General Information Performers Badge Orders Mail Order Where to Stay
General Information Performers Festival Report

About the Sutter Creek 2013 Ragtime Festival Performers

Elliott Adams

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.

Patrick Aranda

Patrick Aranda is one of ragtime's most entertaining and talented performers. He plays a mean piano, sings, performs on trombone, tuba, and who knows what all (not necessarily all at once), and has a huge ragtime repertoire, including the most difficult and flashy novelty-style rags, plus classic rags, Harlem stride compositions, and favorite tunes from the Tin Pan Alley era.

Fans can currently see him perform at Disneyland as main Street's Ragtime pianist on Fridays and Saturdays. He also plays piano with various traditional jazz groups including Auntie Skinners Lucky Winners Jazz Band, and The Burgundy Street Jazz Band.

He is a Music Professor at Chaffey College in Rancho Cucamonga, where he directs the Jazz Band and Concert Band, as well as teaching classes ranging from theory and musicianship to History of Jazz. He also stays busy directing at least three musicals a year.

He made his Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival debut in 2002 and has been invited back by popular demand ever since. In 2003 he was among the modern ragtime composers we honored at our Festival, having created several of his own ragtime pieces, including one inspired by his Sutter Creek debut. Patrick is a favorite headliner at Orange County's annual RagFest and The Ragtime Corner of the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee. He has also been featured at the West Coast Ragtime Festival in Sacramento.

In his spare time, Patrick plays trombone in his brother's Salsa band; performs with several Southern California Dixieland groups, and, has recorded his own solo CD.

In addition to being chair of the music department at the college, he has also been performing this summer at Universal Studios and along with Amanda Castro, and he maintains a full schedule of jazz club and private party performances.

Jack and Chris Bradshaw

Jack and Chris Bradshaw, ragtime piano duo artists from Gilroy, Calif., are bringing their unique sound to Sutter Creek again this year. Jack's four-hand arrangements of popular rags, cakewalks, marches and novelty numbers are played with a sparkle reminiscent of old-time piano rolls. This lively pair has also appeared at the West Coast, Scott Joplin, Blind Boone, RagFest, Shaniko, Cascade, and the Fresno Flats Ragtime Festivals, The Ragtime Corners of the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee, and Old Town Music Hall in El Segundo. The rollicking road to ragtime thus far has taken them to 11 states and Canada.

Jack also plays classic and new ragtime solos to round out their programs. Jack and Chris each hold advanced degrees in music and perform regularly at Sacramento Ragtime Society and South Valley Music Makers meetings.

Tom Brier

Tom Brier, affectionately dubbed "Hot Rod Tommy," used to be California’s greatest ragtime secret until the summer of 2001, when he made his debut to tremendous applause (and much jaw-dropping) at the Scott Joplin Festival in Sedalia, MO and the Blind Boone Festival in Columbia, MO. This composing genius and pianist extraordinaire hails from Oakdale, a Central Valley farming community south of Sacramento. He currently lives in Sacramento where he works as a programmer/analyst for the County of Sacramento. Tom caught the ragtime bug when his parents purchased a Schubert mechanical player. He was only 4, but when he started picking out tunes he heard on the piano rolls, his parents immediately found him a piano teacher. Soon Tom was notating his own music and by age 11, he had composed nearly a dozen rags. Today he has well over 160 ragtime compositions to his name (more than 200 if collaborations with other composers are counted), all remarkably original but clearly demonstrating his depth of understanding of early ragtime subtleties. In 1985, at age 14, Brier made his first appearance at the Sacramento Ragtime Society meeting, blowing everyone away with his signature rapid-fire left hand runs. Since that time, Brier has been a mainstay at the Ragtime Corner of the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee, the West Coast Ragtime Festival, and recently our Mother Lode Ragtime Society gatherings. He has recorded six CDs, has a vast ragtime sheet music collection, is noted for performing and popularizing extremely rare but wonderful rags, and for inspiring pianists to attempt to keep up with him.

