News & Blog



Peggy Lee, Rosemary Clooney, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald.

A lovely warm welcome and an enthusiastic response was received once again, by the Debonaires on Sunday lunchtime at Stafford Jazz Society. Thanks as always to Nick Balmforth for being such a lovely host.
"As always, deleightful to see and hear. Thank you so much for a great concert. SJS"


Dusty Springfield, Joe Loss Steptoe and Son, Bandstand Boogie, Red River Rock

We had a great time at the evening ball at FOV York ! A rip roaring trip back to the 20th Century starting with, what else, the 20th Century Fox fanfare to kick off an evening recreating the sounds of the 1920's to the 60's.
Thanks to Keeley the show finally went ahead after a 2 year lay off. Bravo !!


Ballroom Latin strict tempo dance competition

I think the members of Whitby Dance Club would have had cause to check their tickets as they walked to this unusual stage set up on Saturday. No it wasn't a 'Shadows' concert but some moody lighting and some really great murals on this stage. Cool !
More to the point the Debs had a great night winning some new friends at Whitby Ballroom and Latin Dance Club and airing some new orchestrations. There was some very accomplished dancing and no complaints about tempo, so all in all a great night for a bandleader !
Congratulations again to Ivor and Maisie on their 62nd wedding anniversary. I hadn't sung the Anniversary Waltz for ages.
Bravo all ! Max.



A proud day for the Legion today as they mark their 100th anniversary. This stalwart organisation has a great story to tell of the help it has given to countless ex-servicemen and women over the years, but also it has become such a national institution in Britain that it is hard to imagine November without 'poppy day' and it feels to me like I have been buying poppies for a hundred years myself ! (contrary to accusations for some of my colleagues who think I save them year to year !)
The Royal British Legion is working hard year round to help those in need not just October / November of course and what a success this has been.
Go to the RBL Website today where you can take part in a virtual celebration of this amazing 100year landmark HERE

Kind regards everyone, Max.

VIOLA SMITH - Groundbreaking swing era drummer dies at 107

Violet Smith

Viola Smith was an amazing drummer and pioneer of women in the fiercely male preserve of swing band music in the 30's and 40's.
A fabulous story that you can read in full here:

Watch the video !


Battle of Britain, Spitfire, Hurricane, Lancaster, Wellington, Mosquito.

Seems like yesterday I was blogging about BOB 75 !
At least then we were out dancing and partying as you would expect the Deb's to be doing.
How different this year. This year was the 75th anniversary of VE Day and the 80th of BOB. But everything has just had to be cancelled. Our lovely friends at the Duxford Battle of Britain Airshow were absolutely going to go ahead until the very latest announcement from government last week. So that's it; nothing until the new year and nothing since March.
Now please don't think I'm whinging, I'm just telling. I completely support whatever it takes to contain this unseen enemy and I feel perfectly qualified to recommend that wartime/blitz spirit to get us through. This time the only thing being rationed is our absolute freedom for the time being.
So let us the "many" remember the courage of those wonderfully heroic "few" of 80 years ago and 'do our bit'.
Kindest regards, Max.


Dame Vera Lynn dies today aged 103. Auf Wiedersehen Sweetheart Hello Debs Fans, what a sad day.
Dame Vera Lynn has died today aged 103.
You know I have never given deference to people just because they are in the public eye, viz all the pointless celebrities vacuously filling magazines and the internet.
But: (I won't do her justice here )
Here was a lady who's whole life was an amazing story of courage and giving. A beautiful voice with heart wrenching delivery, the courage to go to Burma when no other E.N.S.A. performers would, and then the rest of her long life, dedicated to her charity work.
The Charity work is what Dame Vera said she would rather be remembered for and who am I to disrespect her wishes. Vera over the course of 75 years since the war ended, (in addition to making even more hit records and television shows) founded and campaigned for a charity for children with cerebral palsy.
She has given us so many things to remember her by.
Auf Wiedersehen Sweetheart ! xx


Vera Lynn forces sweetheart Looking forward to toasting the heroes of WW11 at 15:00hrs today.
Weird to be (as a Debonaire) sitting on my hands when this weekend was so full with bookings commemorating the end of war in Europe. Still our disappointment pales into insignificance considering the fear and uncertainty of the war years, and for some today who are going through their own dark days.
Most uplifting for the Debonaires today is the release of a fab dance tutorial video by the Imperial War Museums. It features our lovely colleagues Jitterbug Jive Dance Troupe and they have chosen to dance to music from the Debonaires, recorded live at the Duxford Battle of Britain Airshow that we did together.
Bravo Linda and Den, and many thanks to Olivia and her team at IWM for making it happen.
Link is above or you can see it on our Videos Page.
Have a great party Folks !


keep calm and carry on. Wash your hands. Rationing. Hello Folks.
Its very tempting to start drawing analogies with the war, what with a bit of rationing going on, shortages of equipment and restrictions on peoples movements etc, I suppose that would make a perfect Max blog especially if we include the lovely community sprit that is now drawing breath throughout the country.
But this enemy is very different and the current emergency appears ridiculous in that heroic key workers are working all hours and the rest of us are on sofa duty. All for good reason of course !

