I just want to thank you for having this website and posting these lessons. I was blessed with a dulcimer that has had made especially for me from a brother in the Lord. He lives in another state from me and was only able to give me some brief instruction which didnít stay with me very well when I got home. I have been so discouraged not being able to find books that can teach me to play.
Thank you so much for these lessons.
Just returned from California on tour.....
I listened to your channel videos on YouTube, at least most of them. And is that your new Husband? He is a really good singer and awesome guitar player. Am impressed. Do you two play together dulcimer and guitar?
I will be putting some of me playing the dulcimer. I am bit shy at all of this, BUT my fans are screaming NO DULCIMER??? So I will next week put some out on YouTube of me playing actually the dulcimer.
I will always be labeled dulcimer player I guess. I always used the dulcimer to help my singing. And why aren't there any videos of you playing the dulcimer. You're a great picker of the dulcimer...I love your playing. And maybe you could show you in your dulcimer shop making and playing your dulcimers. Your dulcimers' action is great!!! And the sound is excellent.
Going to Iceland next month for a vacation...and to look for the instrument "Langspil", a Scandinavian dulcimer, usually bowed. Hopefully I will find some players there. I do speak Norge language. When I was very young we had a nanny from Norway and she taught me the language at an early age. BUT everyone in Scandinavia speaks English.
All my Aloha,
--Terry Duggins and the Zither Band
I wanted to tell you I decided to give my wife her dulcimer early (Christmas) as we are moving and she would have seen it anyway. She simply loves it! She has already gone out and got a "how to" book on dulcimers. We will be closer to you as we are moving from Connecticut to Texas. A little town named Sweetwater. She has quite a blog following and has put pictures of her new dulcimer on her blog site along with changing her avatar to the waxwing around the sound hole. Thank you so much for the excellent job you did. I will recommend you to anyone that asks. Maybe you can come out and be part of the world's largest rattlesnake round-up held in Sweetwater in March. It swells the town size from about 11,000 to about 60,000.
The leaf design is all over the dulcimer, so I'm thinking that it came from the bubble wrap. I kind of like the design, but thought you should know about it. It does not rub off, so it must have been hot in the UPS truck and the bubble wrap left the imprint. I was really wondering you had some kind of a wood stamp to imprint the wood. It looks pretty good. Maybe you want to thing about doing that on future dulcimers you make. It is unique compared to any of the other dulcimers that are in the clubs I play with. None of them have a BEAR on theirs or any other kind of paintings. I intend to show it off on this coming months meeting..........
Everyone really likes my new bear dulcimer and thought the leaf design was very unique. It is still there and still looks great. I just went to the Mountain Dulcimer Winter Weekend at Lake Junaluska, North Carolina, and a few other dulcimer players had to come and look at the "BEAR". They were impressed by its good looks and sound. I am getting used to the 1-1/2 fret (and all the other extras) and the dulcimer is sounding better every day. I am really enjoying it.
Thanks for making a great instrument!
--Raleigh, North Carolina
The dulcimer arrived Wednesday and its beautiful! Of course this Gila Mountain dulcimer resonates the musical notes for quite a long time, the sound is amazing! The dulcimer is beautiful and the black walnut wood has such depth! I especially like the stringers of wood that you placed in there and the contrast is beautiful. The dark small note markers were a nice addition; I'm glad we added them. It is everything that we had talked about and I will have a wonderful journey playing and exploring my 2nd Gila Mountain Dulcimer! It is a work of art!
Thank you, Kerry!
I still own one of your dulcimers, so I check your web site every once and a while. The website keeps getting better. Your dulcimer is still the one of choice when I perform on it in public. It has the best projection of any of my six dulcimers, which is important when playing in the public. It is one of your early equus models. It is the lightest dulcimer I have ever picked up.
