Playing Homer Ledford’s Dulcimer

22 Sep

by Steve Eulberg

While one tour this month in Bettendorf, Iowa, I was given the opportunity to provide workshops for hammered dulcimer players at the home of Linda & Reg Shoesmith.

On the morning I was leaving, Linda brought out a treasured “find” to share:

A mountain dulcimer built by Homer Ledford, one of the famous Kentucky builders of the 20th century!

Homer Ledford Dulcimer

A unique feature of this instrument is that the only fret that went under all 4 strings was the 3rd fret.

Only 3rd fret crosses the entire fretboard

3rd Fret Detail

Tailpiece carving det

Holding Homer's dulcimer

What an exciting opportunity!

Click here to listen to me playing my tune Soaring on this lovely instrument!  I use that 3rd fret on the bass string.  (I also stopped the bass string where the 4th fret would be for the finish of the tune–playing in fretless style!)

(You can learn to play this tune on both mountain and hammered dulcimers in our lessons at!)

1 Comment

Posted by on September 22, 2011 in history, lessons, mountain dulcimer


One response to “Playing Homer Ledford’s Dulcimer

  1. Ken Longfield

    October 8, 2011 at 1:47 am

    Steve, thanks for sharing your experience with the Homer Ledford dulcimer. i enjoyed reading about it and listening to it.



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