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music history page

Jamie's first paying gig was when he was 13 years old and sang in a rock band (the name of which has vanished in the mists of time).

Since then he has played solo and in other bands, duos and trios. He's played rock, folk, country, jazz, classical and more; music from Ireland, England, America, France, Italy, Germany ... whatever sounded good to him.

His first instrument was piano (the less said about that, the better); he then moved on to guitar. Over the years, he has also dabbled with mandolin, banjo, hammered dulcimer and other things with strings, as well as harmonica and whistle.

Here are some of the musical landmarks of Jamie's career over the years:

ca 1970-72 and 1974-75: OGRON

early incarnation of Ogron, left to right: Pete Morson, Ann White, Steve Roud, Jayne Eggert, Al Turk & Jamie

an unaccompanied English folksong group based in London which grew out of a country rock band and, in its heyday, featured founders Steve Roud, Jayne Eggert and Jamie, along with John Shaw and Richard Faire and ended up with Jamie, John and Chris Eyres

* * *

ca 1972-76: THE NEW BLACKTHORN BAND (a.k.a. Slough & the West)

a London-based English country dance band mostly with fiddler Chris Eyres and Jamie on guitar and piano - the band ended when Chris joined Ginger Beer Shindig and Jamie devoted more and more time to the Adelaides and various pop and rock projects (see below)

* * *


an English country dance band based in Andover, Hants, formed by Steve Roud on melodeon, Paul Marsh on melodeon, harmonica and percussion and Jamie on hammered dulcimer, harmonica and piano; various other musicians passed through (I believe the band continued after the original trio left, with three new members whose names slip my mind, playing fiddle, banjo and drums

* * *


Jamie, Graham Sheedy, Jenny

a vocal/guitar duo performing pop and country originals and covers - Jenny went on to play in a number of different setups, eventually hitting the charts in England with High Society

* * *


a rock duo (originals and covers) in London featuring Ernest Hone (vocals, guitar, keyboards) and Jamie (vocals, guitar, mandolin)

* * *


Jamie & Peter Cooper

an originals and covers pub rock band in London revolving around Peter Cooper (vocals, guitar), Ernest Hone (vocals, mainly keyboards) and Jamie (vocals, mainly drums and bass), also featuring guitar, bass and percussion depending on who else was in the band

* * *


Matti Meng, Uli Altdorfer & Jamie

originally a traditional Irish band in Freiburg, Germany, though later also including music of central Europe, with Harald Schmidt (1980) on guitar, Matti Meng (1980-84) fiddle, Uli Altdorfer (1980-88) mandolin, crumhorn, whistle and guitar, Jamie (1980-88) guitar, mandolin, dulcimer, harmonica, Andreas Barth (1987-88) accordion and some other fella (1987-88) who tried to play fiddle and whose name I've forgotten

* * *

1990-around 2000: MEDICINAL PURPOSE

from left: Henry Koretzky, Ryck Kaiser, Jamie, Carol Whitfield & Vinnie Hunter

an old timey, celtic and swing band in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, playing music for contradances and concerts with Ryck Kaiser (fiddle), Henry Koreztky (mandolin, hammered dulcimer), Carol Whitfield (clawhammer banjo, concertina) and Jamie (guitar) along with any one of a number of bass players including Bruce Campbell, BJ Driscoll and Vinnie Hunter.

* * *

1997-present: LAUNE RANGERS

a Harrisburg-based Irish and celtic music band. Jamie (vocals, guitar, cittern) usually plays with Bruce Young (fiddle, guitar, vocals) and percussionist Chad Shambaugh

* * *

1998-2000: SLINGO

an Irish band in central Pennsylvania which grew out of the Launies and featured John Winship (fiddle, concertina), Matt Willen (mandolin, bouzouki and vocals), John Dreibelbis (pipes, flute) and Jamie (vocals, guitar)

1999-present: SHADES OF GREEN & BLUE

the band has performed throughout the US from Pennsylvania in the East to Hawaii in the West. Jamie (vocals, guitar, ukulele) formed the group as an experiment to draw the connections between songs and tunes that have crossed the Atlantic, performing Old and New World versions. Since the early days, the repertoire has expanded to include contemporary songs along with the traditional. Henry Koretzky (vocals, mandolin, guitar) was one of the first musicians to join him on this project and still takes an active part in the lineup. Other musicians have included original member Jenny Brennan (vocals, guitar) as well as KJ Rymensnyder-Wagner (vocals, guitar), Deb Kauffmann (vocals, guitar) and Emmy Truckenmiller (vocals, guitar, fiddle)

