Rhythm Retreat at Brazil Barn is produced by Scott Kettner and Anita Jacobs Arts.

Thanks for an uplifting Saturday afternoon! Ali and I really enjoyed ourselves at your Maracatu event. Everyone we met was chill and really welcoming. Your and Greg’s discussion was illuminating and fascinating. And the rhythm lesson was on another inspiring mix of spiritual cognition. What a rare treat. Ali really enjoyed it, so we had a nice father/daughter hang. Further, she said she’s rarely been in such a non judgemental and free musical environment. Thanks for inviting us and allowing us to experience your musical landscape, Scott.
— John Palmer - TAMA Drum Company

Directed by master drummer and percussionist Scott Kettner, this three day retreat is an immersive experience into the music and culture of Northeastern Brazil and beyond. The weekend combines a robust schedule of intensive percussion workshops, blowout dance parties, inspiring presentations, musical excursions and family activities.  Our home base will be a large historic barn and the surrounding grounds of Tinicum Park in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, just steps from the Delaware River, and about 1.5 hours from NYC and Philadelphia. Home-cooked meals each day will include fresh herbs, local garden produce, and a selection of fresh baked goodies.  2019’s featured retreat guests include Brazilian music expert DJ Greg Caz, folklorist Ana Cristina Coura and members of Maracatu NY.

We are VERY happy to announce that Pitoco de Aira from Estrela Brilhante has just joined our roster for all 3 days.


Take a short video tour into Brazil Barn.



July 26, 27, 28 - 2019


Brazil Barn AKA Tinicium Barn

Tinicum Park in Bucks County, Pennsylvania

CONTACT Rhythm Retreat


Whether you’re an instrumentalists seeking to improve your understanding of Brazilian rhythms, a drummer looking to expand your rhythmic vocabulary, or a seasoned percussionist eager to improve your skills, this retreat will challenge all levels.  The weekend will culminate in a public performance and parade where you can show off your new drumming chops.  Bring your friends and family and prepare to meet other Brazilian music lovers as we share a few days of glorious summer fun together.

Carnival Caravan Retreat drummers - 2017

Carnival Caravan Retreat drummers - 2017

Pandeiro Classes for all levels. Photo by Matthew Hamilton.

Pandeiro Classes for all levels. Photo by Matthew Hamilton.

Explore hybrid drum set grooves, techniques and rudiments with Scott Kettner.

Explore hybrid drum set grooves, techniques and rudiments with Scott Kettner.

Maracatu Classes. Photo by Matthew Hamilton

Maracatu Classes. Photo by Matthew Hamilton





12:00-2:00 Welcome and Picnic Lunch

Grab your orientation package and join us for a relaxed summer picnic and orientation session in beautiful Tinicum Park. Frisbee optional.

2:00-3:30 Maracatu Percussion Class: Led by Pitoco

2:00-4:00 Kid’s Playgroup (Optional)

Kids 3 years old and over can join us for an afternoon of supervised crafting workshops, playground adventures, and storytime in Tinicum Park.

3:45-5:00 Pandeiro Class:  Led by Scott Kettner

5:15-6:30        Maracatu Workshop: Led by Pitoco

6:30-7:45 Brazilian BBQ Feast, Caipirinha Cocktails and Croquet (Optional Add On)

Join us for a special welcome celebration at the nearby Tinicum Herb Barn (transportation provided).  We begin with cocktails, croquet, and fresh herb sampling in the garden. A candlelit Feijoada dinner in the barn will follow.  The feast promises to include fresh herbs and produce from the garden and homemade ice cream.

8:00-9:30    Film Screening + Discussion with Michele Nascimento-Kettner  


10:00am-11:15am Pandeiro Workshop: Led by Scott Kettner

11:30am-1:00pm Maracatu Workshop: Led by Pitoco

10:00-1:00 Kid’s Playgroup (Optional)

Kids 3 years old and over can join us for an afternoon of supervised crafting workshops, playground adventures, and story time in Tinicum Park.

1:00-2:3o Loungy Lunch

Join us for a delicious group picnic in Tinicum Park, finishing up with iced herbal tea, coffee, and Anita’s famous rosemary-apricot bars.  When your done, feel free to stroll along the Delaware Canal, shop in nearby Frenchtown, or just lounge in a hammock under the trees.

2:30-4:00       DJ Greg Caz’s Sonic Journey to Brazil

The renowned DJ and Brazilian music aficionado will break out the tunes and guide us on a musical trip around Brazil. Caz will chat about his extensive travels, demonstrate examples of regional dance rhythms, and share some of his favorite Brazilian recordings,  from contemporary to old school.

4:15-5:30 Maracatu: with Pitoco

5:45-7:45 Brazilian BBQ Dinner (Optional Add On)

Scott Kettner will break out his famous Brazilian BBQ rub for a smokey feast to remember, including local roast corn, Brazilian potato salad, and homemade fruit pies. Cash bar for wine, beer and sangria.

