Brooklyn Center Father-Son Duo Stay True to the Music
Reuben and Dan Ristrom are passionate musicians from Brooklyn Center, but play all around the area.
Step back in time at Crooner’s
If you want to take trip back to when people dressed up for dinner and dined at supper clubs, head over to Crooners Supper Club and Lounge in Fridley. If the ambiance of the place doesn’t lure you in, the melody definitely will.
Reuben and Dan Ristrom graced the stage with their soulful music recently. The father and son duo hail from Brooklyn Center and are passionate about their craft.
“We are keeping this art form alive,” says Reuben Ristrom. “This music is an art form. It’s so much an American art form and by doing this, we are keeping it alive.”
Reuben has decades of experience on stage and his styles include Dixieland, mainstream jazz, swing, standards, Latin as well as vintage rock n roll. He taught his son to appreciate music by learning “The Great American Songbook,” the canon of most influential American songs of the early 20th century.
“If you are going to know a song and sing it, you have to know the melody and the lyrics. You have to know the composer and the key,” says Dan Ristrom. “So he taught me all of these things from a young age when I was a kid and he’s continuing to teach me nowadays.”
The musicians try to stay very true to the intention the composer had for the song.
“You have to dig deep and dig into someone else’s life, mind and heart,” says Dan. “I’m going to give this song as much as I can without overstepping the original composer.”
Over the years, Dan has developed into an accomplished musician in his own right. He also plays in area bands and even appeared on America’s Got Talent.
Sincerity on Stage
It’s easy to see the camaraderie between the father and son on stage. It’s easy to see the love there too.
“We work well together because we love each other and we love what we do,” says Dan.
Audiences appreciate that sincerity. Sue Ellen Zagrabelny has seen the Ristroms play at a few venues.
“They play a lot of music that I like,” says Sue Ellen. “You can also catch them in Maple Grove at Sawatdee.”
The Ristroms get requests from the crowd at Crooner’s that are clearly appreciative of their music.
“They are sending in requests that you know and can do,” says Dan. “They aren’t yelling Freebird or something silly. They are actually requesting songs we know and love, like Gershwin, Cole Porter or Frank Sinatra.”
The Ristroms have no intention to stop playing together or learning from one another. They enjoy what they do, and it shows.
“There’s nothing like a father-son duo,” says Dan. “We’re a family band, a family duo. You know each other’s voices. You know each other’s instincts and you know each other’s heart. There’s nothing better than working with my dad.”