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Sussex-Lisbon Area Music History Index > Polka/Waltz Musicians and Bands Index

Kenny Hottenroth Orchestra

Kenneth Hottenroth

Polka band leader

Services were held Saturday at the Schmidt and Bartelt Funeral Home in Sussex for Kenneth Hottenroth, a longtime polka band leader in southeastern Wisconsin.

Hottenroth died Wednesday about 30 minutes after being stung by a bee in the backyard of his home in Hustiford. He was 55.

Hottenroth, who was a tool and die maker at Vulcan Industries in Germantown, had been the leader of the Kenny Hottenroth Orchestra for about 35 years.

His wife, Deborah, said her husband played at many clubs in Sussex, Menomonee Falls, Germantown, and Richfield. Hottenroth played the accordion, and the other two band members played guitar and drums, she said.

The band made several recordings and also performed regularly on WTKM-FM (104.9), a Hartford radio station. Deborah Hottenroth said. The band's performance at the Dodge County Fair Aug. 19 was carried live on the station.

"He had a lot of people who followed his band and his music," Deborah Hottenroth said. "He was a wonderful husband and man. He provided very well for us. He worked all the time."

The band performed Sunday at the Cedar Creek Inn in Cedarburg. "The hall was full," Deborah Hottenroth said. "There were lots of friends and relatives."

In addition to his wife, Hottenroth is survived by three sons, Kenny, Jim and Joe; two daughters, Jenny and Kim; his parents, Jerry and Marcella Hottenroth; two brothers, Jerome and Charles; two sisters, Mildred and Dorothy; nieces and nephews.

Burial for Hottenroth was at Sunnyside Cemetery.

source: The Milwaukee Journal, September 2, 1989, page 4.


Birth:  Jun. 24, 1934
Death:  Aug. 30, 1989

Hottenroth, Kenneth
Of Iron Ridge Aug. 30, 1989 Age 55 yrs. Beloved husband of Deborah (nee Van Pietersom). Father of Jenny (Randy) Schumacher, Kim (Rick) Sullivan, Kenny II (Sue), Jim, Joe. Son of Jerry and Marcella Hottenroth. Son-in-law of John and Arlene Van Pietersom. Brother of Jerome (Pat), Charles (Fay), Mildred (Richard) Winzek, Dorothy (David) Przybylski. Grandfather of Aaron Schumacher. Further survived by nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

Funeral services Sat. 7 pm at the Funeral Home. Visitation 4 pm until time of services. Interment Sunnyside Cemetery. Kenny was the leader of the Kenny Hottenroth Orchestra.

Schmidt & Bartelt, A. A. Schmidt & Sons, Hwy J and W (Main St.) Sussex

Published in The Milwaukee Journal – Sept. 1, 1989



Birth:  Dec. 30, 1951
Wisconsin, USA
Death:  Jul. 15, 2012

Hottenroth, Deborah (Nee Van Pietersom) Age 60. Passed away on July 15, 2012. She was born on December 30, 1951 in WI to John and Arlene (nee Dallman) Van Pietersom. She is survived by her son Joseph (Tracie) Lueck; grandchildren Austin Mottl and Ashlynn Lueck; long-time companion Dennis Helm; father John; brother John Van Pietersom; extended family Jason Helm, Joel Helm, Jody (Mike) Gersonde, Aiden and Ellyanna Gersonde. She is further survived by nieces Carly (Michael) Kemmeter, Laura and Sherry; nephew Brandon Van Pietersom; one great-niece Makayla and one great-nephew Evan. Deborah is preceded in death by her mother Arlene; brother Kevin Van Pietersom, and husband Kenneth Hottenroth. The family would like to give a special thank you to the caregivers throughout the years and Virginia Highlands for their compassionate care. Graveside services will be held on Wednesday, July 18, at 11AM, at Sunnyside Cemetery (19166 W. Main St.), in Lannon, WI. The Phillip Funeral Home of West Bend is assisting the family (262) 338-2050

Published in Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on July 17, 2012


WISCONSIN POLKA BOOSTERS CLUB Presents Kenny Hottenroth And His Orchestra, Jim Brunner and The “Rhythmaires” SEE US AT THE WAUKESHA COUNTY FAIR SATURDAY 2-6 PM. source: Waukesha Daily Freeman from Waukesha, Wisconsin · Page 9, Friday, July 14, 1972