7:00-7:45 Pandeiro Class: Led by Scott Kettner

7:45-9:30 Roda de Coco Jam Session with Pitoco, Scott Kettner + Sunset Dance Party with DJ Greg Caz

Break out your dancing shoes and be prepared to hit the dancefloor with a special booty-shaking barn party featuring Pitoco de Aira, Scott Kettner and DJ Greg Caz’s legendary vintage Brazilian beats.


10:30-11:30 Maracatu Workshop: Led by Pitoco

11:30-12:30 Picnic Lunch

Join us for a group picnic lunch in Tinicum Park and enjoy a selection of finger sandwiches, herbal specialities and garden- inspired treats.

12:30-1:00 Performance Prep

Grab your drums and join Scott Kettner in a brief warmup to get ready for the day’s public performances.

BRAZIL BASH EVENTS (open to the public)

1:00-1:45 Brazilian Folklore for Kids

Performing with colorful puppets, and featuring Portuguese songs and rhythms, Storyteller Ana Cristina Coura brings traditional Brazilian stories to life in an interactive workshop for kids and families.

2:00-2:45 Drumming Workshop for All Ages

Master drummer and percussionist Scott Kettner uses drums and shakers to teach visitors an introduction to maracatu, forró and other rhythms of Northeastern Brazil.  Drums and egg shakers will be provided, but feel free to bring your own instruments too. No experience needed.

3:00-4:00 Maracatu NY Parade featuring Pitoco de Aira

It’s party time!  Join us in a joyful and raucous procession around Tinicum Park celebrating the musical and dance traditions of Northeastern Brazil.  Grab a giant puppet and join costumed dancers as we boogie around the grass with dozens of drummers and percussionists from the celebrated ensemble Maracatu NY.

4:00-5:30 Carnival Dance Party

Shake a tail feather to the rhythms of Brazil as we blow the top off of Brazil Barn in a colorful dance celebration to remember.

5:30-6:00 Meet the Artist Reception

Scott Kettner, members of Maracatu NY, and other performers will be on hand to sign CD’s and chat.

Tinicum Barn

Tinicum Barn


FACULTY & Special Guests

Photo by Matthew Hamilton

Photo by Matthew Hamilton


Director + Producer

When Scott Kettner looks at a map, he sees a direct line that connects the rivers of northeastern Brazil to the parishes of New Orleans and the streets of NYC. A master percussionist, bandleader and educator, Kettner is the guiding force behind Nation Beat, a band whose teeming, vibrant rhythms find common ground in the primal maracatu rhythm of Brazil’s northeastern region, the Big Easy’s funky, hypnotic second-line and strolling Mardi Gras Indians, and the unfettered freedom of big-city downtown jazz.


Pitoco de Aira

Maracatu Percussion

Pitoco is an outstanding percussionist from Recife, Pernambuco, Brasil who started his journey with Afoxé Ylê de Egbá when he was only 4 years old. Soon after, he joined Nação Estrela Brilhante do Recife, where he is now one of the leaders. Pitoco is a master percussionist with a deep knowledge of Afro-Brazilian beats from Northeast Brazil.


Anita Jacobs


Anita Jacobs has been working in performing arts for over 20 years and is the founder and director of Anita Jacobs Arts, a new programming, consulting and production company based out of Brooklyn, New York. She served as artistic director and director of public programs at Brooklyn Botanic Garden from 2001-January of 2019 where she created and produced numerous site specific events and large-scale outdoor festivals including Sakura Matsuri, the Chile Pepper Festival, and Ghouls & Gourds. Previous work included Celebrate Brooklyn, The New York Jewish Film Festival, and over ten years as an award-winning public radio radio producer for music programs on NPR and PRI.  Anita loves gardening, playing with dogs, and baking scrumptious goodies.


DJ Greg Caz

A Sonic Journey & Conversation of Brazilian Music with DJ Greg Caz

Greg Casseus has been spinning around New York since the early 1990s. He made a name for himself during his long stint at Black Betty (R.I.P.) in Williamsburg, where he co-hosted Brazilian Beat Sundays – a raucous DJ night of 1970s Brazilian dance music that inspired two mix CDs, Baile Funk, Vols. 1 & 2. Caz caught the "sweet sickness” of record collecting at a young age and owns crates and crates of funk, soul, rare grooves, reggae, jazz, golden-era hip hop, Latin music, ’70s soft rock and African music. Aside from his residency at Nublu in the East Village, you can also catch him occasionally spinning at Bembe in Brooklyn.


Ana Cristina Coura “Tininha”

Brazilian Folklore and Storytelling for Children

Performing with colorful puppets, and featuring Portuguese songs and rhythms, Storyteller Ana Cristina Coura brings traditional Brazilian stories to life in an interactive workshop for kids and families.


Michele Nascimento-Kettner

Curator of Cultural Film Screening

Dr. Michele Nascimento Kettner, a native from Brazil, has dedicated herself to teaching for more than 15 years. She has received her PhD in Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian Literatures from the CUNY Graduate Center. Her research interests include the topics of regionalism, globalization, transnationalism and migration. Parallel to her research on Latin-American Literature, Nascimento Kettner has co-authored a book on Afro-Brazilian music and culture, Maracatu for Drumset and Percussion, published in 2013. She currently teaches Portuguese and Spanish at New York University(NYU).


