The Dents Band
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The Dents Band

New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Band R&B Cover Band

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"Destin Welcomes New Orleans Dents Brothers with Open Ears"

Ronnie and Ernest Fly Dents, brothers all their lives and fellow musicians for nearly as long, fled New Orleans at 3 a.m. the morning before Hurricane Katrina ripped through Bourbon Street and the surrounding areas.

Fly and Ronnie are now part of the ever-growing music scene in Destin. The sons of Ernest Maestro Dents, Sr.a man of many talents, music among them--grew up 40 miles outside of New Orleans and played with their fathers group while in their teens. Between them, the Dents brothers figure they have 80 years of professional experience, 10 of those on Bourbon Street.

When we played on Bourbon Street, there were 250 musicians out there at any given time, Fly says. Theres not that many here its like heaven. Of course, there arent as many places here compared to Bourbon Street.

The brothers have made a few trips back to the Big Easy and inform me that things are nowhere near being back to normal, despite the recent Mardi Gras festivities and gradually fading media coverage.

Their first gig took place last September at a Destin Commons-hosted hurricane relief concert. Thats where we first got noticed, Fly says. This band was actually formed here. We found Fritz (Froeschner, guitarist) at Theos.

The considerably younger men who play drums and keyboardsZ and T.C. respectivelyperformed at a Baptist church in Fort Walton Beach and immediately clicked with the Dents brothers. If you know how to cook, you can go in anyones kitchen.

Froeschner says the Dents brothers are the only good thing to come out of that goofy storm while Ronnie calls the whole experience a blessing in disguise. Its been a love-love situation. Destin gets what it wants, and we get what we want.

What a small but enthusiastic crowd heard at a recent Funky Blues Shack appearance is a spirited collection of rhythm and blues favorites with a little bit of jazz and Ronnies witty between-song banter. The first set kicks off with a heartfelt tribute to the Dents Brothers father, who passed away in January. Flys smooth melodic sax playing blends seamlessly with Ronnies steady rumbling bass lines. The rest of the band shines as well Froeschner gets in a nice solo, while the younger guys show real imagination.

The great Impressions song Its All Right reveals Fly as a first class honker. Ronnies singing is warm and fueled by passion. Another musical great is honored when the Dents Brothers Band masterfully weaves together three classics made famous by Otis ReddingIve Been Loving You Too Long (Flys sax providing high drama), (Sitting on the) Dock of the Bay (the famous whistling transposed successfully to tenor sax), and Fa Fa Fa Fa (Sad Song).

One of Flys sax heroes, Junior Walker, is honored with What Does It Take To Win Your Love, then Ronnie serenades a young lady in the audience with It Had to Be You. And Ive never enjoyed the instrumental oldie Tequila quite as much as when the Dents band takes a pass at ittheres the expected first-rate sax play, but also fine, improvisational soloing from Froeschner and T.C.

If you dont tip the band, we know voodoo! Ronnie warns the audience good-naturedly before the musicians take a break. He later tells me his immediate goal is to get as popular as we can get and make as much money as we can.

Ronnie and Fly also attend the Faith Assembly Church, famously referred to as The Rock and Roll Church. They took us under their wing and took care of us, Fly says.

SIDEBAR:

WHO The Dents Bros. Band: Ernest Fly Dents, tenor saxophone and vocals; Ronnie Dents, bass and vocals; T.C., keyboards; Z, drums; Fritz Froeschner, guitar. The well-traveled Tommy Beavers handles drum chores on weekends.

APPEARING: At Funky Blues Shack alternating Wednesday nights throughout March and April; at Hammerheads Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays beginning at 6pm.

SOUNDS LIKE The Dents Brothers offer more than just a taste of New Orleans music, they serve up an irresistible smorgasbord of jazz, blues, Zydeco, Motown, and numerous soul classics that havent lost their pizzazz.
- The Beachcomber


"The Dents Brother’s Band Entertain at Destin Commons"

As one of the afternoon acts at Destin Commons’ Block Party and Scavenger Hunt on Saturday, May 6, the Dent’s Brothers Band showed that they are more that just musicians – they are entertainers.