--Carson City, Nevada
Thanks a million, I love it!!! I received my new "baby" late Thursday afternoon. We've since had time to get acquainted, and she's just beautiful. I love the tone- she really resonates doesn't she? It makes my McSpadden sound like a cardboard toy. I own a number of handbuilt instruments of various types and your construction and attention to detail are excellent. My only problem is that my playing skills are no match for this instrument- I seem to be able to coax much more out of it than my other dulcimer, it just seems to have the ability to allow me to be more expressive than I thought I could be with a dulcimer. The Kokopelli and soundhole designs are perfect as well. I look forward to playing it for a long time to come. Feel free to use me as a reference if you ever need one, and I hope your life is filled with joy and happiness.
My Gila Mountain Dulcimer has been a wonderful source of enjoyment for me. The craftsmanship is superb, the quality of the sound is excellent, and its unusual shape and designs turn quite a few heads when I take it out of the case at a festival or at one of my local gigs. I am especially pleased with the smoothness of the action. I've never played another dulcimer that responds so easily and beautifully. It's obvious that you put a great deal of love and care into the building of my instrument, and it makes it even more special to me.
I have appreciated having a set of tuners that I find to be excellent. Being an experienced guitarist, I appreciate tuners that do not slip, and tuners that do not "drag" (i.e., function smoothly and without effort when making those really minute tuning adjustmets). In addition to those features, the ones you used on my instrument compliment its beauty.....they look as if they were made expressly for the woods used in its construction.
Inexpensive does not always equate with inadequate or ineffective. If the tuners cost less than others, and yet effectively do the job they were designed to do, I'm all for it!
WOW!!! The sound is wonderful and the Mogan David soundholes are perfect! I will sing your praises in more detail when I have more time!
Many years ago I made a dulcimer. It was from a kit. Nothing really good, but I wanted to know how to play one so I found a kit and made it. I fooled around with it and picked up some knowledge of it but never was very good. Still, it was fun to play. After some time we moved to an oldhouse. It needed a lot of work. When we were replacing the furnace and the thermostat we had to have someone come in and do some of the work on it.
The man doing the thermostat saw my dulcimer and thought it was wonderful. He offered my husband a better thermostat than we had ordered in exchange for the dulcimer. Being a man, being extremely practical, not really thinking at all, he jumped at the deal. He did not really understand it when I came home from work and was upset. Time passed. I never really had the heart to go out and get, let alone make, another instrument. Sometimes I thought about it, but, well, never did anything about it.
In the last few years we have gone to Branson a few times. There we "discovered" dulcimer music. My husband finally realized how good it can be. And began to regret the exchange he made. Last year he contacted you and had you make a new dulcimer for me.
What a wonderful Christmas present it was!! I have had so much fun relearning how to play it. I have even found a place where I can get some lessons. I have even found the courage to play in church one Sunday. This week they even asked me to do it again in July!!!
Thank you so much for the beautiful instrument that you made. It is truely a wonderful addition to the household.
--St. Louis, Missouri
......did you read in my post @ the Great River Road festival, that I had played one of your dulcimers? The one that Elizabeth DiPietri has. I don't know which model it was...but it was really pretty and sure did sound nice!!!
I love the sound of my dulcimer! I don't get to play as much as I want since my job is driving me crazy! This dulcimer has a beautiful sound to it though. When we bought it, we played every one in the shop and yours was definitely the best!
Thanks for creating it!
HE'S HERE AND HE'S BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!! The sound is just what I wanted and thank you so much for the shirt and tote. What a great experience dealing with a professional as you are Kerry. I will share Kokopelli with everyone I know and hope you get some more business from the East coast. I can't wait until next weekend at the festival to show him off.
Thank you again Kerry for making me such a beautiful, artsy dulcimer.
After a flight of just over 6,000 miles THE DRAGON HAS LANDED! And what a beauty! Ya done good, kid (age notwithstanding) - it is a work of art. Even more important, the beast has a wonderful voice. Christine is intrigued with it - never having seen a dulcimer before and in spite of my ten-year separation from one, accuses me of playing well. Little does she know! Mind you, it is quickly coming back.
Best to you love and thank you again.
--Lt Col Francis Emmorey
It has arrived! It is midnight and I can't put it down. When it arrived, there was this huge, heavy box. I thought "it weighs a ton and is so long". But when I got it open, I pulled out this beautiful, light-weight work of art! It sounds good and looks great. The paint is very nice. It was a nice surprise to see the scalloped edges of the head and the little paint rossette underneath.
