The Mighty Filberts
Suzanne Chimenti - Guitar, Banjo, Piano, Vocals
Suzanne Chimenti plays guitar, banjo, and piano, and sings for the Mighty Filberts. She is also the resident songwriter for the band. Her day job is teaching elementary music at Fairview Elementary school in Portland, Oregon.
Suzanne has a BA in music education from Portland State University and a ME from Pacific University. Her training was in classical voice and piano. She discovered folk and bluegrass when she got involved in the song circles and concerts at Artichoke Music. In January of 2007 she bought her first banjo and discovered a new, all-encompassing passion.
Suzanne's first music teacher was her mother, who gifted her with musical skills and the desire to be a lifelong musician. She expresses her extreme gratitude to her current private teachers, Ed Snyder on guitar, and Rene Berblinger on banjo.
Richard Powell - Mandolin, dobro, guitar, vocals
Rich really grew up listening to the Beatles, the Eagles, and Creedance, and playing a cheap 6-string guitar in Orlando, Florida. Like many of us “folkies of the sixty's” he was influenced by Dylan, James Taylor, and Peter, Paul, & Mary in college times. Upon moving to Portland, OR, he fell into a “hotbed” of bluegrass culture and playing (guitar, mandolin & dobro), that he's never quite been able to shake (he's tried!). Besides privately teaching the beginner-level on all three of these instruments, he co-hosts the Oregon Bluegrass Association Sunday jam and co-teaches the Ridgefield, WA Tuesday night class. Monday nights you'll find him hosting the Firstenburg Community Song Circle in Vancouver, WA. And Rich loves playing with the Filberts!
Brenda Fletcher - Guitar, vocals
Newlywed Brenda Fletcher (formerly Brenda Baker) went to college on music scholarships. She received her BA in Music Education and fell in love with opera. Cincinnati Conservatory came next-- also a full ride-- where she Got her MM degree in Vocal Performance.
In Cincinnati she spent several years teaching elementary school music and singing in a German dinner theater at night. She also performed in musicals and operettas and sang pop and jazz tunes in a little theater.
She came back to Oregon in 1994 and spent the next 10 years performing occasionally with the Portland Opera, Oregon Symphony, and Oregon Ballet, as well as other local venues. She also taught voice at Concordia University and released her first CD of classical American art songs by a composer friend, Richard Faith. Visit www.brendabaker.biz if you want to know more!
Brenda currently is the general music teacher at Salish Ponds Elementary School in Reynolds School District.
Frank Stovall - Fiddle, Guitar, Vocals
Francis (Frank) Stovall IV, an elementary and middle school ESL teacher, was born in Canton, Mississippi. He plays fiddle and guitar and sings with the Mighty Filberts. He grew up in Texas, the son of Dr. Frank Stovall, III, an accomplished classical and church music singer and pianist. Filbert Frank has fully recovered from the church part of that mix, though he admits his church choir participation influences his music with the Filberts. Even more influential is his long-standing infatuation with folk icons, Peter, Paul, and Mary. He has been an activist in civil rights struggles and the anti-war movements since his teens--- and that was A Long Time Ago!
Bruce Morris - Bass, Guitar, Vocals
Bruce's bass career started when he went to the store to buy ukulele strings for his wife, but came home with an electric bass guitar and amp instead (yes, he remembered to bring home the strings too). It wasn't long before he fell completely in love with the low end and shifted to upright bass. Bruce's “other” instrument is his voice. He is a classically trained vocalist and has sung with several choirs including the Portland Symphonic Choir and Satori Men's Chorus. He has been a lay cantor with several area congregations and currently is a co-director of the P'nai Or Zingers.