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Trumpet: Art Davis

A professor of Music in Jazz Studies at Northern
Illinois University and one of the most accomplished jazz trumpeters in Chicago.

  • Has toured with Ray Charles, Frank Sinatra, & Rosemary Clooney.
  • Has appeared with Clark Terry, Joe Williams, Dizzy Gillespie, Nancy Wilson, Louis Bellson, Tony Bennett and others.
  • Is an active member of the Chicago Jazz Orchestra.
  • Can be heard at Andy’s jazz club in Chicago on Tuesday nights

Clarinet: Kim Cusack

Is a veteran player in demand all over the Chicago area.

  • Longtime member of the Salty Dogs J.B., since 1959.
  • Has played all over the country with bands led by Gene Mayl, Ernie Carson.
  • Appears regularly with Jim Dapogny’s Chicago jazz Band and appeared on “A Prairie Home Companion” radio show at the Smithsonian in Washingon,D.C. and
    others prestigious venues throughout the U.S.
  • Has appered on over forty LPs and CDs and has recorded and worked with jazz
    legends Georg Brunis, Wild Bill Davison, and Turk Murphy.
  • Toured as featured saxophone tenor sax player with the Jan Garber Orchestra.
  • Had a long association with Gene Mayl’s Dixieland Rhythm Kings.
  • Appears regularly at Andy’s Jazz Club in Chicago, and the Village Tavern
    in Long Grove, IL

Trombone: Tom Bartlett

Best known for his West coast Turk Murphy style,
but plays any style of traditional jazz equally well , and is in demand to play with jazz bands on the festival circuit.

  • Charter member of the Red Rose Ragtime Band.
  • Is longtime member of the Salty Dogs Jazz Band .
  • Has played and /or recorded with many other bands over the years, including the Yerba Buena Stompers, Varsity Ramblers, South Frisco J.B., and Bob Schulz’s Frisco Jazz Band.
  • Teaches bilingual 4th grade in Waukegan’s Glen Flora School.
  • Is a fine graphic artist as well and has designed covers for many of the albums he has recorded, including four covers for the RRRB.

Drums: Wayne Jones

One of the oldest active traditional jazz drummers.

  • Appears regularly at Andy’s Jazz Club in Chicago, and has been its Jazz At Noon drummer since its inception in 1962.
  • Has played/recorded with many traditional groups including Waldo’s Gutbucket Syncopators, Ernie Carson j. B., bob Schulz’s Frisco jazz Band, West End J. B., and the Sons of Bix.
  • Played with Turk Murphy in Carnegie Hall in the tribute to The Turk Murphy Jazz Band, 1987.
  • Works regularly with Jim Dapogny’s Chicago Jazz Band.
  • Is a longtime member of the Salty Dogs Jazz Band since 1960

Tuba: Steve Ley

A retired attorney, since 1985 he has recorded with and
been a member of The Elite Syncopators, a four-piece ragtime ensemble from Indianapolis, whose appearances have included the Sedalia Ragtime Festival and the Indianapolis Classic Ragtime Society Festival.

  • Has played with many bands throughout the midwest including the St. Louis Ragtimers, Waldo’s Gutbucket Syncopators, Village Tavern Jazz Band and others.

Banjo/Guitar: Jack Meilahn

A veteran player in the Chicago area.

  • Has also recorded/or played with many jazz groups throughout the U.S..including Chicago Rhythm, Down Home Jazz Band, Varsity Ramblers, and the Hotel Edison Roof Garden Orchestra and recently the Jazz O”Maniacs of Hamburg, Germany.
  • Is a physical therapist who also finds time to play French horn in several wind ensembles in the Western suburbs.

Violin: Rachel Ruhman

Rachel Ruhman had her first violin lessons from Benjamin Britten, the English
composer when he was a house guest of her parents when she was four years
She studied later at the Mannes College of Music and then went to Juiliard in the Prep. Division.
After playing recitals in Mexico as an early teenager, she went to England to
study with Antonio Brosa in 1950-51. Next she attended the High School of
Music and Art in new York for one and a half years, followed up by attending the
U. of New Mexico where she was concertmaster as well as soloist in the Bach
Brandenburg concerti.
Later Ruhman played in the San Diego sympohony and the San Diego Opera for 12
years, and came to Chicago where she won positions with both the Grant Park
orchestra and the Lyric Opera Orchestra. During the next 25 years she also
freelanced with the Chicago Opera Theatre and Music of the Baroque as well as the
Orchestra of Illinois, and was an extra musician with the Chicago Symphony
for many years.
Ms. Ruhman has been with the Lyric Opera Orchestra for over 30 years, where
she holds the post of assistant principal second violin


Piano/Leader: Joan Reynolds

Taught public school music for 30 years, recorded an album as a folk singer, til ragtime piano and jazz caught her ear.

  • Co-founded the RRRB with Mike Schwimmer in 1981.
  • Has given numerous performances as a solo ragtime pianist and has appeared with various jazz groups including the Chicago Footwarmers, Riverboat Ramblers, and her Joan Reynolds Quartet.
  • Performed on the St. Louis Goldenrod Showboat, at the Ragtime Festival of the Classic Rag Society of Indianapolis, at the Sedalia Ragtime Fest with the RRRB, and most recently has been appearing in concerts as The Ragtime Duo
    with Chicago’s Lyric Opera Orchestra violinist Rachel Ruhman
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