Meet the Band
Steve, Tug Hill Players' bass player, has a long history as a musician. He was involved in high school musical groups and has played and sung for over 20 years in a well-known local band called That 70's Band. While he has typically played electric bass, Steve's wife, Merrilee, gave him a standup bass for Christmas a few years ago and he has been excited about the opportunity to play an acoustic instrument ever since. Steve, who works as a technical support supervisor for Welch-Allyn, has composed a number of songs over the years and helps in the arranging of songs for the Tug Hill Players.
Jay is the primary percussionist for the Tug Hill Players. His musical experience began as a trumpet player in elementary and high school in Newcomb, NY. More recently Jay has begun playing the fiddle. Jay took a few years off from his musical endeavors to take on a leadership role in this area's cross country ski activities, acting as president of the Tug Hill Tourathon ski races for many years (now the Winona Forest Recreation Area, or WFRA). Jay's role in The Tug Hill Players continues to grow, as he provides important musical color and a rhythmic anchor for the group. Jay produces an interesting array of sounds on the bodhran, rainstick, chimes, and other rhythm instruments. When Jay isn't pursuing his music or encouraging exercise in the community, he is a family physician at Pulaski Health Center.
Patricia Ledden Chapman
Pat has had a long interest in music, growing up in a very musical family. She composed and performed pieces for the piano during her school years at Sandy Creek, and played piano in a brass and piano trio called The Golden Keys. During her college years, she added percussion to her musical menagerie, joining a folk trio as a conga drum player. On to medical school, Pat played washtub bass and spoons in a group called the The Ectopic Rhythms. She has also been a choral member of The North Country Music Society, and The Oswego Festival Chorus. Most recently, her challenge is learning to play the violin. In the Tug Hill Players, Pat performs on keyboard, melodica, xylophone, and conga drum, as well as joining others on vocals. Pat also helps in arranging some musical parts played in the band. While music is Pat's avid avocation, her professional vocation is Family Medicine, and she is a physician at the Pulaski Health Center.
Gary, a semi-retired carpenter, first became fascinated with music, particularly the sounds of the guitar, while in high school. His family lived near the Syracuse University campus and he often was able to hear the bands playing outside sorority and fraternity houses. He bought his first guitar from a friend who played in a band and showed him his first chords. Gary continued experimenting with chords and gradually discovered the structures and patterns of music that now help in his important role as a primary arranger for the Tug Hill Players. In his twenties he became interested in traditional fiddle tunes and "old timey" music and added banjo and mandolin to his repertoire. For more than 30 years, Gary has spearheaded the musical float that has been part of the Fourth of July Parade in Fair Haven where he lives. Gary was the keyboardist in a local band called Road Trip for many years, which played at several local venues and, for several years, at Harborfest in Oswego. In the Tug Hill Players Gary plays guitar, bouzouki, accordion, keyboard, and mandolin as well as providing vocals.
David started his musical career as a clarinetist and, later, as a saxophone player while growing up near Denver, Colorado. He studied under several well known clarinet and saxophone teachers in high school and continued to play while attending undergraduate and graduate school. While in college he played with a band named Watercolors and more recently in the local band, Road Trip. David always creates interest in the Tug Hill Players when he plays his electronic wind instrument, a woodwind-like instrument that has access to many digitized musical sounds. David is a "quick study" as he learns and arranges new parts within the band. In his non-musical life, David is an associate professor at SUNY Oswego where he teaches courses in Psychology.
A retired college professor, Betsy began her musical career at 6 years old when she began studying the piano. She later added clarinet, ukulele, and guitar to her repertoire of musical instruments, and has most recently begun learning to play the Celtic lever harp. She has performed with several musical theater groups and local choruses over the years. In college she played and sang with a folk singing group called The Insecticides, a name designed as a counterpart to the then very popular group, The Beatles. During her twenties and thirties Betsy sang and played with a group named Lake Effect, which performed both sacred and secular music. Betsy plays keyboard, guitar, harp, clavietta, and electronic wind instrument in The Tug Hill Players. She also works closely with Gary in arranging the music that the Tug Hill Players perform.