West Coast Ragtime Society
Dedicated to the preservation and promtion of Ragtime and vintage American music.
Updated 9/7/2017

Festival XXXI Performers

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The 31st annual West Coast Ragtime Festival will be held November 17-19, 2017 at the Sacramento Marriott Rancho Cordova, Rancho Cordova, California.  Below is the list of performers scheduled to appear as of 4/5/2017. You can expect this list to grow considerably throughout the year.

Click on a performer's name to expand/contract the full bio (where there's a + mark) or open a full bio page.
Solo Performers
Elliott Adams has been playing ragtime since age 10 and is now known internationally as a ragtime player, collector, historian, writer, and composer.

His extensive collection of ragtime, blues, and early jazz sheet music is available to researchers, musicians, and publishers. He has several notable solo recordings on the Stomp Off and PianoMania labels.

Elliott is an intrepid golfer and a practicing dermatologist.

Bio last updated 10/5/2014.

Paolo Alderighi was born on November 5, 1980, in Milan, Italy. He earned a degree in Piano Performance from the G. Verdi Conservatory of Milan in 2000, and a degree in Economics for Arts, Culture and Media from Bocconi University in 2005.

Since 1996 he has performed in Italy, USA, Japan, Australia, Germany, Switzerland, France, Ireland, Hungary, Luxembourg, Holland, Belgium, Spain, Sweden, Denmark, the United Kindom, Malta, and Morocco.

He reached the second position in the "Top Jazz 2007" referendum organized by the jazz magazine "Musica Jazz" as "Best New Talent" and first in the popular referendum "Italian Jazz Awards 2007" as "Brand New Jazz Act."

He has recently recorded his fourth piano solo album and a trio album entitled "Around Broadway" for the label Abeat Jazz and joined many other recording sessions (Tiziana Ghiglioni "Non sono io" Philology, Karin Schmidt "German and American songs" Incipit Records, International Hot Jazz Quartet "Havin' A Ball" Arbors Records and "Still Havin' A Ball" Click Records, Alfredo Ferrario "Dedicated to Henghel" Philology, 5 CDs with the Japanese label Audio Park Records, Rebecca Kilgore Trio "Just Imagine" BlueSwing Recordings, and others).

He recorded a part of the soundtrack of the documentary of Ermanno Olmi regarding the artist Jannis Kounellis. He collaborated on the production of various cultural events.

Since 2011, he has been working on a four-hands piano project dedicated to classic jazz, swing, and ragtime with his wife, Stephanie Trick. They have performed together in Europe, the United States, and Japan. They have recorded five albums together, including "Two for One," "Sentimental Journey," and "Double Trio Always." He performed or recorded with musicians well known in the jazz scene (Howard Alden, John Allred, Joe Ascione, Alan Barnes, Dan Barrett, Gianni Basso, Ian Bateman, Dan Block, Lillian Boutté, Gianni Cazzola, Franco Cerri, Evan Christopher, Colin Dawson, Bruno De Filippi, Tullio De Piscopo, Isla Eckinger, Giovanni Falzone, Alfredo Ferrario, Jim Galloway, Sandro Gibellini, Tiziana Ghiglioni, Dusko Goykovich, Marty Grosz, Scott Hamilton, Eiji Hanaoka, Duke Heitger, Dick Hyman, Duffy Jackson, Tom Kirkpatrick, Eiji Kitamura, Jason Marsalis, Ed Metz, Jr., Luciano Milanese, Gabriele Mirabassi, Mauro Negri, Nicki Parrott, Lino Patruno, Ken Peplowski, Bucky Pizzarelli, Ed Polcer, Valery Ponomarev, Chuck Redd, Randy Reinhart, George Robert, Scott Robinson, Marcello Rosa, Randy Sandke, Antti Sarpila, Karin Schmidt, Frank Tate, Paolo Tomelleri, Warren Vaché, Bob Wilber, Roy Williams, Engelbert Wrobel, and others).

Since 2007, he has been teaching musical culture (Arts and Culture I) at Bocconi University for students in the department of the Master of Science in Economics and Management in Arts, Culture, Media and Entertainment.

He received a special prize from the Jury at the "National Prize of the Arts 2007" organized by the Italian Ministry of University and Research, in the "Jazz" category.

Bio last updated 9/27/2016.

Nick Arteaga was born and raised in Orangevale, a suburb of Sacramento. Since 2012, he has been a regular performer at the Sacramento Ragtime Society meetings and the Ragtime Corners of the Sacramento Music Festival. Nick's interest in ragtime began in his teens and was originally just a diversion from his formal classical studies. In his late 20s, Nick began composing piano rags and has since branched out to composing works in many other styles.

To date Nick has written close to 200 compositions including many piano rags, Latin American compositions and teaching pieces for piano students.

Currently, Nick spends most of his time giving piano lessons, working as a freelance composer/arranger, and helping with his family's real estate business. Besides ragtime, Nick enjoys comedy, cooking and trying unusual foods.

Cleve Baker, as a youngster after the War, was turned on to the Traditional Jazz of Lu Watters that he heard on the radio, including live ragtime played by Wally Rose, long before ragtime was revived by The Sting.

He was "hooked" by the history of the music, its composers and how it has played a role in the social history of the United States.

Cleve did his first paying gig at the Red Garter during his senior year at Stanford Medical School. He has enjoyed playing with a Dixieland band in the North Bay, the Dixon Phirehouse Philharmonics Band, for over 30 years. He's also played with small jazz bands in the Sacramento area and on cruise ships.

At this festival, Cleve will focus on compositions created during the San Francisco Traditional Jazz Revival by Lu Watters, Turk Murphy and Pete Clute, as well as the Ragtime and Traditional New Orleans Jazz which was the object of the San Francisco revival.

Bio last updated 10/15/2010.

Tom Barnebey has been in trad jazz since the 1960s, when he began playing banjo and piano in pizza parlors around the Los Angeles area, and cornet with the then newly formed Jelly Roll Jazz Band. After moving to Sonoma County, he led the well regarded Jazz Salvation Company for 20 years.



Over the years Tom has been a member of, or filled in on various instruments with such jazz bands as San Francisco Feetwarmers, Bear Republic, Trad Trio, Devil Mountain, Golden Eagle and Zenith, as well as performing ragtime/sing-along piano concerts.

Tom currently leads Barnebey's Hot Four, a quartet playing New Orleans jazz, and a quintet called "Beyond Salvation Jazz Band", playing pop music from the Roaring Twenties.

Bio last updated 10/27/2015.

Jeff Barnhart is an internationally renowned pianist, vocalist, arranger, bandleader, recording artist, composer, educator and entertainer. Jeff began his professional career at age 14 playing and entertaining four nights a week in a restaurant in his home state of Connecticut. Here he began to learn the classic swing, jazz and ragtime repertoire of the early 20th century. The 21st century has found Jeff constantly appearing as a soloist, guest artist and pianist at jazz parties, festivals, clubs and cruises throughout the world.

Jeff leads several bands in the UK: the Fryer-Barnhart International Jazz Band, which concentrates on hot music of the 1920s, and Jeff Barnhart's British Band, which performs small group swing of the 30s and Jeff Barnhart and His Rhythm - The New Fats Waller Show. Jeff spent 15 years as pianist/vocalist with the U.S.-based Titan Hot Seven acting as band manager for 10 of those 15 years.

Due to his versatility, vast repertoire and vibrant energy, Jeff is in increasing demand as a participant in international jazz events as either a soloist or as pianist in All-Star Jazz ensembles. In addition to his widely acclaimed solo and band appearances, Jeff is enjoying great success performing with smaller groups, most notably Ivory&Gold®, a group he co-leads with his talented wife, flutist Anne Barnhart. Ivory&Gold® has become a mainstay at many jazz and ragtime festivals throughout the U.S. and the UK.

Jeff enjoys playing dual piano and has done so with such jazz luminaries as Ralph Sutton, Neville Dickie, Louis Mazetier, John Sheridan and Brian Holland. In addition to his own label, Jazz Alive Records, Jeff plays piano and sings on the international labels GHB, Summit-World Jazz Records, Music Minus One, and the two largest jazz labels in the UK, Lake Records and P.E.K. Sound. Most recently, Jeff has joined the roster of artists featured on the Arbors Records label, with four recordings currently available: the most recent featuring jazz legends Bob Wilber and Bucky Pizzarelli. Jeff has recorded as both pianist and vocalist on over 100 full-length albums. He averages 40 weeks a year on the road, bringing his music to all corners of the globe.