The live music industry has been decimated and for the Debs, the very busy VE75 May dates have all been cancelled including the Duxford Airshow. Who knows when we will be out swinging again, but we will keep our spirits up with all the messages of support from our lovely fans.

Keep well and keep away !
Yours, Max.



We had a fabulous lunchtime session at Stafford Jazz Society on Sunday, which just happened to be International Womens Day. So here is a lovely picture of our International Women of note from the band. Even better, on our next major performance we will have a guest Lead sax, who is also (shock!) a woman. So we will have a completely female reed section. Nice.
The members and organisers of Stafford Jazz Society were as lovely and as appreciative as ever. Extra chairs had to be summoned and we gave the audience a mixture of vintage 20's, Dixieland, Big Band Swing, we tried out a new Nina Simone number and even (by request) provided some entertainment reminiscent of Eddie Calvert with a version of Zambezi.
We were very flattered to receive a standing ovation at the end. Thank you SJS !


Gatsby. Blackpool Winter Gardens Empress Ballroom. Corporate Event

So nice to be back at the Winter Gardens Blackpool, this time in the Spanish Hall, for a brilliantly organised and very enjoyable Corporate Event. Here is a picture of the room from the stage before the guests entered the room to a surprise live 1920's Band !
Click on our Galleries page to see more pictures !


MOD Stafford spitfire backdrop

Another fabulous authentic evening of live music at the Sergeants Mess annual Battle of Britain Ball. These folks know how to party, and wow for those wonderful bright red dress uniforms. I really need a set of those for the band !
Knew it was going to be a fab evening as soon as we saw the magnificent back drop to the stage (photo), it was a shame to set up in front of it.
Bravo to project manager Kevin and thanks for the kind words:

Thank you and the band for an excellent set it was absolutely fantastic. Everyone this morning as we are packing away has not stopped talking about the band.
Thank you again and see you next year I hope."

Flight Sergeant KW - MOD.

A sell out August so far for the Debs !


Paul Dogtags

A fabulous August so far as we played our 1st two 40's events of the season. And what contrasting events they were !
Morecambe 1940's Revival on the 3rd was our debut at what was only their 2nd annual event. And hot. Almost faintingly hot in the Memorial Hall but we kept calm and carried on and had a fab evening making new friends. I am told ticket sales for next year's Ball started the following day !
Yanks on the 10th, was a return for us and we had a fab traditional 40's knees up with the winner of the spot prize being a popular decision. So sad about the weather again, this time a bit of a wash out for the outdoor events on the Saturday. But again what a fabulous set of people who run this seminal event commemorating the Yanks being stationed in Saddleworth. These events have one thing in common however, both dances were sold out !

New Album - Debonaires Live at the Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show !

Doris Day Sentimental Journey. Charlie Barnet Skyliner. Glenn Miller Moonlight Serenade. Benny Goodman Sing Sing Sing. Elle Fitzgerald A Tisket A Tasket. Ted Heath Flying Home. Tiger Rag. Darktown Strutters Ball. Goody Goody. The Lambeth Walk

Very excited here at Debonaires HQ. As I type, copies of our new album are dropping off the press. It was recorded at the Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show in September 2018 and contains lots of that new American 40's swing music and some older stuff for the Mums and Dads. The album features some fabulous renditions from Debonaires favourite, the adorable Sarah Eastwood on vocals.
Obviously look out for the CD at our engagements but also happy to post out to our fans. Just drop me an Email. Cost £10 +p&p.
All the swinging best, Max.

Congratulations Amanda and Philip !

society wedding. David Oliver Events Manager. Debonaires Wedding Band

Congratulations Amanda and Philip, it looked like you had a brilliant day all round and the 'Debs' were delighted to have been part of it. So nice to have been appreciated in such a big way by you and your lovely quests. I hope you are enjoying Rome !
You choose a fabulous venue at Lumley Castle (even thought the resident spooks were messing with our equipment) and credit to Events Manager David Oliver and his team for looking after us and making our job so much easier.
Lumley Castle


Debonaires at Stafford Jazz Society

A fabulous swinging lunchtime jazz session was had by all at Stafford Jazz Society yesterday. A lovely warm reception from this record breaking crowd of vintage jazz lovers. Thanks to Nick Balmforth and his excellent team for making such events happen. So rewarding for us to be received so positively.

Congratulations Scarlett & Ricky !

Wedding reception. Alcumlow Hall Farm Astbury, Wedding Music by the Debonaires

We were so pleased to be able to perform for this lovely couple in December. Scarlett wanted as much swinging Xmas music as we could muster. In the end I managed to produce 10 new band arrangements in time for the big day. Sarah's Santa Baby was sublime !.
Lots of other lovely romantic music from the swing era by the Debonaires also.

