Meet the Board
Kate Sheie – President
My first exposure to old-timey music was a Pete Seeger record I played over and over as a five-year-old, but it wasn’t until I saw Foghorn Stringband open for Richmond Fontaine at the Blackbird in 2002 that I had that “eureka!” moment and was hooked. A few years as a spectator and square dancer gave way to occasionally playing guitar with Michael Ismerio at his Alberta Street Pub session (also where I met my partner Stephanie Noll!), and then at Caitilin and Barb’s Waypost jam. Michael hooked me into the Old-Time Gathering Committee in 2010, and then onto the Bubbaville Board a couple of years later, where I’ve been happy to serve ever since. These days I chase my five-year old boys around, and once in a while I get to play guitar and fiddle with my old-time band Maris Otter.
Sophie Vitells Enloe – Vice President
I’ve lived in Portland since I was 10, and grew up studying classical piano and violin. I first heard old time music on my 16th birthday, when a friend took me to hear stringband music at the Red and Black Café in SE Portland. From that day on I was hooked. I’ve been enthusiastically attending old time festivals, concerts, and square dances ever since, as well as performing, recording, and teaching fiddle music. I’ve played with a number of bands over the years, including the Government Issue Orchestra, the Macrae Sisters, and Hopping Jenny. I’ve also developed a deep love of teaching, and have co-taught the Portland Stringband Class with Maggie and Patrick Lind since 2005. I currently teach private violin and fiddle lessons to both kids and adults, and co-teach Portland Fiddle Camp for kids with Kate O’Brien.
This community of old time musicians, dancers, and enthusiasts has been such a wonderful and important part of my life for many years now, and it’s an honor to be able to give back a little by serving on the Bubbaville board.
Suzanne Savell – Treasurer
I am from the mountains of East Tennessee and have spent most of my life involved in traditional Appalachian culture and music. I worked as the director of the Traditional Music Project at Appalshop, a non-profit media, arts and education center based in Southeast Kentucky. It was the best job I’ve ever had, organizing and supporting the traditional Appalachian music, storytelling and dance community through cultural arts education programs, festivals and workshops across Appalachia’s coal mining communities. This work connected me with Portland Old Time Music Gathering, and eventually I ended up moving out to Portland in 2008. Musically, culturally and geographically, I feel a deep connection between the Pacific Northwest and my Appalachian homeland. My other major passion is the environment, and my “day job” is working as the Development Director at Crag Law Center, a non-profit that provides legal aid to the environment to community and conservation groups across the Pacific Northwest. I have also worked as an Arts Integration Facilitator for The Right Brain Initiative and the Development Director at Rock ‘n’ Roll Camp for Girls. I enjoy exploring the wilds of the Pacific Northwest and bicycling or walking around Portland, gardening, cooking and playing banjo.
Jinny Macrae – Secretary
I’ve lived in Portland for about 40 years (I’m originally from northern Washington State) and have always been involved in music. I’ve been a member of the POTMG organizing committee for about 10 years and I edit Bubbaville’s Portland Old Time Music email Newsletter and the monthly online calendar. I joined the Bubbaville Board of Directors in 2015 and I’m excited to expand my participation in the Old Time community as a board member.
I have been involved with traditional music since the mid ‘70s. In 1978 I was a founding member of the Hiawatha Music Co-op in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. This yearly event began in 1979. I make the annual trip to the UP every year to manage the stage.
In 2002 when Bill Martin put out a call for someone to help manage the stage at the Portland Old Time Music Gathering, I accepted the challenge, joining the founders Michael Ismerio, Brian Bagdonas and Bill Martin in helping run the 4th Annual Gathering in 2003. I have been involved since. I’m a founding member of the Bubbaville Board, and have served many years as Treasurer and various Gathering committees.
Musically I flounder with the banjo, guitar and mandolin and love to dance. My wife Tracey and son Reese are both old time fiddlers. We have a dog Jasmine who neither plays nor dances but loves to get belly rubs.
I’m a banjo player. I started with Scruggs style, but when I moved to Portland in 2005 and joined Maggie, Patrick and Sophie’s String Band Class I learned claw hammer. It is now my favorite style. My husband, George, plays primarily mandolin and Cajun accordion, though he’s been known to pick up a fiddle. We discovered the Old Time Gathering in 2006 and have been going every year since. I’m now retired, but until retirement I worked for Legal Aid and, later, for the Small Business Legal Clinic of Lewis and Clark Law School as a lawyer specializing in nonprofit and small business law. I joined the Bubbaville Board of Directors in 2017.
Kate is a classically trained violinist with 10 years teaching experience, teaching from the classical perspective, utilizing many aspects of the Suzuki Method as well as her training in the Western Classical school. She has played violin and sung in various rock/pop and folk bands in Portland, OR and also plays and sings in a band called Calico Rose. Recently, she is enjoying time spent writing her own music. She believes that everyone and anyone can learn to play an instrument. She plays and teaches Old-Time fiddle and improvisation techniques.
I was born in the ’70s and raised through the ’80s on the south bank of Deer Creek, tributary to the mighty Umpqua. With neither fiddle nor banjo to be heard in Douglas nor neighboring counties, I drew childhood inspiration from the melodic meanderings of Boney M, Slade, a National Geographic record of Scottish folk music, and Grandma’s melodica. This confusion of “musical” threads was instantly untangled twenty years later upon hearing the tight fiddle and mandolin unison of Foghorn Stringband. Over the intervening 13 years, a glaring lack of discouragement from Portland old-time musicians and at least eight square dancers (not to brag) has blessed this musical man-baby’s fiddle with an almost noticeable patina of rosin dust.
I was first exposed to Appalachian old time music not long after moving to Portland in 2008. My interest and involvement has grown, thanks in large part to the Portland String Band Class and the annual Gathering as well as summer festivals, local jam sessions, and the tolerant ears of roommates, partners and pets. I play banjo and guitar in Old Barn Preservation Society and put together the “Gathered” compilation album.