Bio last updated 9/27/2016.

Jack & Chris Bradshaw, classically trained ragtime piano duo artists from Gilroy, California, righteously proclaim that, with 88 keys and 20 fingers at their disposal, they have the most piano keys held down at any one time — many of them right! Not going for speed, their quest is for clarity and classic ragtime charm as their fingers dance off the keyboard to Jack's four-hand arrangements of popular rags, cakewalks, marches and novelty numbers. Jack also performs solos to round out their programs.

Besides performing at West Coast, this lively pair gets around and has appeared at the Sutter Creek, Scott Joplin, Blind Boone, Shaniko, Santa Cruz, and the Fresno Flats Ragtime Festivals, and at Old Town Music Hall in El Segundo. The rollicking road to ragtime thus far has taken them to eleven states, Canada, and even to Zürich, Switzerland for a youth ragtime competition and to play a few tunes. They also play in the Ragnolia Ragtette with the Drivons and as the Piano & Pipes Ragtime Trio with theater organist, William Coale.

Bio last updated 10/5/2016.

Danny Coots in 1964 was just six years of age when he began playing drums in upstate New York. Since then, he has studied with Nick Baffaro, Rich Holly, Alan Koffman and Jim Petercsak in percussion. Danny attended The Crane School of Music and St. Lawrence University. He eventually served as adjunct faculty at St. Lawrence University, Clarkson University and Potsdam State University from the 1970s into the 1990s.

He continued traveling and performing with David Amram, Ray Shiner, Daniel Pinkham, Herb Ellis, Will Alger, Jack Mayhue, Speigle Wilcox, Mimi Hines, Phil Ford, Bob Darch, Pearl Kaufman and Arthur Duncan.

In 1996 Danny moved to Nashville, Tennessee, and has lived there ever since. Danny has recorded extensively in Nashville, New York and L.A. and has appeared in over 100 countries. He has played on over 100 recordings, one of which won a Grammy in 2005.

After moving to Tennessee, Danny joined the Jack Daniel's Silver Cornet Band for five years and helped found the Titan Hot Seven. During this time he played and recorded with Dick Hyman, Houston Person, Bob Wilber, Johnny Varro, Jeff Coffin, Tim Laughlin, Harry Allen, Dave Hungate, Bill Allred, John Allred, Randy Reinhart, Ron Hockett, John Cocuzzi, John Sheridan, Dan Barrett, Vince Giordano, Rebecca Kilgore, Ken Peplowski, Duke Heitger, Neville Dickie, Bob Shultz, Nicki Parrott, Bucky Pizzarelli, John Pizzarelli, Yve Evans, Chuck Hedges, Warren Vache and Allen Vache to name a few.

Bio last updated 10/5/2016.

Kylan deGhetaldi hails from Santa Cruz, California, and started playing piano and violin at a young age. While studying classical and jazz he was soon inevitably drawn towards ragtime. Kylan's YouTube Channel (youtube.com/foundring) was one of the first to feature amateur interpretations of stride pianists like Fats Waller and Art Tatum. A decade and millions of views later, Kylan has been fortunate enough to perform and collaborate with some of finest musicians in the world, most notably his introduction to the thriving ragtime community.

Kylan is also a member of the viral jazz group Postmodern Jukebox with whom he's performed in over 50 cities around the world. In addition to working as a church organist, a professional word-games player, and raising his 4-year-old daughter, Kylan is the founder of the Santa Cruz Ragtime Festival, with its second year held February 24-26, 2017.

Bio last updated 10/5/2016.

Jared DiBartolomeo is an engineering graduate of University of California at Irvine. A lifelong enthusiast of ragtime and vintage piano music, Jared was first exposed to ragtime at the age of two when his father played the Maple Leaf Rag on the home piano. The syncopated rhythms left an impression on Jared, and at age eight he started taking formal piano lessons. After receiving a folio of Scott Joplin’s rags and some recordings, Jared dived deeper into ragtime enthusiasm.

Over the next several years, under the mentorship of ragtime greats Marty Eggers and Virginia Tichenor, he expanded his repertoire to include the works of other ragtime composers, as well as novelty piano and stride piano. In recent years, he has focused on the more sophisticated novelty genres of the 1920s, from the early works of such composers as Roy Bargy and Zez Confrey, to the later impressionistic and introspective styles of Lee Sims and Bix Beiderbecke.

For nearly as long as he has had an interest in ragtime, Jared has been a fan of mechanical musical instruments. He currently owns an Ampico reproducing piano and a collection of piano rolls mastered by such artists as Adam Caroll, Edgar Fairchild, J. Milton Delcamp, and Henry Lange, from which he draws inspiration.

Jared first participated in the West Coast Ragtime Festival in 2005 and has had numerous opportunities to perform at San Francisco’s Pier 23, the SRS Ragtime Corner at the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee, the Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival, and the Eau Claire Ragtime Festival.

Richard Dowling, hailed by The New York Times as "an especially impressive fine pianist, appears regularly across America in solo recitals, at classical chamber music festivals, ragtime & jazz music festivals, and as guest soloist in concerto engagements with symphony orchestras. Career highlights include performances in New York at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Steinway Hall, The Rainbow Room at Rockefeller Center, The Metropolitan Club, and the 92nd Street Y. Mr. Dowling has presented solo recitals in the Far East, South America, Australia, Africa, and Europe. He has been a regular featured artist at the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival in Missouri, the West Coast Ragtime Festival in California, and the Juneau Jazz & Classics Festival in Alaska among others.

The National Federation of Music Clubs honored him with a special award recognizing his outstanding performances of American music. Works of Chopin, Debussy, Gershwin, Gottschalk, Ravel, ragtime, and early jazz figure prominently in his repertoire.

On Saturday, April 1, 2017, Mr. Dowling performed the complete piano works of Scott Joplin in two historic sold-out recitals at Carnegie Hall, exactly 100 years to the day that Joplin died in New York. Dowling is the first pianist in the world to perform the complete cycle of Joplin’s 53 rags, marches, waltzes, and cakewalks in public — nearly four hours of music all from memory. Throughout 2017 and 2018 Mr. Dowling will perform 100 Joplin recitals nationwide. Among his many engagements are the Newport Music Festival, Roswell Jazz Festival, Historic Asolo/Ringling Theater, and the Pro Musica concert series in Mexico. Rivermont Records recently released Dowling’s new 3-CD set, The Complete Piano Works of Scott Joplin, recorded on a magnificent Hamburg Steinway concert grand piano. Veteran ragtime pianist Max Morath says, “Richard Dowling’s mastery of the Joplin rags invokes a tenderness that charms us and a technical command that inspires our admiration.”

Reviews praise Mr. Dowling as “a master of creating beautiful sounds with impeccable control of colors and textures,” as “a musician with something to say, the skill to say it and the magnetic power to make you want to listen,” and for giving “a superb recital that left the audience craving for more at the end.” He is a versatile musician with over a dozen CDs of classical, chamber, ragtime, jazz, and popular music. His most recent recordings include Music of Old New York and Gershwin for Two Pianos, an album featuring Rhapsody in Blue and other beloved Gershwin works with virtuoso pianist Frederick Hodges.

Mr. Dowling holds advanced degrees from Yale and the University of Texas, including a doctorate in music. As a sheet music editor for Ludwig/Masters, Alfred, and Hal Leonard music publishing companies he has produced numerous critical performing editions of piano and chamber music by Zez Confrey, Debussy, Fauré, Gershwin, Hummel, Joplin, Mendelssohn, and Ravel. As a Piatigorsky Foundation Artist since 1994 he has performed nearly 1,200 recitals across America. Mr. Dowling resides in New York City and is represented exclusively by Parker Artists, a prominent classical music management in New York. Mr. Dowling is an official Steinway Artist and the proud owner of twin Hamburg Steinway Model C grand pianos. Visit his website at www.richard-dowling.com.

Bio last updated 9/7/2017.

Marty Eggers is described by Terry Waldo as having "an encyclopedic knowledge of the ragtime and early jazz repertoire". He has played with numerous Bay Area jazz and ragtime groups, including the Yerba Buena Stompers, John Gill's San Francisco Jazz Band and the Black Diamond Jazz Band. In addition to solo piano, Marty appeared at the festival for years as bassist with the Bo Grumpus Trio.

