Czech And Then Some is celebrating its 10th Anniversary in 2007. It seems like the years just fly by, while we are having so much fun! Our current band members include Aaron Schumacher, Jennifer Marek, Michelle Slovak, Andy Mikula, John Schumacher, David Slovak, and myself. Our original band members were Louis Valek, John Marek, David Trojacek, Andy Mikula, David Slovak, and myself.
We've been so fortunate to have some very talented musicians joining us during our first ten years – we have had the honor to perform with: Johnny Warner, Larry Haag, Dennis Kubos, Wes Kucera, Michael Morris, David Czarnek, Branch Luetge, Sonny Patalik, Wade Worley, Frank Melmer, David Fraga, Frank Vrla III, Tony Petter, Chad Zabojnik, Tim Cox, Anthony Macalik, John Dujka, Pat Zapletal, Johnny Voldon, Brian Svetlik, and Charlie Nemec.
Our music style has changed some since we first began. We now use four horns, and this gives us the opportunity to play many different styles of music. The band has been very lucky to play some great arrangements that have been written by Sonny Patalik, Harry Czarnek, Frank Melmer, Frank Kubena, Cliff Coutnik, Paul Menousek, Bob Palensky, Mark Vyhlidal, Glenn Koca, Branch Luetge, Roy Haag, David Czarnek, David Slovak, and myself.
Czech & Then Some has played for many different functions. We've had the privilege of performing at many places in Texas, such as the National Polka Festival in Ennis, Oktoberfest in Fredericksburg, Westfest in West, Accordion King Fest in Stephenville, and the Six Flags Over Texas Heritage Festival in Arlington. We have also entertained many folks in the midwest, including the Starlite Polka Festival in Wahoo, Nebraska; Denmark Polka Festival in Denmark, Wisconsin; the Polkatennial in Wichita, Kansas; and at the Czech Hall in Yukon, Oklahoma.
Czech and Then Some has also been fortunate enough to enjoy playing for many of our friends at dances, weddings, parties and anniversaries. The band would like to thank all of the people who attend our engagements and make it possible for Czech & Then Some to do what we love, play polka music! We are looking forward to the next ten years. This is our sixth recording and we really hope you enjoy it!
While we were working on this CD the Polka World lost a true legend, icon and a great friend. Ernie Kucera passed away on July 9, 2007. Having known Ernie all of my life he was a dear friend and one of my biggest influences. He taught me a great deal about polka music. Ernie definitely had the smoothest polka band and had one of the greatest Czech bands that ever existed. Ernie and Millie were very good friends of the Zapletal family and was a big influence on Michelle as well. As you listen to this CD you can tell just how much influence Ernie had on Czech & Then Some, there are six songs on this recording that came from Ernie’s style and sound. We are dedicating this CD in Ernie’s memory. Ernie’s music will go on forever and we will continue to play all of the great songs that made Ernie Kucera and his Orchestra Nebraska’s No. 1 Polka Band. Ernie, we will miss you.