Jam Camp Coaches

Shana Aisenberg mandolin, guitar, old-time banjo

Shana is a nationally recognized multi-instrumentalist, playing, composing, recording, and teaching diverse acoustic roots styles from traditional southern Appalachian and Celtic, to eastern European Klezmer, bottleneck blues and jazz. She has been a national flatpicking champion. www.ShanaSongs.com


Susie Burke vocals, guitar

Susie has a vocal style that is at once stunning and heartfelt. "Burke displays a gift for pulling honest emotional chords--all too rare in these clever and cynical times." (Scott Alarik, Boston Globe)




Bruce Carlson pedal steel guitar

Bruce adds strong jamming skills to the mix, plus he plays the elusive pedal steel guitar (lessons provided also). We let one electric instrument squeak in because he's Ellen's brother!




Darrell Carlson Country, Bluegrass, Swing, Rock guitar, vocals

Darrell has been playing guitar and singing since he was nine years old. He started a band when he was twelve and his sister Ellen and brother Bruce joined in along with some neighborhood kids. Not only has he played with bands in Connecticut and New Hampshire, but he jams into the wee hours playing everything from country to rock to blues welcoming players of all levels.


Ellen Carlson fiddle, guitar, mandolin

Fiddler Ellen Carlson has a strong grasp on several musical genres. She has played with bluegrass, swing, western swing, country, Irish and square dance bands. Bluegrass Unlimited Magazine gave her a coveted highlight review for her solo album "People I Play With" as well as three excellent reviews for her band High Range, calling her "a talented musician." She teaches at numerous festivals and workshops including Fiddle Hell, Grey Fox, Joe Val, and Pemi Valley. She started and leads the New England Fiddle Ensemble (featured on WMUR's Chronicle) with over 100 members. She is a member of the NH State Council on the Arts Teaching Roster. www.EllenCarlson.com


Kevin Caron old-time banjo

Kevin is a Maine-based multi-instrumentalist specializing in several old-time banjo styles. He sings and plays banjo and guitar in the old-time, folk, and bluegrass band Sugar Hill. He is also a founding member of the Maine Marimba Ensemble, playing complex, polyrhythmic arrangements of traditional and contemporary music from Zimbabwe. 


Melissa Bragdon Caron fiddle

Melissa is a Maine-based fiddler known for playing and teaching many different styles of music. Classically trained, she received a degree in Music Education at the University of Maine and has experience teaching string programs and general music at various grade levels in the Maine public schools. Melissa has been a long-time member of the Portland-based bluegrass band Jerks of Grass and recently joined Cumberland Crossing. She also plays with the old-time band Sugar Hill and teams up with Ellen Carlson & Kathy Sommer to perform with Fiddlers Three. Melissa is co-director of the New England Fiddle Ensemble, a non-profit organization that supports community by bringing together a large group of musicians of all ages to learn and perform different styles of music. Melissa was greatly involved in the development of 317 Main Community Music Center in Yarmouth, Maine, where she taught fiddle and acoustic ensembles for twelve years. Melissa also teaches at her studio in Scarborough, Maine. MelissaBragdonCaron.com


Zac Francis bass

Zac has spent the last decade as a studio musician, songwriter, performer, and music teacher. He attended Keene State College where he studied upright bass and classical composition. After graduating, he moved to Austin, Texas in 2014 to further his career as a professional musician. After spending six years recording and touring the country with some of Austin’s finest and most renowned acts, Zac returned to New England in 2020 where he has continued to write, perform, record, and produce music as both a solo artist as well as a collaborator with a wide variety of musical artists. zacfrancismusic.com


Skip Gorman mandolin, guitar, fiddle, vocals

For over half a century Skip has enjoyed singing, playing and performing an impressive and varied palette of traditional American and Celtic folk music. As an accomplished singer, guitarist, fiddler and mandolinist, Gorman has completed over fifteen recordings of fiddle, mandolin, bluegrass and cowboy songs, been featured on many others, and established his own record label, Old West Recordings. skipgorman.com


