Meet The Band

Frank Schmitt

Frank Schmitt started his professional career at the age of 14 when he performed his first gig at Ft. Mitchell Country Club with a band called Odyssey comprised of local band directors. Today, 46 years later, Frank performs with over 30 different bands throughout the Midwest including the Blue Wisp Big Band, PyschoAcoustic Orchestra, Swingtime Big Band & the Monday Night Big Band. When entertainers such as Don Rickles and Frank Sinatra, Jr. come into town, Frank usually gets the call to do the gig. Frank joined the original London Street Band from 1982 to 1988 before taking a break from the performance scene for 16 years. During that time frame, he was the arranger/keyboardist for the group. In 2004, he decided to get back into the gigging scene and the rest is history. Since his return, Frank has performed thousands of Big Band and Jazz gigs but he has always wanted to get back into doing the music from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. In July of 2015, he carefully chose his musicians to put London Street back together again and looks forward to bringing joy and excitement to London Street’s audiences for years to come! Frank will be the arranger for the band as well as covering both keyboard and bass for the group!

Laura Langland

At the age of 6, a stringy blonde haired little girl sat down for her first lesson at the piano and thus began a love affair with music spanning over fifty years. When her parents moved to an apartment, she walked three blocks every day after school to play her grandmother’s old upright player piano. By the late 60’s most of the keys were missing their ivory.

Along with many others, she joined her junior high choir upon the arrival a hot new choir director– and the singing began. At the onset of the folk scene in the late sixties, she picked up acoustic guitar and joined her first band – an acoustic light rock vocal trio called Rosewood, who still play together yet today.

Moving on to the rock band Legend, followed by the swing band Sounds Unlimited, she spent many years with London Street – from 1986 until its disbandment following the passing of guitarist Bugsy Brandenburg.

Laura works as a sales rep in the printing industry, and lives on a 16 acre farm in Batavia, OH with her husband of 28 years, Jim … two horses, two dogs and four cats – enjoys remodeling their farmhouse, caring for her perennial gardens where there is always a rock wall or walkway being built, painting & refinishing furniture, sewing and their newly acquired 1980, 22ft Catalina sailboat.

They are the proud parents of Patrick (25) and Kelly (27), who is the mother of their first grandchild, 8 month old Colton James. Jim’s famous words about music still ring true today “your mother would drive to Cleveland for $100” …

James Davis

James, originally from Rushville, Indiana, grew up listening to a wide range of music from Duke Ellington to 2Pac and everything in between. He started playing trumpet and singing in the 4th grade and played formally up through high school until he was confronted with the realization that he could not do it all and he had to choose between his sports career and his musical career. He chose his sports career and earned a football scholarship to Indiana University (The winning years!!). He graduated in 1993 and started his corporate life in Louisville, KY and found his way back in to music through church by singing in various church choirs. When he and his family transferred to the Cincinnati area for his corporate life, he was able to connect with some great musicians at First Church of Christ in Burlington, KY. This allowed James and Frank to connect and get to know each other.

He has always dreamed of being a part of a band and he is excited to continue his musical career as a part of London Street.

Gary Kennedy

Gary starting playing drums at age 5. At age 8 he played Music Hall as a solo performer in a tribute to Harry Carlson along with Henny Youngman, Tom T. Hall, Bonnie Lou and many others. He started playing in bands professionally at age 9 with “The Burgundy’s” led by his brother Tim,  playing the Beverly Hills Supper Club, Lookout House and other area clubs in Northern Ky. and Cincinnati. He has also played with Dee Felice and Popeye Maupin, both local well known Jazz drummers in the 70’s. Gary grew up listening to Buddy Rich, Louis Bellson, Max Roach and others. He graduated from Northern Ky. University in 1994 with a Master’s  in Music Education. He taught for many years at various High Schools in Kentucky, Ohio and Indiana with the last 10 years of his teaching career at Highlands High School in Ft. Thomas Kentucky. Gary has played with many bands throughout the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s including Clockwork and Exit. He currently fills in with the Swinging Shepherd Big Band and full time with London Street.

