The House Cats have been grooving tunes for almost three decades, making them the longest-running jazz ensemble in St. Augustine's music scene. Performing a variety of 30s and 40s jazz, swing jazz, jump blues, and swing, the four-piece ensemble has been the house band at Stogies Cigar Bar every other Saturday night since the establishment opened more than 20 years ago. From the King Cole Trio to the legendary Miles Davis, The House Cats pull out vintage tunes like tickertape and are known for their deep knowledge of music theory and jazz history. Originally formed in the early 90s, The House Cats is the brainchild of upright bassist, sculptor, woodworker, and visual artist, Joe Segal. Joe remains the group's founder and the only original member of the ensemble after years of shifting, morphing, and growing into the regionally famed jazz quartet it currently is today.
When the band performs as a trio, playing instrumental tunes, about one in every four songs is led by electric guitarist and lead vocalist, Rino Terraciano. Rino and Joe are joined by rhythm master and drummer, Chris Hadjopoulos, who relentlessly stays in the pocket, building energy and laying back throughout each song, giving the band its signature sound. At times the trio expands to become a quartet, with the addition of a tenor saxophone player, Greg Weir, who is a powerhouse of air and wind that has been known to just about blow the roof off during his steamy solos. Together this quartet becomes a phonograph of years past, urging listeners to pop on their fedora hats and antique cuff links to occupy the dance floor for a chance to experience a time when jazz was king.