All workshop activities and performances will be held at the Tinicum Barn (Brazil Barn) in Erwinna, PA.

Early Bird Special (April 18-May 12)

  • All Access Pass: $390

  • Two Day Pass: $290

Regular Price (May 13-July 27)

  • All Access Pass: $425

  • Two Day Pass: $325

  • One Day Pass: $175 

    Optional Add Ons

  • Friday Night Feijoada Brazilian Dinner: $35 (adults 18yrs up) $15 (12-18yrs)

  • Saturday Night BBQ: $35 (adults 18yrs up) $15 (12-18yrs)

  • Kids playgroup- $15 per hour per child (3 years old and above)

Your decision to register constitutes your acknowledgement of and consent to all of the registration, payment and cancellation terms and conditions listed below:


  • Early Bird Special April 16-May 13, 2019.

  • All rates are per-person

  • All rates are subject to Tax and the Service & Processing Fee

CANCELLATION: All payments and deposits are refundable up to 7 days before event.


By registering, you hereby release Scott Kettner, Tension Rod Music and Rittenhouse Soundworks, its employees, and all associated entities, from all claims, liabilities, loss to property, damages, injuries, etc. arising out of or in connection with your participation in any aspect at Carnival Caravan Music Retreat


Scott Kettner’s Rhythm Retreat and Anita Jacobs Arts reserves the right to take photos and/or video during. the retreat and to use such photos and/or video for advertising and marketing purposes. By registering for Rhythm Retreat 2019, you agree to release your photograph without compensation and understand that Scott Kettner’s Rhythm Retreat and Anita Jacobs Arts reserves all rights in regard to reproduction of said photograph.


Rhythm Retreat welcomes all ages however most participants will be adults.  Participants under 15 are permitted if accompanied by legal guardian/chaperone.


Photo Gallery photos by Matthew Hamilton


Contact Us

Don't hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions.


963 River Rd, Erwinna, PA 18920

Name *


Rhythm Retreat participants are responsible for their own accommodations, but we have provided a list of suggestions at different price points.   

Our home base is Brazil Barn (a.k.a Tinicum Barn) which is located in Tinicum Park in Erwinna, Pennsylvania. We are located very close to the cute Victorian hamlets of Frenchtown and Milford, New Jersey which have coffee shops, restaurants, and lodging.


Located in Tinicum Park about a three minute walk from Brazil Barn, there are a group of nice wooded campsites with fire grills and restrooms.  We have reserved a number of group sites for our guests at the rate of $4 a night per person. Contact us for reservations and more details.

You can also book your own private site at $30 a day (6 people max.) by contacting

Air B&B’s

We have reserved several nearby Air B&B’s for our guests which are available on a first come first served basis for folks staying in the area both nights. Contact us directly for reservations and more details.  

The Carriage House at Walnut Pond-2.jpg
Milford River House.jpg

The Carriage House at Walnut Pond

$50 per night (Shared room, 2 night minimum)

Charming carriage house on very private 8 acres overlooking Walnut Pond. The long driveway takes you past our small vineyard, a log cabin built in 1789 and across Little Nishisakawick Creek. The carriage house is bright & cozy with lovely views & private patio great for nature watching. We live in the adjacent converted barn. 2 miles from historic Frenchtown on the Delaware River, close to Bucks County with a great variety of restaurants, miles of towpath & old river towns to explore.

Bedroom #1 - Shared room with two twin beds

Bedroom #2 -  Private room with a double bed (reserved)

Milford River House

$70 per night (Private Room, 2 night minimum)

200 year old 1400 sq. foot home with front porch, side yards, trees and bluffs in the backyard; the Delaware River is across the street with small views from the porch; short walk into the quaint river town of Milford where there is a micro-brewery/ restaurant, antique shops, and market; perfect for biking, walking, kayaking and tubing; an easy getaway from NYC or Philly. The home was an old stagecoach stop but has been completely updated and immaculately decorated with antiques.

Bedroom #1 -Private room with a double bed

Bedroom #2- Private room with a double bed

Bedroom #3 - Private room with a single bed


Bed & Breakfasts

There are a number of nice Bed & Breakfasts in the immediate area.  We recommend making reservations as early as possible.

Widow McCrea House  - 53 Kingwood Avenue Frenchtown, NJ 08825   (908) 996-4999

The National Hotel  - 31 Race Street, Frenchtown, NJ  08825 (908) 996-3200

The Rittenhouse Inn - 49 Kingwood Avenue, Frenchtown, NJ  (908)797-8485 (no website)

Bridgeton House on the Delaware - 1525 River Road Upper Black Eddy, PA 18972  (610)-982-5856

The Golden Pheasant Inn - 763 River Road, Erwinna, PA  18920  (610) 294-9595

Bike Rental

Cycle Corner in Frenchtown has bike rentals for the whole family.  Their inventory includes tandem, youth and child carrier bicycles.

Tubing (if you stay longer)

Delaware River Tubing offers daily, adventures including tubing, rafting, canoeing and kayaking along the Delaware River.

Transportation (more details coming)

Transbridge Bus Lines goes directly to Frenchtown from Port Authority Bus Terminal in NYC in a little under two hours.