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   ormed in December 2005 for a quick gig in an eastern suburbs restaurant and when everyone got into the music and the cooks abandoned the kitchen to join in, it was decided to stick together and The Jugalug Stringband was born! Since then Jugalug has performed regularly for the Sydney Jazz Club and at Jazz Festivals on the East Coast including Manly, Newcastle, Bellingen and Dubbo, The Shack at Narrabeen and has a regular gig at the Shady Pines Saloon in Darlinghurst. They have released three successful albums, “Waltz Mysterioso”, “Six Pack” and “Wabash Blues”.


The Jugalug Stringband plays a repertoire of pre western swing music based upon the styles of early string and jug bands of the 1920’s and 30’s. The band is entertaining, engaging and swings like crazy and the  instruments, dating back to the early part of the twentieth century, include National guitars, uke and lap steel, banjo, strohviol, mandolin washboard and double bass: The members are all veterans of the acoustic music scene and include:

Phil Donnison plays Beeton ukulele, National guitar, Gibson L50, Beeton and Rickenbacher lap steel guitars, kazoo, nose flute and handles the vocals. Phil also performs with Mic Conway’s National Junk Band and The Captain Matchbox Whoopee Band. He has played with The Old Blokes String Band, The Original Sweaty Palms Orchestra, The Gladesville Sheiks, The Stovepipe Spasm Band and The Emancipated Rampart Footwarmers Jug Band. He and Stewart also performed with Tiny Tim.


Stewart Binsted plays tenor banjo, National guitar, ukulele and jug. Stewart has played with The New Wolverine Jazz Orchestra since its inception and has a background in Jug Band music and Jazz. He and Phil established The Emancipated Rampart Footwarmers Jug Band in 1963 and they later formed The Gladesville Sheiks, a hot Jazz Band featuring Nat Oliver on trumpet.



Marcus Holden plays the violin, strohviol, resonator mandolin and Beeton resophonic tenor guitar. Marcus also plays with Mic Conway’s National Junk Band and his  own group, The Fiddlers Feast. He has performed with Diesel and the Adelaide and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras. He is an arranger and recording engineer  and has a background in Classical, Jazz, Country and Irish music.



Adam Barnard plays washboard and traps. Adam has kept up the family musical tradition and has been involved in Jazz, Jug and Rhythm and Blues groups, playing with The Mudsteppers Jug Band, Mic Conway, King Biscuit Blues Band and currently with The Radium Club Hepsters.




Stan Valacos plucks, strums, slaps and bows the double bass. He is in great demand  and performs regularly with George Washingmachine, Ian Date, Bob Barnard and Geoff Bull. He has played with Tom Baker, was outstanding in the Straight Back Fellows and won gold with The Young Olympians.

the Blurb