He has also appeared with the Tichenor Family Trio (Trebor Tichenor, Virginia Tichenor, and Marty).

Marty helped found the Sacramento Ragtime Society in 1982. He is a past president of the West Coast Ragtime Society.

Bio last updated 8/11/2008.

Andrew Greene is the founder and director of the Peacherine Ragtime Society Orchestra, and is the leading young authority on orchestral ragtime and silent film accompaniment. Mr. Greene founded the Peacherine Orchestra while a freshman at the University of Maryland, hoping to draw attention to this neglected but historically important music.

He is the curator of the Arthur C. Ziegler, E.J. McBride, Katherine Lingham, Louis H. Burns, and Palm Leaf Ragtime Orchestra collections, along with his own personal collection of orchestrated ragtime, silent movie music, theater and dance selections, piano solos, and records. The collection totals over 10,000 selections from 1862 to 1950, with an emphasis on the music of 1880 to 1929.

Mr. Greene has appeared at leading venues including The Kennedy Center, The Smithsonian Institution, The Library of Congress, The American Film Institute, and has traveled across the United States to perform, conduct, and lecture on the music of America's past. Mr. Greene guest conducted the South Dakota Symphony Chamber Orchestra at the age of 22 in September 2013, underscoring the silent comedy of Charlie Chaplin. Frequently Mr. Greene leads seminars based on his research, presenting at ragtime festivals and other events. His website is www.greeneragtime.com.

Bio last updated 9/6/2016.

Rosemary Hallum is a pianist, performer, writer and teacher specializing in ragtime and novelty, built upon a classical background. She earned a B.A. in English, M.A. in education, and Ph.D. in music & movement education, plus postdoctoral studies in the U.S. and Europe. Dr. Hallum has played in music festivals in Europe (Portugal, Italy, Hungary, England) and the U.S. (West Coast Ragtime Festival, Ragtime Corners of the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee), and performed in master classes of Paul Badura-Skoda, Boris Berman, Tony Caramia and others.

She belongs to several professional organizations (ASCAP, AFM, AFT, MTAC) and has teaching experience ranging from university through preschool. She has presented over 100 local, state and national teacher workshops, and is listed in several reference volumes including Who's Who and the Dictionary of International Biography. Students in her private piano studio in Alameda range in age from 8 to 80, and all do improvisation and creative work.

Rosie is noted for her research, writing ability and effective interviewing. Her numerous publications as author, co-author or contributing editor include over 400 magazine articles in the U.S., Europe and Japan, ranging from music and education to bodybuilding, fitness, travel and nutrition. Then there are six books, two textbooks, several teaching guides and over 30 children's educational music albums. She has interviewed stars in music (Dave Brubeck, Eldar, Woody Allen, James Brown, Marian McPartland, Uri Caine), world champions in bodybuilding, fitness & strongman competitions, and famous cooks (Julia Child, Ming Tsai).

Her other interests include research, cars, and "hands-on" travel (two Biblical archaeology excavations, dinosaur dig, woolly mammoth dig, working with giant pandas). Throughout her life, music has been a constant. "It has been a source of beauty and joy, and has opened many doors!" she says.

Frederick Hodges is hailed by the press as one of the best pianists in the world, and has established a reputation specializing in late romantic music as well as Broadway and Hollywood musicals of the first half of the 20th century by America’s best composers, such as George Gershwin and Cole Porter. He maintains a busy concert schedule of stage, television, radio, and film appearances around the globe.

Additionally, he is a much sought-after silent-film accompanist for both live performances and DVD. He performs regularly at the Hollywood Heritage Museum, the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum in California, the Cinecon Film Festival in Hollywood, The TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood, and at silent film festivals around the country. He also performs at music festivals around the country, such as the Sacramento Music Festival, the West Coast Ragtime Festival, and the Sedalia Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival. His website is www.frederickhodges.com.

Bio last updated 8/11/2017.

Brian Holland is an internationally renown pianist, composer, recording artist, and entertainer who has enjoyed a music career spanning more than 35 years. After spending his formative years playing in pizza parlors and clubs throughout Indiana, Brian's career flourished when he discovered the World Championship Old-Time Piano Playing Contest. In 1999, he won his third title and was retired as "undefeated." He has since returned three times to serve on the judges panel.

Brian has played with some of the hottest jazz bands in the U.S. — Titan Hot Seven, Wally's Warehouse Waifs, the Holland Rhythm Company, and others — and has traveled all over the world performing his creative styles of jazz, ragtime, stride, boogie, and blues. Most recently Brian and Danny Coots have formed a musical partnership, and together they are quickly building a reputation as the fun and musical duo, Holland & Coots.

Brian has fourteen recordings (solo and ensemble) to his credit, and garnered a Grammy nomination for his work with Bud Dresser on their album, "Ragtime - Goodtime - Jazz".

Bio last updated 10/31/2015.

Vincent Johnson's multifaceted approach to ragtime and syncopated piano music is both forward thinking and historically minded. As a pianist, he is dedicated to the oft-forgotten novelty piano style and peppers his performances with renditions of rarely heard compositions. As a transcriber, he is as likely to be transcribing a syncopated song arrangement from a Duo-Art piano roll as he is to be transcribing the latest composition of a fellow Southern California ragtimer.

As a composer, Johnson combines the format and parlance of historical rags and piano novelties with his own humor and sensibilities to create a personal, unique style. His ... And So Fourth!won 1st prize in the 2014 World Championship Old-Time Piano Playing New Rag Contest.

Vincent regularly performs at ragtime clubs and festivals throughout California, and his compositions have been formally programmed by pianists from Manhattan to Hungary. Johnson's debut CD My Pet, featuring novelty piano solos, was released in 2013.

Bio last updated 11/8/2014.

Max Keenlyside is a dazzling pianist and formidable composer, and has made an auspicious entry into the music world. Born in 1991 and starting in music at the age of 10, he has written and performed music in ragtime, stride, and classical styles, gaining a reputation as a top young artist in his field. In 2009, Max represented Prince Edward Island in the National Artist's Program, held in the conjunction with the Canada Games. A favorite at jazz and ragtime events around the world, he has headlined at the Scott Joplin, West Coast Ragtime, and Blind Boone festivals.

While equally at home in ragtime and classical styles, he is especially lauded for his stride and traditional jazz chops. These demanding, two-handed and rich piano styles were crafted by the likes of "Jelly Roll" Morton, Fats Waller, and James P. Johnson; Max plays them all with a stylistic flair and an ear for detail.

Having composed since elementary school, Max's compositions have garnered critical acclaim. He wrote the concert march processional music for his own high school graduation, and his "Northern Lights Rag" has become a fixture on the ragtime scene.

In addition to festivals, Max regularly plays solo concerts and has given a program for a live audience on CBC Radio. His debut release, KeenlyStride, was issued in 2010 on the Rivermont label. This was followed by Mostly Max in 2012, featuring a plethora of Max's original compositions alongside the old classics. Max currently performs around North America, and is composing his first Symphony for orchestra.

Bio last updated 11/16/2013.

Carl Sonny Leyland was born & raised on the South Coast of England, growing up close to the city of Southampton. As a child he was drawn to the American music which he heard on LP records his father would play. It was here that he developed an appreciation for Dixieland jazz, the rock & roll of the 1950s & the country music of Jimmie Rodgers & Hank Williams. At age 15 Leyland discovered boogie woogie when he heard a school friend working through a written arrangement of a tune called JD's Boogie Woogie (Marvin Wright). Captivated by the sound of the repeating 8 to the bar left hand pattern, Leyland was inspired to go to the piano & begin on a path that would become his life's purpose.

Within three months he would be performing in public & shortly after would become a member of a respected local group "The Bob Pearce Blues Band."

Initially influenced by boogie woogie greats Albert Ammons, Pete Johnson & Meade 'Lux' Lewis, Leyland went on to fully explore the piano blues genre, becoming an authority on early & obscure styles such as those played by Cow Cow Davenport, Little Brother Montgomery, Montana Taylor & Speckled Red to name a few.

