Raymond Simpson is an expert in traditional Australian music, dance and legend.
His birthplace, Nariel Creek - in the heart of Snowy Mountain territory - still has the longest running folk Festival in Australia, held every New Year. Ray's grandfathers both played in old time dance bands, and one of them rode with the Man From Snowy River--Jack Riley.
He is an Australian award winning concertina player, a multi instrumentalist and an outstanding entertainer, dancer and musician. His instruments include concertina, accordion, didgeridoo, carpenter's saw, bones, spoons, lagerphone and many more!. He can call dances, sing and demonstrate dances in fine style. His other skills include whip cracking (like his grandfathers before him) and riding the band's colourful character, Emily the Emu!
Jennie Simpson is a highly skilled musician, dancer and singer with expertise in theatrical animation and dance. She has a natural flair for putting together audience appropriate entertainment and is a seasoned performer with a joyful and friendly rapport with all audiences. She is both a qualified teacher and actor.
Jennie's instruments include keyboard (piano), guitar, flute, whistle, percussion (including bodhran) and she sings, calls and demonstrates dances and can MC any occasion with style and ease.
Chris Lazzaro is song writer, performer, Primary Teacher with a love for all forms of music and song.
He is a highly talented multi instrumentalist, and includes amongst his instruments the mandolin, banjo, guitar, spoons, bones and many other unusual percussive instruments.
His family heritage of both Italian and Irish background, bring to the band a unique story in itself as well as a wonderful flavour of cultures!
Blackberry Jam is honoured in having many other fine musicians that have performed with them for varying performances. These wonderful performers include:
Bruce Watson - singer/songwriter and children's performer
Ellen Hundley - multi instrumentalist (including piano and violin) with an angel's voice!
Meet the Band!
To contact us:
Phone: (03) 9754 2249
Fax:(03) 9752 6024