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Tag Archives: hammered dulcimer

Rich Chords Part 1 & 2

Rich Chords Part 1 & 2

by Linda Ratcliff & Steve Eulberg

Your life will be richer when you use rich chords. – Steve Eulberg

Recently, we uploaded a new series of lessons about how to play Rich Chords on the hammered dulcimer.

Rich chords are chords that have other notes added to them, in addition to the 3 notes that go with either the major or the minor chords. To set the stage for building rich chords, in this video Steve begins the series by explaining the basis or construction of major and minor chords.

HD Video streaming too slowly? Try the standard definition.As you work your way through Rich Chords Part 1 and Rich Chords Part 2, you will learn to identify and play major 7th chords, dominant 7th chords, 6th chords, minor 7th chords and more.

Toward the end the series, Steve applies everything we’ve learned to the old familiar tune, “You Are My Sunshine.” The arrangement in his final video of the series was my favorite – where he used dominant 7th chords to create a “bluesified” rendition of this well-known song.

As always Members of DulcimerCrossing.com have access to all of the episode in this lesson series.  Join here

 
 

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Marie’s Story

Marie’s Story

by Linda Ratcliff

How the musical score of Marie’s life was forever changed …


One of our followers, Marie, shared her personal musical journey with us, and told how playing the dulcimer has impacted her life. I was touched by her story, and got her permission to share it with all of you.  From Marie …

“I just read your story about how you grew up learning music. You are so very fortunate. I always had it in me too, but I was not allowed to play music until I married my sweet husband, Bill. He bought a piano for me while I was in college in the 70’s, so I could learn and enjoy music with our children.
I will never forget how shocked my music professor was that I signed up for “beginners piano lessons” while in college. He simply could hardly tolerate me as I struggled to learn to read the music, and I “barely” made a C just in order to pass the class (I worked very hard). As if that was not enough for him, I “stupidly” told him I was going to come back and play for him someday. He said, “I will be an old man.” This hurt me so much, and I left feeling defeated. Then I went on to my next class, cried as I told a friend how hurt I was, only to find this very nice young gentlemen was listening. He turned to me and said, “Do you want to play seriously, or for fun?” I said, “For fun, because I want to play for our children as they grow.” He said, “I will teach you,” and I started taking lessons with him and he taught me very well.

My youngest son, Keith, learned saxophone in grade/high school and I enjoyed playing with him. He died at the age of 26, and it left me so devastated that I lost all memory of how to play my piano, plus my computer skills that I had studied. I soon realized if I did not find something to do, I was not going to be able to bear life anymore. I then learned to play the mountain dulcimer, which helped me start to go on with my grief (because I could still count to 10).

Then I went to a concert, and Rick Thum was playing his HAMMERED DULCIMER. I got BIT!!! Rick gave me a learning CD, and I went all the way to Bennington, OK, and bought a beautiful Master Works HD. I began taking lessons in Mountain View, AR, and worked hard to learn my beautiful instrument.

Many times I thought about quitting because the HD was so HARD for me. I had to learn to read the notes and chords all over again — but I did not quit. I felt like God was saying: “No, you are not going to quit — I gave you a gift to help you, so keep trying.”

I now enjoy the HD very much and I’m still learning (can’t get enough). So even though I was not so fortunate at a young age, I have at least had this wonderful opportunity. By the way, I had told myself I was too old to begin … and then I said to myself, “What if I don’t try and I live to be 100? Then I will regret that I did not try.” I’m so glad I tried and stayed with it!!”

Do you have a story to share?  Please send it, if you believe it will inspire and motivate other dulcimer players, And, as always, if you have any questions, always feel free to ask Steve or myself.

Happy dulcimering,

Linda
 
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Posted by on December 13, 2017 in hammered dulcimer, subscriber news

 

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Live Event! Karen Alley

Live Event! Karen Alley

Karen Alley, 2014 National Hammered Dulcimer Champion, has been on the faculty of the Colorado Dulcimer Festival for years and shared one of her Habits for a Healthy Music Habitat with premium subscribers of DulcimerCrossing.com.

This Sunday, December 3rd, she will play a live, interactive ConcertWindow Show for DulcimerCrossing Subscribers!

[If you are not familiar with ConcertWindow, this is an internet platform that allows performers and watcher/listeners to connect with each other from the convenience of their own locations, using their computer, tablet or phone!  DulcimerCrossing began offering these as a benefit for their members January 2016.]