I think it sounds great. Where did you place it on your bright to mellow scale? I am so glad I changed to the square shape.
(no e-mail address)
--Idaho Falls, Idaho
She is beautiful!! All the sweet touches of the purple keys and knobs (?). So feminine!--reminds me of a Jimmy Buffet tune--not sure of the name, but the lines go "there's something so feminine about a mandolin"--do you know that one? When I looked at it, that song began to twirl around in my head. I have been playing it and it sounds so warm, full and wonderful. Thank you so much Kerry! The one I have is a kit that an old fella gave me and won't hold tune and was so difficult to play, - "Iris" is a dream!!
(You can see a picture of Karen's Iris soundholes on my Traditional Collection page.)
--just checked out your new mountain dulcimers on the website. They are gorgeous, and what magnificent innovations you bring to them! Maybe the Equus is my favorite. These dulcimers are an outstanding representation of who you are. You are beyond cool, lady. I think I love you. Or would if I could. Or something like that.
To hell with proprieties. I do!
Wow! The pictures online didn't do it justice! I've only been strumming it, but it sounds great!! Wow! I've got a three day weekend comming up and I know what I'll be doing. Did I say how great it looks? Wow!!
--Hudson, New Hampshire
Hurray!!! My dulcimer arrived safe and sound. I've spent the past hour orienting myself, getting it tuned and now I'm learning to play "Go Tell Aunt Rhodie". I am having just too too much F U N!!
It's very very beautiful. I love the colors of the wood and the sound is nice (it'll sound better when I know what I'm doing). But it sounds warm and mellow to me which is what I wanted.
I will call you very soon. I'm being so self-centered right now. I'm not answering the phone or talking to anybody. I just want to play it until I'm exhausted then I'm going to bed.
Smiles & hugs to you, dear Kerry!!
--San Diego, California
. . .and then she wrote again. . .
If you ever come to San Diego, please do contact me so we can get together. I do love my beautiful dulcimer that you built for me. A friend of mine, who plays guitar and saxophone quite well, was very interested in seeing my dulcimer. He wanted to see if it was made well. He was VERY impressed and told me what a fine quality instrument I had.
I am also happy with the really nice case. Thank you for enclosing the two picks for me and for adding that little leather strap with the green beads on it. It seems to me that I'm picking it up pretty good. I have 2 wonderful books: Larkins book with CD and the "You can Teach Yourself to Play the Dulcimer" book with video.
I just wish I didn't have to be here at work. I just want to be home to practice all day. Thank you again so much for the wonderful service and the constant communication was greatly appreciated. . . and mostly thank you for building such a beautiful looking and sounding instrument that will give me hours and hours of great pleasure.
Smiles and Hugs to you, Kerry!!!
--San Diego, California
I am so HAPPY with the dulcimer you made me!!! The finger spacing on the fret board is perfect, the texture is like glass even the inside of the scroll where the strings are is just like glass. It has a powerful mellow sound. It projects beautifully. It's appearance is just awesome. I love the hard shell case. Now I have a case like Jean Ritchie's. And the sound holes are so unique that you have to keep staring at them like stars at night. Thank you again and I love the Axe Wax...keeps my old strings looking new. I recorded the ozark version of, " Go tell Aunt Rodie".....with this awsome instrument you made for me.
Mahalo Nui Loa~
(You can see a picture of Terry's Double Heart soundholes on my Traditional Collection page.)
Beautiful! The touch, so smooth, the sound, wonderful! My dulcimer was waiting for me at the door Friday, and it seems as if I haven't put it down, so please excuse this late Thank You. Seems as if I am babbling, but when I am excited, well............. I've waited so many years for a dulcimer, and to now have such a lovely instrument is way beyond the imagination. The painted forget-me-nots came out quite nice. Your a talented woman!
