Home_Kats_Band 2017-08-11T19:17:45+00:00

We are a soul & swing band, jazz & jump blues, rock n’ roll & romance...every kind of music you like and none of the music you don’t.

We are the hippest, coolest Kats around... and every gig is a chance to make our clients shine.


Gwen Hughes and The Kats Band

What other band can bring together the deep-pocket swing of the 1930s and 1940s and segue effortlessly into contemporary beats like Stevie Wonder’s “I Wish” and “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk?  The Atlanta Journal-Constitution flatly states: “Gwen Hughes was swinging before swinging was cool.”


Painting of Gwen and the Kats by Atlanta Artist Gina Palermo, 2005.

A veteran on the Southeast music scene, Gwen is one of the busiest bandleaders in Atlanta, along the way being named “Favorite Jazz Artist” by the readers of Creative Loafing magazine and taking her act overseas to France, Eastern Europe and Turkey. The rest of the “Kats” are equally impressive: Arthur Turner on keyboards; Ramon Pooser on bass; Mace Hibbard on saxophone; Melvin Jones on trumpet; Wes Funderburk on trombone; and Mike Hinton is the faithful backbeat on the drums. Collectively, these players (and Gwen) have about a century of experience between them, playing all over the world, for the last (4) Olympic Games, movie stars with Turner Classic Movies, and professional clients in such diverse locales as the Cayman Islands to New York City.  The Georgia Dept. of Economic Development calls upon Gwen & The Kats every year to travel and represent the State at various functions all over the United States.

While Gwen is known for her singing, she is also an accomplished pianist, frequently leading the band for events that do not require vocals.

Corporate and wedding clients marvel at the band’s ability to take the event seriously, but not themselves.  Says Gwen: “My objective has always been to have a band that enjoys each other – it makes the audience enjoy the band that much more…and it makes the music even better.” Her point is enthusiastically supported by Gloria Stuchlik, formerly of the Emory Conference Center: “When the band broke into “In the Mood,” I think I even saw a waiter dancing! The shouts of “Encore!” I heard at the end of the evening lead me to believe everyone enjoyed the evening as much as I did.”

Performance History Available upon request. References available upon request.  To Contact Us About Booking the Band or More Info:  info@katsband.com or call 770/621-4644.

We want to thank you for your amazing performance. You and your band truly made our night special. The music was so good that Roger and I just wanted to sit and listen to you playing.

Thank you for accommodating us with last minute requests. We couldn’t ask for a better band!

Roger & Wangyi Yoon, (Atlanta, GA)

I just want to say thank you again for all of your hard work at our wedding. You and your band did an AMAZING job.

The marching band and trumpet exit were absolutely perfect, and we loved the set list.

Ollie and I were so happy with how everything turned out. I also really loved working with you, and I hope we get to work together again in the future.

Oliver & Stephanie Gregory, (New York, NY)
It Was Great to see 1000 people dancing!
Daren, Spiral Entertainment, Atlanta, GA
New Year’s Eve went great! They did a great job engaging the members and I was actually impressed of the range of style of music besides jazz. We will keep them in mind for the upcoming season.
Waynesville Country Club (NC)
Thank you for being part of the team that absolutely rocked Frank & Deb’s wedding celebration! It was such a pleasure to work with you again!
Erica Prewitt, ABigToDoEvent.com
I just wanted to thank you for your great band for being the best ever imaginable and for bringing such great spirit and joy and beautiful music to Lindsay and Jamie’s wedding! You have brought so much love to our family over the years.
You were such a blessing to me with my Client Appreciation Dinner.
Michele Harkins, Keller Williams
It’s your personality that gets you through the doors, Gwen, you are truly special. If any of the things I do in the future need a piano player or music period, I will push for Gwen Hughes to be a part of it.
Veronica, A Spa Extravanganza (Fundraiser for Prostate Cancer)
Man, were you the hit of the party…everyone wanted to keep dancing, no one wanted to leave the wedding.
Sarah, Bride
When I heard you at The Decatur Arts Festival, I knew we had found the group we were looking for…your range and well-honed musicianship moved the evening along from smooth dinner time tunes to closing out the evening with the celebrants “Shout”ing for joy.”
Dave, Father of the Bride
I hope we can work together in the future.
Hands On Atlanta
Kristen, United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta
The shouts of “Encore” I heard at the end of the evening lead to me to believe that everyone enjoyed the music as much as I did. Your voice is beautiful and the musicians are excellent. When the band began the opening notes to “In the Mood,” I even saw a banquet waiter dancing!
Gloria, Event Planner (Emory Conference Center)
We are 1000% Gwen Hughes and the Retro Jazz Kats fans!!! Heavy metal, 1960s movie themes, Portuguese ballad, Broadway, polkas – all typical “jazz” stuff, huh? HA! As you can see, they are completely flexible and EVERYTHING sounded great.
Rich, Groom
Your professionalism and diverse repertoire made the evening a complete success. From jazz to swing to “Brick House,” you made sure there was something for everyone to enjoy.
Wright, RCS Productions
Gwen! Thank you for being such a great talent and joy to work with!
Samantha Shelton, Furkids.org

Videos & Photos

Voted “Favorite Jazz/Swing Artist” multiple times

by Creative Loafing magazine.

Bandleader Gwen Hughes has had Grammy submission and the band’s members have played for music legends like Chuck Berry, Jeff Beck, Francine Reed and The Beach Boys!

  • The ONLY swing band that can also play Motown and Classic Rock Hits, too!
  • Nonstop 4 hour dance sets available upon request.
  • 15 years of experience serving corporate clients, casinos, clubs and festivals.
  • A wedding band that gives each bride & groom the personal attention they deserve, learning special songs, meeting in advance to finalize all details, making sure the day is flawless.
  • For Corporate Events we will make sure that every detail is attended to.
  • The band can be as small as a duo up to 7 pieces, with a 3 piece horn section. For a Big Band and full orchestra see our other band The Continental Dance Orchestra.
  • We will always dress for the occasion.  Zoot-Suits are an additional option.
  • Background Solo Piano, Duos, Trios and Quartets available – perfect for cocktail and dinner events.

A Sampling Of Our Audience