Tuesday, January 30, 2024

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

This is a follow-up to Friends of a Child Molester

First some good news...

Someone Finally Listened

For once in the three years I've been actively contacting event organizers, one has finally listened. On January 30, Frederick was scheduled to appear at an event hosted by Piedmont Piano Company. I used the contact form on their website a couple weeks ago and included a link to my blog post.

Last weekend I received an e-mail that has been nearly 8 years in the making:

This hit me like a ton of bricks. The fluffy kind made of rainbows and bouncy castles and sweet, sweet vengeance. The mixture of schadenfreude, gratitude, and not gonna lie, feeling of power were completely overwhelming. The efforts I'm making are not going to waste!

Long Arms

Tangentially, I reported the abuse to the Berkeley PD last week, in case we're still inside some statutes of limitations. They called again yesterday for a follow up, so those wheels are still turning. Hopefully I'll be hearing from detectives and/or the DA soon.

Of course, reality has a nasty habit of snapping me back...

Just Try To Ignore Me

As I mentioned last time, Sierra Madre Playhouse is featuring Frederick Hodges at a silent film festival February 3rd and 4th. Originally I had sent an e-mail to the author from Broadway World who mentioned the event, as well as contacting Sierra Madre Playhouse through their contact form online.

Since then, I have:

  • Tweeted about Frederick's appearance at the event, linking to my blog post and @mentioning both Sierra Madre Playhouse and Lara Gabrielle
  • Sent a Facebook message to the SMP page
  • Commented on SMP's Facebook posts that mention Frederick's event

Sadly, they continue the pattern of completely ignoring me. But my efforts did not go completely unnoticed. Facebook awarded me a Top Contributor badge for being an active commenter on their page. 🙃

Activism Activation in 5... 4...

Well given my new scorched earth approach, and thanks to a master class from my grandmother in how not to be ignored, I've decided to get more active. I'm going to be making an appearance at the upcoming event so they can no longer hide Frederick's monstrous nature from their audience.

I put together a flyer with a picture of me and Frederick where I look like his spitting image. It gives a brief description of our history together and my struggles to be heard by folks in the ragtime, classic film, and other communities. If Frederick doesn't already feel the walls closing in after today's canceled event, he sure will after this weekend.

One Last Chance

Since the good news I received, I've been sitting on a tiny inkling of hope that Sierra Madre Playhouse and Lara Gabrielle would hear my pleas and confront the issue. I really want to give them the benefit of the doubt, and don't really love the idea of a single-night trip to a Motel 6 in LA while my job is up in the air and we're packing up to move... However, I went to check on my tweet today and was greeted by this:

So it looks like we're going around this circle again. I can't tell if she doesn't want to accept that a friend of hers could be a monster or if she's financially motivated due to the ticket sales for this event, but damn. This just feels classless.

I look forward to seeing your audience this weekend.

The Hypocrisy of AVFilm

I've tried to reach out again to the folks running AVFilm. On the page of their board members, I found the following profile:

Hillary Kambour

Vice Chair

Hillary (she/her) is a retired trial and appellate attorney who spend most of her career representing abused, abandoned, and neglected children. Since moving to Dry Creek Valley in 2015, Hillary is busy in her garden, volunteering around the area, running, hiking, and biking, and trying to become proficient in Spanish. [...]

(emphasis mine)

After seeing this, I sent the following e-mail on Jan 23. As expected, I have not received a reply.


I read on your profile that you were once an attorney focusing on abused children. I have contacted AVFilm a few times over the years to let them know that they are hosting events featuring the child molester Frederick Hodges. Their facebook page blocked me and everyone I have contacted directly has ignored me.

Is AVFilm representing your values by refusing to engage with someone who was abused as a child and continuing to promote a predator?


The Syncopated Crimes

In my last post, I mentioned I would follow up on my interactions with Andy Senior. I don't think it's worth re-hashing the entire conversation at this point. However, I think this final email interaction is quite telling.


And when are you going to actually report on the fact that he's a child molester? You with the platform. You, with all these supposed feelings that, given your inaction, sound more like you're trying to play the victim in this situation.

What do you think I've been doing these last few years if not contacting every venue, event organizer, film society, etc. when his name comes up? You yourself said it will be hard to get the message out. Yet here I was contacting YOU for exactly that. You just want to pass the buck.

Like literally everyone else I've contacted who has ignored or blocked me.



I'm replying much against my better judgment since I suspect you'll take what I say and use it against me to spotlight my cowardice and hypocrisy.

If I am a victim, the wound is self-inflicted. I single-handedly took on a moribund publication eight years ago and kept it going—not out of any lust for power or money but out of a sense of obligation. That's on me. I felt the niche music community of which I am a part needed a quality publication to provide support and encouragement.

