For the past twenty-five years, Leif Pedersen has provided listening and dancing entertainment for many of the top social events, festivals and conventions in New Orleans, both with his big band, SWING, and as featured vocalist with The Al Belletto Big Jazz Band. Clients have included the Opera Ball, Scholars for Dollars, the SweetArts Ball, Audubon Affair, Zoo-to-Do, seven New Year’s Eve engagements in the Fairmont Hotel’s Blue Room, sixteen French Quarter Festival appearances, the 2002 NFL Owner’s Gala for Super Bowl XXXVIII and numerous national conventions for corporate giants such as Toyota, IBM, Bank One and the American Medical Association.
The big bands have not only provided some of the finest dinner and big band music in the region, they have also served as the backup orchestra for many major talents including Rita Moreno, Lou Rawles, The 5th Dimension, Maureen McGovern, The Lettermen, Phyllis Diller, Leslie Gore and Bobby Rydell.
Leif honed his performance skills in Orlando, Las Vegas and Los Angeles nite club settings and then traveled the U.S. and abroad for over six years as the featured vocalist with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra. He returned to his native New Orleans and appeared as the featured vocalist at Pete Fountain’s Reunion Hall for the 1984 World Fair. He continues to appear nationally for prestigious events such as the Congressional Mardi Gras Ball in Washington, D.C., Norway’s Olympic Preview Ball at the Waldorf Astoria in New York and the Association of Healthcare Philanthropy’s International Conventions in Washington, D.C., New Orleans and Orlando.
Now, Leif brings all of his professionalism to a new, exciting musical product: Leif Pedersen’s 1944 Big Band. The band performs the great arrangements originally made famous by the bands of Glenn Miller, Count Basie, Woody Herman, Artie Shaw, Benny Goodman, and Tommy & Jimmy Dorsey. He sings the classics recorded Frank Sinatra, Dick Haymes, Bobby Darin and Tony Bennett.