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The Finkelsteiners play Oom-pah for you

October 5, 2016

By Kathy Edwards McFarland

This Friday, in downtown Denton, Texas, the third annual Oktoberfest on Walnut will


Ron Fink at the 2014 Oktoberfest on Walnut. Photo by Ed Steele.

feature one of the most recognized band leaders/drummers around … Ron Fink and the Finkelsteiners, (dressed in Lederhosen, of course) playing traditional German “oom-pah” music from 7:30-9 pm.

This amazing drummer and former University of North Texas Jazz Prof, enjoys history – history of music, more specifically, percussion and drum music, as seen by his involvement with Denton‘s Vintage Jazz Society, his rousing Dixieland band – Ron & the Rowdies, the long-running Sweetwater Jazz Quartet (with Jim Riggs, Neil Slater and Lou Carfa), and Ron & the Finkelsteiners – a traditional German band (the Chicken Dance is in their repertoire.)

Retiring in 2000, Ron began teaching at UNT in 1964 and was one of the first full-time college percussion instructors in Texas. He is the former principal percussionist and timpanist with the Fort Worth Symphony, Opera and Ballet Orchestras, as well as a frequent performer in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Ron has also played with the Singapore Slingers, and the illustrious (and only) live rodeo band in the world (until the Fort Worth Livestock Show and Rodeo pulled the band’s plug this past year.)


Sunday morning warm-up … Drummers … if you don’t know this book, you should … Ron Fink “Chop Busters” I studied with Ron at North Texas and still love playing these exercises. -Rick Latham


The Vintage Jazz Society takes to the Sweetwater Grill & Tavern patio stage every Spring on Fat Tuesday for one heck of a fun New Orleans Mardi Gras party, playing Dixieland in ensemble groups, but always with Ron on his wonderful vintage drum kit. “Vintage drums, vintage cymbals, lovin’ it. Takes an older drummer to figure out how to set all this up.” Ron stated in a Facebook comment.


Ron wrote: Gig on 1934 painted head 26″ Ludwig Pioneer bass drum, and other old drums and cymbals. Drum came with inside lights, original calf-skin heads.

Bookending Ron and the Finkelsteiners at Oktoberfest on WalnutDenton Road, a Fort Worth Indie Rock band – playing 5:30-7 pm; and The Holler Time, a Denton-Gainseville Country  Rock Americana band – playing from 9:30-11 pm.




  1. ron fink permalink

    Wow…..nice write up. Thanks, See ya Friday. R


  2. Hey, I thought you were the best story idea around. Glad you like it. K


  3. Ron Fink permalink

    Kathy,& Steve, thanks again for your help at the octoberfest. If you have any pictures, I would love to see them, Best, Ron

    Sent from my iPhone



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