Last year I paid out almost $50K to contributors as well as covering printing, mailing, and other expenses. I paid myself nothing. The Syncopated Times is not quite breaking even. My wife and I survive on her pension and Social Security.

Now, suppose I published a front-page item with headline "Pianist Frederick Hodges Accused of Long-Term Sexual Abuse." The octogenarians and nonagenarians who subscribe to TST would go into cardiac arrest, but worse, Hodges himself would see it since one of his old lady patrons sends him a gift subscription. I would get sued to death.

If I'm a coward for not wanting to take on that crusade (with predictable results), so be it. I regret that I cannot be your sledgehammer.


Andy Senior
Publisher and Editor
The Syncopated Times
Exploring the World of Hot Jazz, Ragtime, and Swing


Wouldn't want to let morals get in the way of profit.

I hope you can't sleep at night.

Friday, January 19, 2024

Friends of a Child Molester

Nearly eight years ago, I wrote about my experiences of abuse at the hands of Frederick Hodges. Since then, I have received an outpouring of support from friends, family members, and even strangers.

At least from people outside the ragtime and classic film communities. I have contacted news outlets, e-zines, article authors, event planners, band members, etc. All but two completely ignored me, and not a single one has made any material changes to their coverage of this monster.

Now I'm scorched earth angry. It's time to name and shame these friends of a child molester.

I am not posting any personal contact information here, only links to the content or organizations they've been a part of. Please do not engage in harassment or threats. I want them to change their behavior, not live in fear. Well, except Frederick... May he forever live in fear of who walks behind him.

PS: If you have any SEO tips so this post will show up when people search for these organizations, please contact me.

Don Neely's Royal Society Jazz Orchestra and Child Molester Club


In the ultimate example of "stand by your man", Frederick Hodges has been a part of RSJO since before we met. There is no way in hell these people haven't heard about the accusations. But he's such a good singer and pianist it doesn't matter to them.

When I contacted them by e-mail or voicemail, they ignored me. When I contacted them on Facebook they blocked me. They are actively waging a campaign of denial.

Never attribute to malice what can be explained by simple incompetence. But never rule out malice. Maybe he's not the only child molester in their midst... 

The Syncopated Times, Promoter of Child Molesters

In 2021 I e-mailed Larry Melton, the author of https://syncopatedtimes.com/from-the-2021-sutter-creek-ragtime-festival/ - no reply.

In 2022, I e-mailed Brian Sheridan, the author of https://syncopatedtimes.com/frederick-hodges-sophisticated-syncopation/ - no reply. I emailed him again today with a heads up that I was writing this post and he threatened to sue me for libel and defamation.

In 2022 I e-mailed Andy Senior, the co-founder of the site. He is the only one in all these years who took the time to thoughtfully respond. Unfortunately, his thoughts didn't go far enough and to this day he continues to absolve himself of any responsibility for legitimizing Frederick's career.

I'll make a follow-up post detailing the exchange. You can see the latest developments on my Facebook page. TL;DR: not my problem; you should write a book and then maybe people will listen.

San Francisco Silent Film Festival Loves Child Molesters


Sent an e-mail in 2021 - no reply.

Petaluma Film Alliance Hosts Child Molesters


Sent an e-mail in 2022 - no reply.

Art Deco Society of California, Friend to Child Molesters


Sent an e-mail in 2022 - no reply

AVFilm is Hosting a Child Molester

They were hosting a classic film night in 2022 where Frederick was playing piano.

I e-mailed their director of programming, Michael Traina, but didn't receive a reply.

I sent a message to their general Facebook account and they blocked me.

I sent Facebook messages to Tess Aston, Kathryn Hecht, and Hillary Kambour. None replied.

I e-mailed their general account about the fact that they blocked me on Facebook and they ignored me.

The event page is no longer available but this is probably just data rot.

The Press Democrat Doesn't Care About Child Molesters

I called the news room regarding his appearance at the AVFilm event. They said someone would get back to me if they wanted to write about it. I guess they didn't care.

San Mateo Daily Journal Ignores Child Molesters


Sent an e-mail to the author, Curtis Driscoll, in 2022 - no reply

Broadway World - Child Molester at the Sierra Madre Playhouse!


Sent an email to the author, A. A. Cristie 8 days ago - no reply

Used contact us form on Sierra Madre Playhouse site - no reply

YouTube Channels With a Child Molester on Piano

I have left comments on multiple channels with videos of Frederick. The comments have either been ignored or deleted.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCcpe7p9ZVb9i0Ws_n82zOWA - Janet Klein, recently appearing in duets with Frederick
https://www.youtube.com/@GeorgeCollier - 831,000 Subscribers. This is someone I'm familiar with for entirely unrelated reasons
https://www.youtube.com/@frederickhodges - I'm surprised my comments haven't been deleted