Diego Bustamante

Diego Bustamante, age 14, has been playing piano for seven and a half years. He lives in Paradise, Calif., where he studies with Dr. Robert Bowman. Diego has just finished 8th grade at The Progressive Schoolhouse in Chico. Like so many others before him, Diego's interest in ragtime began when he heard The Entertainer by Scott Joplin. His interests outside of ragtime include birding and skiing.

Amanda Castro

Amanda Castro is a young jazz singer specializing in well known and lesser known songs of the pre-1920s, 1920s and 1930s, adding her own unique mix of Latin rhythms, New Orleans soul, and genuine blues feeling. She started studying voice at the age of 15 and has been singing professionally for the last few years, appearing in some of Southern California's most well known jazz clubs, including Angel's, Nola's, The Hip Kitty, and Steamers. In addition, Amanda has appeared as a feature performer at community music festivals and other entertainment events. Along with Patrick Aranda, they co-lead The Amanda Castro Band which is helping to spread the gospel of vintage jazz to jazz clubs and other venues throughout California. They have appeared on Good Day L.A. with Steve Edwards and Mar Yvette, and will be appearing in September with nine-time Grammy award winner Arturo Sandoval.

The Crown Syncopators

Featuring the virtuoso piano stylings of Frederick Hodges, with accompaniment by Marty Eggers on tuba and Virginia Tichenor on drums, The Crown Syncopators were formed to perform at San Francisco's Pier 23, where each of its members also plays solo piano monthly. Their repertoire is almost exclusively ragtime.

Jared DiBartolomeo

Jared DiBartolomeo was first exposed to ragtime at the age of 2 when his father played the Maple Leaf Rag on the home piano. The syncopated rhythms left an impression on Jared, and at age 8 he started taking formal piano lessons. Within a year and a half, he was playing The Entertainer. After receiving a folio of Scott Joplin's rags and some recordings, Jared delved deeper into ragtime enthusiasm, and has since expanded his repertoire to include the works of other ragtime composers, as well as novelty and stride piano.

A major turning point occurred in 2004 when Jared chose ragtime as the subject of a research paper for a music literature class at Diablo Valley College. He attended the West Coast Ragtime Festival for the first time and had the opportunity to interview six musicians, one of whom was Marty Eggers, known for his vast knowledge of ragtime and traditional jazz. Jared began studying ragtime with Marty in early 2005, and since then 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.

At age 17, Jared earned an A.A. degree in Liberal Arts from the Diablo Valley College, where he had been taking classes since he was 12. He recently graduated from UC Irvine with a degree in Civil Engineering.

The Drivons
Robyn and Steve

The Drivons became part of the West Coast ragtime movement in 2003 when Robyn was approached by Petra and Bub Sullivan to begin performing with the Porcupine Ragtime Ensemble. Soon after, Steve joined in playing trombone, and their new love for ragtime was born. A couple of years ago, Steve started showing up with his snare drum, which fostered the Sullivans & Drivons quartet. The Drivons have since become known to many ragtime fans and musicians as familiar and welcomed performers in a number of festivals and concerts in California.

Since the 2009 Sutter Creek Festival, the Drivons have played by themselves as a duo. With Robyn on tuba, Steve will sing some of their favorite ragtime era songs while adding rhythm and chords on tenor guitar. The Drivons can also be heard with Chris and Jack Bradshaw as the Ragnolia Ragtette.

Robyn Drivon has played the tuba since she was 10 years old, and has now oompahed with orchestras, symphonic bands, and brass ensembles in California and the Midwest, including several European tours. An accomplished tubist, Robyn relinquished her position with the Stockton Symphony in 1986 to begin law school. In 2006 she and hubby Steve moved to Woodland, Calif., where she is County Counsel for Yolo County. Since entering the Ragtime scene, Robyn has started studying the piano, and loves it! The grand kids call her "Nama".

Steve "Pops" Drivon has enjoyed a career's worth of traditional jazz, early American pop, and band music accomplishments. He now spends much of the year on the road singing and playing washboard and slidewhistle. Steve has toured since the 1970s with the Port City Jazz Band as well as the last 11 years with the Washboard Wizardz. He also toured previously with his one-man show, Stevie the Musical Clown, and as crooner/lead trombonist with the Glenn Miller Orchestra.