Scott Hopkins banjo

Scott became interested in bluegrass and banjo music by listening to recordings of Flatt & Scruggs and The Stanley Brothers that his dad played while he was growing up. At 15 years old, Scott started taking private banjo lessons and joined the school band on the tuba to fully immerse himself in the study of music. As a tubist, Scott received a bachelors of music education degree from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam and a masters degree of music education from the University of Connecticut. He won the Crane Concerto Competition on the tuba in 1995, but kept his banjo nearby at all times. Since his college days, he has played banjo with a number of bands in New York State and Vermont over the years. In 2013, Scott released an acclaimed solo banjo recording, using his skills as player, composer, arranger, producer and engineer. He currently teaches 5-12 Band at Duanesburg Central School District just west of Albany, NY, performs with The McKrells throughout the year, the Upstate Bluegrass Band at the Saratoga Race Track during summer months, teaches Wernick Method Bluegrass Jam Camps, teaches at Music Camps North, conducts the Empire State Youth Orchestra's Concertino Brass Ensemble, and has a studio of private in-person and virtual banjo students. Scott joined the Caffe Lena School of Music as a banjo instructor in the fall of 2022 and has a number of dates with his new group The Scott Hopkins Jazz Trio in 2023! ScottHopkinsBanjo.com


Paul Hubert guitar

Paul has performed extensively as a solo artist on classical guitar and as a singer/songwriter. He is the guitarist extraordinaire with the NH-based band The Buskers, featuring tasteful finger-style guitar to blues-to-the-metal rock licks. He has produced three solo recordings and is featured on several other recordings and has an ongoing relationship with the New Hampshire Very Special Arts program. www.PaulHubertMusic.com


Ellery Klein fiddle

Ellery is an in-demand fiddle teacher in the Boston area, with a studio of over 25 youth and adults in Medford and Belmont. She founded and directs Powers Music School's week-long youth summer camp, "Strings Traditions;" been a repeat instructor at Fiddle Hell, and has also taught at Spanish Peaks Celtic Fest, Blás, the Boston Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann school, and online Irish music weekend, "Fiddle Frenzy." She also runs a monthly Irish music learners' session in Belmont. Ellery currently performs with the triple-fiddle quintet festival band, The Bow Tides, as well as the New England-based Irish trio Fódhla with flute player Nicole Rabata and guitarist Bethany Waickman. From 2003-2007, she fiddled with the acclaimed Irish band Gaelic Storm. In 2001, Ellery received her M.A. in Traditional Irish Music at University of Limerick's Irish World Music Centre, and is a proud alumna of Cincinnati, Ohio's public magnet high school, the School for Creative and Performing Arts. When she's not teaching fiddling, she can often be found advocating for safer streets and more cycling and walking. elleryklein.net


Steve Muise fiddle

Steve is a graduate of Berklee College of Music. He is in his 29th year as a music educator (strings specialist) in the Mt. Blue Regional School District (centered around Farmington, ME). His responsibilities include directing the Mt. Blue High School and Mt. Blue Middle School Orchestras, and teaching stringed instruments to elementary students. Steve also teaches at the Maine Fiddle Camp, has taught at the USM Summer Strings Academy, and has been the associate conductor for MMYO. He founded and directs the Franklin County Fiddlers, a multi-stylistic fiddle band comprised of talented students at Mt. Blue High School. Steve and the fiddlers have toured New England and Québec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI, Ireland and throughout the deep South (including Nashville and New Orleans). Steve was awarded Maine's Music Educator of the Year in 2007, and in December 2010 he was named as a "Director Who Makes a Difference" representing Maine in "School Band and Orchestra" Magazine. He regularly performs throughout New England and beyond with his bands Boréal Tordu, Frigate, and Muisette.


Steve Roy bass, mandolin, fiddle, guitar, ukulele

Steve is a multi-instrumentalist from Eliot, Maine who plays and teaches upright bass, mandolin, fiddle, guitar, and ukulele. He is fluent in a vast array of musical styles, including bluegrass, jazz, folk, rock, jam, country, old time, heavy metal, etc.

As a sideman, he has toured nationally and internationally with many of the acoustic world's top acts, including Laurie Lewis and Tom Rozum, John Reischman and Eli West, Molly Tuttle, Joe K. Walsh, Frank Solivan and Dirty Kitchen, Joy Kills Sorrow, Hit and Run Bluegrass, and many others. Locally, he is well known for his work with groups such as OldHat Stringband, High Range, Jazzputin and the Jug Skunks, Steve and Dave Play Dead, Spinal Tarp, and countless others. He has been leading a weekly open bluegrass jam on the NH seacoast for over a decade. Bluegrass Now Magazine calls Steve a "devastating weapon." He is currently a faculty member at 317 Main Street Community Music Center in Yarmouth, ME, and at Portsmouth Music and Arts Center in Portsmouth, NH. Steve is the Program Director at Nimblefingers Old Time & Bluegrass Workshops in British Columbia, and he has taught many other music camps and workshops throughout the USA and Canada, including Steve Kaufman's Acoustic Kamp (TN), Fiddleheads Jam Camp (NH), Ossipee Valley String Camp (ME), Walker Creek Music Camp (CA), Aloha Bluegrass Academy (HI), and many others. Steve is also a violin maker, and works in the violin shop of Jonathan Cooper, in Portland, ME. 


