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Celtic, Scandinavian and Contradance music
from the Pacific Northwest



Home Music Schedule Photos
Country Capers' member's instruments

Country Capers' instruments, from the cover art for their CD, Farther Be In, The Welcomer

Country Capers began when Jane Landstra and Ken Embrey met in Mendicino, California, over three decades ago. In addition to dances and lighter performances, 'Capers' (alias Nordleik) do instrumental programs for all size private and corporate occasions: weddings, parties, solemn gatherings, dinners--catering to the needs of each event. "We play folk festivals, farmers' markets, coffee houses, music halls, dance parties. We book for St. Patrick's Day and major Swedish and Norwegian holidays by early October. But, we are also available for hire on relatively short notice--a duo (Ken and Jane) or our trio."

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Members

The members of Country Capers play music "wherever we go, be it Washington state, Canada's Quebec and Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, or Scandinavia's and the British Isles' many musical 'hot spots.' Our tunes and styles incorporate ancient and modern Scottish and Irish tunes as well as strong influences of Norwegian and Swedish fiddling traditions and players we've met over the years and had the pleasure of playing with. Our daughter, Robyn, occasionally plays bass with us when she's in town." David Denz joined the group in 2004 when he began playing contradances with them, and that collaboration has evolved into the group you hear today. The three primary members, Ken Embrey, Jane Landstra, and David Denz, all live in North Kitsap county, Washington. Click to listen to Country Capers.

bullet Jane Landstra has been playing Celtic and Scandinavian fiddle 30 plus years and embraces folk music as lead fiddler, vocalist, composer, fiddle & dance teacher, and artistic music director in many folk dialects spanning 3 decades of experience. She specializes in Celtic and Nordic, with graceful familiarity of English country dance music. She also performs on Hardanger fiddle, and piano.
bullet Ken Embrey, a long-time string and squeeze wizard, creates traditional harmonies and chording for esoteric musical moments that stretch from the Cajun southwest to far-out Nordic tunes on fiddle. He plays a two row "torader" accordion, several old Cajun squeeze boxes, concertina, guitar and munn (mouth) harp.
bullet David Denz combines many years of traditional music performance with superb arranging abilities and an ear for interesting harmonies. He performs on cittern, Uilleann pipes (in D and B), guitar, and wooden flute.
bullet Robyn Marie Embrey occasionally performs with Country Capers and is currently on the folk music trail with Cajun accordion, and electric bass. Her newest interest is bluegrass music. Most recently, Robyn won the USA Cycling Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships. Division II Women's Downhill race "...in formidable fashion and clocking the fastest female time of the day..." on October 25th, 2008. Her parents, Ken and Jane are extremely proud.

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What others say about Country Capers

"The tone set by your band was right on. You created an atmosphere of calm and contemplation for our [wedding] ceremony that fit perfectly with our natural surroundings; and then you turned around and created the most jovial and celebratory atmosphere for our dancing after dinner. The effect was magical. Thank you!" -- Jessica Ludders, bride

"Country Capers are fine musicians. Jane has a wide range of musical talent and interests; she can play lively New England, Cape Breton, and Irish reels and jigs, beautiful and intricate Scandinavian melodies, pulsating Cajun tunes, and stompin' Appalachian hoedowns. She plays with lovely tone and rhythmic drive. From energetic polkas to heavenly waltzes, she makes you want to get up and dance! Her playing is complemented by the ethereal sounds of David's wooden
flute, lilting cittern, pulsating bodrahn, and the wild primal voice of his Celtic pipes. Ken adds texture on several instruments, doubling on fiddle for wonderful Scandinavian harmonies, punctuating on banjo, or providing guitar backup. You'll enjoy this band!" -- Sherry Nivens

"...It was everything I hoped for...everyone had a blast.".. and "it was perfect to dance after Thanksgiving!" Anna Oesta, Bainbridge Island

"It was wonderful...all dancing together laughing and smiling." Bainbridge Graduate Institute Contradance

"Jane and the Country Capers were fabulous to work with. They were flexible and helped us find songs that were a perfect match for our ceremony. The contra dance during the reception was a highlight on our big day. It got everyone out on the lawn dancing: young and old, and even those who I have never seen dance before! It was a fabulous time. I would highly recommend the Country Capers, both for a wedding ceremony and contra dance reception!" Michelle Burkhart

Photos of performances can be found on the Country Capers Photo Page.

To book Country Capers, email Jane.Landstra (at) gmail.com

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Celtic artwork by Cari Busiak

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This page last modified by Barbara Denz, webmaster:  06/29/2009

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