Marty Eggers

Marty Eggers is well known on the West Coast as a top-notch ragtime pianist and bassist. Marty's music career began in Sacramento where as a teenager he helped found the Sacramento Ragtime Society in 1982. He has played with numerous San Francisco Bay Area jazz and ragtime groups, most notably John Gill's San Francisco JazzBand and the Black Diamond Jazz Band. His talent and versatility have led him into several varied and prestigious engagements, from recording with traditional jazz legend Bob Helm to touring Germany with Hal Smith's Rhythm Cats to playing in backup bands for both Leon Redbone and Butch Thompson. Marty, from Oakland, Calif., is also a skilled composer and arranger of ragtime and traditional jazz.

He also appears with the Tichenor Family Trio (Trebor Tichenor, Virginia Tichenor, and Marty) and performs as a soloist at least once a month on Tuesday evenings at Pier 23 in San Francisco and Wednesday evenings at the Straw Hat Pizza Parlor in Rancho Cordova, CA.

Terry Waldo describes Marty as having "an encyclopedic knowledge of the ragtime and early jazz repertoire."

Marty is married to ragtime pianist Virginia Tichenor (see below) and is a past president of the West Coast Ragtime Society.

Gary Greenlund

Gary Greenlund is from Virginia City, Nev., where he often plays banjo at the Bucket of Blood Saloon, including sets with pianist Squeek Steele. He also is a member of the Sacramento Banjo Band.

Frederick Hodges

Frederick Hodges, of Berkeley, CA was groomed for a career as a concert pianist but was happily lured away from his path after he found a stack of turn-of-the-century sheet music in his grandmother’s piano bench. Repeated exposure to the rollicking ragtime rhythms of player pianos and 78 rpm phonograph records sealed his fate and he set out to master the ragtime playing styles that had captivated him.

While still an undergraduate at UC Berkeley, he was hired as pianist for the Royal Society Jazz Orchestra, for which he has played for 20 years. He also performs with the Peter Mintun Orchestra, with jazz ensembles, and as a soloist. He appears at least once a month on Tuesday evenings at Pier 23 in San Francisco and Wednesday evenings at the Straw Hat Pizza Parlor in Rancho Cordova, CA and he is a much applauded featured performer at the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee's Ragtime Corner and West Coast Ragtime Festival.

Enya Kuo

Enya Kuo first fell in love with ragtime when she found herself laughing while playing a piece. She is 17 years old and discovered ragtime not too long ago, but she hasn't been able to let go of it! She has performed at the West Coast Ragtime Festival and the Sacramento Music Festival as well as other ragtime concerts. In her spare time, Enya loves reading, writing, and eating dark chocolate.

Carl Sonny Leyland

Carl Sonny Leyland blew everyone’s socks off at our 4th Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival (when he was lesser known) and has subsequently done the same at just about all the prestigious festivals in the country, including the Scott Joplin and Blind Boone Festivals in Missouri, the West Coast Ragtime Festival in Sacramento, Orange County’s RagFest, plus the Sacramento and San Diego Jazz Jubilees. We’re lucky he loves us and agreed to thrill us with a return appearance this year. His ability to recreate obscure and primitive styles in the genre of barrelhouse, blues, and boogie woogie, combined with the originality and soulfulness of his own music, makes him one of today’s most exciting pianists. Plus he sings!

Born in the south of England in 1965, Sonny took up piano at age 15. His inspiration was the boogie woogie music of Albert Ammons, Pete Johnson & Meade Lux Lewis. Fascinated by this style, Sonny traced it back to its Barrelhouse roots, incorporating the stylings of Jimmy Yancey, Cow Cow Davenport, Little Brother Montgomery and other notables into his own playing. In 1988, Sonny headed for New Orleans, where he lived for 10 years, appeared at the world-renowned New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, and furthered his exploration of piano genres, including Blues, country, R&B, rockabilly, Rock and Roll, and, of course, traditional jazz and ragtime. He has toured in Europe and the United States as a solo act and with bands such as Anson Funderburgh and the Rockets and Big Sandy and His Flyrite Boys. Following a trip out west in 1995, Sonny relocated to California. He now resides with his wife in New Cuyama, CA. Sonny has several CDs to his name, solos and with the Carl Sonny Leyland Trio, featuring Carl, Hal Smith on drums, and Marty Eggers on bass.