In 1988 Leyland had the opportunity to come to the USA. This initial visit to New Orleans inspired him to relocate to that city where he would spend the next nine years. During that time he was active on the club scene, quickly gaining a reputation for his authentic blues & early rock & roll stylings. Also, he toured with the Dallas based band Anson Funderburgh & the Rockets whose line up included blues great Sam Myers.

In 1997, feeling the need for a change, Leyland relocated to Southern California. He joined Big Sandy & His Flyrite Boys, the well known rockabilly & western swing group & toured with them for over three years.

By this time his repertoire had expanded to include ragtime & early jazz styles which enabled him to become part of the traditional jazz scene around Los Angeles & San Diego. In June of 2003 the Carl Sonny Leyland Trio was formed with drummer Hal Smith & bassist Marty Eggers. There was such a natural synergy between the three musicians that a recording of their first performance was good enough to issue on a CD (Broadway Boogie, now out of print). Their versatile combination has proven successful over the years. They have recorded seven CDs to date (including a collaboration with Nathan James & Ben Hernandez) and continue to work steadily on the festival scene. (Jeff Hamilton replaced Hal Smith as drummer.)

Leyland has also continued his involvement with the rockabilly scene & plays each year in the backing band at Viva Las Vegas & more recently at the Rockabilly Rave USA. In this capacity he has worked with such notables as Janis Martin, Ruth Brown, Billy Lee Riley & Carl Mann. (See 'Career History' page on his web site carlsonnyleyland.com for a complete list of artists.)

Whether playing solo or with his trio, Leyland's playing displays an infectious spontaneity, providing plenty of surprises for the listener. While he possesses the necessary vocabulary to pay tribute to the greats of old, he refuses to limit himself to this & prefers to let each performance be an opportunity to say something new.

Bio last updated 11/9/2015.

Frank LiVolsi is a pianist and composer from Rhode Island who specializes in ragtime and early jazz. Beginning his musical education at the Knapp School of Music under the instruction of Mrs. Julia Tombello, Frank received classical training and only discovered a passionate interest in ragtime during his early teen years. Frank's first performance outside New England was in 2011, when he performed at the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival in Sedalia, Missouri.

Since then Frank has appeared at the West Coast Ragtime Festival in Sacramento, California; the Blind Boone Ragtime and Early Jazz Festival in Columbia, Missouri; as well as venues in Wisconsin, Colorado, and Massachusetts. Frank is a recent graduate of the University of Rhode Island, having earned his master's degree in mechanical engineering and applied mechanics.

Bio last updated 11/9/2015.

Jonathan Meredith has been playing finger-style ragtime guitar for about 40 years. He plays both nylon and steel string guitars for both classical rags and parlor rags as well as ragtime arrangements of original, popular, jazz, novelty tunes from the 30's and 40's. He plays in and around the foothill area of Nevada City and Grass Valley. In the mid 1980's he produced a series called "Ragtime" in Nevada City featuring piano, guitar, dancing, slideshows, history, cakewalks and ensemble groups.

Jonathan also produced a series of California and Klondike Gold Rush productions which were performed locally and at the Huntington Library in Pasadena. Vocal and instrumental arrangements of Fats Waller's tunes will also be heard. Jonathan also plays gypsy jazz, country swing and old-timey music in a band with his wife, Margo, called "The Buffalo Crossing".

Bio last updated 11/10/2015.

Larisa Migachyov was born in Russia and began her classical piano training at the age of 5. After immigrating to the United States, she quit music for many years until, by pure chance, she saw a flyer advertising the San Antonio Ragtime Society on a supermarket bulletin board. She attended one of the meetings and was instantly hooked. A year later, she composed her very first rag, the Purple Chicken Rag, and premiered it at the 2006 Scott Joplin Festival in Sedalia, Mo.

Larisa has composed more than 22 rags, mostly in a very traditional style, and mostly named after various types of food. Since that first performance at the 2006 Scott Joplin Festival, she has performed at many other ragtime festivals, and in fact, helped start a new festival in San Antonio. She has released two CDs, A Heap of Rags in 2007, and Oh, That Ragtime Chick! in 2009. The latter CD features 13 of her own compositions.

Larisa's "day jobs" have included mechanical engineering, design consulting, literary translation, and running a math tutoring agency. She recently graduated from law school, worked for a law firm in Palo Alto, Calif., and currently makes a living as a patent attorney in private practice.

Bio last updated 11/10/2011.

Ezequiel Pallejá, from Buenos Aires, Argentina, is a ragtime and early jazz performer since half a century ago, participating in many Argentinian bands, like Tiempos Viejos Jazz Band, Roseland Jazz Band, Guardia Vieja Jazz Band, Antigua Jazz Band, Eureka Jazz Band, Porteña Jazz Band and at present the Fenix Jazz Band, attending long-time shows in Argentina and participating in international festivals in New Orleans and Connecticut in the USA.

He has composed more than 15 rags within the last 20 years. As a piano soloist, he has participated in the San Antonio Ragtime Festival (2010 and 2011) and the West Coast Ragtime Festival since 2012. He was a judge at the San Antonio young ragtime performers contests (2011 and 2013), and brought piano ragtime recitals to Houston (2011, 2013), San Antonio (2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013) and Lima, Perú (2013).

In Buenos Aires he performs recitals in many opportunities, as piano soloist, as choir director, and as piano performer in jazz bands or for silent movies. He also gives talks about ragtime, tango and jazz origins, and makes some related musicals with singers and chorus. His musical El ritmo del Ragtime is expected to be presented next year. Recently he also formed the "Buenos Aires Ragtime Trio" along with a banjoist and a tubist.

He is the director of the "Buenos Aires International Ragtime Festival" which took place in that city, November 2014 and 2015. A third festival is planned for May 2017.

In another vein, Pallejá is an engineer at the University of Buenos Aires and a Ph.D of the Valencia Politechnique University. He belongs to the Engineering and Geographic Argentine Academies.

Bio last updated 10/11/2016.

Will Perkins is a 24-year-old native of Riverbank, California, who has been performing at ragtime/jazz festivals since the age of 14. His love for the traditional American piano styles of Scott Joplin, Fats Waller, and Dick Wellstood have led him to opportunities to perform at music festivals around the United States and beyond. In 2012, Will was a featured performer at the Bohem Ragtime and Early Jazz Festival in Kecskemet, Hungary, and later that year placed 3rd in the World Championship of Old-Time Piano in Peoria, Illinois.

After a two-year hiatus as a religious missionary in the country of Uruguay, he has happily returned to music performing at numerous venues across the country.

Currently, Will resides in Rexburg, Idaho, where he attends Brigham Young University – Idaho studying Elementary Education, and is preparing to release his third album of music this winter.

Bio last updated 10/11/2016.

John Reed-Torres (aged 25) was born and raised in Los Angeles. The first time John recalls hearing Ragtime was during school recess in fifth grade. An ice cream truck's megaphone projected the A theme of Joplin's "The Entertainer". John smiles, "Right then and there, Ragtime bit me, and simultaneously released multiple inner infatuations that I now have for antiquity, ranging from architecture to automobiles."

Shortly after that, John began to teach himself piano throughout his middle school and high school days. He worked up performances of Scott Joplin rags as well as classical pieces. In 2009, John began studies at Pasadena City College & the Neighborhood Music School in Boyle Heights, where he was able to begin formal piano lessons for the first time through the generosity of scholarship donors.

He has since performed at venues around Los Angeles and abroad, including the annual Ragtime festival at The Old Town Music Hall in El Segundo, where John plays a pivotal role as head projectionist and pre-show performer, amongst other duties. Additionally, at The Old Town Music Hall, John has for the past several years hosted the Young Ragtime Masters concert series. He has also performed at various Ragtime/Early Jazz Festivals such as the West Coast Ragtime Society Festival, Blind Boone Ragtime & Early Jazz Festival, Scott Joplin International Ragtime Festival,Orange County Ragtime Festival, Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival, Oakhurst Ragtime Festival, The Rose Leaf Club, The Jonathan Club, The Los Angeles Country Club, Art Share LA, and, most recently, for the Grand Opening of the John William "Blind" Boone Center in Columbia, MO.