"Thank you SO much to you all for playing the reception music at our wedding on Saturday. You were absolutely fantastic! You created the most warm, festive atmosphere to accompany the mulled wine and went completely out of your way to include Christmas songs we'd asked for. It was exactly what we wanted! Thank you, Scarlett xxx"

Duxford Battle of Britain Airshow 2018

We were very 'chuffed' to be asked to perform at the Duxford Battle Of Britain Airshow again this year, especially for the 100th anniversary of the RAF.
The SHOW was in the air but we 'did our bit' to keep the spirit of the Battle of Britain going in the Nightlife Hub aided beautifully by our friends from Jitterbug Jive. As you can see from the photo they were a blur as they performed spectacular dance demonstrations dancing to the Debs'. Of great significance to us all was the fact that we were blowing and dancing on the very spot in the hangar where the Spitfire usually stands. A bit of mopping up of oil before the dancing could take place ! Also sharing the stage were 3 of the D-Day Darlings with their impressive well drilled choreographed actions that I think the RAF itself would be impressed with.
What a brilliant weekend for flying and musical entertainment.
Bravo to Phil, Olivia, Ella and the rest of the Duxford Team.

Spitfire Flight

Spitfire Elizabeth

Well what can I say? Am I a really lucky chap? Not only do I get to front the best swinging band in the land, but I also get treated to a flight over the White Cliffs of Dover in a Spitfire! This was an absolutely amazing, exhilarating, scary and actually very emotional experience that I will never forget especially looking down on that iconic wingshape with the cliffs below. A few victory rolls thrown in for good measure by my excellent and 'bang-on' pilot Parky Parkinson from Aero Legends. What a pilot, what a plane, still the most exciting machine ever made, and boy was it made for the skies.
Pleased to have fared somewhat better than poor old Glenn Miller, as I actually did return back to base ready for the Duxford Battle of Britain Airshow the following weekend where I got so see Spitfire 'Elizabeth' once again along with 17 others all flying in formation. Stand by for my update on the Duxford 100 years of the RAF Air Show including the exploits of the Debonaires to follow soon. Max.

Armed Forces Day - RAF Cosford

Lancaster Bomber  fly past Debonaires

Great to be back at RAF Cosford for Armed Forces Day, excellent exhibits, excellent music, fantastic fly-by of a Lancaster …….. Ah well 2 out of 3 not bad. A technical hitch meant the old girl was grounded in Liverpool and didn't make an appearance.
If you have never been to Cosford RAF Museum it really is a great place for a day out.

New Debonaires promotional video

promotional video Max Debon & the Debonaires. undiscovered Mark Leigh, Princess Dianna. Frank Sinatra. Tommy Dorsey. I

Finally it's happened. I have removed the 'apology' from the title of our Music Clips page.
Very pleased to have a new and our 1st proper promotional video from our last performance at the Phoenix Jazz Club.
Good work band and some great vocals from Sarah.
Even on a whole website its very hard to say what kind of music we play, it is so varied and will vary depending on the client and the occasion. This new video solves this problem, in 3.5mins you get some Glenn Miller, Gastby, Fred & Ginger, Ellington/Ella swing, some Latin, Nina Simone, Marilyn Monroe, some 50's Basie groove and some Dixie Jazz.
All thanks to Mark Leigh of Undiscovered Brass who asked if he could record his Tommy Dorsey tribute with the Debs.
See our new video on our Music Clips Page and hear Mark's exquisite performance of Tommy's I'm Getting Sentimental over You

All I can say is I hope you enjoy the videos and look out for the live album !

Duxford Battle of Britain Airshow

Imperial War Museum Duxford Battle of Britain Airshow

Wow what a weekend !
Lets start appropriately with the flying. What a fantastic excuse for some superb pilots to go thrashing about the place in some iconic yes, but still breath-taking 70 year old aircraft. A squadron of 14 Spitfires in the air together, Hurricanes doing amazing aerobatics, plus a glorious Lancaster. There were some marvellous US planes too, Thunderbolts, Mustangs and Dakotas. Dakotas always make me think of From Here To Eternity.
Appropriately we had 3 members of the band flying in to the gig. Ok 2 were on commercial aircraft into Stanstead but our intrepid lead sax man Rick managed to pilot his own aircraft into Duxford. From the saga I get the impression it is harder to avoid the red tape than it is to avoid the ground when undertaking a flight !
Each morning before the show there was 40's entertainment from the Debonaires of course, brilliantly supported by Jitterbug Jive dance troupe from Bournemouth and the dulcet Andrews Sisters style renderings from the Blue Bird Belles from the West Midlands. We certainly made new friends with the artistes and visitors alike and thanks to all you swing fans who tracked us down on Facebook and our website and sent us such encouraging messages.

