Musicians: a few of our band members
Cathy DeWitt is an accomplished singer and pianist, and she has played professionally at festivals, parties and concerts throughout the States, as well as England, the Virgin Islands and Hawaii. She has sung and recorded with pianists Dave Frishberg and Rob Bargad, performing most recently with Bargad in New York. In addition to her jazz work, she plays in the folk/bluegrass band Patchwork. She received an IONS/Fetzer grant for her Healing Music Program at UF Health/ Shands Arts in Medicine, where she is Music Director and Musician in Residence. She also won the 2000 Music Award from the Gainesville branch of the National League of Penwomen, and was voted Gainesville’s Musician of the Year in 2010.
David Ottenberg has a Master’s degree in music from the University of Florida, and he plays both acoustic and electric bass. He is constantly in demand, playing jazz with the Omi Ajamu Trio and pianist Frank Sullivan, and classic and original rock with the Relics and the Erasables. He played with the Rhythm & Blues Revue as well as the Gainesville Chamber Orchestra. He is often called upon to perform on bass for the Hippodrome State Theatre, where he played for the Rocky Horror Picture Show as well as a successful run of Beehive. He teaches music at Talbot Elementary School, and is with the faculty of Kevin Cassidy’s summer Bass Camp at the University of Florida, as well as teaching private bass lessons.
Janet Rucker is a multi-instrumentalist who plays guitar, piano, bass, and banjo, and is best-known for her distinctive voice, described by one producer as “fragile, yet powerful; vulnerable, yet confident.” A veteran of countless bands, she is in high demand as a session singer at local recording studios. Her original songs compose a large part of Patchwork’s repertoire, and her “Florida Home” was recently one of the winners in the Will McLean Best New Florida Song songwriting contest. She performed in the Hippodrome State Theatre’s 1987 production of “Hair,” and before forming Patchwork she toured the festival circuit from Colorado to Atlanta to Florida with her band, Country Love. Janet is a member of many bands, including The Relics, and recently released her first solo album, Unreasonable Love.
Ben Grier is an amazing saxophonist with degrees from the University of Florida. Grier has filled the lead alto sax and lead tenor sax chairs in the University of Florida Jazz Ensemble One, as well as the lead tenor sax chair for the 2015 SEC all-star jazz band. Prior to his arrival at UF, Grier toured with the World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra in the second alto sax chair, traveling to Canada, New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Ohio, Wisconsin, Massachusetts, and New Jersey. At UF he was the two-time recipient of the Gary Langford Jazz Scholarship and the three-time recipient of the Kenneth Webster Saxophone Scholarship.
Christine Alicot is an excellent classical flutist with a beautiful, dulcet tone. She graduated from the Paris Conservatory of Music. Christine came to the States nearly twenty years ago to broaden her repertoire, and has been here ever since–although she returns to France occasionally to visit family there and perform. Here in the States she plays with many people; her diverse styles include classical music, folk music, improvisation and jazz.
Rob Rothschild plays drums and percussion in several rock, jazz, and rhythm & blues bands in Gainesville, Florida. He has worked with many artists as a producer and recording engineer, as well as being the drummer on their recordings. In that role he’s been called “a composer’s drummer.” As a touring drummer he played with Leslie Gore, Lou Christie, and Billy J. Kramer. He also has experience in all phases of post-production sound for film, and he worked in that field in New York and in South America.