - Friday, Saturday & Sunday, Sept 27, 28 & 29

High energy, fun-filled horn band

A short story about a long band.

Rich Ruoff, the head of the Lancaster Roots and Blues Fest is a big deal. At least to any musician who was lucky enough to play his awesome musical nirvana called the Chameleon Club. He started this club back in the 1980s where he discovered/nurtured/pushed all sorts of bands and musicians-then by the 90’s he bought a bigger place and this was where Jeff Thomas first met him. Rich had this insane idea to put on 48 bands in 48 hours and Jeff’s band The Frogs was one of them. Backstage waiting for the band before them to finish (they were called Small Ball Paul, by the way) Jeff and his band-mates worried about how this audience was really going to hate them. It was the early 90s, when so many bands were mostly angry and Small Ball Paul was pretty dang pissed.


Thing is, the Frogs and their songs were fairly happy and extremely
spastic-like a mix between They Might Be Giants and The Violent
Femmes, on speed, or something. The Small Balls finish, then the Frogs play to a pretty bemused audience and afterwards Rich introduced himself, “Can you come back in two weeks?” That was the beginning of a whole adventure. Rich started a record company and asked the Frogs to be on the label.


All these years later Rich is still letting Jeff play places where he’s
putting on shows – a reason for this could be that Rich ran out of ideas
for bands to book or it could be he likes that Jeff’s All-Volunteer Army
are a high energy, fun-filled horn band that writes great songs and
is dedicated to giving the audience an awesome time. Check these guys out, you will have a blast!

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