The ‘Riders

Meet Joyride…

georgepenkGeorge Penk – Fiddle

George Penk’s powerful connection between music and dance has placed him in high demand throughout the U.S.  He has an unusual ability to infuse his fiddling with both driving rhythm and intense emotion. George’s music urges dancers to respond—soaring and gliding to beautiful English tunes or stomping and shrieking to fast-moving reels.

erik-sacrementoErik Weberg – Flutes, Harmonicas, Bombardes

Erik holds down the “windy” end of Joyride, playing flutes (concert C and Alto), harmonicas and bombardes.  Erik takes joy in playing not only the tunes themselves, but providing the rhythmic, percussive, and harmonic effects that make music danceable.  Harmonicas and bombardes are used less often, but add color, variety, and even excitement to the Joyride sound.

betsy-jeff-mark-2013-nwfJeff Kerssen-Griep – Guitar, Percussion

Jeff contributes soulfully solid guitar drive and percussion to popular contra dance bands Joyride and Wild Hair. A sunny rhythm catalyst, his guitar muscle and lilt owe as much to Steve Cropper as to John Doyle.


Sue Songer , Piano, Fiddle

Sue Songer’s solid and irresistibly danceable piano playing is the bedrock for the fiddlers she accompanies. Whether playing for contra or English dances, she enjoys varying the texture of the tune to suit the mood at hand, fostering a strong connection between the music and the dancers. Sue is well known for her contributions to the larger dance community, including publishing the Portland Collection tune books and companion CDs.  Organizers, please see this link for Sue’s piano needs when she plays in your community.