John has written fourteen rags, including several collaborations with friends, Vincent Johnson and Reginald Robinson, and is the founder of The Ragtimers' Club on Facebook. It is now the largest online club dedicated to Ragtime music. When John isn't busy with school or work, he enjoys maintaining his 1973 Volkswagen Beetle, collecting antique Ragtime sheet music and phonograph records, dabbling in film photography, and practicing on his recently acquired pride and joy, an upright 1887 Weber piano. After university, he aspires to become a professional educator. Being of a diverse ethnic heritage, John aims to acknowledge the links that connect us all, especially those through music. He wants to expound the many aspects of history, especially the history of ragtime, to his generation, so more will recognize ragtime as a monumental form in the development of culture and music.

About Ragtime, John says, "Ragtime music is the delightfully infectious beat that lifted African-American people from places of disregard to places of notoriety, among the public view. I really like this music, and it is exhilarating to play. I understand its language. I believe that music is a universal language, different dialects. I feel that Ragtime is the dialect that I understand and am able to convey best. I like when people tell me 'you have a good understanding of this genre; it sounds legit.' That always puts a smile on my face."

Bio last updated 10/20/2016.

David Thomas Roberts began composing, painting and writing at age eight. His first serious compositions reflect the influence of such composers as Chopin, Satie, Joplin and Ives. He has composed 140 solo piano works, including the major suites Map Dreams and New Orleans Streets, as well as chamber pieces, art songs, choral and electronic works. He recorded five LPs (1978-1985), and has appeared on 20 CDs, many devoted to his own compositions.

DTR has been heard on ABC's "Good Morning America," National Public Radio's "All Things Considered," and across Canada on CBC Radio. His eclectic suite New Orleans Streets (1981-1985) was hailed by historian Al Rose in I Remember Jazz as "the single most important contribution to the culture of New Orleans in the past fifty years."

David's concerts feature a variety of Americana and Post-Modernist compositions. Further background on David's work can be found at DavidThomasRoberts.com. His sheet music, CDs, and visual art reproductions are featured on DTRstore.com.

Bio last updated 10/20/2016.

Jack Rummel has pursued the piano as an amateur most of his life. A composer and reviewer, he has hosted the weekly ragtime radio program KGNU's Ragtime America since 1980. He is also founder and co-producer of the annual Rocky Mountain Ragtime Festival. He practiced dentistry in Boulder, Colorado, for over 30 years, retiring in 2002. He is a tireless promoter of ragtime music and its performers.

His recording for Stomp Off and his recent CD releases of Brun's Boys and Lone Jack: The Ragtime of Today has also put him in the forefront of ragtime composers now living. He has three published folios of original compositions.

He regularly reviews current ragtime recordings on his website: www.ragtimers.org/reviews. He has performed and/or served as master of ceremonies at festivals in St. Louis and Sedalia, Mo.; Central City, Evergreen and Boulder, Colo.; and the West Coast Ragtime Festivals in both Fresno and Sacramento. He also plays five-string banjo in a bluegrass band.

Bio last updated 5/29/2004.

Christoph Schmetterer started taking cello lessons at the age of eight. Not until he was nineteen did he start composing and playing the piano, which has become his preferred instrument.

His first works were rags, and ragtime remains in the center of his almost 200 compositions. Apart from that, he composes dances, marches and sacred music. He writes not only for piano, but also for orchestra, band and choir.

He plays the organ at mass every Sunday in the small village of Wildungsmauer near Vienna. He is director of the wind band in the town of Bruck an der Leitha, where he also plays trombone.

Christoph has doctor's degrees in history and law. He is a legal historian in the Austrian Academy of Sciences and a trainee lawyer in a law office.

Sean Sharp is back for his eighth West Coast Ragtime Festival. This year (2017) he will present From Broadway to Bombay: Around the World with Illustrated Songs an illustrated-songs program of tunes written about various locales, with Frederick Hodges at the piano. Sean has performed with illustrated songs for over 17 years and has given shows at previous West Coast Ragtime Festivals, the Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival, the Shasta Silent Film Festival, and at the Corte Madera Centennial's Ragtime Night festivities in 2016.

He has performed with The Great Nickelodeon Show at the Turner Classic Movies Festival in Hollywood, the Giornate del Cinema Muto in Italy, the Telluride Film Festival, the Niles Essanay Film Museum and San Francisco’s Castro Theatre, among other venues. He is an original member of San Francisco’s 42nd St. Moon Productions and has appeared in over 20 of that company’s productions.

His other credits include singing in the San Francisco Grace Cathedral Men’s Choir and performing with the Lamplighters and down the California coast with the Great American Melodrama.

Bio last updated 6/6/2017.

Martin Spitznagel has been hailed as a remarkable, astonishing, and "face-melting" musical talent. His flying fingers and sparkling repertoire have left audiences across the country enthralled with America's first popular music, Ragtime. Whether performing the masterworks of Scott Joplin or the score to Star Wars, Martin is truly at home on the piano bench.

He found success early, winning a Yamaha Disklavier at the age of 14 in Calliope Media's nationwide Crazy for Ragtime competition. His entry, chosen from the hundreds of submissions by a panel of judges that included world-renowned violinist Itzhak Perlman, coincided with the centennial of the birth of ragtime music in 1897.

Despite this early success, Martin was largely self-guided until 1998, when he met Eastman School of Music pianist and pedagogue Dr. Tony Caramia, who challenged him to "find the surprise" in every performance. Under Caramia's tutelage, Martin flourished, developing a keen ear for melody, a gift for improvisation, and a talent for composition.

In the years since, Martin has performed across the country at venues large and small, including featured performances at the Scott Joplin International Ragtime Festival in Sedalia, MO and the West Coast Ragtime Festival in Sacramento, CA.

Awards for composition include "Best New Rag" in the 2007 and 2011 at the World Championship Old-Time Piano Playing Contest, first place in the 2010 Scott Joplin Foundation's worldwide "Train Town Rag" composition contest, as well as a Bronze International Galaxy Award and a Platinum MarCom Award for "Best Original Score" for PerformTech Inc.'s holiday e-card.

In 2011, Martin was selected as the Scott Joplin Foundation's Artist in Residence, and in May he claimed the title "World Champion of Old-Time Piano Playing " at the World Championship Old-Time Piano Playing Contest in Peoria, IL. All shall look upon me and syncopate!

In addition to his musical pursuits, Martin holds a B.A. in Creative Writing, a Certificate in Medieval and Renaissance Studies, and an A.S. in Filmmaking. This diverse skill set has enabled him to work on everything from a documentary film about polio with "St. Elmo's Fire" screenwriter Carl Kurlander to composing award-winning orchestral scores for short films and animations.

Martin currently works as a multimedia designer, writer, and filmmaker in Alexandria, VA, where he lives with his wife, Jessica, and their two young sons. He looks forward each day to the opportunity to reach new audiences with the music that has given him so much joy.

Squeek Steele, was born and raised in eastern Kentucky, and began playing the piano by ear at the age of 3. Other than piano recitals, her first real public playing came at age 12 when she played gospel songs for an old-time revival. Squeek holds a Guinness World Record (1990 book, p. 18 under Squeek Moore) for playing the most pieces of music on piano from memory. Classically trained at Oberlin Conservatory of Music, she plays a wide variety of musical styles from many different eras.

She has performed internationally (Singapore, Hong Kong, Berlin, Germany) as well as in the U.S. (New York, Wyoming, Virginia, Connecticut).

She lives in the historic mining town of Virginia City, Nevada, where she teaches elementary music as well as piano students, and performs at the Bucket of Blood Saloon. She enjoys collecting ethnic music from the many islands of Indonesia having just made her 5th trip there last January. She has recorded 15 albums of American Popular Music of the early 20th century. Two of her covers of Old West songs were used in a film with Natalie Portman and Ewan McGregor, Jane Got a Gun, released in 2016.

See her website: www.goodoldsongs.com.

Adam Swanson is one of the world's foremost performers of ragtime and early American popular music, including ragtime, early jazz, the Great American Songbook, and more. He holds a bachelor's in classical piano and a master's in musicology from the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University. Although he is only 25 years old, Adam has been a featured performer and lecturer at ragtime and jazz festivals across the United States, and he is the only four-time winner of the World Championship Old-Time Piano Playing Contest.

He made his New York debut in Carnegie Hall at the age of 19, where he performed with Michael Feinstein. Adam has performed at the Cinecon Classic Film Festival in Hollywood and the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage in Washington, D.C., as well as in Hungary and Switzerland. He has worked with such musicians as Toronto's John Arpin, former rock star Ian Whitcomb, and legendary 1950s recording artist Johnny Maddox, who is one of Adam's greatest influences.

