The only noticeable mistake was that we had asked the announcer to only address the parents of the bride and groom by first name. The (step)father of the groom was addressed as Brad Trusler (it was assumed that his last name was the same as Josh's and it is in fact Laymon). We chalked it up to human error, and it by no means put a damper on the evening.
Whether for the Lord Mayor of Hull, England, U.S. Senators, North Carolina Governors, happy brides and grooms, charities, collegiate events, country clubs, dance clubs, inaugural balls, Bob Hope, Perry Como, Pat Boone, Wayne Newton etc., Leon Jordan's Continentals play music of the great Big Bands. The band was featured in the major motion picture "Once Around" with Richard Dreyfuss and Holly Hunter.
They play what dancers and listeners want to hear, original arrangements and music from notable bands such as:
Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey
and more current arrangements from today's swing band leaders
Music selections number over a thousand from 1914-2010s.
The Continentals Dance Band was first organized in 1957 as a sixteen piece orchestra. Leon had just been discharged from the Navy, and he and other musicians in the Raleigh area were looking for an opportunity to play dance music. The band's first engagement was playing for the Miss Raleigh pageant in 1958. Soon afterward they were playing for college dances at N.C. State, Duke and UNC. Many of the early musicians were college students and members of the National Guard Band. The band quickly grew in popularity because they played dance music while other bands in the area played jazz.
One of the first musicians in the band and one who helped start the band was drummer Bobby Harrison. After playing with the Continentals, Harrison went on the road with Frank Sinatra, Jr. and then Si Zentner and Juliet Prowse. He now plays in Los Vegas. Other well-known musicians who have played with the band more recently are saxophonist Kirby Campbell, at one time the busiest studio musician in New York City, and Bob Havens who was the featured trombonist on the Lawrence Welk show for its entire twenty-two year run. The Continentals Band is best-known for having played more than five hundred Saturday night engagements at the Radisson Governors Inn in Research Triangle Park, N.C.
The Band's current vocalist is Stephie Goode, who was educated at the Indiana University School of Music and studied under the great Eugene Bayless.
The Continentals Orchestra plays a variety of music — Latin, swing, mambo, rumba, waltzes, some beach and country, ballads, vocals, 30's–2010's — popular and contemporary. The orchestra seeks to play the styles of music that customers prefer and will also adapt to the preference of the dancers. We play danceable music and swing music as revived by Linda Ronstadt, Harry Connick Jr., Michael Buble, Diana Krall & Rod Stewart.
The Continental Combo, a break-out jazz combo is available for smaller and/or more intimate events.