Robert Bell Hot Swing Combo – Songs For Socially Distant Happy Feet And Hearts

The Robert Bell Hot Swing Combo was booked to provide music for a swing dance in Madison, WI on April 18, 2020. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was not possible for the band to make the trip or the event to take place. Madison Invasion 2020 was officially cancelled… as an in person event.

In a gesture not soon forgotten, the organizers offered compensation to the band despite the event being unable to move forward as a traditional live swing dance event. It was determined that Madison Invasion 2020 would proceed as a virtual event. Dancers and listeners alike could join a livestream and be inspired, even if just for an evening. Multiple musicians performing simultaneously over the internet is no easy feat in early 2020; we opted to make a recording instead and share it via livestream on the evening of the event. You’re listening to a historic recording, a pandemic recording.

Every musician in the band maintained a 20ft or more distance while recording outside, nitrile gloves were used to setup and teardown. The physical distance made recording the five of us a challenge, but the entire world is facing far greater challenges. As musicians, while our ability to work has ceased, we feel our duty to provide song as part of a community has been honored. The musicians on this recording contributed SO MUCH energy and talent in the short couple of hours we had; no retakes, no overdubs, no arrangements and all without a second thought while observing distancing.

Your support is greatly appreciated. We wish you, your family, friends, and communities safety, health and as always, happy feet and hearts. Thank you!


released April 17, 2020

Robert Bell – guitar
Daniel Eikmeier – trumpet/cornet
Frederick Richardson – clarinet
Andrew Burns – bass
David Michael – drums

Recorded in NE Minneapolis, MN
April 11, 2020
Engineer: Robert Bell
Tech Support: Katie Bell
Photo and design: David Michael
Video: Shayna Jurrens
Special Thanks: Madison Invasion 2020

This was an absolute blast to complete and I am completely humbled by the response from those that tuned in during the livestream, purchased the recording and have shared our work with the world, thank you.