Graham Messer

Graham Messer is 11 years old and has been studying piano for three years. He lives in Berkeley, California, and studies piano with Frederick Hodges. Graham starts Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School in Berkeley in the Fall. Along with a passion for piano, Graham is an active composer who also enjoys mountain biking, playing the clarinet and trying new foods. His interest in ragtime probably started soon after birth, as he has spent his entire life listening to Uncle Frederick play the piano.

Larisa Migachyov

Larisa Migachyov has played the piano all her life and discovered ragtime in 2005, when she joined the San Antonio Ragtime Society. She has composed more than 20 rags and performed at various festivals around the country. Her latest CD, Oh, that Ragtime Chick!, features all her own compositions. She recently passed the California Bar Exam and has started her own firm specializing in patent law.

Porcupine Ragtime Ensemble

The Porcupine Ragtime Ensemble consists of:

Elliott Adams - piano
Petra Sullivan - violin
Bub Sullivan - mandolin, cümbüş, vocals
Susan Desper - flute, piccolo
Robyn Drivon - tuba
Steve Drivon - trombone, percussion, vocals

The Porcupines were formed around 1983 when Elliott Adams and Petra — 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 rags, marches, waltzes, one- and two-steps, plus many songs. In addition to having performed on public radio, in community concerts (including several Stop and Smell the Roses, fairs and the California State Railroad Museum), they are regulars at the Sacramento Music Festival Ragtime Corner, the Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival, and the Sacramento Trad Jazz meetings. The group also has played at the West Coast Ragtime Festival every year since 1989. The Porcupines have entertained at the Sacramento City Library Galleria and the Stockton Cesar Chavez Library. In July 2007, The American Rag ran a featured interview, and April 2008 marked a first appearance at the Redding Jazz Festival.

They have four CDs ("Quills Up!", "Live!", "Quilling Me Softly", and "Pig Ankles") on the Miracle Records label.

Stevens Price

Stevens Price, former owner of the Sutter Creek Ice Cream Emporium for 13 years, is also the founder of the Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival and the Mother Lode Ragtime Society. He is proud to be able to bring his love for ragtime music to the Mother Lode. He grew up around music — singing in church by age 8 and performing in choirs thereafter, all the way through his college career. He started picking out tunes on the piano after hearing his dad perform "boogie woogie" on the family piano. Soon, Stevens began picking out music, and by age 12 he was playing boogie and other styles as a self-taught artist. Then he went to college as a music and drama major, where he decided to take piano lessons. Needless to say, he had to unlearn certain techniques. When he discovered ragtime, Stevens became a regular at the Maple Leaf Club meetings in Los Angeles. He still remembers playing Scott Joplin's "Maple Leaf Rag" with six other club members on six pianos. At the Ice Cream Emporium, Stevens still occasionally plays for the enjoyment of the customers, and due to the success of the Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival, the ice cream parlor has become the ragtime center of the Mother Lode and home of the Mother Lode Ragtime Society. Stevens has composed over a dozen ragtime compositions and has CDs and folios available for purchase. He also has composed dozens of praise and worship songs and is the Worship leader at his church in Pine Grove. He is currently the Music Director for the musical theater program at the Local High School. Stevens is active with the Sacramento Ragtime Society, and has performed at the Ragtime Corner during the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee.

Ragnolia Ragtette

The Ragnolia Ragtette mixes the elegant to humorous gems of the ragtime era with some of the newer, favorite contemporary rags. Listen as this artful combination of 4-hand piano, tuba and percussion present parlor tunes that burst forth in high ragtime style. Playing the music that originated from the recreational houses on one side of the tracks and later made its way to the upstanding respectable, family homes on the other, Ragnolia brings the ragtime era to life. It’s ragtime with enthusiasm. This ensemble made its debut at the 2008 Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival.

