This is Andy White. Part drummer, project manager, internet genius and international ballroom dancing champ (one of those isn’t true!)
Andy started playing the drums aged 9, on his Dad’s drum kit, and by age 15 he was a very in-demand drummer – a regular fixture at weddings, corporate events and theatres across South Wales. He had a stint with the popular Phil Dando big band, numerous other functions bands as wel as Owen Money, Max Boyce and Peter Carrie. Although Andy didn’t study the drums as a profession he knew it was what he wanted to do from a very early age.
In 2003 Andy White formed Classic Soul Dogs. They played their first gig in September 2003 (a carpark in Rhymney) and took their first professional engagement in November of that year, it must have been a great night because they performed at the same person’s 50th birthday 5 years later! The Soul Dogs grew and grew, until 50-60 gigs per year became the norm, and they thrived!
However, Andy always felt that great entertainment could be made more available. Classic Soul Dogs are right at the top of the food-chain for soul bands, they’re big, professional and spectacular. With 8 professional musicians, plus technicians, equipment, music, insurance (etc.) it’s no surprise that they’re pretty expensive. Well worth it if you can afford it, not ideal if you can’t. So Andy created Pelican Groove in 2011.
“It’s a smaller band” Andy says, “so we’re able to charge less, but what was really important was to not sacrifice the quality, and attention to detail, that people have come to expect from Classic Soul Dogs. Pelican Groove is built on the same solid base as Classic Soul Dogs, with the same band leader and core musicians. We’ve kept Dave Mitchell as our front man, there is simply no-one better, and we’ve reworked our set to include a lot of modern tunes alongside the great soul and party numbers. Think ‘Wilson Pickett meets Bruno Mars'(!), I’m really excited about the future”.
Andy regularly writes about the industry on his South Wales wedding band blog.