Feature of the Month
Ma's Boys...........by Don Fritz

Written on 5.14.11

This is the twentieth edition of the Feature of the Month for the South Dakota Rock & Roll Music Association. We are rock and roll fans, and looking to write a feature each month, that will not only bring back wonderful memories, but will also remind us all of the history that was made in our great state of South Dakota. We are hoping to write a feature each month selecting one of the many talented Bands, DJ's, Radio Stations, and Dance Halls throughout SD.

In the mid 1960s there were a number of bands that formed in the Sioux Falls area. One of these bands was Ma's Boys and consisted of Kevin King on guitar, Randy Hink on drums, and Mike Parker on bass. A short time later Jeff Yelnick on keyboard and guitarist Guy Gullickson were added. The group was managed and booked by Leona Hink, Randy's mother, hence the name Ma's Boys. Leona and her husband not only served as chaperons but also provided the transportation. She found jobs for the band by direct mailings to high schools all over the state. That resulted in gigs post game dances, proms, and homecoming dances.

Soon the group built up a solid reputation as well as a loyal following. In 1968 successful promoter Jimmy Thomas took notice and offered to be their manager. With his connections to places like the Hollyhock Ballroom, the Showboat, and the Mocamba Club, Ma's Boys were soon playing to large crowds across the Upper Midwest. Other favorite locations included the Arkota Ballroom and Coliseum in Sioux Falls, Groveland Park, the Rainbow, Ruskin Park, Japanese Gardens, Milltown, Blue Dog Inn, Roller Drome, Horatios, and the Depot in Aberdeen. They also performed for functions at numerous South Dakota Colleges. They traveled to neighboring states like Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, and Wisconsin. They traveled in a 1948 customized Brill bus.

Some of the other musicians who played with Ma's Boys at different times over the years included Mark Lidke, Jeff Olson, Keith Sanborn, Rod McGinnis, Doug Dean, Jeff Bower, Jimmy Goings, Tom Manning, and Gary Swanson. The band had a great run until 1970 but most of the guys continued their musical careers playing with other groups.