About Mollie B
A Musical Journey
Mollie B, the multi-instrumentalist, award-winning vocalist, and host of the Mollie B Polka Party TV show, has been performing music all her life. Mollie started her career performing with the Jim Busta Band when she was only a child. Through hard work and dedication, Mollie now performs nation-wide to live audiences, as well as TV productions and the movie screen. She is most often seen performing with the band, SqueezeBox, but does on occasion serve as a guest artist with other bands. Mollie not only has performed on over 40 recordings, she has shared her many God-given talents with fans in over 30 states and eleven countries and continues to inspire young musicians with her love for music.
Between the Jim Busta Band's practices and recording sessions, music always filled the Busta household in small-town Minnesota while Mollie was growing up. She started singing in the band at age three and joined on piano when she was eight-years-old. For years to follow, Mollie played several instruments both in the school bands and choirs, as well as in her father’s band.
Growing up, music always filled the Busta household in small-town Minnesota; between the Jim Busta Band's practices and records being spun. , Mollie arranged songs for the school’s band and choir programs, the Jim Busta Band, and even found time to create her own original compositions. Mollie also served as the student-director for her high school band rehearsals and concerts.
Mollie went on to continue to develop her love of music and received a Bachelor of Arts in Music (trumpet and voice) from Luther College (Decorah, IA). Mollie’s senior paper was on polka music which gave her a chance to educate her classical music professors and colleagues about the music dear to her heart. Mollie also received a Master of Arts in Instruction from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota (Winona, MN). In 2005, Mollie joined Ted Lange's Bratwurst Boys, based out of Ridgeville Corners, Ohio. In 2007, 2-time Grammy-nominee Ted and Mollie changed the name to SqueezeBox. SqueezeBox showcases Mollie's versatility on several instruments, as well as her talented vocals.
In July of 2011, the first Mollie B Polka Party aired on RFD-TV. Mollie was a creative director and co-producer of these shows. The Mollie B Polka Party currently airs in over 55 million homes on RFD-TV on Wednesday at 6:30pm and Saturday at 10:00pm ET.
In 2017, Wisconsin Public Television released the documentary called "POLKA!" Mollie is the host of this 90-minute long documentary about celebrating life with polka music in the state of Wisconsin.
In 2018, Mollie B & SqueezeBox appeared as “Mollie B & her band” in a scene of the Warner Brothers movie, “The Mule,” directed and starring Clint Eastwood. In this scene Mollie plays piano, trumpet, sings, has one line, and dances with Clint Eastwood. Additionally Mollie & Ted Lange co-wrote the song they performed, which was pre-approved by Clint Eastwood. Mollie wrote the instrumental part and the chorus & Ted wrote the verse.
Also in 2018, Mollie was the youngest person to be inducted into the International Polka Hall of Fame and she had a US Flag flown in her honor by the US Air Force in a mission in the Middle East.
In 2020, like many, Mollie and Ted had to pivot due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Mollie and Ted began their YouTube channel, with weekly Tuesday night performances, and gained over 20,000 subscribers and over six million views.
In fall of 2021, Mollie received the Sperati Award from Luther College. An award presented to one alumni musician receives this award each year for their excellence in instrumental music. And in 2022, Mollie was inducted into the Minnesota Music Hall of Fame.
Mollie’s talents have also been showcased in front of a live audience during The Mollie B Christmas Shows both at RFD-TV the Theatre and the Jim Stafford Theatre in Branson, Missouri, in 2011-2014, and 2016. Since 2017, Mollie performs the holiday special at the CAL Center in Reedsburg, Wisconsin. Mollie has performed, directed, wrote, produced, choreographed, and hosted these two+-hour live performances. Mollie’s cast has featured up to 36 renowned musicians and artists in front of audiences up to 1300.
Mollie has won the title of the “Favorite Female Vocalist” award numerous times, both from the United States Polka Association and the International Polka Association. She has also won multiple awards from the Polka America Corporation for her polka recordings with Ted Lange. Additionally, Mollie has won the "2013 Polka Promoter of the Year" award, from the Wisconsin Polka Hall of Fame, and was inducted into the Iowa Polka Hall of Fame in 2015. In 2018, she became the youngest inductee into the International Polka Association Hall of Fame.
Some of Mollie’s most note-worthy performances as a vocalist, instrumentalist, actress, and/or music arranger include:
Caribbean Cruises (2001, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013-2020, 2022-2023),
Norsk Hostfest (Minot, ND, 2013-2019, 2022, 2023),
Mollie B Christmas Show at the CAL Center in Reedsburg, WI (2017-2019, 2021-2023),
Wurstfest (New Braunfels, TX, 2009-2013, 2015-2019, 2021-2022),
Maggie Mae Show in Reedsburg (2016-2019),
Midwest Country (2019),
Warner Brothers movie “The Mule” (2018),
Rhythm Cats at Silver Star Theater (Mesa 2017),
Maggie Mae Christmas Shows (2016-2017: Crystal Grand, WI Rapids Performing Arts Center, Hartford Scheuer Center),
Mollie B Christmas Concert at the Jim Stafford Theatre (2016),
Toledo Symphony (Bryan, OH, 2010 & 2016),
Penny Gilley Show on RFD-TV taping (2015),
Jimmy Sturr Show on RFD-TV taping (2012),
Anniversary Mass with Daniel O’Donnell (Moline, IL, 2010),
Big Joe Polka Show on RFD-TV (2005-2008),
Iowa Governor Culver’s Inauguration Gala (Iowa City, IA, 2007),
American Folk Arts Festival (Bangor, ME, 2006),
President’s Palace in the Dominican Republic (2004),
Sound of Music (Spring Grove, MN, 2003),
Library of Congress (Washington, DC, 2002),
Kennedy Center of Performing Arts (Washington, DC, 2002),
“Polka Passion” (National PBS special, 2001), and
Handel’s “Messiah” & Mozart’s “Requiem” (Decorah, IA, 2000).