About the artist:

Karen was playing the fiddle at a folk festival in 2004 when she discovered the hammered dulcimer, and found that she could make much nicer sounds on the dulcimer than on the fiddle. Hammered dulcimer rapidly became a passion, and she now teaches and performs across the US.

Her repertoire ranges from Celtic to classical to hymns to show tunes, and her style combines percussive techniques with the rich harmonies and broad dynamics that make the dulcimer one of the most expressive instruments used in the folk community.

She has released two albums showcasing a variety of styles, as well as two books: “Beyond Melodies, Using Chords to Add Harmony,” which demystifies music theory and playing harmonies with melody lines, and “Christmas with your Dulcimer,” a book of arrangements of favorite Christmas carols for beginner and intermediate players.

When she’s not playing the dulcimer, Karen is a glaciologist specializing in the ice shelves of the Antarctic Ice Sheet. She also teaches in the geology department at the College of Wooster in Ohio.

http://www.dulcimercrossing.com/dc_liveEvents_pm.html

 

 

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Su La Li-New Hammered Dulcimer Lesson

Su La Li-New Hammered Dulcimer Lesson

by Linda Ratcliff

Are you tired of practicing the same old tunes?  Try a new tune.  Learning fuels creativity, refines skills, and is satisfying when you finally  “get it.”
– Linda Ratcliff


We have a new lesson for our hammered dulcimer students called Su La Li. This lullaby is taught by Steve Eulberg, and was composed by Bonnie Light for Music Together, an internationally recognized music program for children from birth through age 7. 
This is a classic example of a “song without words.” Songs that are sung just using syllables are fun to share with young children for two reasons:
  • Children who have not yet learned to speak can still sing along.
  • Children can enjoy the musical experience without having to focus on words.
You can listen to Steve talk us through different ways to create a beautiful arrangement here.
SuLaLiCover
While this song is lovely using just the syllables “su la li,” children will also get a kick out of singing their own names or the words “I love you” instead.
As always, if you have any questions, always feel free to ask Steve or myself.
Happy dulcimering,
Linda

 

 
 

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Barlow Knife (New Lesson)

Barlow Knife (New Lesson)

By Linda Ratcliff

The Barlow knife design dates back 400 years, and is a type of folding pocket knife that features double or single blades that open at one end only. The knife-style bears the name of a man named Barlow of Sheffield, England, one of the earliest and most famous makers. This knife has been in the back pocket of Americans since the beginning, and its dependable design and minimalistic features make it a classic to own. Fifty years ago, you could buy one for $2.00, but they cost quite a bit more today.

The song about the Barlow knife is an old-time southern Appalachian tune that is credited to the music of Henry Reed (Glen Lyn, VA), who called the tune “Cabin Creek,” and Franklin George (Bluefield, WV), who knew it as Barlow Knife. The tune is usually played as an instrumental, with perhaps one verse only sung.

Steve & Vi playing Barlow Knife on the streets of Fort Collins

 

In this lesson, Steve Eulberg teaches hammered dulcimer players how to play the melody, backup, and harmony for Barlow Knife. Enjoy this video with Vi “The Fiddler” Wickam and Steve Eulberg playing Barlow Knife together. You can clearly hear the twin harmony in the arrangement. Barlow Knife is included on their Fiddle Whamdiddle CD.
BarlowKnifeDemoCover 
As always, if you have any questions, always feel free to ask Steve or myself.
Happy dulcimering,
Linda
 
 

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Dampers on Hammered Dulcimer

Dampers on Hammered Dulcimer

Steve Eulberg introduces the tool of dampers, how they work and how they can be used on the hammered dulcimer in this new lesson set.

Changing the timbre of the tone is the thing he likes because it broadens the sonic palette for playing the sweet music!

Here is the lesson set.

Subscribe to DulcimerCrossing.com to see the rest of the lesson!

 

 

 
 

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Stir Up Your Power for Hammered Dulcimer

Stir Up Your Power for Hammered Dulcimer

A new seasonal lesson for Hammered Dulcimer features an original tune by Steve Eulberg.HarkCover

Steve wrote this tune as a song for his congregation to sing in the season of Advent when he was an inner city pastor in Kansas City.  Guy George later covered it and the two of them have played it on stage a few times at festival appearances.  The tune is part of Steve’s Hark, the Glad Sound recording and is found in his book Dulcimer-Friendly Worship, Vol 1: the season of Advent.

Take a look at a preview below:

 

Subscribe to DulcimerCrossing.com to see the rest of the lesson and learn to play this tune!

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