Adam performs every summer at the historic Strater Hotel in Durango, Colorado, where he is musical director of the new Durango Ragtime and Early Jazz Festival. Visit Adam online: www.adamgswanson.com.

Bio last updated 6/27/2017.

Virginia Tichenor has been consumed by ragtime her entire life, as the daughter of Trebor Tichenor, the noted ragtime scholar, pianist, collector and founder of the St. Louis Ragtimers. She studied music at the St. Louis Community Association for the Arts and took advanced training from concert pianist, John Phillips. Always at the crossroads of the ragtime revival, her parental home houses the world's largest library of ragtime sheet music and piano rolls. Virginia grew up with legends like Eubie Blake, Max Morath and Butch Thompson chatting in her own living room.

Her father was advisor-confidant for most of the ragtime community, so Virginia often heard new rags when they were forming in the minds of their composers. The topic of her college research project? The ragtime revival, of course! In 1998, Virginia released her first solo recording, a CD entitled Virginia's Favorites. It includes four two-piano duets with her father, Trebor.

She is the Vice President, and past President, of the West Coast Ragtime Society.

Stephanie Trick "has come to practically dominate the stride piano field," notes reviewer Jack Rummel. Harlem stride piano, which developed in the 1920s and '30s, is an orchestral style of two-handed piano playing that not only swings, but is also technically demanding and exciting to watch. Louis Mazetier, a respected interpreter of this genre, writes in the Bulletin of the Hot Club of France that she has "won the esteem of specialists in the genre with wonderful interpretations of stride classics, James P. Johnson, Fats Waller, and Don Lambert (which she learned by ear). She plays these pieces with a punch that is matched by her precise interpretation."

In the words of the great Dick Hyman, Stephanie is "one of the nicest gifts to arrive on the jazz piano scene in recent times, and we couldn't be more delighted to welcome her."

A classically trained pianist, Stephanie began playing piano at the age of 5. During the time between her beginning years and high school, her piano teacher exposed her to early jazz, and the syncopation and swinging rhythm piqued her interest. While in college, it became clear to Stephanie that she wanted to pursue stride and classic jazz styles professionally.

With a swinging approach inspired by second-generation stride pianists such as Dick Hyman, Ralph Sutton, and Dick Wellstood (as well as the original Harlem ticklers, James P. Johnson, Willie "The Lion" Smith, and Fats Waller), and one that includes boogie woogie and blues from the late '20s, Stephanie was the 2012 recipient of the prestigious Kobe-Breda Jazz Friendship Award, and has performed in many parts of the United States and Europe in a variety of venues, including the Teatro Dal Verme in Milan, Italy; the KIG Dixieland Festival in Dresden, Germany; the Arbors Records Invitational Jazz Party; the Rochester International Jazz Festival; the Gilmore Keyboard Festival; and the Sacramento Music Festival. In 2008, 2010, and 2014, she was invited to perform at the international Stride & Swing Piano Summit in Boswil, Switzerland.

A serious student, dedicated to classic jazz and the stride piano tradition, she has played with a number of celebrated musicians, including Dick Hyman, Phil Flanigan, Rossano Sportiello, Allan Vaché, Louis Mazetier, Nicki Parrott, and Danny Coots. Graduating from college with a Bachelor of Arts in Music, she was inducted into the Phi Beta Kappa academic honor society at the University of Chicago.

Stephanie frequently performs with her husband, acclaimed pianist Paolo Alderighi, making fresh arrangements of songs from the Swing Era in a four-hands piano duo, and they currently have recorded five albums together (see www.paoloandstephanie.com). In 2014, they played for the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall at the Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival. Stephanie also enjoys accompanying Grammy-nominated lyricist and vocalist Lorraine Feather in a show that features the music of James P. Johnson and other stride piano composers, set to original lyrics by Feather (see www.nouveaustride.com).

Stephanie has recorded 10 albums and one DVD. Her solo Live CD was awarded the "New Talent Prize 2011" by the Hot Club of France. (CD track listings, video clips, ordering information, and more may be found on her website at www.stephanietrick.com.)

Bio last updated 11/6/2016.

Richard Zimmerman is a ragtime performer, historian, author and producer who has single-handedly been greatly responsible for the recent worldwide revival of ragtime. He recorded The Complete Works of Scott Joplin and The Collector's History of Ragtime. Both are considered to be milestones in the annals of ragtime recording.

As a producer he originated theatrical presentation of ragtime with his "Where It Was!" concert series in Los Angeles which featured ragtime stars of the present and the past — including the then-forgotten Eubie Blake. He has since produced and directed many ragtime concerts.

Worldwide appearances both live and on television include the Montreaux (Switzerland) Jazz Festival, BBC world service Radio and BBC-TV, Canadian Broadcasting Co. ragtime specials and Australia's Tropicarnival.

He has appeared in concert and at music festivals throughout the United States and Canada as well as being the Music Director of the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival in Sedalia, Missouri. He is the recipient of the Scott Joplin Foundation Achievement Award in 1991.

Zimmerman was a founder of The Maple Leaf Club, America's organization devoted to preserving ragtime, and he edited its newsletter, The Rag Times, which kept ragtimers throughout the world up to date in this exciting and vital field of music.

In 1987 he was awarded the first-place prize at the Mill Bridge Village Ragtime Competition — "CHAMPION RAGTIME PERFORMER OF THE WORLD".


Youth Performers
Ramona Sidney Baker is 16 years old and has been playing ragtime for four years under Virginia Tichenor, but she has been interested in ragtime for many more years than that. She credits her father, noted jazz musician Clint Baker, as the one who first interested her in this addictive music. It started with a few records from the 1900s that had ragtime dance music on them, which Ramona recalls hearing when she was three to four years old.

Ramona tries her hardest to dig through the oldest examples of recorded ragtime on cylinders and early disc records, looking for the long-forgotten pianists behind all of the great singers of the period. She will be performing some of the rarest pieces at the festival. Besides West Coast, Ramona has performed at the Sutter Creek, Santa Cruz, and Scott Joplin Ragtime Festivals.

Diego Bustamante is an 18-year-old from Paradise, California, who became interested in ragtime when, as a kid, he heard The Entertainer by Scott Joplin. The ragtime world discovered him at the West Coast Youth Ragtime Competition six years ago. Since then he has appeared at the Sutter Creek, Oakhurst, and West Coast festivals, the Old Town Music Hall in El Segundo, plus several youth concerts.

As also a classical performer, Diego made his second appearance with the Paradise Symphony performing a movement of a Mozart concerto in spring of 2016.

Diego has been studying piano for 10 years, the last seven with Dr. Robert Bowman. Last year, Diego completed his first CD, Classical and Ragtime, Side-by-Side, available now.

Bio last updated 10/24/2016.

Michael Chisholm is from Houston, Texas, and has grown up in a musically appreciative family. His first music training was in middle school, where he learned to play the xylophone and marimba. Eventually, he graduated to piano. Michael's first exposure to ragtime was watching JoAnn Castle play on a rerun of the Lawrence Welk Show. From that moment, he knew ragtime was his style of music.



Since then, he has composed over 50 rags and has started collecting the original prints of ragtime sheet music. Besides piano, Michael likes to rag out on the flute, piccolo, and clarinet.

Alethea Sung-Miller is 17 years old and resides in Sacramento, California where she is home schooled. Allie loves writing music as well as performing. Though she began in classical music, her good friend Diego Bustamante introduced her to ragtime when she was 11, and she immediately fell in love with it. She also harbors a growing fondness for jazz and has attended and played at the Sacramento Trad Jazz Society meetings.

Allie also manages her own youth music group, The Sacramento Syncopators, with members from Sacramento, the Bay Area, and Chico, as well as performers from as far away as Florida. You can find out more about the group on their website: sacramentosyncopators.wordpress.com.

Besides music, Allie loves writing, and is currently finishing her sixth novel. She is also an accomplished ballerina. Although writing and music are her greatest passions, Allie hopes to go into electrical or biomedical engineering when she grows up.

Bio last updated 10/24/2016.

