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Tri-State Jazz Society Presents...
Richard Barnes and the Blackbird Society Orchestra - February 19, 2012

PHILADELPHIA - Blackbird Society Orchestra will play for Tri-State Jazz Society on Sunday, February 19, 2012 from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. This concert will be at the Community Arts Center, 414 Plush Mill Road, Wallingford, PA 19086. The Blackbird Society Orchestra is Philadelphia's premier 1920s dance orchestra dedicated to the preservation of red-hot jazz from the era of flappers, Gatsby, and bathtub gin. Half-price admission is $10, available for first-time attendees and members; general admission is $20. High school and college students with IDs and children accompanied by a paying adult are free. Pay at the door; there are no advance sales or reservations. The Community Arts Center is less than a mile from the Media-Swarthmore exit of I-476 (the "Blue Route"). There's free parking. For information call (856) 720-0232 or visit:

The Blackbird Society Orchestra

Richard Barnes- Guitar, Banjo, Vocals
John Southard - Piano
Dan Nosheny - Sousaphone
Paul Rogers - trumpet
Jim Gicking - Trombone
Jay Rattman - Clarinet, Sax
Michael Salsburg - Violin

On February 19, per leader and guitarist Richard Barnes, the Blackbird Society Orchestra will be playing "...various hot jazz, pop hits, and obscure forgotten classics from the Original Dixieland Jazz Band and Bix to works associated with Armstrong and Ellington. He and Salsburg will also perform several Lang/Venuti compositions."

Barnes, the driving force behind Eddie Lang Day in Philadelphia, played with the Kim Milliner Band for five years. During this time, his interest in Lang's unique style growing, he joined forces with violinist Michael Salsburg, in the role of Joe Venuti, in a recreation of the famous Lang-Venuti Duo, and this experience, as energizing as it was successful, led him to extend the concept and form a full '20s-era recreation group he named the Blackbird Society Orchestra. BSO performs in various configurations and in its full eleven-piece identity is a 'formal' 1920s-30s dance orchestra featuring note-for-note renditions of jazz classics from 1927-30 by Duke Ellington, Paul Whiteman, Roger Wolf Kahn, Fletcher Henderson, and other great innovators of the day. Barnes reports that he "spent 10 years off and on playing with Leon Redbone, where he met Dan Levinson, Vince Giordano, and Jon-Erik Kellso and strengthened his foundation of music and musicianship."

Pianist John Southard is a versatile artist, piano teacher, arranger and composer. With a B.A. in Music from the University of Delaware, he has performed with the Delaware Symphony, played on hit records, and led his own groups at many prestigious venues. He served as house pianist at the Columbus Inn for ten years and played piano with Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey, Robert Merrill, Bob Crosby, and Sammy Kaye. He taught at the Wilmington Music School and at the University of Delaware for more than twenty-five years and is now teaching at the Arts Academy at the Grand Opera House in Wilmington, Delaware, and in his own private studio in Newark, Delaware.

Dan Nosheny is a multi-instrumentalist performer and singer-songwriter from Philadelphia. He studied at the Eastman School of Music and has performed throughout the United States with the Violent Femmes, Laurie Anderson, McCoy Tyner, and "in a particularly proud moment, Triumph the Insult Comic Dog." He also performs as the solo act Neon and Shy, singing original, whimsical, and eclectic songs on the accordion and toy piano.

Trumpeter Paul Rogers lives in Philadelphia where he is currently on scholarship attending The University of the Arts. Paul has also studied at The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York City. He has played in various venues on the east coast including an appearance at Dizzy’s Coca-Cola Club at Lincoln Center. A North Carolina native, he has studied with Ray Codrington, John Swana, Charles Tolliver, Jeremy Pelt, Jimmy Owens, and Stephen Riley.  

Apart from a seven-year stint in New York in the late '70s with jazz record companies A&M, Artists House, and CTI Records, where he worked with Jim Hall, Art Pepper, Chet Baker, Thad & Mel, and others, Jim Gicking has lived in the Philadelphia area, playing trombone and guitar in big bands, small groups, and pit orchestras. He's now principal trombonist in the Main Line Symphony and plays guitar weekly in a jazz trio at Café San Pietro in Ardmore. Jim studied with Tom Giacabetti, and briefly with Jimmy Amadie, and taught at the Wilmington Music School before earning a law degree. He fell in love with the music of the '20s and '30s after hearing Marty Grosz on NPR's Fresh Air, and Marty has become a friend and a mentor.  

Jay Rattman, twenty-four, originally from Stroudsburg, PA, maintains an active schedule as a freelance woodwind artist, composer, and arranger in and around New York City. Mentored by saxophone greats Phil Woods and David Liebman, he received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in alto saxophone performance from the Manhattan School of Music. He's performed at Lincoln Center, The Blue Note, Carnegie Hall, Town Hall, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. He's a  a member of the Manhattan Saxophone Quartet, Drew Nugent’s Midnight Society, the Manhattan Klezmer Band, and Phil Woods’ Festival Orchestra.

Dr. Michael Salsburg has been playing hot jazz violin for over 40 years. He was inspired in his early 20s by recordings of Venuti-Lang. After that, he was hooked. He played professionally in Hollywood, with gigs including appearances in the "Gable and Lombard" movie and on the Tonight Show with David Carradine. He played on Billy Joel's Piano Man album. His "day job" is Chief Architect for Unisys Corporation cloud solutions. But he continues performing in the tri-state region and always looks forward to performing his favorite music with BSO. On New Years Day, you can see Michael playing fiddle at the front of the Ferko String Band in the Philadelphia's Mummers Parade.

To hear the Blackbird Society Orchestra, please visit them at:

The Community Arts Center

The Community Arts Center, located near I-476 (the "Blue Route") between Media and Swarthmore in Delaware County, has become a favorite Tri-State Jazz venue. The piano at CAC is excellent, as are the acoustics, and the atmosphere is bright and congenial. Tri-State Jazz Society continues to present a number of band and solo piano concerts in the main gallery of the center as part of the center's expanded music program.

CONTACT: Sally Cannon
(856) 720-0232

P.O. Box 896
Mount Laurel, NJ 08054

Tri-State Jazz Society, formed in 1988, is dedicated to the preservation and live performance of traditional jazz including Dixieland, swing, ragtime, and boogie-woogie. All concerts are open to the public and feature leading professional small jazz bands and soloists. Monthly concerts are presented at venues throughout the Philadelphia area. The society is a non-profit educational corporation supported by its members.




Concert Schedule:


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Tri-State Jazz Society
P.O. Box 896
Mt. Laurel, New Jersey 08054

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