Ragtime Skedaddlers

The Ragtime Skedaddlers were formed in 2008 to play ragtime string band arrangements for two mandolins and guitar. First mandolinist Dennis Pash is well known to ragtime enthusiasts as the founder of the legendary Etcetera String Band. He is an extraordinarily expressive player. No one is better at bringing out the folk roots that underlie so many ragtime compositions. In addition to numerous festival appearances as a performer, Dennis has written and lectured on the development of string ragtime. Nick Robinson plays the second mandolin part which is unique to the published string arrangements. Nick has played a variety of musics, including American old time, klezmer, and Indonesian gamelan. Dave Krinkel is an accomplished guitarist who also plays with the traditional American old time band, the Tea Sippers.

Noted ragtime music reviewer Jack Rummel recently wrote of the Skedaddlers' debut album: "This isn't just music for mandolin players or string-band lovers. This is ragtime for ragtime lovers, and the Ragtime Skedaddlers are the real deal."

Raspberry Jam Band

The Raspberry Jam Band consists of:

Julia Riley - flute/piccolo
Tom Brier - piano
Kitty Wilson - percussion
John Massey - guitar
Doug Davies - string bass
Cheryl Woldseth - violin

Formed in December 2005 and expanded in 2011, the band has become part of the ragtime scene in the Sacramento and Sierra foothills areas. They have participated in the Ragtime Corner of the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee, the West Coast Ragtime Festival, and have been featured at Auburn Concert Band performances. They perform at the Sacramento Ragtime Society and The Mother Lode Ragtime Society meetings.

Interested in playing diverse works from classic ragtime to contemporary works, the group's byword is variety. Eclectic in nature, the Raspberries especially seek out obscure or seldom performed rags and feature the works of various contemporary composers. The addition of slide whistles, kazoos, costuming and props add an element of whimsy to their performances.

John Reed-Torres

John Reed-Torres was born and raised in Los Angeles. He first heard ragtime music during school recess in fifth grade. An ice cream wagon came creeping along, playing The Entertainer. Right then and there, ragtime bit him and simultaneously released multiple inner infatuations with antiquity, ranging from architecture to automobiles.

Shortly after that, John began to teach himself piano throughout his middle school and early high school days. He developed a short repertoire and began to play for friends and at church while simultaneously playing trombone in the high school marching band. He also marched and played trombone in the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade (2008-2012).

He worked up performances of a couple Scott Joplin rags as well as some classical pieces, winning first-place awards two years in a row in his school’s talent show. He also played the soundtrack for a short, independent silent film that earned third place at a festival, and won a gold medal at the NAACP/ActSo competition in Los Angeles, which earned him a trip to perform in New York City. That same year (2009), John began music studies at Pasadena City College, where he began formal piano lessons and started to expand his repertoire. He has performed at various venues around Los Angeles and Pasadena, including the Rose Leaf Club, Old Town Music Hall, Xiem Clay Center, Holmans United Methodist Church, and Orange County ragtime societies, as well as the West Coast Ragtime Festival and the Fullerton Ragfest.

John has written three rags and some classical shorts as well. He aspires to become a professional musician, composer, conductor, and mechanical engineer/architect. 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 everyone will recognize ragtime as a monumental form in the development of culture and music.

John Remmers

John Remmers, from Ann Arbor, Mich., is a retired professor of computer science with a serious addiction to playing ragtime piano. He is seen and heard frequently at ragtime festivals around the U.S., whether it be in open-piano after-hours sessions or as a billed performer. In addition, he dabbles in creative writing and has an interest in web design and programming.

Tim Rotolo

Tim Rotolo began playing piano at age 5. His interest in ragtime was sparked during visits to Disneyland. During one visit, the audience was asked if anyone would like to play. He did, catching the attention of the afternoon featured performer. Tim was soon introduced to Johnny Hodges, a featured pianist on Main Street for 25 years. Tim was blessed to study with Johnny for three years. He has also studied with Patrick Aranda.