Oliver Moore, 16 years old, has been playing piano since the age of 6. As a pianist, vocalist, upright bassist, accompanist, arranger, and entertainer, he has performed at various venues throughout northern California. Oliver’s interest in the piano stylings of the early 20th century range from the ragtime of Joplin and his contemporaries, to the intricate novelty piano of the '20s, to the jumpin’ stride piano of Harlem. He is also classically trained and enjoys playing most forms of jazz and the early rock and boogie music of the '30s, '40s and '50s.

Oliver is from Chico, Calif., and maintains a busy schedule playing gigs, accompanying various productions, singers, and instrumentalists, and playing the upright bass and piano in various orchestras throughout the north state.

Oliver is currently a volunteer in Enloe Hospital’s Music for Healing program and is a junior at Inspire School of Arts and Sciences. Oliver has performed at the West Coast Ragtime Festival, the Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival, the VOCE chamber music competition in Los Angeles, and the World Old-Time Piano Playing Contest where this year he won second place in his division.

Bio last updated 6/27/2017.

Ryan Wishner, after hearing his mom play “The Entertainer” one night at the age of 10, took interest in the piano and was immediately drawn to ragtime. That interest has expanded to include just about any popular music from the early 1800s through the 1930s. Ryan’s biggest goal in performances is historical accuracy, and he often bases his playing style on old recordings and piano rolls.

Ryan enjoys working on “mechanical music” machines such as phonographs and player pianos. He is currently studying Mechanical Engineering at the University of California, Riverside.


Groups
Ivory&Gold®Praised by The L.A. Jazz Scene as a musical duo that can "draw out the beauty in the rich melodies and play the music...with taste, sensitivity, and a real affection for the idiom," Ivory&Gold® celebrates the greatest examples of American jazz, blues, ragtime, Broadway and hits from the Great American Songbook. Internationally renowned American musical performer and historian Max Morath calls Ivory&Gold® "...read more.
The Pacific Coast Ragtime Orchestra is a group of 10 musicians dedicated to playing and preserving turn-of-the-century ragtime music. The Ragtimers, organized in 1980 by music teachers from Pacifica and Half Moon Bay, coastal towns south of San Francisco play dance and casual music written between 1885 and 1920.


The band's repertoire reflects the cares and celebrations of a gentler time. Along with The Entertainer and Maple Leaf Rag, they play such nostalgic obscurities as Au Revoir but Not Goodby, Soldier Boy, Frenchy Come to Yankeeland, Morning Glory Lane, and Vampire Gallop.

Although the group may be described as a novelty band because it eschews contemporary music, it aims to reproduce faithfully the sounds of the ragtime generation. Many of PCRO's selections are Scott Joplin tunes, arranged by Gunther Schuller. Most of the musical scores are yellow and crumbling with age, but the orchestra feels that these poignant works deserve to be kept alive.

The orchestra has performed at the 2002 Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival in Sedalia, Missouri, the Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society in Half Moon Bay, at the 25th anniversary of the Maple Leaf Club in Los Angeles with ragtime greats Wally Rose and Max Morath, the Classic Jazz Festival in Los Angeles, the Monterey Bay Ragtime Festival in Watsonville, and the Santa Cruz Ragtime Festival.

They are regular performers at the Sacramento Music Festival in May and the West Coast Ragtime Festival in November. They have made several recordings.

To contact the orchestra, write:

Michael Hart
603 Farallon Ave.
Pacifica, CA, 94044
or call (650) 355-1731
or email suehorn@pacbell.net

A sub-unit of the Pacific Coast Ragtime Orchestra, called The Smalltimers, are going to perform at the Hal Isbitz tribute concert at the 2016 festival.

Bio last updated 11/6/2016.

The Porcupine Ragtime Ensemble began about 1983 (not 1909, as they often claim) when Elliott Adams and Petra and Bub Sullivan started playing together as a trio at the Sacramento Ragtime Society sessions to explore harmonies and Elliott's sheet music collection. Over the years the group has expanded to its present size and instrumentation. The Porcupine repertoire ranges from folk rags to tangos, cakewalks, classical...read more.

Raspberry Jam Band has become part of the music scene in the Sacramento, Sierra Foothills and Bay Area. They have participated in the Ragtime Corner of the Sacramento Music Festival (formerly known as the Jazz Jubilee), the West Coast Ragtime Festival, the Sacramento Traditional Jazz Society, Music for Humanity, Music on the Divide...read more.

Sullivans and Drivons offer an array of contemporary and classic rags, including Latin tangos and waltzes, plus ragtime and novelty songs.  Among the pillars of the Sacramento Ragtime Society, the Sullivans have been part of the ragtime world for over 20 years.  They have had the rather unique pleasure of being interviewed and performing in China for Shanghai television....read more.


Seminar Presenters 
See the Seminars Page for details about each seminar.
Click on the presenter's name for expanded biographical information.
Max Morath
Topic: Goodbye Ragtime, Hello Jazz
Max Morath occupies a unique space as a spokesman for American music and popular culture. He played a key role in the revival of ragtime in the 1970s with his Off-Broadway show Turn of the Century (1969). Other productions followed until he retired from performing in 2007, having logged over 5000 engagements in the USA and Canada. He remains active today as a writer and consultant.

A graduate of Colorado College (B.A. English 1948), he alternated employment in radio and television with seasonal jobs as pianist and musical director for melodrama and stock companies in Colorado and Arizona, leading to a growing fascination with ragtime and American popular music. Graduate studies at the Stanford-NBC Radio & Television Institute sharpened his media skills, and in the early 1960s, for Public Television, he wrote and performed two nationally-distributed series — The Ragtime Era and Turn of the Century — half-hour shows which explored American popular culture through our music and theatre.

Max holds a Master’s Degree in American Studies from Columbia University (1996). His graduate thesis explored the life of American songwriter Carrie Jacobs-Bond, inspiring his novel, based on her life, I Love You Truly (iUniverse, 2008). National Public Radio (NPR) commissioned him to research and write their Curious Listener’s Guide to Popular Standards (Putnam/Perigee 2002), and he is represented in The Oxford Companion to Jazz (Oxford, 2000) with the essay Ragtime Then and Now. Max and his wife, the photographer Diane Fay Skomars, collaborated on The Road to Ragtime (Donning 1999). Among his current projects is the co-authorship with Moss Hall of a screenplay devoted to the life and times of the pianist John William “Blind” Boone. With the Edw. B. Marks Music Company of New York, he is the editor of New Ragtime Current, a print collection of contemporary rags — many of which were first introduced in Sacramento at 2015’s “New Composers” festival concert.

Diane and Max live in Duluth, Minnesota, where Diane retired recently as an Administrator at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD).

Andrew Greene
Topic: Orchestrations of Scott Joplin's Music
Andrew Greene is the founder and director of the Peacherine Ragtime Society Orchestra, and is the leading young authority on orchestral ragtime and silent film accompaniment. Mr. Greene founded the Peacherine Orchestra while a freshman at the University of Maryland, hoping to draw attention to this neglected but historically important music.

He is the curator of the Arthur C. Ziegler, E.J. McBride, Katherine Lingham, Louis H. Burns, and Palm Leaf Ragtime Orchestra collections, along with his own personal collection of orchestrated ragtime, silent movie music, theater and dance selections, piano solos, and records. The collection totals over 10,000 selections from 1862 to 1950, with an emphasis on the music of 1880 to 1929.

Mr. Greene has appeared at leading venues including The Kennedy Center, The Smithsonian Institution, The Library of Congress, The American Film Institute, and has traveled across the United States to perform, conduct, and lecture on the music of America's past. Mr. Greene guest conducted the South Dakota Symphony Chamber Orchestra at the age of 22 in September 2013, underscoring the silent comedy of Charlie Chaplin. Frequently Mr. Greene leads seminars based on his research, presenting at ragtime festivals and other events. His website is www.greeneragtime.com.

Bio last updated 9/6/2016.

Ed Berlin
Topic: Scott Joplin's Personality — Characteristics and Contradictions
In 1981, Dan Morgenstern, director of the Institute for Jazz Studies (Rutgers University) wrote that Ed Berlin’s book Ragtime: A Musical and Social History “sets new standards for ragtime scholarship.” In following years, Ed continued path-breaking scholarship with his books Reflections and Research on Ragtime, which won an ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award in 1988, and King of Ragtime: Scott Joplin and His Era, now in its second edition. In reviewing this new edition, David Reffkin wrote: “The most reliable biography of Scott Joplin has been expanded and updated! ... Ed’s craft of biographical writing makes it a worthy reading experience.”