Absinthe & Lace Champagne Supper Club

burlesque Florian Brooks Oliver Tabor Scarlet Butterfly Talulah Blue

Wow, what a night we had !
I really must put on record, the fabulous show presented at the Opera House Arts Theatre Buxon on Saturday by Lady Absinthe. Such a fabulous thing to be part of. Fine dining whilst being entertained by internationally renown talent such as Florian Brooks, Oliver Tabor and Scarlet Butterfly in a professional show that hit just the right tone. Such a promoter of live entertainment and for me in particular - Live Music ! Thank you Lady A xx
See the 2 pictures here and then jump to our Gallery page to see more.

Nothing like a bit of networking !


Washed out Bandstand - Yikes!

Brooklands, Goodwood, Oulton Park, Donnington Part, Brands Hatch, Silverstone

Things not looking good upon arrival at the MSV Vintage Festival at Oulton Park Racing Circuit. However the organisers (Phil's Team) swiftly rescued the situation and found us and the Backstep Boogie Club a lovely dry corner of the Café and a captive audience !
It was fab to be working with Trina and the Backstep Boogie Club once again. How do you keep dancing all day ?!

But the weather did cheer up to allow this splendid band shot with this magnificent iconic aeroplane

spitfire, battle of britain flight, professional swing band, debonaires

I think Sarah was enjoying herself with all that military hardware !

chanteuse, jazz vocalist, swing vocalist,

Standing ovation for our debut at Stafford Jazz Society - Oh my !

John Barber, Andy Scott, Mike Lovatt, Matt Ford, Claire Teal, Vintage Dance Orchestra

What a lovely Sunday lunchtime concert at Stafford Jazz Society, and such a warm welcome from Nick Balmforth and the rather large audience and a standing ovation no less.
Thanks to ace trombonist John Barber for standing in and bravo to all my lovely regular musicians who clearly had a ball. On particular form I think was the delightful Sarah Eastwood on Vocals and Clarinet who was clearly loving performing in her home town.
I must also give a big thank you to Mr Paul Milgate-Scarrott, top photographer, for some excellent shots of the band, look out for a new gallery later in the week. I fear Sarah may well have a gallery to herself !

Stockport Plaza - Winter Cafe

Art Deco Manchester Swing Band Swing and Latin Band

We had a superb debut at the Plaza Winter Cafe' on the 9th December. It was a lovely opportunity to meet some new friends and to catch up with some of our regular fans who await our not too frequent public performances. Great to have so many diners. I'm told that there was only one spare seat in the whole Cafe' unsold.
Due to the size of the venue and the intimate dining nature of the event I took just a 5 piece combo along: Our regular rhythm section boys and the lovely Sarah Eastwood on Vocals, Clarinet and Sax.
If you have not been to the Plaza or indeed the Cafe' both are wonderfully restored Art Deco treasures. Tours are available.
I am happy to say that the Plaza have already re-booked us for next Xmas, the 8th December to be precise. Hopefully see you there, best wishes Max.

Vintage Wedding - Claire and Gary

North Wales Chesterfield Winding Wheel

My world has changed ! For the first time in over 2 years I don't have Claire and Gary's wedding in the Debonaires band diary, suddenly its all over. I think Claire holds the record for early booking the Debonaires, bless you Claire !
You really did think of everything. You and Gary looked splendid in your wonderful vintage turnout as did your lovely guests.
Claire and Gary had dance lessons to prepare to dance to their choice of 1st dance which was Benny Goodman's Sing Sing Sing. And the guests were not getting away with it either. Yes jive lessons from 2 dance teachers on hand so that even the most uninitiated guests could throw themselves into the spirit of the evening.
Thanks to Claire also for pointing out a brilliant wedding song with such good words.Claire asked me to make a special musical arrangement of Bring Me Sunshine as a surprise for Gary. We kept the secret to such an extent that I entitled the song BMS just so Gary wouldn't spot it on our music stands and catch on.
Lovely evening, lovely couple, lovely cake !
Best wishes for your future Claire and Gary.

Battle of Britain Dinner


Fabulous debut night at MOD Stafford performing for mess Battle of Britain Dinner. Good food, good music, and a SPITFIRE, ok a jeep and a NAAFI tent too but a SPITFIRE !

Batte of Britain Dinner

Heroes remembered battle of britain MOD Royal Signals Regiment RAF March Past Winston Churchill

Well, actually the Officers and Sergeants did rather dignify the authentic NAAFI tent, and it was a splendid evening with the right proportion of fun and seriousness as the occasion deserved. Heroes remembered.

Armed Forces Day - RAF Cosford

Battle of Britain Flight. RAF.Music from the Debonaires. Swing Nostalgia Glann Miller, Benny Goodman

Fabulous musical day at RAF Cosford commemorating Armed Forces Day.
Great to be involved in this again.
This year we had a Hurricane fly-by, Wow wee!!!