Alex Rubin guitar

A member of the April Verch Band from 2016-2020, Alex has toured extensively both at home and internationally, including performances in 49 states and abroad. Alex developed a love for acoustic and traditional music while attending Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. Graduating with a degree in Neurobiology in 2011, Alex returned to the vibrant Boston music scene, studying privately with Berklee School of Music's ineffable John McGann. Since then, Alex has performed around the world on distinguished stages including at Merlfest, Australia's National Folk Festival, Estonia's Viljandi Folk Festival, Kaustinen Folk Festival in Finland, the Vancouver Island Musicfest and more. Alex is also the winner of the 2022 Freshgrass Guitar Competition. Currently, Alex lives in Cambridge, MA and is working on a solo acoustic guitar record. alexrubinguitar.com


Bethany Waickman DADGAD guitar

Bethany is a guitarist based out of Portland, Maine. She accompanies some of the country’s finest players, be it at dance halls, pub sessions, or on the concert stage. She primarily plays & teaches guitar in DADGAD. The modified tuning offers unique harmonies and rich drones well suited to supporting traditional music and to the driving, rhythmic playing for which Bethany is known. bethanywaickman.com


Coaches and Back Up Musicians From Previous Years

Kathy SommerFiddle, Fiddleheads Jam Camp Original Co-Organizer

Kathy started Jam Camp with Ellen in 1998 and they ran it together for over 22 years! Kathy continues to be an inspiration to many of our campers, including Ellen and Melissa!

Kathy plays fiddle, electric violin, mandolin, and sings with the band The Buskers, a wild and fun, folky and funky band based in NH, and performs with Northern NY musicians as Yellow Moon Jazz. She is adept at folk, swing and jazz, and has tried her hand at the Latin jazz scene as well. You can catch her performing across state lines, traveling with The Buskers, performing with Fiddlers Three or playing a variety of gigs in northern NY, including the Northern Lights Orchestra. She also has played many years for New England contra and square dances, was a member of The Fiddleheads Band, and Sweet, Red, Hot, and Sassy, and gives fiddle workshops in NH and NY. kathysommerviolin.com


Bob Amos, banjo, guitar, songwriting

Joyce Andersen, fiddle and vocals

Darol Anger, fiddle

Jason Anick, fiddle, mandolin

Byron Berline, fiddle

Paul Bourgelais, guitar

Andre Brunet, fiddle

Denny Breau, guitar

Erica Brown, fiddle 

Isa Burke, fiddle, guitar

Flynn Cohen, guitar, mandolin

Liza Constable, guitar, vocals

Shane Cook, fiddle

Kris Day, bass

Alan Epstein, mandolin

Matt Glaser, fiddle

Skip Gorman, mandolin and cowboy historian

David Greely, Cajun fiddle

Nancy Harrowitz, vocals

Donna Hebert, fiddle

Sue Hunt, piano, accordion and Calling

Todd Jones, guitar, banjo, vocals, song writing

Bob Kordas, banjo, resophonic guitar (dobro)

Diane Kordas, bass, vocals, song writing

Amanda Kowalski, bass

Andrea Larson, Swedish

Carter Logan, banjo, dobro

Katie McNally, fiddle

Rodney Miller, the great contradance fiddler

Jim Prendergast, guitar, Irish

Woody Pringle, old-time banjo

Mitch Reed, Cajun fiddle

Harvey Reid, guitar and vocals

Matt Shipman, guitar, bass, mandolin

Peter Stillwagon, guitar

David Surette, folk and bluegrass, guitar and mandolin

Dave Talmage, banjo, fiddle

Ryan Thomson, fiddle, accordion, penny whistle, dance

Tony Trischka, banjo

Andrew VanNorstrand, fiddle, mandolin, guitar

August Watters, guitar, bass, mandolin, vocals

Celia Woodsmith, vocals, guitar