Thunder Valley Casino catches fire with Ohio Players

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Sugarfoot’s Ohio Players took it old school Saturday night at Thunder Valley Casino Resort and turned Pano Hall into party central, or should I say funk central.

The 69 year old master of funk Leroy “Sugarfoot” Bonner, along with eight of his friends, brought the house down as they played hit after hit from their massive collection of songs from the 70′s and 80′s.

Looking frail and using a cane from time to time, Sugarfoot started out with “Who’d She Coo,” and “Skin Tight.” The mixed crowd, of both young and old, were on their feet for most of the performance.

Joining Sugarfoot onstage was Grammy Award winning and longtime band member Trae Pierce (Musical Director/Bass), Derwin Daniels (Sax), Courtney “Big Luv” Girlie (Drummer), Emmanuel Cook (Keyboards), and Earl Fleming (Keyboards). I know that’s only five, but I didn’t catch all their names ““ so if anyone knows who they were, I would love to hear from you.

This was funk at its finest with a tight three horn section, a phenomenal drummer, keyboards, and of course one of the greatest bass players. The band weaved their way from one song to another, making for some wonderful transitions between songs.

Sugarfoot’s voice was no worse for wear. Granted he doesn’t sound the same as he did in his younger years, but he can still bring it. His signature sound came through as he continued with “Fopp,” “Jive Turkey,” and “Honey.”

The crowd erupted into cheers, and anyone not standing was soon on their feet, when the band started playing “Love Rollercoaster,” leading into a superbly performed bass interlude.

As the band left the stage, you could feel the tension in the room as everyone cheered for Sugarfoot and his team to come back out onstage and play just one more. Of course they came back out and finished with everyone’s all-time favorite “Fire.”

The funk doesn’t stop here!!

Catch George Clinton at Thunder Valley Casino Resort on March 25th.

Setlist:
Who’d She Coo
Skin Tight
Fopp
Jive Turkey
Honey
Let’s Love
Sweet Sticky Thing
Heaven
I Wanna Be Free
Love Rollercoaster
Encore
Fire

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