Debut - Debonaires Dixie Band !

"trad Jazz"  "New Orleans" New Orleans Trad Jazz

"Would you be able to provide a band to play New Orleans style music?"
Yes Madam! And so the Debonaires Dixie Band made its debut. I mean, which Bandleader doesn't have Sousaphone and Banjo players in their address book!
It was certainly fun to put together a scratch band for Redhouse Inn Grand Re-opening and it went down so well we hope to be going back.
The nice thing about a New Orleans/Trad Jazz/Dixie Band is that its just an acoustic set up ideal for pubs and smaller venues.
So yes the Dixie Band is taking bookings. The best things are never planned. :-)

Congratulations Mr & Mrs Borriello !

wedding Edgbaston Birmingham "My Baby Just Cares for Me"

The great thing about Brides, is that they are so efficient when it comes to organising the wedding, usually booking the band nice and early as Izzie did 13 months ago. I feel I have become Izzie's pen pal as we have emailed each other over the months, sorting out dates, timings, favourite tunes, the first dance, oh and a buffet for the band hee hee! Absolutely the best part of my job and to be so well received by all ages as are found at a wedding is so gratifying. I was very pleased to pen a new musical arrangement for the couple's first dance, "My Baby Just Cares For Me" and that means we now have a new number in the repertoire. Have a good honeymoon Izzie and Adam.

Mayor of Tameside - Annual Charity Valentine

Strictly Come Dancing Charity Valentine I just couldn't let last night's event go by without comment. The Debonaires first time at Dukinfield Town Hall, very nice, and what seemed to us to be a very successful evening.
We particularly enjoyed the Strictly Come Dancing style dance demonstration by the Mayor, Councilor Vincent Ricci, as he demonstrated his medal wining dance skills.
A bravo too to Joanne Green who seemed to have a complete handle on the organisation of this fine event.

BBC Northern Dance Orchestra - Bob Turner

BBC Northern Dance Orchestra One Show

Have just learned that the Debonaires have a genetic line to musical swing royalty in their ranks. What's he on about you may ask?
Our superb drummer Mr Robert Turner, is seems, has an even more famous Dad. Bob Turner was quote "top drummer in the BBC Northern Dance Orchestra". I know that many of our older fans remember the NDO with great admiration and affection.
Apparently the photograph was from the 1968/69 Premier Drum Catalogue taken at the BBC Playhouse Theatre Manchester. Cool !
If anyone remembers Bob Turner or would like to share any other memories or tidbits about the NDO send me an Email. Rgds, Max.

Congratulations Mr & Mrs Denovan !

Debonaires play live music for beautiful dream weddings

Had a great time on Saturday. Lovely wedding, lovely people, lovely Bride!
I was very pleased to make a new musical arrangement for the band to play for the couples first dance' - Michael Buble's 'Have I Told You Lately That I love You'. I stuck quite faithfully to Michael's recording. Just as well! Rebecca and Trent launched into a beautifully choreographed dance routine precisely as per the recording. Phew! Just as well I didn't get creative with it. Bravo both it was a beautiful routine.
Professional accolades to Emma Tuckley of High Times Weddings & Entertainment

Jazz at the Mill Presenter - The Debonaires very own Sarah Eastwood

Stafford Radio Windmill Radio Jazz at the Mill.

How exciting ! The Debonaires very own Sarah Eastwood is now presenting her very own show on Stafford Radio.
Listen in to good jazz old and new. Contact her with your favorite 3 tracks from your Divas or Kings of Jazz and get them aired.
Well done Sarah ! (cute ears).

Battle of Britain Celebration at RAF Cosford

Spitfire. Lincoln bomber, Lancaster Bomber, RAF Cosford. Great to be playing at RAF Cosford today AND a spitfire fly by to boot. They are the most beautiful and exciting machines ever made !

I have had a marvelous commemorative 12 months starting with our Great War centenary event in Middlewich last October, a legion (get the pun?) of VE and VJ type of events, my own trip to the Normandy Beaches this summer and this week a couple of musical outings commemorating 75 years since the Battle of Britain.

One of the moments that sticks in my mind was at one of our largest V.E. Day events. I overheard the caretaker of the building explaining to the skateboarding youths outside why there were so many old people descending on the venue. "Something about the war"

Vintage By The Sea

Hemingway Design midland hotel morecame

Thought I should spread the word about this brilliant vintage event. Not that I think I need to as in excess of 40,000 people are expected. Looking forward to some excellent live music. See you there !

Midland Hotel - Morecambe

GI Jive  Midland Hotel Vintasge By The Sea Hemingway Design

Very excited to be performing last night at the Midland Hotel Morecambe. This beautifully restored art deco 'palace' did not disappoint. The glamour, the views, the location, and the staff ! All superb, A great vintage night had by all I think. Bravo to our lovely and charming hostess and birthday girl, Jean Avery.

