I originally set out to play ragtime, boogie and barrelhouse. I found out quickly that most people want to hear songs they are familiar with. In order to find employment I've played every imaginable style. I've probably played "Piano Man" more times than Billy Joel. I worked 5 nights a week at the Holiday Inn Kingston for years plus tons of boat cruises and other events.
On this album I decided to go back to my roots and record what I want. I hope you like it!
Interview with Ross MacLachlan on ragtime and boogie-woogie following "Not Just Ragtime" Concert Nov 2008 in Currie Hall, Kingston, ON. Ross talks about his interest in ragtime, boogie woogie, his influences and the difference between the two styles. Concert footage is included. Thanks for the production by Curtis Brunet of KTown Source, filming by Dave McCallum and interview by Doreen Edmunds. Thanks also to Gary Barratt on drums and Tim Roberts on sax.
I had a lot of help from the following musicians who contributed their talents:
Gary Barratt(world’s greatest drummer!) who has played with me since 1982 Bob Arlidge – your smooth double bass adds a LOT to this album Jess Lindeman - your beautiful Cello ensures this is “Not Just Ragtime” Spencer Evans – great clarinet improvisations on Little Bird Tim Roberts
– your sax suggestions compliment the driving nature of Kidd’s Boogie
David Rodenburg - engineer for this project. Thanks for your encouragement throughout the sessions Dave.
Way back in time
My mother started me on the piano at a very early age. My mother, sister and brother also played. My dad played bagpipes all of his life right up until his passing in 2008. I studied with local teachers Barbara Good and Donna Gobin. Donna paid particular attention to detail and practicing techniques. She was the "Simon Cowell" of classical music. If you did something poorly, she let you know it! If you did something well, you were given praise. I know we don't want to discourage new artists but part of me still agrees with that philosophy.
Oddly enough, as a teenager I was influenced by Queen, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Yes, and particulary the earlier Elton John albums. I still have tremendous respect for these artists.
After university, I joined a band called City Limits with the Rodenburg brothers
(Real Shiny Records). I met Gary Barratt through David Rodenburg. Gary and I
formed "Doctor Drums and the Ragtime Kidd"
and have played on and off since then.
When I first became interested in ragtime, I studied under Toronto artists
Bob Fenton and John Arpin. Other ragtime performers I really like are William
Bolcom, Roger Shields and James Levine. For Boogie I like Albert Ammons, Pete
Johnson, Meade Lux Lewis, Errol Garner, Dr. John and my current favourite is
Michael Kaeshammer. This guy is great!
I hope this album will introduce a once popular style of music that you may be unfamiliar with. Tell your friends, maybe this music will have a renaissance!
Since I have many influences, I'd hate to say who I sound like exactly. I'd say a bit of Dr. John, Scott Cushnie (Professor Piano), Doug Riley, Joan Besen, Albert Ammons, Pete Johnson, Michael Kaeshammer and even a little Jerry Lee Lewis.