John Harp - Band Leader / Trombonist
Music has always been an important part of John’s life. By age eleven, John found he had a talent for jazz improvisation. By the age of fourteen, he began playing local jazz jam sessions. At these sessions, he played with some of the greatest west coast men who educated him on the wonders of the small jazz ensemble. By 18 John was a regular in the Portland music scene performing not only jazz but salsa, blues, rock and soul while studying music at Mt. Hood Community College. In 1997, after completing a contract on a cruise line as a trombonist, John moved to Chicago to complete his degree in Jazz Studies at DePaul University. While at DePaul, he continued to freelance around Chicago playing Salsa, Reggae, Classical, and Soul. In 2002, together with saxophonist Josh Beatty, he created The Soul Papas and has worked ever since to create the energetic music that is the hallmark of every Soul Papas performance.
Leroy Barncord - Vocals / Guitar
At a young age, Leroy Winn was heavily influenced by the styles of Elvis Presley and Frank Sinatra. Leroy’s first gig was rocking out his 5th grade Sock Hop that led him to know he was destined for the stage. As a teenager, Leroy performed on TV telethons, state talent contests, and TV talk shows such as - Jenny Jones. As Leroy’s experience grew, so did his style of music, going on to play guitar and sing in some of Chicagoland’s hottest rock alternative and Motown/funk bands. Leroy currently works as a full time arts director and performs live as the front man for The Soul Papa’s. He also plays weekly as a solo acoustic artist bringing a wide variety of popular covers and original music to his fans.
Dan Becker - Guitar and Background Vocals
Affectionately known as the “Professor” by his bandmates, Fox Valley native Dan Becker is an incredibly versatile guitarist. He began performing with an acoustic duo during his freshman year in college at Grand Valley State University. Dan toured with a number of rock, alternative and psychedelic world music bands in the 80’s and 90’s. Around 2001, he began as the guitarist for the blues band Noon Darkness and in 2002 became the original guitarist for The Soul Papas. Dan is equally comfortable in any style of music including classical, folk, Irish pub, country, rock, blues, soul, and jazz. He has taught guitar and bass to many bright students since the 1980’s (including Leroy).
Dan also leads the coffeehouse band the Tourist. http://www.danbeckerandthetourists.com/
Patrick Lovelace - Drums and Background Vocals
At an early age Patrick was encouraged by his grandfather to learn different instruments until he found the right fit. This musical exploration resulted in an extensive understanding of popular music. Patrick went on to focus on the drums and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Music Performance and Education from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. Over the last 26 years, Patrick has freelanced in the Chicago area. He has produced recordings for several spoken word artists and is the founder and leader of the neo-soul band, The Urban Groove Experience. https://www.facebook.com/BBEs-Urban-Groove-Experience-363702751782/
Josh Beatty - Saxophone
A native of Cannon Beach, Oregon, “Smokin’” Josh Beatty has spent most his life in search of the zen of saxophone. Josh is a graduate of Pacific Lutheran University School of Music where he studied with master saxophonist Burt Wilson. In 1999, Josh moved to Chicago and began performing immediately with trombonist John Harp in the bands Phat Planet and The Penthouse Playboys. In 2002, after these early projects ended, he co-founded The Soul Papas with John Harp. Josh has also been an active member of the improvised music scene and has recorded and performed with David Boykin’s Macro and Micro Cosmic Sound Orchestra, the Flabby Hoffman Trio and Undertow.
Larry Stigler - Guitar
Larry started teaching himself guitar at the age of 15 . He co-founded both Big T and the LDS Love Band as well as The Urban Groove Experience. He has freelanced in the Chicago area blues and spoken word scene as well as frequent studio appearances. His intricate guitar rhythms round out The Soul Papas’ powerful back line sound.
Charles Johnson - Bass
Dionne Johnson - Vocals