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Jingle Bells for Mountain Dulcimer in 3 Different Tunings

Jingle Bells for Mountain Dulcimer in 3 Different Tunings

This winter-time tune by James H. Pierpont has long been associated with Christmas, but actually is about riding in a fast sleigh through (and sometimes IN) the snow!

Steve first demonstrates and teaches how to play this song in the key of G from three (3) different tunings!

First we have chords to accompany singing in DAA tuning and then the melody in the lower octave:

Secondly we have both chords and melody in DAd tuning, making use of the capo at the 3rd fret:

Finally we re-tune to DGd for playing in “reverse ionian” of G and play the tune this way:

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Odd Meters

Odd Meters

ClubFootedJibby Steve Eulberg

Playing traditional instruments in the western world, we get quite used to “square” or “even” rhythms and meters in the songs we play.

Marches and Reels are in (4/4) time; Polkas are in (2/2 or 4/4).  Even jigs (6/8) have 2 pulses in their measures.  Waltzes (3/4) have a strong beat on 1.  Slides (12/8 or 6/8) and Slip Jigs (9/8) have multiple pulses in their measures, but what all of these tunes tend to have in common is that they have a regular way to be counted based on the time signature.

There are other places in the world, however, where tunes with Odd Meters are considered normal or natural.  Key signatures of 5/4, 7/8, 11/8 feel odd to many of us, but odd can ALSO mean FUN!

Actually what happens in these tunes is the players or dancers sometimes sub-divide the counting into smaller bits to help keep the song together.

5/4 may be counted:  123 12

11/8 may be counted:  1234 123 1234.

7/8 may be counted several ways:  1234 123   or  123 1234   or 123 12 12.

Which choice is made is determined by the character of the tune itself.

The tune Club-Footed Jib is a tune that I wrote as an etude (a study) of the 7/8 time signature.  Each of the 3 sections of the tune has a different way of counting.  A new lesson teaching this tune and its exciting Odd Meter has now been posted.

Here is the hammered dulcimer demonstration of the tune.

Here is the mountain dulcimer demonstration of the tune.

Log in and learn to play this one as a tool for exploring an Odd Meter!

 

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