Pied Pumkin String Ensemble - Photo Taki Blusinger
The Pied Pumkin String Ensemble
AKA:  The Pied Pear 1976-1980
Vancouver, British Columbia
1974 - 1976
1990 - Present


Joe Mock ~ Guitar, Piano, Vocals
Shari Ulrich ~ Fiddle, Flute, Vocals
Rick Scott ~ Dulcimer, Vocals

This band is falls under the folk and humor labels. Guitarist Joe Mock had previously led the jazz-rock group Mock Duck back in the late 1960's, and Shari Ulrich (fiddle, flute and vocals) had made the journey north from San Francisco, and Rick Scott was a budding children's entertainer.
Pied Pumkin String Ensemble - Photo by Judy Weiser
    After quickly becoming favorites on the festival and small concert stage, they recorded their first album live at the Simon Fraser University on top of Burnaby Mountain from the back of a truck in 1974. They released their LP on one of Canada's first truly independent record companies, namely their own Squash Records (what else?). A second LP was released in 1976 (Pied Pumkin Allah Mode), but they lost Shari Ulrich when she joined up with Claire Lawrence in The Hometown Band. The duo continued as Pied Pair, and release a new LP in 1978 called "The Pair Of Pied Pumkin".

    After Shari Ulrich's time with The Hometown Band, she started a very successful solo career under the production and guidance of Claire Lawrence. Hit singles and hit albums followed, but she took time to rejoin Mock and Scott in 1980 for a new album, "Pied Who? Pear What?".

    Joe Mock went back to doing a solo gig, this time in Japan, where he found an audience of curious Japanese and homesick North Americans looking for the real thing. Joe is currently living in Europe where he still makes a living singing and playing his guitar. All three have released CDs in the last few years.



The photos were taken by Taki Blusinger (the "lick"), Judy Weiser (live, color). The b/w crowd photo is by unknown.  Zoom in on the crowd in that photo and see that almost every face has a big smile.

Roger Stomperud (R.I.P.), bass with Kickin' Horse, 3 April 2004

During Pieds Pumkin and Pear, Rick Scott was not a budding children’s performer, but a budding dulcimer ace. His children’s music career didn’t begin until 1989. After Pied Pear he spent more than a decade touring solo and with Harris Van Berkel, Andy Graffiti and Connie Lebeau in The Rick Scott Band (they released one LP You Better Dancing in 1985, re-released digitally in 2013 on CD Baby), and as an actor for stage, film and television. 1982-90 he appeared in numerous Arts Club Theatre productions in Vancouver including title roles in The Late Blumer and the national tour of the circus musical Barnum, for which he learned to walk tightrope.

An 1989 invitation to perform in Vancouver schools in launched his children’s music career and led to performances in 9 countries and 8 award winning children’s recordings, most recently the 4 CD musical audio novel The Great Gazzoon. In 2014 he premiered an educational concert My Symphony introducing kids to orchestra with the Vancouver Island Symphony. He continues to tour old songs and new playing his dulcimer solo for big folks and small, with audiences spanning four generations. He is curator of the Protection Island Museum and Goodwill Ambassador for the Down Syndrome Research Foundation. www.rickscott.ca

Pied Pumkin reunited in 1998 to perform a dozen reunion tours, releasing three CDs: Plucking DeVine in 1999 (a CD retrospective of faves from the 1974-80); Pied Alive in 2000, recorded live on tour in 18 BC Communities; and Pumkids, winner of 2007 Canadian Folk Music Award for Best Children’s CD. In 2011 Rick and Joe reunited for a Pied Pear tour, releasing Pied Pear Collectors Edition, containing the LPS A Pear Of Pied Pumkin and Pied Who? Pear What? on a single CD. Pied Pumkin opened the Vancouver Folk Festival’s 35th anniversary in summer 2012 .

Footage of the entire last Pied Pear concert at the OAP Hall in Victoria in 1984 just surfaced and will soon be available. Details will be on www.piedpumkin.com.  Shari continues to tour widely both solo and with several trios including UHF with Roy Forbes and Bill Henderson. www.shariulrich.com   All three Pumkins can be seen in many videos on YouTube.

Rick’s recordings are available from www.rickscott.ca and CD Baby www.cdbaby.com/cd/rickscott

Valley Hennell (manager and producer, Rick and Pied Pumkin)

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Last Update: 2 August 2014
Credits: Roger Stomperud, Valley Hennell
Band # 1451