Donations to Delaware Water Gap Celebration of the Arts (COTA) are being accepted in order to create a scholarship for young musicians in Rick's name. Please click here to give...


Rick ChamberlainRick Chamberlain was born in 1952 to the late Richard Earl Chamberlain and Audrey Baxter and raised in Yardley. He began playing at age 5, learning from his dad, an amateur trombonist with a love for all kinds of music. As a youngster he had performing opportunities with local dance bands and youth orchestras and studied with Ed Cook in Trenton, New Jersey. His first professional job was at age 13. As a member of the Pennsbury High School Concert Jazz Band, he won numerous awards which included a scholarship to the National Stage Band Camps. On the suggestion of the late Johnny Richards, who frequently rehearsed the band, he began studies with Wayne Andre in New York City. While in high school, he attended Phil Woods' jazz camp — Ramblerny — for two summers. At age 16, he became a member of the Trenton Symphony Orchestra.

During the summer after graduation, Rick worked with Bob Newman's house band at Mount Airy Lodge, with the likes of Al Cohn and Dave Frishberg, where he got his first taste of the jazz scene in the Poconos. Boston and the New England Conservatory were next. He received a degree (BM) in 1975 studying with John Swallow and playing in the orchestra, wind ensemble, the jazz bands of Jaki Byard and George Russell and a brief stint with the New England Conservatory Ragtime Ensemble. Among his other mentors were Phil Wilson, Gunther Schuller and Joe Maneri. A 1½-year hiatus was spent performing throughout New England with a Berkshire-based band, Goodfriend Coyote. While in Boston, Rick played with numerous freelance orchestras, chamber and contemporary music ensembles.

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