Book Bob’s Bands

Hi! Thanks for your interest in Booking Bob’s Bands!

Jeff Petersen and I have played music together for over 40 years, 36 1/2 of those in the Iowa Rock and Roll Hall of Fame group, The Blue Band. Since the hiatus of The Blue Band (starting January 21, 2018) Jeff and I have broken down into smaller groups in order to try and continue making a living playing music. (The Blue Band stopped, but the monthly bills did not!)

Just about all the music I can provide for town celebrations, neighborhood gatherings, corporate functions, casino stages, wineries, garage/deck parties, and bars/nightspots grows out of our duo, THE BLUE 2. Both members are twice inducted into the Iowa Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and individually inducted into the Iowa Blues Hall of Fame. Jeff Petersen-guitar/vocals; Bob Dorr-drums/harmonica/vocals. The song list comes from 40+  years of playing music together. Blues, Rockabilly, Americana, even a country song and maybe an old Blue Band song or three! Jammers welcome to sit in. Jokes and laughter are a mainstay of each performance. This band is willing to travel a few hundred miles from its base in Cedar Falls/Waterloo. The Blue 2 can deliver all necessary sound equipment for a crowd of up to 200. Price, always negotiable, generally $300-$600 depending on travel time/if we do sound/length of performance time/ and if you’ll feed us! The Blue 2 has had many successes at Tabor Home Winery and have been well received as  The South Skunk Blues Society  between-band entertainment for the 2018 Bowlful of Blues Festival; the Botanical Blues Celebration, Des Moines Botanical Gardens; Sturgis Falls Days, Cedar Falls; Gilbertville Depot Anniversary Celebration; Hearst Center For The Arts, Cedar Falls; Hartman reserve Fundraising Dinner, Cedar Falls; and numerous deck and back yard/garage parties. Please feel free to contact any of these venues for recommendations/insight. See The Blue 2 performance of Wayfaring Stranger that the Des Moines Register recorded a few years ago.

The Blue 2-Bob Dorr and Jeff Petersen
Jeff Petersen and Bob Dorr-The Blue 2

Once The Blue 2 starts adding more players (want a dance band? Maybe we should add a bass player. And a sax player!) we are now calling that group Bob Dorr & Friends featuring Jeff Petersen (formerly known as The Limestoners) We generally think in terms of a 3-5 piece band with this group, often joined by a variety of multi-instrumentalists and singers, including Nolan Schroeder (sax and bass) Buddy Franklin (bass and keys)  Doug Norton (bass and vocals) singer Cindy Grill, Sleepy Bones Allison (young stringed instrument phenom) Tom Barry (sax), Stumpf fiddle player Barb Farrow, Tommy ’T-Bone’ Giblin (keys) Dan DJ Johnson (bass and vocals) and many former Blue Band members including Eddie McKinley, John and Cathy Rohlf, Ed Flack, Sam Salomone, and Heath Pattschull. We always have a Fender “Jam Amp” in the truck and encourage our blues playing friends to sit in on a few tunes. This band (under the name The Linestoners until 2022) has been part of The Music In The Junction Celebration in West Des Moines; National Trails Day, White Rock Conservancy, Coon Rapids IA; Byron’s Street Dance, Pomeroy IA; Rollin’ On The River Blues Festival, Keokuk IA; The East Grove Farms Music Festival; Annual April Fools Bike Ride; Riverside Casino Show Lounge; Music In The Park Concert Series, Hills IA;  Sturgis Falls Days, Gateway Park, Cedar Falls; Grimes Farms and Conservation Area, Outdoor Amphitheater, Marshalltown IA; Cedar Valley Arboretum fundraiser and other festivals. Price: $400-$1200 depending on how many players you’d like in the band/travel time and expenses/if we need to supply a sound system/ and if you’ll feed us! Stop out and join the fun and feel free to contact any of these festivals and nightclubs for recommendations. The recordings Isn’t It Sweet, What Love’ll Make You Do, and Drugs, Drugs, Drugs (cuts 1, 2 & 3 on the playlist at the left of this page) are from an appearance at the Iowa Public Radio Friends Blues Blowout  at Electric Park Ballroom, Waterloo, January 2017 (Blue Band fans might recognize the songs!)

Jeff and I also play in BlueMississippi (correct spelling) which is the combination of the two original Blue Banders, Bob and Jeff, and Dave Hummel and Cricket Davis, the two original members of the Iowa Rock’n’Roll Hall of Fame inducted group, The Mississippi Band. The band is the classic two guitars, bass, and drums instrumentation (with Bob and Dave occasionally playing harmonica) with all four singing. Music ranges from classic 60s blues to Americana favorites to occasional original songs. This band is willing to travel a few hundred miles from home (Bob and Jeff live in Cedar Falls/Waterloo, Dave and Cricket live in the Dubuque area) and can deliver a sound system for an event ranging up to 500 people. Price: $500-$1500 depending on travel time and expenses/if we need to supply a sound system/ and if you’ll feed us! Cuts 4, 5, 6 & 7 in the playlist, Statesboro Blues, Have You Ever Loved A Woman, She’s About A Mover and Boppin’ The Blues were done by BlueMississippi at the 2018 Iowa Public Radio Friends Blues Blowout at Electric Park Ballroom in Waterloo.   

BlueMississippi Band

In recent years I’ve started to get my sideman skills going. I’ve done substitute drum gigs with Iowa City’s Blue Dog Band and drum/harp gigs with Dan Johnson/Skeeter Louis, and Iowa Hall of Famer Bob Pace. This is probably the wave of the future for me. Let me know if your band needs a  blues harp/singer/drummer!
Four or five times a year, including The Iowa State Fair, Waterloo Center For The Arts RiverLoop Music Series, The Tabor Winery Harvest Celebration, and the Waterloo Center For The Arts New Year’s Fundraiser, I’ve presented many of these bands plus other Iowa musicians as Bob Dorr’s Iowa Music Revue. Price $1200-2500, based on how many of these bands (and friends) you’d like to include. Feel free to contact Martha Tabor at Tabor Winery, Kent Shankle at the Waterloo Ctr. For The Arts, or Tonya Cook at the Iowa State Fair for recommendations. 

One last note on Blue Band availability. Right before the band went on for the last time, I told the band to have fun because it was likely the last time The Blue Band would ever play. Someone shouted out, “But Bob, what if someone offers us a whole GOB of money?!” My answer was “well, we’d need to know where and when to show up!” 

I have been fortunate to work with so many music buyers, festival bookers, event planners, and special event promoters in my 45 years of band leading. I look forward to working with you sometime soon. 319-277-4007

Bob Dorr with plaque from Iowa House honoring him as an Iowa Cultural Icon