She has performed with award-winning bands and artists, such as the Rhythm Cats, Heartland Country Band, Mollie B’s All-Star Band, Karl and the Country Dutchmen, the Jimmy Sturr Orchestra, SqueezeBox, Bruce Bradley Band, Gary and the Ridgeland Dutchmen, Music Connection, Brian and the Mississippi Valley Dutchmen, the Out-of-Town Czechs, the Polka Nuts, John Gora and Gorale, Toledo Polka Motion, Polka Family, Klancnik and Friends, the Don Wojtila Band, George Staerkel, Kenny Brandt, Steve Meisner, Kevin Solecki, Alex Meixner, Hank Guzevich, Fred Ziwich, Lenny Gomulka, Al Piatkowski, and more.
In addition to performing, Mollie has taught music to all levels (age three through adults) at the following schools: Lanesboro Elementary & High School, St. Mary’s University of Minnesota, West Salem Elementary & Middle School, and St. Patrick’s Catholic School (Bryan, OH). Furthermore, for 15 years, Mollie taught private music lessons (teaching up to 52 lessons/week).
When Mollie finds herself away from the stage and teaching, she enjoys dancing, exercising, and traveling.
AWARDS & HONORS
2022 - International Polka Association - International-Style Female Vocalist of the Year
2022 - Minnesota Music Hall of Fame
2021 - International Polka Association - Favorite International Female Vocalist
2021 - Luther College Sperati Award: recognition of Outstanding Achievement in the field of Instrumental Music
2020 - International Polka Association - Favorite International Band
2019 - International Polka Association - Favorite International Band
2018 - International Polka Association - Favorite International Female Vocalist
2018 - USA flag was flown in Mollie B’s honor during combat support missions to Iraq and Syria
2018 - International Polka Association Hall of Fame
2017 - International Polka Association - Favorite International Female Vocalist
2017 - International Polka Association - Favorite Polish CD: “Dance all Night”
2017 - Bavarian Blast Parade, New Ulm, Minnesota - Co-Parade Marshall
2016 - Polka Lovers Club in Texas (La Grange) Wall of Fame
2016 - International Polka Assoc. - Best International Polka CD song: "North Shore" from "SqueezeBox by Request"
2016 - International Polka Association - Best International Polka CD: "SqueezeBox by Request"
2016 - International Polka Association - Favorite Female Vocalist
2015 - International Polka Association - Favorite Female Vocalist
2015 - Iowa Polka Hall of Fame - Promoter Category
2015 - Polka America Corporation - Best Variety Polka CD of the Year: "2014 Mollie B Christmas Special"
2015 - Polka America Corporation - Best Polish-Style Polka CD of the Year: "Polkas On My Mind" (Emily Bizon)
2014 - Polka America Corporation - Best Variety Polka CD of the Year: "2013 Mollie B Christmas Special"
2014 - International Polka Association - Favorite Female Vocalist
2013 - National Polka Festival Parade, Ennis, Texas - Parade Marshall
2013 - Polka America Corporation - Best Variety Polka CD of the Year: "2012 Mollie B Christmas Special"
2013 - Wisconsin State Polka Hall of Fame - Promoter Category
2013 - International Polka Association - Favorite Female Vocalist
2012 - Polka America Corporation - Best Variety Polka Cd of the Year: "2011 Mollie B Christmas Special"
2012 - International Polka Association - Favorite Female Vocalist
2011 - United States Polka Association - Favorite Female Vocalist
2011 - International Polka Association - Favorite Female Vocalist
2010 - Polka America Corporation - Best Contemporary Polka CD of the Year: "Freshly Squeezed" by SqueezeBox
2010 - United States Polka Association - Favorite Female Vocalist
2009 - United States Polka Association - Favorite Female Vocalist
DISCOGRAPHY - click on any underlined title to learn more about the recording and/or to order the discs
2022 - "Escape to Polka Paradise" CD - Tom Brusky
2020 - Mollie B "Country"
2017 - "Enjoy Yourself" CD - Kris & the Riverbend Dutchmen
2017 - "Making Music" CD - Ryan, Karl, & Denny
2017 - "POLKA!" - Documentary DVD - Wisconsin Public Television
2016 - "Power of Polka" DVD - Alaska Polka Chips (live)
2015 - "Ave Maria" CD (single)
2015 - "40th Anniversary" CD - Karl & the Country Dutchmen
2012 - "2012 Mollie B Christmas Special" CD/DVD
2012 - "Partners, Brothers, and Friends" CD
2011 - "2011 Mollie B Christmas Special" CD/DVD
2011 - "Enjoy Yourself" CD - Marty Nachreiner
2008 - "Polka Playin' Fool" CD - John Gora & Gorale
2007 - "Squeeze Me" CD - SqueezeBox
2006 - "Solecktive Sounds" CD - Kevin Solecki
2005 - "Lead Me, Lord" - Mollie B & Friends
2002 - "Come, Let's Sing Joyfully to the Lord" CD - Jim Busta Band
2001 - "Polka Passion" - Documentary Video & Audio CD - National Public Television
2001 - "West Coast Tour" CD - Luther College Nordic Choir
2000 - "Handel's Messiah" CD - Luther College
2000 - "Just Playin' Round" CD - Jim Busta Band, Vol. 4
1999 - "Boys Day Out" CD - Karl & the Country Dutchmen
1992 - "Jim Busta with Family & Friends" CD - Jim Busta Band, Vol. 2