The Rumbles Ltd.
The Rumbles have been one of the most popular and successful rock-and-roll dance bands in the Midwest for over 42 years.
You’d think a band with such a storied history would be content to rest on its laurels and drive off into the setting sun of semi-retirement. Not a chance. There’s still more crowds to be rocked and their busy schedule proves it.
Originally an early-1960’s high school “garage band” from Council Bluffs, IA, the Rumbles began playing professionally in 1963 with the original permanent lineup of Rich Clayton and Joe Brunnworth on guitars, Warren “Bud” Phillips on bass guitar and Steve Hough (pronounced “Huff”) on drums. Although he was the last to join as well as the youngest member, Hough is the only remaining “original Rumble” today.
When the Eddy Haddad Entertainment Agency of Omaha assumed management of the group in 1964, the band’s popularity took off. The somewhat strange marriage of the big band leader Haddad and the raucous rock-and-roll band with the soaring vocal harmonies paid off handsomely throughout the 1960’s with several hit songs and huge crowds throughout the Midwest.
1968 brought the monster single "Jezebel", which went to #1 in several Midwestern radio markets and charted on the Billboard Hot 100. A string of chart singles followed, including “Everybody’s Talkin”, “14 Years”, “Out of Harmony”, “Hey Lenora”, “Push, Push” and others. Even the loss of band founder Clayton, who moved to California in 1967 with the band on the verge of stardom (replaced by keyboardist/guitarist Bob Ford), failed to slow down this musical juggernaut.
But the one thing that did bring the Rumbles popularity to a halt was something they had little control over – the musical tastes of their core audience. As psychedelic music started to win over young people in the late 60’s and early 70’s, the Rumbles witnessed an unprecedented phenomenon – kids sat down to listen to the music rather than bolting for the dance floor. Consequently, attendance at dances rapidly declined and The Rumbles were soon forced to disband.