How do you get an authentic 8 piece swing band into the Weighing Room at Uttoxetter Racecourse?


In the bucket of a vintage JCB of course!

Bravo to organiser Gemma at Vintage Suitcase, great weekend !

Selfie with Debonaires - Absinthe & Lace Buxton

debut cabaret band

And did everyone get into the spirit of the evening at the Absinthe & Lace Champagne Supper Club last Saturday? I think they did !
We were performing with some fabulous acts and the whole evening was a very classy affair and the guests left us in no doubt they had a good time.
Bravo once again to Lady Absinthe and her team !

Normandy Landings

Normandy Landings

Well I'm a year late for the 70th anniversary but I finally made it to Normandy to pay homage to this great event. I think one needs to go there, look up at the fortified positions from the beach to fully appreciate the bravery. And if you think you appreciate the scale of this invasion, wait until you have been to one of the may exhibitions. Impressed and amazed in equal measure. And what about Pegasus Bridge ! What an audacious feat of flying in pitch darkness by those glider pilots.
We all play at 'vintage' these days for fun but I will never trivialise any of the commemorative events we perform at.

I love my job !

Talulah Blue Burlesque Cabaret live band Debonaires

Always stimulating to be performing with the stunning Talulah Blue at the Absinthe & Lace Champagne Supper Club.

All smiles at Mill Row VE Celebrations last night

Official VE Day comemorations celebrations featuring Max Debon & the Debonaires

No not another picture of the band on stage, just some smiling faces from last night's VE Day knees up at Mill Brow. Check out our Gallery Page for more pictures.
When we drove into the village it was like walking onto the set of 'Home Fires', what a great war effort from everyone.
Fabulous people, lovely pub, great swing music and Bravo! to the village dance troupe.
Lots of new friends made.
Look out for other VE Day performances from the Debonaires later in the year.

VE Day commemoration at Tatton Park Knutsford Cheshire tomorrow

British Legion Cheshire East. Max Debon playing bugle for Last Post I am very proud to be playing the bugle for the British Legion commemoration at Tatton Park tomorrow. The Mayor of Cheshire East Council will be in attendance and lets keep our fingers crossed for good weather !

Wigan Jazz Club


We had a lovely afternoon at the Wigan Jazz Club on Sunday. The Wigan Youth Jazz Orchestra Kicked off the session in fine style under the direction of Debonaires own Richard (Rick) Halliwell.
The Debonaires provided a programme of jazz 'Dance Music' from its roots in 1917 through to Benny Goodman with a little bit of Vegas style kitsch thrown in.
What a lovely crowd and many thanks again to Diane Hammond for stepping in on clarinet at less than 24hours notice. Brill !

70th Anniversary - Victory in Europe (VE Day) 2015


Friday the 8th May 2015 is the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE Day). It's hard to imagine the joy and relief experienced by everyone at home and serving abroad after 6 years of threat, hardship, break up of families and of course, never actually knowing how and when it was going to end. We all know it ended in victory in1945. They couldn't know. What times they must have been when an 'entire nation' become heroes.

Wigan Jazz Club

wigan international jazz festival Whoops! Sorry Folks, have had the wrong date on the website for our return to the Wigan Jazz Club. It is Sunday the 26th April. Please spread the word !


Friends of the Forties

Have been looking for this little photographic gem for some time. Going back to the 90's I used to play trumpet and vocals with East Anglia's premier dance orchestra, the AGO. What a fine body of men, and who's that girl?
We really did have colour photography then, but pre Instagram this was retro!
Great band, great times, great memories. Would be pleased to hear if anyone remembers dancing to or playing with the band.


Public Events

swing jive dance music


Get your military and vintage hardware polished up ready for this year's Wartime in the Vale weekend 15th/16th June.
The Debonaires will be performing Saturday evening, playing a range of lively vintage dance music from the 1930's to the 60's!
See you there, Max.

Fever by Peggy Lee. The Folks That Live On the Hill.


Delighted as always to be invited to perform for Stafford Jazz Society at the White Eagle Club, Riverway, Stafford, ST16 3TH. 12:30.
It is a great opportunity for us to play some Jazz music we would not normally play for a dance, and also to get those feet tapping to some of our more energetic numbers! See you there!

Social Dance 21st October 2023 - Ballroom, Latin American & Sequence - Whitby Dance Club Ellesmereport - All Welcome

Tickets from Cilla Smith 0151 3396085
Venue: Whitby Club, Dunkirk Lane/Chester Road, Ellesmere Port.


Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show - 16th/17th September 2023

Very excited to have been invited to perform once again at the Imperial War Museum Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show this year.
The Debonaires will be performing between 9:00 & 13:00hrs each morning before the show starts. Apparently 15,000 visitors per day are expected and I understand why. The line up of aircraft is amazing and some categories of tickets sell very quickly and are only available in advance.

We will be doing our best to get that Battle of Britain feeling going with the great swinging hits of the 30's & 40's. Come and join us !

Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman


Hello Folks, thrilled to announce we will be performing at the Lowther Pavillion Theatre once again in 2023, for the1940's Dance. It is an evening performance in the Theatre itself.
It is a wonderful professional venue, with a great dance floor so come and dance to Messrs Miller, Goodman, Ellington and Dorsey on the Lanchashire Riviera !
More details to follow, stand by. Max.

forties event, 40


I am very excited that the Debonaires have been asked to perform at the Wartime in the Vale weekend (17th-18th June 2023). This will be our second appearance and we had such a ball last year ! This will be a fabulous weekend of WWII hardware and fun. We will be playing for the Saturday night Ball, so keep an eye out on the WWV website and I will update you all here as details are finalised.
Keep the date !

Cha Cha, Rhumba, Paso Doble, Salsa

Social Dance - Palace Ballroom - Hindley Wigan - 1st October 2022

All are welcome to an evening of live music and dance at the Palace Ballroom / Hurst Dance Studios in Hindley, Wigan.

Ballroom - Latin American - Sequence - Dancing to Max Debon & the Debonaires !

spitfire squadron flying home Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show Airshow

Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show - 10th/11th September 2022

Very excited to have been invited to perform once again at the Imperial War Museum Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show this year. The Debonaires will be performing between 9:00 & 13:00hrs each morning before the show starts. Apparently 15,000 visitors per day are expected and I understand why. The line up of aircraft is amazing and some categories of tickets sell very quickly and are only available in advance.

We will be doing our best to get that Battle of Britain feeling going with the great swinging hits of the 30's & 40's. Come and join us !

1940's DANCE - LYTHAM ST. ANNES - 20th AUGUST 2022

Hello Folks, thrilled to announce we will be performing at the Lowther Pavillion Theatre once again in 2022, this time for the 1940's Dance.
It is a wonderful professional venue, with a great dance floor so come and dance to Messrs Miller, Goodman, Ellington and Dorsey on the Lanchashire Riviera !
More details to follow, stand by. Max.


I am very excited that the Debonaires have been asked to perform at the Wartime in the Vale weekend (25th-26th June 2022). This will be our first appearance I and it is looking like it is going to be a fabulous weekend of WWII hardware and fun. We will be playing for the Saturday night Ball, so keep an eye out on the WWV website and I will update you all here as details are finalised.
Keep the date !

Please see all our other news & events

Contact Us

Just pick up the phone and call Max Debon on 07979 501101.

If you prefer, please use our contact form or send him an email to

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“ Max, simply lovely - thankyou so much. Better than ever. ”

Stafford Jazz Society

“ We have had the great pleasure of being entertained by Max and his Debonaires for several of our live big band dance evenings. Having a live band with vocals of their calibre is something special, playing for a wide audience with a variety of ballroom, latin and sequence dance music. Max is not only friendly and easy to communicate with but he and the band are also flexible. ”

Whitby Ballroom Dance Section.

“ Very Good morning to you Max

Thank you so much for performing for us at Wartime in The Vale - you were all amazing and I really appreciate your talent and professionalism. ”


“ Thanks again for a great afternoon, and I’ve got to say, you guys have had some of the best feedback we have ever had – the entire room thought you were excellent ! ”

RH - Corporate Client

“ Max,
Thank you and the band for an excellent set it was absolutely fantastic. Everyone this morning as we are packing away has not stopped talking about the band.
Thank you again and see you next year I hope. ”

Flight Sergeant KW - MOD

“ Hi Max

Thanks for a great performance the feedback to us was 100% positive. We don't really have much choice about next year as we have (already) had requests for tickets for next years dance ! ”

GD Morecambe 1940's Revival

“ Thank you SO much to you all for playing the reception music at our wedding on Saturday. You were absolutely fantastic! You created the most warm, festive atmosphere to accompany the mulled wine and went completely out of your way to include Christmas songs we'd asked for. It was exactly what we wanted! Thank you, Scarlett xxx ”

Scarlett McGuinley-Hughes

“ If there was a prize for best dressed band this weekend's contestants would win hands down.

The band opened with a brief snatch of the theme tune to Strictly Come Dancing to herald Nick Balmforth in his role as compere onto the stage. This led on to songs from the 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s played in style by Leader and trumpet player - Max Debon, Austin Ralphson on the trombone, Rick Halliwell on the alto sax, Sarah Eastwood on clarinet and vocals, Peter 'Pedro' Robinson on double bass, Rob Turner on drums, Peter Wilson on keyboard and Anne Holder on saxophone.

We had it all - Mambo Italiano, The Folks who Live on the Hill, Stardust, American Patrol, Tiger Rag, My Baby Just Cares for Me and much much more, ending with an appropriate swing version of The Addams Family. In line with Strictly's favourite straight-talking Craig Revel Horwood it was Fab-u-lous ! ”

Stafford Jazz Society

“ Hi Max
I just want to place on record my sincere thanks to you all for your superb performance on Saturday night at my 50th Birthday Party.

