The Best in West Coast Traditional Jazz!

The Ragtime Ramblers blend the best of traditional jazz music with outstanding musicianship and a style all their own. Favourites at concerts and festivals, country clubs, parades and private events in the US and Canada, The Ramblers are also known for their “Jazzified” arrangements of rock classics. Led by Plectrum Banjo virtuoso Dave Ivaz, The Ragtime Ramblers continue to delight audiences at festivals and events of all types with their trademark sound and high-energy stage show.

Look & listen to more Ragtime Ramblers, order a "Meet The Ramblers" CD and learn more about us at

Instagram @ragtimeramblers

Pro Athletic Events

From Chicago's Famous "Cub's Band" to the Vancouver Canadians Baseball team and more, The Ragtime Ramblers are major league entertainment at any sporting event. Dave's experience in the Chicago Cubs Band and as bandleader at Chicago's Navy Pier is your assurance of expert planned program entertainment.

Meet The Ramblers

Dave ‘Big Banjo’ Ivaz

banjo, vocals, bandleader

Dave Ivaz has performed on guitar with artists ranging from Martha Reeves & the Vandellas to The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, jazz vocalist Nancy Wilson, the Fifth Dimension, and at festivals including The Vancouver International Jazz Festival and Lollapalooza. Originally from Chicago, Dave is now a proud Vancouverite and CEO of Dave Ivaz Music, a BC Public School music teacher, and music director for up-and-coming BC singer-songwriter Harrison Ivaz.

Bonnie Northgraves

trumpet, vocals

Bonnie Northgraves is a Canadian trumpeter, vocalist, pianist, and composer. Her singing is smokey, rich, and explorative; her trumpet playing a call to the early jazz styles of New Orleans while being lyrical, intriguing, evolved, and playful. With one foot rooted in heritage and one foot leading forward she is an engaging musical powerhouse that is exciting, joyful, and chock full of personality. This strong combination has given wings to a music career thats seen her tour North America, Europe, China, and India.

Sam ‘Magic’ Shoichet

bass, vocals

Little did Sam know, but the magic monkey paw he found in the old curios shop was, in fact, cursed. When he wished to “become a famous musician,” the accursed paw granted him his wish… but as a BASS PLAYER!!! Now he is doomed to forever walk the world backing up other musicians, never truly alive, never truly dead. But what that monkey paw couldn’t have predicted is that Sam learned to sing the odd tune, so for a few brief moments he basks in the adulation of fans and can see what life is like no longer relegated to the role of The Sideman!

Saul ‘Fingers’ Berson

saxophone, clarinet, vocals

With his bright playful sound,  saxophonist and clarinetist Saul Berson is a Vancouver mainstay in the trad jazz styles of Sidney Bechet and Pete Fountain. His inventive improvising explores new paths through territory we had thought fully mapped. Saul has performed with international artists including Jaki Byard, Steve Grossman, George Lewis and Barry Guy and has studied at the Banff Centre for Fine Arts (1979, 1983) with Dave Holland, Dave Liebman, and Kenny Wheeler.

Jim ‘The Reverend Hopper’ Hopson

trombone, tuba, vocals

Known for his baby-faced charm and old-world charisma, Jim’s velvety-smooth trombone &  vocal stylings run the gamut from heart-rending to show-stopping! Jim is a published composer/arranger, an accomplished session musician, and a prolific sideman, having performed and recorded with such artists as: Chucho Valdez, Muhal Richard Abrams, The Vancouver Symphony, Nikki Yanofsky, Coleman Hell, Holly Cole, and many more.

In Memoriam - Jamie ‘Pops’ Croil

trumpet, vocals

In October of 2023, we lost our dear friend Jamie Croil. Jamie was a cornerstone of the Vancouver music scene for decades, and was an exceptionally kind, warm, selfless, and creative person.  A lover of all music, Jamie’s lyrical home was in the tradition of Louis Armstrong and Bunny Berrigan with both the full-bodied and beautiful call of his trumpet and the silky sound of his voice. Jamie was also a composer/arranger, brass clinician, Jazz Vespers coordinator, and has performed with many notable bands over the years such as The Vancouver Ensemble of Jazz Improvisation (VEJI), The Dal Richards Orchestra, and The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra to name a few. We miss him dearly every day, and we feel his presence and influence every time the Ramblers perform.

©Phonos Music 2018