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The FTB Acoustic Trio


The FTB Acoustic Trio is an offshoot of Southeast Minnesota band and recording artist, Fred The Bear.  The Trio formed in 2016 when Fred The Bear’s front man, Ray Coudret, was invited to perform in a Springsteen Tribute concert for the Paradise Center of the Arts in Faribault, MN.  Wanting to create something unique and special, he immediately looked to fellow band members Bob Kanzelman and Jerry Spencer and asked if they wanted to try something a little different, leveraging Jerry’s background playing jazz on upright bass and Bob’s bluegrass-inspired harmonies and new-found passion for mandolin.  The result was very well received, and the Trio has been experimenting and expanding its playlist ever since.  The Trio blends soulful, bluesy vocals and tight harmonies with skilled picking and energetic bass-lines, playing unique arrangements of a wide mix of classic rock, Americana, country, and alt-rock music by great artists from every decade: everything from CCR, Pure Prairie League, Tom Petty and R.E.M., to Wilco, the Wood Brothers, and Jason Mraz. Fred the Bear also writes and performs its own original music, highlighted by insightful lyrics reflecting on life’s promises and disappointments, set to dynamic melodies and rhythms. They released their debut CD, “Just For A While”,  in 2017, containing nine original songs. The Trio performs several of these along with other great originals.

The band’s name is a tribute to the late Bruce “Fred the Bear” Eschler, the owner of “The Bear’s Den” bar in Donaldson, MN, whose support of live music gave front man Ray and FTB’s other guitarist, Rick Roy, their start some 30 years ago.  FTB is grateful to be an active part of the SEMN music scene, sharing their music at a variety of venues in Rochester, Northfield, Faribault, and throughout the region.


Member bios:


Ray Coudret (guitar, lead vocals) came from “way up nort’”, but has called Northfield, MN home for over 20 years.  When not teaching the next generation of mathematicians or producing highly acclaimed high school musical productions, he is a prolific songwriter and has performed with a variety of bands over the decades, including “Area 51” and “Why Not?”. Ray is the co-creator and producer of the long-running 411 Concert Series in Northfield, which brings professional acts to the city through the Northfield Arts Guild.


Jerry Spencer (upright bass, vocals) a lifelong resident of Rochester, MN, has played upright bass since he was a kid.  He has a wide and diverse musical palette and has played in a variety of orchestras, musicals, church bands, bluegrass groups, and jazz combos, including the "RCTC Jazz Band", “Root River Jam” and the “Med City Jazz Collective”. He continues to play with “Up-Town Jazz”. 


Bob Kanzelman (mandolin, vocals, percussion) originally hails from North Dakota but is a 25+ year resident of Rochester, MN. This mild-mannered engineer and church musician had previously played with Jerry in worship bands and a Gospel bluegrass group, but never planned to join a 'gigging' band, until he reluctantly agreed to sit in on cajon with Fred The Bear for one night. He soon became a key ingredient of their sound, delivering lynchpin harmonies and a sensitive touch on whatever instrument he picks up.

FTB Acoustic Trio Live

North Side Gal - JD McPherson

Brilliant Disguise - Bruce Springsteen

I Want You Back - Jackson Five

More videos available on our Youtube channel

Sample Song List


The Weight (The Band)

Proud Mary (Creedence Clearwater Revival)

I Want You Back (Jackson Five)



Willin' (Little Feat)

Drift Away (Dobie Gray)

Amie (Pure Prairie League)

Sundown (Gordon Lightfoot)

Ophelia (The Band)

American Girl (Tom Petty)

Listen To Her Heart (Tom Petty)



Crazy Little Thing Called Love (Queen)

From Small Things (Bruce Springsteen)

The One I Love (R.E.M.)

Brilliant Disguise (Bruce Springsteen)

Downbound Train (Bruce Springsteen)

Dancing In The Dark (Bruce Springsteen)

     - (Ruth Moody cover)

Atlantic City (Bruce Springsteen)

      - (Levon Helm cover)

Cover Me (Bruce Springsteen)

Fadeaway (The BoDeans)

It's Only Love (The BoDeans)


Heart Of The Matter (Don Henley)

One (U2)

Lines Around Your Eyes (Lucinda Williams)

Pretty Little Adrianna (Vince Gill)

Yer So Bad (Tom Petty)

Losing My Religion (R.E.M.)

I Got You (Wilco)

3 AM (Matchbox 20)


Wagon Wheel (Old Crow Medicine Show)

Save It For A Rainy Day (Jayhawks)

Dead Sound (The Ravonettes)

Luckiest Man (The Wood Brothers)

Keep Me In Your Heart (Warren Zevon)

Beauty Way (Eliza Gilkyson)

Real Live Bleeding Fingers (Lucinda Williams)

I'm Yours (Jason Mraz)

Whistle For The Choir (The Fratellis)

Times Like These (Foo Fighters)

Cry (Slaid Cleaves)

Elvis Presley Blues (Gillian Welch)


Dearly Departed (Shakey Graves)

North Side Gal (J.D. McPherson)

Lucky Now (Ryan Adams)

Down By The Water (The Decemberists)

If I Wanted Someone (Dawes)

Shake It Off (Taylor Swift)

       - (Ryan Adams cover)


Three Wise Men

Down In Omaha

Just For A While

Storm Rolling

Profane Saint


Locally World Famous

I Been

I Used To Dream

Six Miles From Hope

Taking Pictures

Small Dreams

Promised Land

All Because of You



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