Tim particularly enjoys the upbeat, energetic Revival-style ragtime popularized in the 1950s, ragging popular songs of the ragtime era, and creating his own arrangements of old standards.

In high school, Tim was a National Merit Finalist, and, in 2009, he earned his Eagle Scout award. Now 19 years old, Tim will be a junior at Claremont McKenna College, majoring in International Relations, and is in his 6th year of studying Mandarin Chinese. He has just returned from four weeks in Taiwan where he participated in a program to teach English in a small school on the west coast of the island.

Tim's dream is to combine his piano playing and Chinese while playing at Disney-Shanghai when it opens in 2014.

Tim has two CDs, titled Re-Keyed (2009) and Dust and Ivory (2011). He has been a featured performer not only at the Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival, but also at the West Coast Ragtime Festival and the Ragtime Corner of the Sacramento Music Festival.

Sean Sharp

Tenor Sean Sharp is an original member of 42nd St. Moon Productions. Some of his favorite roles with that company have been in The Good Companions, Darling of the Day and Three Sisters. Sean has been seen impersonating the songwriter/performer Henry Russell at the Dickens Christmas Faire and singing with the Great Nickelodeon Show at the Giornate del Cinema Muto, the Telluride Film Festival, the Niles Silent Film Festival and the Castro Theatre. His other credits include singing in the Grace Cathedral Men's Choir, performing with the Lamplighters, and performing down the coast with the Great American Melodrama.

Ray Skjelbred

Ray Skjelbred has been a featured piano soloist in concerts and festivals for many years. He has appeared at the West Coast Ragtime Festival, Breda Jazz Festival in Holland, the America's Finest City Festival in San Diego, the Edinburgh Festival in Scotland and many others. He has also led his own groups (the Ray Skjelbred Quartet, the Great Excelsior Jazz Band, Berkeley Rhythm, the Yeti Chasers, Ray Skjelbred and his Cubs, the Monogram Boys, and the First Thursday Band) and has played and recorded with most of the leading traditional jazz musicians of the past few decades.

Ray has worked with Turk Murphy's Jazz Band, Bob Mielke's Bearcats, Hal Smith's Roadrunners and with a variety of other groups that included or were led by Dick Oxtot, Ev Farey, Jim Goodwin, Bob Helm, Bill Napier, Richard Hadlock, John Gill, Clint Baker, Chris Tyle, Monte Ballou, Kim Cusack, Simon Stribling and many others.

He currently works most often with Bob Schulz and the Frisco Jazz Band, Simon Stribling's New Orleans Ale Stars, Glenn Crytzer and his Syncopators, and his own First Thursday Band (which plays regularly at the New Orleans Creole Restaurant in Seattle's Pioneer Square). Ray has also been a chosen accompanist for jazz and blues singers such as Barbara Dane, Barbara Lashley, Rebecca Kilgore, Claire Austin, Pat Yankee, Carol Leigh and the legendary Victoria Spivey.

His piano work appears on the Triangle/Rhythm Master, Solo Art, Arcola, Pianomania, Euphonic, Stomp Off, Jazzology, Berkeley Rhythm and Orangapoid labels.

Ray usually performs an eclectic mix of early jazz standards, blues, barrelhouse, classic ragtime, unexpected pop tunes and original compositions.

Squeek Steele

Born and raised in eastern Kentucky, Squeek Steele began playing the piano by ear at the age of 3, with her formal music training beginning when she was 8. Squeek holds a Master's Degree in music. A pianist, organist, composer and teacher, Squeek has performed internationally from Singapore to Germany, New Zealand and Nepal, and on the east and west coasts of the United States.

Hailed as "a lightning bolt in a black dress" (Philadelphia Inquirer), Squeek played her way into the Guinness Book of World Records for most songs performed on piano from memory (1990 book, p.18, under "Squeek" Moore). She performed 1,852 songs in a three-week period. The record remains unbroken.

Though Squeek is classically trained, she plays all styles and genres of music. Specializing in ragtime and early 20th Century American popular music, she has recorded 15 CDs.

