Thanks for visiting!  So, you're curious about:  The origin of the band's name? The left handed bass player? That white drum kit? What's the make and model of that big green guitar?  Well…these and other questions will be happily answered below! 


First off, Mackie Brothers is a band of the people! 50+% of the songs the band performs have been suggested by friends, fans and family! No wonder this band is ready for a good time before the first chord is struck! No two shows are the same and the band is a "traveling living room show" no matter where they perform! From Jefferson Airplane, Santana & Chris Stapleton, to Tom Petty, Phil Collins, Kenny Loggins & more! 

 MACKIE BROTHERS…Simply Unpredictable since 2016!

Formed in the spring of 2016 in Duluth, Minnesota, Mackie Brothers was started by a band of brothers! Three “musical brothers” to be exact: Mark Connolly (guitar & lead vocals); Eddy Esselstrom (bass & vocals); and Dan Vaught (cajon & vocals). They were ready to create something new as a trio - a cover band with a twist! With music delivered in a way that makes anyone hearing the band for the first time want to order another round and sit awhile longer to see what happens next!

Okay! Now would be an appropriate time for you to yell;  “ Hey, these guys aren't brothers!  AND none of them has the last name Mackie!” Oh…naming a band is a complicated mess isn't it?  

The band is named after and dedicated to the kind and loving spirit of the late Irene Maki, RN from Superior, Wisconsin. When Dan was a new nurse learning the ropes inside the world of St. Mary's Intensive Care Unit, Irene was there with a smile, words of encouragement, and the technical expertise to guide the "newbies" toward success! When meeting for the first time Dan stated; "Hi Irene, my name is Dan." She replied; “Oh, don't call me Irene. Everybody calls me Maki!” And so it is. The band affectionately named Mackie Brothers after Irene Maki!  Thank you Irene! Until we meet again dear friend!♥️

"With 1100+ followers on social media and growing, this part-time band delivers a full-time sound with bold creativity!" -Tracy Lundeen, Lundeen Productions, LLC. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Answers to Questions!  

1.) Noted above.  

2.) The left handed bass player is the newest member of Mackie Brothers, Bob Coldwell from Cloquet, Minnesota. Bob has dedicated his life's work to music and live performance. He bought a band t-shirt and wore it everytime he came to see Mackie Brothers perform in Duluth. He even sat in once playing a right handed bass backwards! Bob joined the band in the fall of 2021. He plays left handed bass and acoustic guitars because…well…he's left handed!! 🤪😆 Bob also belts out a mean Tom Petty-like vocal that hits that rock ‘n roll sweet spot! 

3.) 8 years ago, Dan started out with a cajon (a wooden beat box) and a foot tambourine. A year later, the cajon wasn't creating enough low end. So, he ditched it for a 20" kick drum he sat on backwards and added bongos. Year after year, he added this and that! He updated his hybrid kit in April. It's built around a Sonor Bop  kit with smaller sized drums. He's happy!

4.) Mark's main guitar at present is either a 12-string Taylor acoustic OR a green semi-hollow body 6-string Gretsch electric. It's a 2005 Country Club. The band calls it "The Green Machine!"  Mark loves playing and singing anytime and anywhere! He's in the midst of completing an impressive guitar collection! So you'll never know what guitar you'll see him playing. He likes to say; "A guy can never own too many guitars!"  

Click the "Contact"  button on the main menu to: Send the band a song suggestion; Tell them a story; or Ask how to book the band for an upcoming celebration, cabin party, living room or patio/deck gathering; a wedding; etc. They'll get your message right away and reply in quick fashion. After all, that's what Irene would do! Life is short! Let's get to it and have some fun in the process! 

Thanks for your support #mackienation! 



In Memoriam: Eddy Esselstrom

Eddy Esselstrom

This page is dedicated to the memory of our bandmate Eddy Esselstrom. You are thought of every day, and we are reminded of your musical talent, funny wit and friendship at each and every gig. You have gone to your resting place. Rest in peace buddy. As we who live on must someday pass, our meeting up is inevitable.