Tunes, Jams & Classes

PCDC Dance Tunes Session

All Instruments Welcome!

Do you play a melody instrument and want to learn some of those tunes you’ve been dancing to every week?  The Second Thursday PCDC Dance Tunes Sessions are for you.  The sessions are taught by local musicians who are masters of the contra genre and great teachers.  Instruments that show up include fiddle, mandolin, banjo, concertina, cello, guitar and sometimes even a bass playing melody.

We learn two to three tunes per class, and over the course of the year we work on building a repertoire together that we can play for a dance – either a 5th Saturday open band dance and/or a special dance of our own.  Fun!

The classes are held in SE Portland from 7pm to 9pm on the second Thursday of the month, from October through May.  We usually have about six to eight people, with room for more.  If you have questions, or would like to be on the class mailing list, please email delonalang (at) gmail (dot) com.

See the more about the actual tunes at the tunes session website.

Pizza Jam

Play tunes with friends at the Pizza Jam!

The “Pizza Jam” (although no longer at a pizza parlour) is a group of musicians that get together twice a month at people’s houses to play contradance and other tunes.  All instruments and skill levels welcome.  We meet twice a month, 7:30pm to 9:30pm, on the 1st and 3rd Mondays.  The 1st Monday session is at the home of Sally Joughin, 2715 SE 34th Ave; the third Monday session is at the home of Laurel Thomas, 3037 NE 43rd.

We use printed music and mainly play tunes from The Portland Collection, Volumes 1–3, by Sue Songer, and from The Waltz Books, I-IV, by Bill Matthiesen.  If you don’t have those books yet, everyone is willing to share music.  Additionally, you can bring copies of any other tunes, contradance or not, that you would like played at the jam session; please bring 10–12 copies.

We go round the room and each person takes a turn at choosing a tune to play.  That person sets the tempo, decides how many times we play it, and starts us off together.  We recommend playing each tune at least 3 times.

To get on the mailing list, email Sally Joughin, with your name, email address, and the instruments you play.  You’ll receive a reminder email, usually the Friday or Saturday before each jam session with all the details.


There is a once-a-month English Country Dance jam, 4th Wednesday.  We play at different houses, 7:30pm to 9:30pm.  Get on the email list to find out where it will be.  Contact Sally Joughin.  We play from the 2 Peter Barnes books of ECD tunes and the 4 Waltz Books.  If you don’t yet have these books, players will share with you.  We take turns choosing a tune to play.