The McFadden Brothers
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The McFadden Brothers
The world famous McFadden Brothers are ready to perform at your Kansas City event!
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Sons of famous dancer and performer "Smilin' Jimmy McFadden", The McFadden Brothers are a true piece of Kansas City musical history.

Ronald and Lonnie McFadden combine song, dancing, music and comedy in their act to deliver one of Kansas City's most complete entertainment packages.

The McFadden Brothers have performed with Sammy Davis Jr., The Count Basie Orchestra, Kool and the Gang and continue to be a part of Wayne Newton's show in Las Vegas.

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The McFadden Brothers

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The Magical Journey of The McFadden Brothers...

Who would have guessed that a flourishing career would be the result of "having fun with Daddy?"  That's what has happened in the case of The McFadden Brothers.  In their own words they recall; "as far as I can remember, we were tap dancing," "Dad would practice with us - he used to make it so much fun.  This was like playtime with Daddy."

They have been entertaining since they were in elementary school, learning their licks from their father, Kansas City hoofer and all around entertainer Smilin' Jimmy McFadden.  Their dad, danced with the likes of "The Count Basie Orchestra," "Blanche Calloway's Harlem Review", "Jay McShann," and many more of the top name entertainers and orchestra's of the 30's and 40's.  Along with leading a top notch tap dancing act of his own, "The 3 Chocolate Drops."  The 3 Chocolate Drops traveled around the eastern and central United States.  Working in the same circuit as "The Berry Brothers," "The Rhythm Kings" and another group by the name of "The Will Mastin Trio."

McFadden began teaching his sons tap dancing at the ages of 3 and 4.  In addition, he made sure both Lonnie and Ronald would get a knowledge of music by making sure they took piano lessons as he taught them lots of comedy bits, tap routines and songs to sing.  At ages 6 and 7 Lonnie and Ronald gave their first recital, an hour long show that consisted of the two McFadden Brothers singing, tap dancing, doing comedy bits and playing piano and organ.

After The McFadden Brothers entered junior high school, they completely quit tap dancing and taking piano lessons, largely due to peer pressure as Lonnie recalls, "They weren't too fond of tap dancers at the school we went to."  So they decided to concentrate more on playing the trumpet (Lonnie) and the alto saxophone (Ronald).  Instruments that were more accepted by their peers.

As a teenager, Lonnie traveled with one of the regional R&B and Top 40 bands playing trumpet and singing before starting his own band, "Lonnie and The Band" that included Ronald on the alto Sax.  It was during this time that Lonnie became a songwriter and arranger and Ronald developed his own style as a choreographer.  After Lonnie and The Band had run it's course, The McFadden Brothers were born.

In order to complement their musical and dancing skills, the brothers began developing a stage persona - a more complete presentation that was inspired by St. Louis newsman and playwright, John Auble.  Auble, who already knew of Jimmy McFadden, learned of the young brothers and journeyed to Kansas City in the early '80's to see Lonnie and Ronnie perform.  Several months later, Auble wrote "Steps: The Pops McFadden story."  Lonnie and Ronnie starred in the play, which enjoyed a long run in St. Louis in 1985.

"Steps" was a throwback to the days of vaudeville, and the characters the McFaddens portrayed in that play are still largely evident in their shows today.

By the 1980's the McFadden Brothers paralleled their fathers career by performing with "The Count Basie Orchestra".  They played major jazz festivals in Europe and Japan, appearing on the same bill with such jazz greats as Miles Davis and Wynton Marsalis.  During this time, they also made their first national television appearance on "Incredible Sunday's" as a result of a recommendation from Ben Vareen.

The McFadden Brothers have since appeared with some of the biggest names in show business, like Sammy Davis Jr., Tony Orlando and Wayne Newton.  Their travels have taken them to all parts of the world as well as some of the finest venues in the world, from nightclubs to coliseums.  One of the most rewarding experiences the McFadden Brothers have had was performing for our troops in Iraq on a USO Tour hosted by Wayne Newton in 2004.

After years of experience as live performers, The McFadden Brothers are now proud to announce their first CD entitled "Chapter 1".  This is a compilation of some of the songs that audiences around the world have requested and loved through the years.  "Chapter 1" marks the beginning of a new era in The McFadden Brother's career.

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