1. a partnership, esp. a group of musicians.
|Metronome May 28: As a soft fiddle-sax combo, it clicks.|
|Music Library Association Notes Dec. 41: Combo: abbrev. of ‘combination.’ Refers generally to an instrumental group usually smaller than a band.|
|Jives of Dr. Hepcat (1989) 5: Just as soon as the canary pulls her number, the combo breaks out like the measles and presses much ether.|
|Mad mag. Sept. 41: A hot combo of the hipsters, by the hipsters and for the hipsters shall not cut out.|
|All Night Stand 94: These Yank airforce combos they have, they get me to sit in.|
|Semi-Tough 156: Those who didn’t mind leaving other parts of the lawn where the rock combos were playing.|
|Time Out 10–16 Dec. n.p.: His self-styled punk rock combo [KH].|
|White Shoes 110: A two-piece combo warbling some old Hall and Oates song.|
|Yes We have No 297: A combo is playing swing on the bandstand.|
|Observer Screen 16 Jan. 24: I rented a top-floor flat from an elderly brother-and-sister combo.|
2. (UK/US Und.) a combination lock (on a safe).
|AS ‘Und. Argot’ Dec. 107: combo: combination of a safe.|
|Moth (1950) 174: My fingers kept working the combo.|
|Young Wolves 71: You got my combo out of Chief’s office, didn’t ya?|
|Finders Keepers (2016) 7: ‘Now the combo,’ said Mr Blue. ‘He snapped his gloved fingers. Give it up’.|
3. (US) any form of combination, whether of people, things, sandwich ingredients, wagers etc.
|Und. and Prison Sl. 28: combo, n. The ingredients of a meal, ready for cooking; a meal.|
|(con. 1920s) Hoods (1953) 265: ‘The Combo taking the union over?’ Lefty asked.|
|Young Wolves 106: I got a winning combo and I want to keep it that way.|
|‘Miscellany’ in AS XXXVII:1 79: A food combination may now be called a combo, as in the following examples: ‘Potluck Supper on Slate? Take chicken-rice combo’.|
|Letter in Dear America (1985) 8 Feb. 153: That cozy spot known as the ‘Pink Pussycat,’ a combo bachelor officer quarters and social club.|
|Habeus Corpus Act I: I think they’ve clicked, Scorpio and Sagittarius. Lovely combo.|
|Brown’s Requiem 150: To the right of the living room was a kiddie-room-sewing-room combo.|
|Way Past Cool 100: The combo of beer and the cops on top of confronting the gang of young boys had stretched even his patience thin.|
|Observer Mag. 25 July 23: With the pills, it was an unbelievable combo. Plus the crazy men.|
|Conversation with the Mann 89: Men and men were routine, same with women and women, and men and men who dressed like women, and any other combo you could dream up.|
|Viva La Madness 290: Morty is driving and he’s livid, not a good combo.|
|Pulp Ink [ebook] I need fire running through my veins for this. Instead I’ve got a combo of caffeine, nicotine and dexedrine.‘October 17 ... Meeting’ in|
4. a relationship.
|Absolute Beginners 60: You ever had that combo [i.e. a loving relationship].|
5. (US campus) a bisexual person.
|(con. 1960s) Tripmaster Monkey 78: Pseudo psycho lesbo sappho weirdo hetero homo combos.|