We all thoroughly enjoyed the music and didn't want it to end. The dance floor was full throughout the night and with dancers of all ages. - a real tribute to your artistry.

Many of us woke up on Sunday morning quite bleary eyed but with so many of your wonderful tunes going around in our heads. You have created many many happy memories.

I will not hesitate to recommend you to other people.

Please convey my appreciation to the other band members.

With sincere thanks and good wishes.
Gary ”

Garry Poole

“ Thanks you for providing excellent music and I look forward to doing business with you again as you made my job a lot easier. ”

CM Flight Sergeant MOD Stafford

“ We would like to thank Max and The Debonaires for their fantastic music at our wedding on Saturday.
They were so accommodating and even added a new song to their repertoire as I requested Gary Smiths favourite song of Bring Me Sunshine, he was over the moon when he heard it.
So many of our guests were mesmerized by Max and the music, we had lots commenting on how fantastic they were and how lovely it was to have a proper band playing!
Everything was perfect from the initial e-mail to the very end, I can't recommend them highly enough. Thank you so very much x ”

Claire and Gary

“ Thank you Deboniares for the most amazing night. You were just superb and made our 1940s party such fun and got everyone on the dance floor! We're trying to think of future parties just so that we can book you again! Thankyou thank you thank you! ”

Nancy and Tom

“ Hi Max, thank you for the fantastic music on our opening night. We thoroughly enjoyed it. We will be in touch soon to arrange a repeat booking. ”

Ruth Newman - Redhouse Inn

“ Thank you for sounding so amazing last night, from start to finish we loved every minute of it. Adam Borriello (groom).

You guys were amazing! Thoroughly enjoyed your sets -Couldn't stop dancing and singing! Thank you for helping to make their evening special.Cazz Prior (Bridesmaid). ”

Wedding of Izzy & Adam

“ Hi Max,

On behalf of the Civic Mayor of Tameside (Councillor Vincent Ricci) and all his guests, please accept our sincere thanks for a fantastic evening.

The event was a huge success and we are all so grateful to the Debonaires for helping to make the occasion so memorable.

Thank you once again, it was a pleasure working with you.

Best wishes. ”

JG - Tameside Mayor

“ Hello Max great to hear from you
I`d like nothing better than to book the Debonaires for a show next year- easily the best dance band I`ve booked EVER!! ”

DT / Middlewich Town Council

“ On behalf of the Commanding Officer of the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, I would like to thank you so much for playing at our Battle of Britain Dining-In Night. Your contribution was greatly appreciated and I have received numerous positive comments following your performance last night.
The Debonaires captured the mood of the evening perfectly; the selection of music was ideal and, on a personal note, the RAF March as the Top Table left was the icing on the cake.
Please pass on my thanks to all members of The Debonaires - you all helped make the event a great success. ”

Project Officer - Battle of Britain Dining-In Night

“ Thanks Max, you did us proud. Fabulous band! ”

Lavender Ribbon Cancer Charity

“ Morning Max
Just wanted to say a HUGE thank you to you and your team .
Excellent , very professional, and also lovely people to work with . Your dedication and passion for your art is outstanding , and you took the evening to a different level with your music - amazing !
I would love to have you back to another supper club and hope you had a wonderful night yourselves .
Please pass on my thanks and appreciation again to your team , they were all excellent .
Hope to speak soon ,
Warmest Regards
Lady Absinthe x ”

Lady Absinthe / Buxton

“ I wanted to follow up on your wedding performance on the 24th November. Your band's performance was excellent and everyone had a wonderful time; I can't tell you how many people came up to me to ask where we found you and how good they said you all were. As a 'small' band you put out a 'big band sound', witness the crowded dance floor. ”

PM / Macclesfield

“ We all had a brilliant night at the Swingaroo christmas party - what a great party atmosphere - Awesome band, absolutely blew us all away at Swingaroo on Friday. Hopefully we're getting 'em back next year! ”

AD / Preston

“ Thanks again for playing at our wedding. The music was perfect for giving the drinks reception that 'vintage' feel and definitely added a touch of class! We have had so many lovely comments from guests. We really appreciated your professionalism on the day and beforehand in fitting round our ever changing plans and song preferences for the day. We will definitely be recommending the Debonaires to our friends for future events. ”

HB / Nantwich

“ We gave a great reception to the Debonaires. - as this 'small big band' reminded us of Duke, Glenn, Woody and others, and singer Sarah did the same for such as Ella, Peggy and Marilyn. Absolutely everything went with such a swing. ”

Brookdale Club / Stockport

Live Music, Swing Band, Lindy Hop, Dance Band

The Debonaires are based around Manchester, Birmingham, Cheshire, Staffordshire, essentially the Midlands and North West but are happy to perform at venues nationwide.