Rock & Blues Dance Band
was born out of a situation that many bands unfortunately
experience. Uncle Joe Boarman was part of an Irish band that got
hired to play for
a St. Patrick’s Day party at an Omaha area bar. Well, the crowd
wanted rock and roll dance music and showed its displeasure. It
got ugly. One member of the band quit after that gig and the rest
of the band was discouraged.
contacted Torri Pantaleon, a drummer with whom he worked in a novelty
band for several years. Uncle Joe asked if Torri wanted to start
a dance rock band. Never turning down an opportunity or
challenge, Torri signed up.
another local musician to play lead and began to rehearse.
Originally called “The G-Men,” they settled on BluesAgent after they
found out how many bands were called “The G-Men.” Although
getting several gigs after one year as a band, they couldn’t seem to
keep a bass player. Finally, Uncle Joe ran across Bob
Roose. Bob came on board and things really started to change for
the better. Bob not only added competent bass playing, his
singing gave the band four strong voices.
didn’t feel quite right and for good reason. The lead player
notified the band that the next gig would be his last with
BluesAgent. Torri held a meeting with Uncle Joe and Bob saying
that the band should stay together and that all three be very proactive
in finding a new lead player.
in Mark Nelson, a well-known Omaha musician. What a stroke of
fortune! Amazingly, Mark and Uncle Joe knew each other. After the
first rehearsal with Mark, the chemistry was sealed. BluesAgent
now has all the right pieces in place.
Mark and Bob
can both play several instruments, while Uncle Joe is proficient as a
rhythm guitarist on the six and 12-string guitar. All four sing,
giving the band a strong vocal element. Uncle Joe, Bob and Torri
mix and match as backup vocalists with strong harmonies.
All of the guys have been playing in the Omaha area for years and they
all bring varied playing experience and music tastes into BluesAgent
giving it a strength and ability to interpret songs that many other
bands don’t have.
philosophy is to have fun, make people happy and get them to
dance. If they don’t dance, at least have them tapping their toes
and singing along. BluesAgent plays rock and blues dance
songs. Whether the song is fast or slow, you can bet that you can
dance to it.
A veteran TV
sportscaster and play-by-play announcer, Torri’s outgoing personality
allows him to be the band’s spokesman during gigs. His ability to
interact with a crowd has been invaluable. Uncle Joe has many
years as a solo acoustic musician/singer and has helped him hone his
stage presence. Uncle Joe is also excellent at playing to a crowd.
BluesAgent Band Members
BOB ROOSE, Bass Guitar, Vocals
Bob was born, raised and educated in Omaha. An experienced
musician, Bob is multi-talented being proficient in playing the
keyboards, accordion, guitar, percussion, flute and the Penny Whistle!
experience in a wide variety of musical styles including rock n’ roll,
soul, country, funk, Christian and now BluesAgent. Bob’s past
bands have opened for Professor Morrison's Lollipop, Head East, Jumping
Kate & Bono Sisters among many.
addition to the band, Bob filled a strong need at bass guitar.
His vocal ability adds a strong dimension to the band as he can pick
out any harmony part and go with it, however he also has strong lead
vocals. BluesAgent benefited from Bob’s presence in more than one
way, as he introduced lead player Mark Nelson to the band.
influences are as wide as his own experiences. He likes Steely
Dan, Yes, Karlo Bonoff, Irving Berlin, Chopin and Rachmaninoff.
As for BluesAgent, Bob says he’s glad to be part of it all because, “I enjoy making 'em dance.”
MARK NELSON, Lead Guitar, vocals
Mark was born in Moline, Illinois, on the muddy banks of the
Mississippi. Mark says that when he was born, the doctor slapped
his behind and said, "Fine, fine, fine!" We know that’s not
true. The doctor slapped Mark’s mother instead!
accomplished musician, he rips/shreds the lead for BluesAgent, but can
also play keyboards and bass. A veteran of the Omaha music scene,
Mark has played for many bands and is in high demand to fill in with
several area known bands like The Confidentials.
Mark says, “I’m tickled to be pickin' with BluesAgent and am working on
my stealth Strat knockoff guitar to transcend space and time with Bob,
Uncle Joe and Torri, bringing Humanity to the next cosmic level of
His claims to fame? “I shook hands with Carlos Santana, Lowell
George and Buckminster Fuller.” He adds, “I'm looking forward to
entertaining Mid-America with this great band - BluesAgent!”
TORRI PANTALEON, Drummer, Vocals
Torri is a native of Mansfield, Massachusetts, and cut his
musical teeth on rock and roll and has been playing the drums since the
Many Omaha area residents remember Torri as a sportscaster for KETV,
Channel 7 and as a play-by-play announcer. His on-air experience
allows him to relate to a crowd which really comes in handy as the
band’s spokesman during gigs. Torri enjoys having fun with people
and uses his sense of humor to do that.
He doesn’t consider himself a good singer, but was forced into singing
early in his band experience because as Torri puts it, “Everyone else
in the band was afraid to sing.”
Torri can also harmonize, helping to give BluesAgent strong backup vocals.
He says, “Like most guys my age, I was heavily influenced by the
British Invasion. Some great music was pumped out then. But
the British weren’t the only ones making great sounds.”
Torri was also captivated by The Ventures, especially drummer Mel
Taylor. The Surfing Sound was also a big motivator for him.
“Wipeout,”anyone? Then……he discovered the Blues!
He’s played in many bands and has toured throughout New England and the
Mid-Atlantic opening for The Young Rascals, The McCoys, Paul Revere and
the Raiders, Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels and many others.
He also spent over 11 years in the U.S. Navy all the time playing in
bands. With a wink he says that he can say he’s played Rome and
Naples, Italy plus several Caribbean resorts. Of course, it
helped that he was stationed at Navy bases in those areas.
After an Honorable Discharge, Torri stayed in Omaha. He earned
his Bachelor’s Degree in Broadcast Journalism from the University of
Nebraska-Omaha as well as going through UNO’s Masters program in
Torri has been playing in the area for many years with several bands,
and now says he’s found a sweet home with BluesAgent. “What’s
better than playing rock and blues dance tunes?”
UNCLE JOE BOARMAN, 12 & 6 String Rhythm Guitar, Vocals
Uncle Joe was born and raised just outside of Indianapolis, Indiana
prior to enlisting in the U.S. Air Force where he saw combat action in
Viet Nam. That wasn’t exciting enough for him, so when he was
honorably discharged from the Air Force, he enlisted into the U.S. Army!
Uncle Joe was originally a solo acoustic musician with a folk music
background. On any Saturday morning when the weather’s nice,
you’ll find him on a corner in Omaha’s Old Market singing to the
masses. Uncle Joe’s singing ability allows him to take the lead
on many vocals. But he also has great ability to harmonize, so
his backup vocals are also very strong.
His solo experience helped to hone his stage presence and ability to
interact with a crowd. Uncle Joe’s a friendly, likeable guy and
with his looks that’s important!!
An interesting fact about Uncle Joe is that he speaks fluent Mandarin
Chinese, which comes in handy when the band goes to eat at Chinese
restaurants. Uncle Joe is also a big guy with a big heart.
About BluesAgent, Uncle Joe offers, “We want to make people happy and
get them to dance. That’s why if it’s a fast or slow song, you
have to be able to dance to it. Of course, it also has to be
either rock or blues.” He brings invaluable experience playing
six-string and 12-string rhythm guitar for the band.
Uncle Joe likes to have fun and does, but also wants BluesAgent to sound the best that it can.