Gary lives in Wilder KY with his wife of 25 years, Jan. He is the proud step dad of Matt and Laura and enjoys his eight beautiful grandchildren.

Ric Hopkins

Ric began his musical career at the age of 12 when he saw the Beatles and all the girls screaming on the Ed Sullivan Show, and started guitar lessons! He has spent his career in music, as a salesman, sales manager, and store manager in music stores, while delving into the home recording realm back in the 70’s, and the MIDI and keyboard explosion in the 80s. He made a career change at 35 and became a recording engineer doing corporate work for companies such as P&G, Kenner, and Kahns. He spent the 90s at Jewel Records recording artists and bands. He also finally lived his dream of becoming a “rock and roll star” when he played with ‘Impact’ a classic rock horn band that were the backup band for oldies shows, where he got to play with over a third of the artists and groups in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at Oldiesfest, Music Hall and Taft Theater. He also now owns his own recording studio, the SoundWorkshop.

Larry Daniel

Larry Daniel has been playing trumpet professionally since 1974.  He was on a full scholarship for his Undergraduate and Graduate Degrees at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music in Trumpet Performance from 1976-1982.  His teachers were Eugene Blee and Frank Brown.  Since then he has performed with most every orchestra and big band in the greater Cincinnati area.  He has also performed in the pit orchestra with many of the shows that have come to Cincinnati as well as back up to Tom Jones, John Denver, Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Tony Bennett, Barry Manilow, Bette Midler, and many others.  He also had a couple summer tours with Maynard Ferguson back in the 70’s. He remains an active studio musician in Cincinnati and Indianapolis.  He also enjoys teaching privately and doing clinics at area schools. Larry is excited to be performing with London Street and all of these fine musicians!  Being in the Horn Section with Ron and Dave; two musicians he used to enjoy listening to when he was just a kid is an added bonus!

Ron Bramlage

Hi my name is Ron Bramlage, grew up in northern Kentucky-Cincinnati area. Began playing bass clarinet, baritone sax and tenor sax in high school, graduated 1962. I have played just about any type of music you have heard. I started in a garage band 1959. First gig in a saloon on Court St. in Cincinnati. Played behind the The Marvelettes “Please Mr. Postman” while in high school. After high school went into the Navy, played some gigs. After the Navy moved to Atlanta GA. In Atlanta played in back up bands for Joe Tex, Pointer Sisters, Wilson Pickett, Percy Sledge, Solomon Burke and bunches of other people in the 60’s and 70’s I can’t remember. I also led a band in the south named “Baby Ray and the Dixie Dazzlers”. Moved back to the area in 1980 played with Dee Felice, VO, Bill Gemmer, Bobby Geyer, Shirley Jester, Frank Vincent, Booty Wood, Jimmy McGary and bunches of other very talented cats like the guys and lady in the the New London Street band. I even subbed in the original London Street. Rock on Baby, Peace!!!

 Bill Gemmer

Bill fell in love at the age of ten….with the trombone. He studied with Tony Chipburn, principle trombonist with the CSO, during high school, and pursued his studies further at University of Kentucky. He enlisted in the army and spent some of that time in Vietnam with the 9th Infantry Division Band. A rifle on one shoulder and a horn on the other took some getting used to. He returned to the states and attended Berklee School of Music in Boston, then hit the road with a couple of well known orchestras: The Hugo Winterhalter Orchestra, and The Glenn Miller Orchestra under the leadership of Buddy Morrow. He traveled to Germany and played with the South German Radio Orchestra in Stuttgart, then went on the road with The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra. Bill became one of the “Riverboat Ramblers” enjoying several cruises on the Mississippi Queen. Bill was a founding member of The Blue Wisp Big Band, and the musical director at the Dee Felice Café in Covington, KY. for many years. He also taught in the Jazz Department at CCM. He currently enjoys working with The Pete Wagner Orchestra, Dave Greer’s Classic Jazz Stompers, and many of Cincinnati’s finest musicians. We’re blessed to have Bill join our London Street Band family!