Kevin T. Richards is a multi-instrumentalist and vocalist who specializes in pre-war acoustic blues, country, traditional and jazz music playing guitar, steel guitar, banjo, fiddle, and mandolin. Kevin has shared the stage with music greats such as Robert Lockwood Jr., Jorma Kaukonen and John Hammond. Kevin fronts the band the Spyder Stompers (Americana) and is a member of Hot Djang (gypsy jazz/swing). Recently he founded the Green Diamond Zephyr a band created to help educate and preserve music of the Great American Songbook. Kevin is ROAM’s Artistic Director. He founded of ROAM in 1999 and was the chief administrator through June 2015.
Sheela Das is a professional vocalist and instrumentalist who plays ukulele, flute, pennywhistle and guitar. She is the lead vocalist for the SpYder Stompers and Sugar Pie, Sheela and the Others, and the Green Diamond Zephyr (Great American Songbook tribute) funded by the Ohio Arts Council. Sheela has performed at the Brooklyn New York Folk Festival in 2014 and on the Jalopy Stage in Brooklyn in March 2015. Her influences include Memphis Minnie, Etta James, Rory Block and Patsy Cline. Sheela is an artistic consultant and lead teaching artist for ROAM, ROAM’s associate director (2011-2015), and the principal songwriter and workshop leader for her company Creative Concepts in Music.
“She’s a multi-instrumentalist and vocalist whose mastery spans a breathtakingly wide range of musical genres.” Anastasia Pantsios – Cool Cleveland
Baba Jabal Harris performs Djembe, Ashiko, Djun Djun, Krin, CongaDrums, Shekere, Vocals, and the Bamboo Flute. His styles of music range from West African Manding and Afro Cuban to Jazz . His degree is a B.S. in Education from the University of Cincinnati. He has been a ROAM teaching artist for 6 years. He leads the group One World Rhythm and leads many local drum circles.
Jack Mizenko is a vocalist who performs folk music using guitar, mandolin, and harmonica. He has a B.A. in Math and an M.A. in Special Education. He has been a ROAM teaching artist since 2007. He is a member of the band FlipSide (original).
Mike Pereira is a vocalist and multi-instrumentalist who plays Americana, folk, rock, bluegrass, and jazz, on the acoustic guitar, mandolin, and upright bass. He is a self-taught musician and rocket scientist who has been a ROAM teaching artist since 2012 focusing on arts and science programs and professional development for educators. His band affiliations are The Silver String Band (Bluegrass and swing) and Sheela-and the-Others (Rock, swing).
Salima Smith is a native New Yorker who specializes in STOMP, writing rap, and leading ROAM summer camps and other song writing programs.
Afi-Odelia Scruggs is a vocalist who plays blues, traditional and contemporary African American gospel, old time and bluegrass on the electric bass, piano and keyboards. She has studied and performed music for more than 50 years. Her private instructors included Ed Ridley, pianist, 1994 – 1996, jazz pianist Neal Creque, 1996 – 2000, Rob White, electric bass, 2013 to present. I enrolled in the jazz studies program at Tri-C from 1996 to 1998 and taken classes in MIDI – 2009, Audio for Video, 2011. She also attended intensive music camps at Augusta Heritage in 2000, 2001, and 2007. She has been a ROAM teaching artist since 2004. She is the electric bassist for the Antioch Baptist Church Gospel Choir and for the choirs at Progressive Baptist Church.
Deborah Van Kleef is a vocalist who plays folk and country music on guitar and ukulele. She studied flute with members of the Cleveland Orchestra and in the Wind Performance Program at York University, Canada. Studied guitar at Goose Acres Folk Music Center and Fairmount School of Music. Attended numerous workshops at the Augusta Heritage Center, International Folk Alliance and Children’s Music Network. She has been a ROAM teaching artist since 1999.
Todd Brian, Interim Executive Director
Todd is a proven community development professional with substantial success in leading non-profit mission driven organizations. Todd works well with board members, staff, contributors, fellow community organizations, political leadership, and volunteers. Todd has lived in Cleveland since 2007 and both of his daughters went to Northeast Ohio universities. Prior to coming to Cleveland he worked in Michigan for 20 years with economic development groups in Three Rivers, Port Huron and Flint. Short stints in Iowa and Washington, D.C. round out his path to ROAM. He has degrees in Business Marketing and Economics from Olivet Nazarene University.
Kevin Richards, Artistic Director
Tam Sivertson, Project Assistant
Tam Sivertson is a Berklee College of Music graduate who studied percussion. He is the project assistant and scheduler for ROAM programs.