* * *

1999-present: FANAI

growing out of Alaska's Last Night's Fun and Pennsylvania's Laune Rangers, Fanai has established itself as one of the finest old time traditional Irish music groups currently performing. Featuring the button accordion and melodeon playing of Dan Possumato and the vocals and guitar of Jamie, Fanai has performed throughout the Lower 48 in concert at places like the Coatsville Traditional Irish series in Pennsylvania and Washington State's Mukilteo Coffee Company music series and at festivals such as the North Texas Irish Festival and the Pittsburgh Irish Festival

2008-present: COBBLESTONE

Tucson's fine Irish band, Round the House, decided to end its days as a regularly performing band in 2010. Jamie had often sat in with the group and its members, so it seemed a natural progression for fiddler Sharon Goldwasser and Jamie to get together to keep the flame of Irish music alive in the desert. The group originally appeared as a trio with Dave Firestine of Round the House on mandolin but currently plays as a duo

Jamie (vocals, guitar) often plays solo with accompaniment provided by John Winship (fiddle, concertina), Henry Koretzky (guitar, mandolin, vocals), Bruce Young (fiddle, guitar, vocals) and/or Ryck Kaiser. When Chad Shambaugh (bodhran) and Jenny Brennan (vocals, guitar) of Nashville, TN, are available, don't be surprised to see them join Jamie on stage

Jamie also has a fine reputation as an accompanist and has played guitar for many musicians including:

John Brennan (fiddle, guitar)

Jenny Brennan (vocals, guitar)

Myron Bretholz (bodhran)

Aoife Clancy (vocals, guitar)

Jim Eagan (fiddle)

Cara Kelly Frankowicz (fiddle)

Donna Long (piano, fiddle, vocals)

Eliot Grasso (pipes)

Ken Kolodner (hammered dulcimer, fiddle)

Billy McComiskey (accordion)

Sean McComiskey (accordion)

John McGillian (accordion)

Kieran O'Hare (pipes, flute)

Rosie Shipley (fiddle)

Matt Shortridge (fiddle)

Beverly Smith (vocals, fiddle, guitar)

Mary Staunton (accordion)

Recordings featuring Jamie which are currently available include:

Uncorked - Medicinal Purpose
an album of contradance music (Jamie - guitar)

Launie Tunes - Laune Rangers
an album of (mainly) Irish songs and tunes (Jamie - producer, vocals, guitar, cittern)

My Wild Irish Boy - a solo album by Jamie
Jamie is featured singing and playing guitar, cittern, harmonica, helped by a number of friends including Kristine Allen (fiddle), Jenny Brennan (vocals), Bruce Campbell (bass), Aoife Clancy (vocals), John Hayden (drums), Ryck Kaiser (fiddle), Henry Koretzky (mandolin, guitar, vocals), Chad Shambaugh (bodhran, percussion), Jill Smith (piano), John Winship (concertina) and Bruce Young (fiddle) and presenting songs and tunes from Ireland, England, Australia, France and Croatia
produced by Jamie with Henry Koretzky and Kathy Kelly

Many's the Mile, Love... - a solo album by Jamie
with Jamie on vocals, guitar and harmonica along with many of his musical friends including:
Myron Bretholz (bodhran, percussion), Bruce Campbell (bass), Ryck Kaiser (fiddle), Henry Koretzky (mandolin), Donna Long (piano, vocals), Nancy McCallion (vocals), Billy McComiskey (accordion), Paul McKeown (guitar, keyboards, percussion), Rosie Shipley (fiddle) and John Winship (concertina)
thirteen tracks produced by Paul McKeown with Jamie
(there's also a bonus 14th track - something just a little bit different!)

Worldwide Composers Compilation CD - Volume 1 - various artists
is an album soon available at CD Baby featuring a variety of Hawaiian musical styles. Jamie is honored that his slack key guitar piece, "Pau Ko'u 'Ole Makemake Owau", was selected as one of the 11 tracks

Ryck Kaiser - Ryck Kaiser
Ryck's solo album of fiddle tunes (Jamie appears on various tracks playing guitar)

also soon to be released:

an album by Bruce Young
(featuring Jamie on guitar on various tracks)

Jamie is also recording a new album and with music that might surprise some of his fans! So far, the bare bones of a score of tracks are down. Look for a spring, 2011 release date