Squeek now makes her home in the old mining town of Virginia City, Nevada, where you can sometimes find her playing at the Bucket of Blood Saloon or down at the Gold Hill Hotel.

Monty Suffern

Monty Suffern is an Australian who currently resides in Texas where he leads a retired life, walking his dogs, building an airplane and practicing his piano whenever possible. He has been playing piano more than 60 years, having started on his seventh birthday, and concentrates mainly on ragtime and stride styles.

Monty attended the 2008 Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival on his way from Texas to Melbourne, Australia, to visit family (everyone knows that Sutter Creek is en route between Texas and Australia). He intended simply to enjoy the festival as an audience member, but due to the illness of one of the featured artists, Monty was co-opted onto the program. His very unique rollicking style (which uses handfuls of notes) was quite a hit, and he enjoyed this role so much that he has agreed to return each year since.

The Sullivans and Drivons

The Sullivans offer an array of contemporary and classic rags, including Latin tangos and waltzes, plus ragtime and novelty songs. Among the pillars of the Sacramento and West Coast Ragtime Societies, the Sullivans have been part of the ragtime scene for many years. They have enjoyed performing at various festivals, concerts, and special events — from Santa Nella to China for Shanghai television.

A Sacramento native, Petra Sullivan has a degree in Music and teaches violin and piano. Bub Sullivan studied classical piano as a child, then later took up string instruments before discovering ragtime as a student in St. Louis.

The Sullivans are pictured here with the Drivons with whom they often play together.

Keith Taylor

Keith Taylor began playing ragtime in 1972. Until that time, his musical background was classically oriented. Earning a Bachelor of Music degree in piano and a Masters in composition, including studying composition in Paris, France, he continues to perform and compose both types of music. For many years he taught instrumental music in the Los Angeles Public Schools. He currently lives with his wife in Azalea, Oregon where he freelances as a composer and a pianist. Since boyhood, Keith has traveled twice a year to the Mother Lode to photograph the historic towns and to play every saloon piano he finds — tuning and repairing them while he's at it — a very popular fellow! In 1998 he dropped by the Sutter Creek Ice Cream Emporium, where he discovered another piano and Stevens Price, someone he hadn't seen since the two met at The Maple Leaf Club in Los Angeles 20 years earlier. Keith was the inspiration behind Stevens' decision to organize the Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival of 1999, and that was such a success, Keith returned home and re-organized the Cascade Ragtime Society which now sponsors an early April Ragtime Festival in Roseberg, Oregon. Keith, along with Tom Bopp, is also responsible for initiating the Fresno Flats Vintage Music Festival held each February in Oakhurst, CA. Keith’s latest undertaking is the Annual Shaniko Ragtime and Vintage Music Festival held in a wonderful ghost town in Oregon each September.

Virginia Tichenor

Virginia Tichenor has been consumed by ragtime her entire life. She is 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 is 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. It was so popular, the family has since released two other CDs, "The Tichenor Trio" which includes Virginia's father and her multi-talented husband, Marty Eggers, and most recently, "Ragtime Reunion - Tichenor Family Five" featuring Virginia, her dad, her husband, her brother, and her sister-in-law. She is the Vice President, and past President, of the West Coast Ragtime Society.

Kitty Wilson

This will be the 13th enthusiastic year for Kitty Wilson at the Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival. Wearing her ragtime-era costumes, "Washboard Kitty" plays her specially embellished washboard and hand-crafted woodboard with thimble-tipped fingers, adding brushes, cymbals, bells and castanets as needed. She has provided versatile percussion accents to top ragtime pianists and ensembles for several years at festivals and concerts in California, Nevada, Washington and Missouri.

In addition to her ragtime activities, Kitty plays annually in the big washboard concert at the Monterey Dixieland Festival, and has been a repeat guest artist with a bluegrass band from Ashville, North Carolina, as well as playing with the Peninsula Banjo Band in San Jose.

This weekend, she will join Squeek Steele and other festival pianists, as well as performing Sunday as part of the Raspberry Jam Band.

To Top Of Page