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Westfield NC Janie's Jumpstart

  Meet the Instructors

November 18-20, 2016


Nancy Sluys

Jacki Spector

Janie Rothfield is an award winning clawhammer banjo player and powerhouse fiddler who has been playing Old Time Music “forever”! Janie got her start playing with older generation fiddlers and banjo players from New England, North Carolina and Quebec and since high school has had bands that played music rooted in Traditional American and Celtic music styles.  She is known for her melodic and rhythmic style on both fiddle and banjo, and original tunes.  She just released her 11th recording, OUT OF THIN AIR, that features all of her own compositions and songs.  


Janie has taught banjo and fiddle privately and at camps and festivals such as Banjo Camp North, Old Songs Summer Camps, Folk College and the Festival of American Fiddle Tunes.  Her teaching method combines her easy to learn technique that combines strategies for learning to play by ear quickly with a focus on musicality and rhythm!  Her tunes have won the Best Non-Traditional Tune at Clifftop Appalachian Stringband Festival TWICE!  Jane performs with numerous bands, including Coracree, Great Big Taters, Sugar Pie, with Allan CarrPanache Quartet and with daughter Shona Carr as Little Missy. 

Jane Rothfield

Nancy Sluys has been playing traditional music since 1973 when she acquired a mandolin and started attending bluegrass festivals. In 1974 she happened upon the Galax Fiddler’s Convention in Virginia and discovered the haunting sounds of old time music. Taking up the clawhammer banjo she quickly mastered it and returned year after year to Galax eventually winning first place in 1995, 2002 and 2004. She has also won prizes at most of the major fiddlers conventions in the south including 2nd at Clifftop and 1st at Elk Creek, Fries & Mount Airy. Nancy and her award winning bass playing husband, Bill, live in the musically rich area of Mount Airy, NC and formed the Pilot Mountain Bobcats with Nancy playing fiddle, Jacki Spector on banjo, Allin Cottrill on guitar with Bill on aluminum upright bass. The Bobcats have performed throughout the U.S. including MerleFest, Rockbridge Old Time Festival, Chicago Folk Festival and the Berkeley Old Time Music Convention. They are known for their hard driving traditional style and danceable rhythm. Nancy has made five highly acclaimed recordings, with the Bobcats, Man Alive and one “solo” (with friends) recording.  Nancy has taught clawhammer banjo and fiddle at Augusta Heritage Arts Workshop camps, and at numerous festivals around the country.






Betty Vornbrock

Jacki Spector got a guitar for her 14th birthday and started learning traditional music. She participated in monthly “hootenannys” through her teen years, pursued folk music in the Boston &Cambridge coffeehouses during college and attended every folk festival in the northeast. In 1972 she borrowed a banjo and began a journey that would lead her to Mt Airy, NC – home of the Round Peak style of Old Time music.


In the 70’s and 80’s Jacki was active in the Folk Music, Old Time Music and Country Dance scenes in the Boston area. She met and played with a wide variety of traditional musicians, eventually focusing on southern mountain music and the banjo. Since moving to North Carolina she has played in the award-winning band, The Pilot Mountain Bobcats with Nancy Sluys, playing at festivals, camps and dances for over 25 years.


Jacki taught banjo at Augusta, and Rockbridge and has been teaching in the JAM program in Galax, VA since 2011. She has a special passion for teaching beginners and for helping musicians find their own voice in the music. The highest compliment she ever received was from Tommy Jarrell who asked; “Are you sure you learned to play the banjo in Boston?”

Cathy Fink
Marcy Marxer
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