Spring dance of the Hartland Sportsman’s Club, Saturday, 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. at the Bon Aire Club, Pewaukee. Music by the Kenny Hottenroth Orchestra. Open to the public. source: Waukesha Daily Freeman from Waukesha, Wisconsin · Page 23, Wednesday, April 17, 1974


Ken Hottenroth, the former Sussex Jaycee president, village president and band leader, died suddenly at the age of 55 on Aug. 30, 1989, after he was stung by a bee. source Sussex Sun, September 1989


April 23, 2015 - Jim Hottenroth My dad, Kenny Hottenroth did several recordings with KL Recording Service, recording both in the studio and remote, A lot of remote recordings were done through WTKM in Hartford, they still have some recordings on file and a lot of information you are looking for.


John Denston/Denzin - drummer, that played in the Kenny Hottenroth Orchestra [See note below from Mike Truttschel]

Mike Truttschel June 13, 2015 via FB Message
I was looking through the website and noticed the name John Denston and that he was a drummer for Kenny Hottenroth. I'm not completely sure about this but there was a local cop by the name of John Denzin and he was a drummer. He had kids that were my age that went to St. James so we were not close in age. This could be the same guy. I wonder if Fred Keller might have any recollections about him. John Denzin lived on Townline Rd. just south of Good Hope Rd. on the hill. Later on I think he was a Lannon police officer.
Mike Truttschel
An interesting story about John Denzin.... In the early 1980's my band Dark Star was playing for a party in Menomonee Park. There was a complaint from one of the neighbors that the music was too loud. John was on patrol and came over to tell us to turn down. He was very cool about it saying he understood how it was because he was also a musician. I asked him "what instrument do you play?" He said that he was a drummer so I asked him if he wanted to sit in for a few songs so he did. He was pretty good. We didn't hear of any complaints the rest of the night.
    Hi Mike, my name is Kim Hottenroth-Christoperson, I learned from my mom Betty L Hottenroth, and Brother Jim Hottenroth that you are looking for Historical information related to musical talent resulting from John Sutte's music lab at Hamilton High school. I was a 1979 graduate of Hamilton, I took Sutte's classes for three of the four years in H.S. Myself and Don Cornell were two chosen Seniors in 1979 to produce and perform our own musical show/concert completely of our own... making. Two separate shows. We were allowed to pick our own choices of songs, our stage lighting and back drops, the people who we wanted to perform with us. From start to finish we were in charge of our own production. My show occurred on May 24, 1979, Don's was on the 30th. I still have the original crude concert announcements from both of our shows. My show included the musical talent of Sally Wallace, Debbie Kanapka, Sarah Mooney, and Chris ?, (Don't remember her last name). I played guitar, piano and vocals, Sally, Debbie, & Chris played guitar and vocals, Sarah was vocals. I have several pictures of my show, and pictures of Other events kids were involved in, and two of John Sutte. One outing in particular I remember was taking a bus to Maple Ave. School and performing for students. Debbie Kanapka, Sally Wallace and I performed there and at many times in Sutte's music lab. The song I remember vividly performing at the grade school was Puff the Magic Dragon. We did some great harmonies together back then. We had an article and our picture in the Sussex Sun which I wish I would have kept. We performed a variety of folk songs, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Stones, and several other artists of the time.
    I am sure I can dig up some memorable items for you if you're interested. I do also have an old 45 in storage of I believe George Pievich from Hamilton. I believe the song is "Strange Like Me", but I'll have to get back to you on that once I find it.
    • Mike Reilly Hello Kim, yes, we're very interested in acquiring this musical history for the historical society. This is the first I've heard of other music productions besides the 1975 (which also included poetry and skit) and the 1981 which were both recorded on LP vinyl. Were your 1979 performances recorded on video or ? Any recorded music, programs, original creations, your production notes, etc are all welcome. We are now setting up an exhibit area, so we need memorabilia!
    • Mike Reilly Kim Christopherson your family was talking about donating your Dad's 4ft wide podium that he used at gigs, are they still offering it?
      • Kim Christopherson The podium is at my mother's house, they did mention donating it. I'll send them an email to reply to this.



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