[Masopust Polka Band]

Circa 1890



The Masopust Polka Band, specializing in Czech polkas, waltzes, and specialty dances, is a family band that traces back five generations to the year 1890.

The original Masopust Polka Band

Circa 1890, Czechoslovakian immigrants, Joseph and Katheren Masopust, came to Oklahoma from Nebraska, settling in the central portion of the territory (around the Mustang area).

Joseph Masopust, along with his sons, James, Joe, Frank, and Lou, and also family friend and neighbor, George Kralik (the same married Annie Hubatka), formed the first iteration of the Czech polka brass band, The Masopust Polka Band. These were the first two generations of the Masopust family to carry the band.

Joe Masopust, the eldest son of James, reorganized the band in the mid-1920's, adding drums, piano, and a variety of traditional and contemporary music of the time. The band's pianist, Bessie Drabek, and Joe were married in 1927. The band was carried on by Joe, Bessie, and their son, Glenn, who played the trumpet. This was the third generation of the Masopust family to carry the band.

In 1975, David Masopust joined the band as the tuba player. David's joining the band marks the fourth generation of the Masopust family to be a band member.

After Joe Masopust passed in 1978, Bessie continued the work of driving the band forward. Under her leadership, the band produced two albums: the self titled album in 1981, and Phase II in 1992. Bessie passed away in 1997. David Masopust then became the fourth generation of the Masopust family to carry the band.

In 1996, William "Bill" Masopust, son of David and great-great-grandson of Joseph, joined the band as the drummer. That brought the band to the fifth generation of the Masopust family.

As of now, this is not the end, as the sixth generation of the Masopust family has been born.


MPB Around the Web

Here are some links to interesting articles and media around the web that reference the Masopust Polka Band.

What is Masopust?

The name, Masopust, is made of two key words: maso, which means meat, and pust, which means fasting, and both are significant to the meaning. Put them together and you have meat fasting, or to do without meat. Masopust can also mean carnival. If you put those two meanings together, you get, meat fasting carnival. What holiday can you think of that is a meat fasting carnival? How about Mardi Gras? Masopust is the Czech equivalent for Mardi Gras.