“Down by the Salley Gardens” for Hammered Dulcimer

The words to this song (in Irish ‘Gort na Saileán) are from a poem composed by Irish poet William Butler Yeats and published in 1889: Down by the salley gardens my love and I did meet; She passed the salley gardens with little snow-white feet. She bid me take love...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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A Sweet Fingerpicked Melody for Mountain Dulcimer – “Dream Stream”

Jan’s tips on playing “Dream Stream”:    This is a tune that I wrote with a mystical, dreamy and arrhythmic feeling in mind. The solo recording was made with my dulcimer in a C-G-C, Mixolydian tuning. The tab is written in the standard DAD tuning and is indicated to be...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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“Scotland the Brave” Using Different Mountain Dulcimer Drones

The bagpipe tune, “Scotland the Brave,” probably became known around the turn of the 20th Century.  It is considered the unofficial national anthem of Scotland. Many people in the U.S. first heard this traditional melody in the 1950s, when the Ames Brothers recorded contemporary lyrics to it bearing the name...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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“Silent Night” arranged for Mountain Dulcimer

“Silent Night” was sung first as “Stille Nacht! Heilige Nacht” in Oberndorf, Austria in 1817. Written a year earlier as a Poem by Fr. Joseph Mohr, he took it to Franz Gruber on December 24, 1818 to inquire about a melody being put to it for the Christmas Eve service....
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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“Auld Lang Syne” for Mountain Dulcimer

by Madeline MacNeil This book and companion CD offer a very simple and reliable introduction for new mountain dulcimer players. The following sample from the book is a simple one-string arrangement, along with a recording. Author Madeline MacNeil is using the DAA (‘Ionian’) tuning, which places the tune comfortably on...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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“Off She Goes” for Mountain Dulcimer

Traditional Irish Jig arranged by Mark Nelson This energetic jig is often played in music sessions and dances in Irish, English and Scottish traditions. It is a popular tune for New England contradances as well. Here are some words that go with the A part: Off she goes to Donnybrook...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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Mountain Dulcimer: “Aura Lee” an Easy Jamming Tune!

This traditional Irish song captured my attention on folk radio. What struck me was the beautiful melody and rhythm in conjunction with the quirky counting chorus, and the story: a young man is smitten by a woman of questionable reputation washing her feet by candlelight on a late-night street in...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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“Grandma’s Dulcimer” for Mountain Dulcimer

by Linda Brockinton Several years back I went into a flea market and found a dulcimer abandoned on the floor. How sad it was to see this instrument that once held so much music just tossed away after someone died. It always makes me sad to see music and instruments...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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Mountain Dulcimer Blues 101

By Bing Futch Music is a language much like English, German, French or Kacipo-Balesi. If you think of 12 chromatic notes like our 26 letters of the alphabet in the western English language – those same 26 letters (sometimes with diacritical markings) can order coffee in Spanish, beer in German...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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Traditional Ballad for Mountain Dulcimer: “Barbara Allen”

by Ralph Lee Smith with Madeline MacNeil This ballad has origins in the British Isles. The version here was collected by Cecil Sharp and published in his 19312 book, English Folk-Songs from the Southern Appalachians. The arrangement here is from the singing of Loraine Wyman. The music of Lorraine, and...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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“Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair”

by Stephen Foster arranged for Mountain Dulcimer by Shelley Stevens The following arrangement is from MB96543BCD, Stephen Foster for Mountain Dulcimer, by Shelley Stevens. Often sung in the Key of F, Shelley has arranged it to the key of D and the familiar DAD mountain dulcimer tuning. Listen to Shelley...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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Mountain Dulcimer: Those Sparkling Harmonics!

We all may have occasions where we want to put some “dazzle” into our playing. Harmonics can add sparkle to an arrangement and also can sometimes provide a handy way to negotiate a tricky passage. What’s a harmonic? The easy definition is: a “clear bell-like sound” produced by lightly stopping...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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“Haste to the Wedding” An Irish Jig for Mountain Dulcimer

“Haste to the Wedding” is a favorite traditional Irish dance and jamming tune. Here is Mark Nelson’s mountain dulcimer arrangement of it from the above-referenced book. You can purchase the book and its accompanying CD, or “e” version at MelBay.com   Listen to Mark Nelson play “Haste to the Wedding.”...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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Interview with Jerry Rockwell, Mountain Dulcimer Player & Builder

I admire Jerry Rockwell’s mountain dulcimer playing. He’s got a generosity of spirit that manifests itself both in his music, and in the playing of other players he has taught and influenced. I’m one of them, and some others who have benefited this way from knowing Jerry are Steven K....
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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Welcome to the August/September 2010 Issue of DulcimerSessions®!

Hammered and mountain dulcimers are different instruments with different playing techniques, but they have a lot of music in common, and many people play both. To make mountain dulcimer music accessible to hammered dulcimer players we usually include with mountain dulcimer tablature the accompaniment chord letters and either notation or...
  • Ted
  • November 30, 2016
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