The two brothers – Ernest “Fly” and Ronnie Dents – are newcomers to the music scene here on the Emerald Coast, but are fast establishing themselves as performers that can deliver.

Former residents and musicians in the Big Easy, they have made their home Destin and have a formed a band made up of some of the finest pros in our area. Fly is on sax, and Ronnie lays down a very funky bass line. Fritz Froschner on guitar is one of the area’s best, and Tommy Beavers handles the drums confidently. Telvis (not Elvis) rounds out the group on keys. Their music is delivered with a sweet soul feeling that makes you just want to sing along and move to the beat.

Ronnie and Fly both go to the trouble of being on wireless rigs, and when they start to play you can see why. Almost immediately, they are out front connecting with the crowd.

The May 6 set started with the Average White Band’s “Pick Up The Pieces.” It was immediately obvious that this group has infectious fun with what they do.

Followed up “It’s Alright” by the Impressions, Ronnie and the band sang with sweetness in their voices, coming both from natural talent and years of experience. Fritz showed his soul with a Tyrone Davis favorite, and Fly let loose with the instrumental standout “Europa” – a song that sax man, Gato Barbieri, made famous (you may be familiar with Santana’s version of this song). More fun followed with songs like “Just a Gigolo” and Van Morrison’s “Domino.”

Throughout the whole set, the Dents interacted with the crowd and showed a sure showmanship that many groups in our area lack. Too often bands get in a rut playing for the changing faces of tourists here at our nightclubs and bars. It’s easy to just think of yourself as background music and forget that people are watching. The Dents Brothers Band showed that they’ll do their best to never let this happen. - Florida Emerald Coast . Com


Discography

Live In Taiwan - Ronnie Dents Sr.

Mardi Gras In New Orleans - Ronnie Dents Sr.

Fly By Night
Ernest "Fly" Dents

Photos

Bio

Ronnie Dents, the founder of The Dents Band, and a premiere bass guitarist and vocalist, was born in L.A., and raised in the musical streets of New Orleans. He has been entertaining audiences across the country and around the world for more than three decades. Influenced by such artists as Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Larry Graham, Sam Cooke, Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley, Ronnie has delighted fans with his funky bass lines, silky-smooth vocals and personable performances for more than 30 years, including 20 years on world famous Bourbon St. in New Orleans. Ronnie has had the pleasure of performing with and accompanying such artists as: Kellie Paterson, Rance Allen, Freda Payne, Richard “Dimples” Fields, Tata Vega, Lamont Dozier, and Steve Winwood.

The Dents Band encompasses classic sounds of Motown, Jazz R&B, Ever Loving New Orleans Classics, and Gospel, with a little bit of Country, and a little bit of Rock N Roll to round out their repertoire. The Dents Band engages its audiences, young and old, with a fusion of melodic classics, an exciting performance, and enthusiastic audience participation. The attentive style of their performances makes audiences feel like their own “personal” band is entertaining them. Since arriving in Destin three years ago, they have become a staple of the Emerald Coast’s ever-growing music scene.

Members of the band have performed at such venues as: Club 544 – Bourbon St. – New Orleans, LA,, House of Blues – New Orleans, LA, Modern New Era Club – Nashville, TN, The Cotton Club - Denver, CO, Ascona Jazz Festival - Lake Maggiore, Switzerland, Umbria Jazz Festival – Perugia, Italy, Brown Sugar Club – Taipei, Taiwan, Club TU – Taipei, Taiwan, Bourbon Street Club – Brazil, Half Note Jazz Club – Athens, Greece, The Village of Baytowne Wharf – Sandestin, FL., Harbor Village Wharf Destin, FL, Funky Blues Shack – Destin, FL, Florida Fish House – Sandestin, FL, The Ocean Club – Destin, FL., Harry Ts – Destin, FL, Surf-Side Resort – Destin, FL, BLUZ Grill & Bar – Destin, FL, Pat O’Brien’s – Destin, FL,

The Dents Band has enjoyed notable success along the Emerald Coast due to dedicated effort and a love of playing music & entertaining. The band is looking to expand itself to become “the Band to see”, embraced throughout the country and around the world.