In addition to his books, Ed, who holds a Ph.D. from City University of New York, has written innumerable articles on a wide range of musical subjects and lectures at events in the U.S., Canada, and in Europe.

More information is available on his website, www.edwardaberlin.com.

Frederick Hodges
Topic: Fred Astaire in Ragtime
Hailed by the press as one of the best pianists in the world, Frederick has established a reputation specializing in late romantic music as well as Broadway and Hollywood musicals of the first half of the 20th century by America’s best composers, such as George Gershwin and Cole Porter. He maintains a busy concert schedule of stage, television, radio, and film appearances around the globe.

Additionally, he is a much sought-after silent-film accompanist for both live performances and DVD. He performs regularly at the Hollywood Heritage Museum, the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum in California, the Cinecon Film Festival in Hollywood, The TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood, and at silent film festivals around the country. He also performs at music festivals around the country, such as the Sacramento Music Festival, the West Coast Ragtime Festival, and the Sedalia Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival. His website is www.frederickhodges.com.

Bio last updated 8/11/2017.

Ryan Wishner
Topic: The “When” and “Where” of Ragtime’s Beginnings
After hearing his mom play “The Entertainer” one night at the age of 10, Ryan took interest in the piano and was immediately drawn to ragtime. That interest has expanded to include just about any popular music from the early 1800s through the 1930s. Ryan’s biggest goal in performances is historical accuracy, and he often bases his playing style on old recordings and piano rolls.

Ryan enjoys working on “mechanical music” machines such as phonographs and player pianos. He is currently studying Mechanical Engineering at the University of California, Riverside.

Richard Zimmerman
Topic: Ragtime Revivals — The First 75 Years
Richard Zimmerman is a ragtime performer, historian, author and producer who has single-handedly been greatly responsible for the recent worldwide revival of ragtime. He recorded The Complete Works of Scott Joplin and The Collector's History of Ragtime. Both are considered to be milestones in the annals of ragtime recording.

As a producer he originated theatrical presentation of ragtime with his "Where It Was!" concert series in Los Angeles which featured ragtime stars of the present and the past — including the then-forgotten Eubie Blake. He has since produced and directed many ragtime concerts.

Worldwide appearances both live and on television include the Montreaux (Switzerland) Jazz Festival, BBC world service Radio and BBC-TV, Canadian Broadcasting Co. ragtime specials and Australia's Tropicarnival.

He has appeared in concert and at music festivals throughout the United States and Canada as well as being the Music Director of the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival in Sedalia, Missouri. He is the recipient of the Scott Joplin Foundation Achievement Award in 1991.

Zimmerman was a founder of The Maple Leaf Club, America's organization devoted to preserving ragtime, and he edited its newsletter, The Rag Times, which kept ragtimers throughout the world up to date in this exciting and vital field of music.

In 1987 he was awarded the first-place prize at the Mill Bridge Village Ragtime Competition — "CHAMPION RAGTIME PERFORMER OF THE WORLD".


Dance Instructors - Check back for dance instruction schedule.
Bruce Mitchell returns to the West Coast Ragtime Festival. His career began in the 1950s and spans all types of dance, with an emphasis on vintage and folk dancing.

Bruce is director of the Camtia Dance Ensemble, specializing in German dance, which has danced all over the Western United States, for nearly half a century.

He is director of the annual Stockton Folk Dance Camp, and is President Elect of the National Folk Organization.

Richard Duree was new to Sacramento in 1960 when he worked for the Department of Justice. A colleague invited him to go to a dance concert on a Sunday afternoon at the Memorial Auditorium. They were late, and the first thing he saw when they entered was a performance of the Ukrainian Hopak. It took his breath away because he knew that these were not professional dancers and that he could do that, too! Richard became hooked.



He'd been active in martial arts for many years and was very interested in human movement. That and the music made him an instant convert. He joined the Dionysian Dancers and performed with them for a couple of years, then joined Bruce Mitchell's Camtia Folk Ensemble and danced with them for several years. He also studied with Wee Steuber, who still is one of the best teachers he ever worked with, because she instilled in him a sense of value in folk dance.

In the late 1960s Richard enrolled in the Dance Program at San Francisco State University with Anatol Joukowsky and studied with him for two years, receiving his BA degree in Dance in 1969. Three years later, he enrolled in the graduate program in dance at Cal State University, Fullerton, and taught four undergraduate courses in folk dance there. After receiving his MA in Dance Ethnology, he taught dance and physical education as an Adjunct Associate Professor (for over 20 years).

Richard's other academic activities and interests include dance ethnology and history, folk arts, dance theater, dance technique, holistic approach to dance, fitness and health, multicultural education, instructional design, and curriculum development. He has taught fencing, bowling, outdoor recreation, fitness and aerobics, weight training, self-defense, firearms safety, personal defense, regional geography of Europe and North America, cultural geography, physical geography, and travel geography.

Richard and his lovely wife and dancing partner, Ruth Levin Duree, live in Southern California. With a dance background in physical education, theater, history, and anthropology, Richard and Ruth impart an in-depth knowledge of dance technique and an appreciation of dance history to their teaching.

Above is abridged from Richard Duree’s online biography.

Stan Isaacs is a vintage dance and folk dance leader and teacher in the San Francisco Bay area. Stan began teaching folk dance around 1958 while attending Antioch College in Ohio. In the mid-1980s, he discovered Vintage Dancing when he sponsored a workshop with Richard Powers at his folk dance group.

Stan arrived in the Bay Area in 1964, and soon began teaching at the UC Berkeley folk dance club, but he also danced in San Francisco, Menlo Park, and Stanford. During this period he taught workshops as the opportunity arose, and taught at Kolo Festivals, which were memorable occasions in San Francisco.

In 1971, there was an opportunity to work in Israel, where he spent the next three years programming computers during the day, and teaching folk dances in the kibbutz at night. Israeli dancing was already well established, but the people were always eager to learn new dances, and to improve their styling. Stan recalls that there was a lot of enthusiasm, even under difficult circumstances.

Around 1986, Stan began to teach vintage dancing, with the help and participation of Richard Powers, who found that by using choreography, folk dancers could leam vintage dancing more easily.

In 1987, Stan and his wife, Karen Kalinsky, started the Pomander Club, a venue for Vintage Dancing in Palo Alto, California. The club meets weekly to learn and dance vintage dances. Originally, the club concentrated on the Ragtime Era (circa 1900-1920) but has since broadened its repertoire of dances to cover the 1800-1935 period. With his wife, Stan has also taught at various folk dance workshops and ragtime festivals in the San Francisco Bay Area and other parts of California.

Above is an excerpt from Stan's online biography.

Piano Accompanists
Stanley Stern has been playing music for the dance instruction at the Sacramento Ragtime Festival for the past ten years. He often plays with a piano partner but for the 2015 Ragtime Show he will be playing with Mario Ojeda. Mario is a senior music student of violin at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo. Mario's master violin teacher is Paul Severtson, the concert Master of the SLO Symphony Orchestra. He recommended Mario to Stanley for performances...read more.
Mario Ojeda, born in Chula Vista, California started playing the violin at 12 years of age. He learned much of the classical symphonic pieces quickly and soon was asked to join several noted performing groups in this area. These include Opera San Luis Obispo, Symphony of the Vines, SLO Symphony Orchestra, Santa Maria Philharmonic, Cuesta Master Chorale. His teacher, Paul Severtson introduced him to Stanley Stern, who introduced him to Ragtime music...more.
Special Presentation
Sean Sharp (vocals) and Frederick Hodges (piano) present From Broadway to Bombay: Around the World with Illustrated Songs, taking you around the fantastic, wondrous world of illustrated songs, all from the ragtime era and all bound to leave you gasping and hollering for more. Illustrated songs — the first "music videos" — were first shown in vaudeville and nickelodeon theatres (1894-1914) and were beautifully hand-colored, live-model photographs that depicted the story of each song's lyrics. Sean and Frederick will guide you through the intricacies of each song, asking you to join in for each song's final chorus! Come voyage through the melodies and images of the past, as Sean and Frederick serenade you with "There’s a ship in the Bay that will carry me away…." Introduction by Max Morath.

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