Shake the Blues Band

The Shake The Blues band is a natural spinoff of the Shake The Blues acoustic recording with David Grisman on mandolins and Bill Fouty on acoustic bass: a journey through the soundscape and mythos of early twentieth century blues, jazz, and Americana music. This recording features thirteen original songs (spanning forty five years) played primarily on six instruments that John Knutson built. The Shake The Blues recording represents a lifetime retrospective, and a happy marriage of Knutson’s creative life of songwriting, musicianship, and luthiercraft.


Sure, we’d all like to have Dawg (AKA David Grisman) in our band, and he might possibly be available, depending on his intense touring and recording itinerary, and of course, on “budget considerations.” David was never part of this band, as the band was a spinoff from the recording we did together. All serious offers regarding his performance with the Shake The Blues band will be considered by his management. So for all intents and purposes, and to get on with our love of musical performance, Susan Comstock rounds out the Shake The Blues band on violin, vocals, and percussion.

Multi-instrumentalist vocalists Susan Comstock and John Knutson form the core of Shake The Blues band. Together we also form the core of the band known as The Susan as The Susan Comstock Swingtet. As the Susan Comstock Swingtet we’ve played more than 300 county fairs, weddings, upscale restaurants, winery events, and casuals since the year 2003. Located in Sonoma County CA, the Swingtet continues to entertain audiences in the SF Bay Area with their amplified-acoustic mix of retro jazz, rhythm & blues, and novelty tunes. Susan sings in five languages, and we are a very entertaining combo. Wherever we perform we are crowd pleasers with a focus on entertainment at all levels. Both bands are fleshed out with the best acoustic bass players and drummers in the North Bay Area. We play music with the finesse and sensibilities of the the period in which these rich musical styles evolved and interbred, creating the unique legacy of American music.

The Shake The Blues band is simply the alter ego, or let’s say hillbilly cousin of the Swingtet, but features the same personnel. As you might surmise, there is a lot of musical crossover between these two bands. Adding this rootsy element expands the genres Shake The Blues covers, and John is able to include his love for Americana, and the more hardcore blues, country, folk, and novelty tunes which were an awkward fit for the image and venues of the Swingtet. Also as bandleader of Shake The Blues, multi-instrumentalist John Knutson features a wider range of his own original music, and indulges in playing wider range of his handmade Knutson Luthiery instruments. The repertoire of this band has no limits except, as we include many styles of America Roots music including blues, jazz, country, gospel, R & B, Latin, ethnic, folk, and oldies, because Americana encompasses all of these roots music forms and influences. Again, as with the Swingtet, we’re crowd-pleasers with an emphasis on entertainment at all levels, and we love to get people dancing.