The mountain dulcimer arrived as UPS promised before 10:30 am! It is beautiful! The wood is more beautiful than I expected, the finish is butter-smooth and the quality of the craftmanship is outstanding. The sound just rings on and on, great harmonics and good projection of the notes. I just love it, much more than I ever expected. Surprisingly, it is more lightweight than I remembered them being, and that is a good thing as my banjo is quite heavy. The cherry wood body and the spruce top are perfectly beautiful. This instrument will be perfect for next week when I learn how to play it at Common Ground on Hill music camp in Western Maryland. I've spent a few days reading everything on the web about mountain dulcimers and now having played one of my own, I fully understand how people felt when they wrote about picking one up and falling in love with it. A truly lovely instrument you have made, thank you.
I visited Sedona Sunset last month and your Kokepeili dulcimer sold two days after they received it. I was, however, able to take a close look at the student dulcimer. Your work is so precise, so caring. I was amazed at the workmanship with rounded edges and perfect fits. The sound was excellent and the movement on the fret board was so easy. I was very impressed. I use a Smokey Mountain dulcimer. I bought it because of the sound and the smooth fretboard. But it has nothing on even your student model. Definately, once I finish my short stint as a student again and get back into the workforce, I will order one of your dulcimers. Thank you for directing me to a store where I could handle one of your instruments.
The craftsmanship is absolutely impeccable, but even more important than that, it plays beautifully, sweet and strong. My other dulcimer just didn't hold the key past the 8th or 9th fret, but this one sounds perfect from the scroll end to the tailpiece! I cannot believe the difference in the strength of sound as well as the lovely resonance it gives. I only hope my own playing can grow to do it justice.
--West Salem, WI
I can't thank you enough. My learning rate has doubled with the new instrument! Using it has made all the difference in the world. I took it over to a friend's house Sunday, and we had a great jam session. Her daughter (who is blind and mildly autistic) loved the sound... wanted me to play "Cripple Creek" and "Waterbound" over and over. That nice long flatpick you included with the dulcimer; do you sell those? I really like the design, both for the dulcimer and my guitar, and I'd like to stock up.
I have a Kerry Anderson-Coates KoKopelli dulcimer that I got while "not" skiing in Ruidoso a couple of weeks ago. We visited for a couple of hours while I made the difficult decision as to which "pelli" to take back to Texas with me. I now am the proud owner of a wonderful butternut and walnut square bottom 'pelli dulcimer, made by a gracious and talented lutherie(sp?).
Thanks Kerry for a beautiful and well-crafted instrument. I was playing it last night and as my husband passed by, he remarked about how great the 'pelli sounded. (He has never mentioned anything as I played my teardrop McSpadden.)
When Kerry returned home from visiting with us, she drove all night to Arizona to be with Leta when she awoke after major surgery. What a gal.
This is my $.02 worth.
--Lago Vista, Texas
The dulcimer arrived late in the afternoon last Thursday. I have been getting acquainted with it since then, usually playing into the proverbial wee hours of the morning. I was amazed by the detail of the Dragon headstock, and the two on the soundboard are perfect. I can't even begin to imagine how you came up with such an original method of camouflaging f-holes.
Even more than the appearance, I love the instrument's voice. It's a lot stronger than I expected. The volume is excellent and the notes are good and full. By the way, did you use mahogany for the back? Is that why it sounds like that or is it the cedar soundboard?
Just two more things. I like the fact that the shape of the instrument makes it easy to hold securely. Also, I like the feel of the finish you put on it.
We got back Tuesday from the grandson's wedding, which was very nice. However, it did not hold the same kind of pleasure I got from being able to see and play one of your instruments for myself! Your instrument was very pretty and played just as nicely as the McSpadden I compared it with at Dusty Strings in Seattle. In fact, I think yours has a little brighter tone that either one of the McSpaddens I tried.
When I arrived at Dusty Strings, I was disappointed not to see yours there, so I asked about it, and told her they were holding it so I could see it. She soon found it and gave it to me to play. I put a McSpadden on my lap along side of yours so I could listen to both by playing a passage on one and repeating it on the other. I soon found the action on yours was very comparable to the action on theirs. There wasn't enough difference that I could tell any difference. To me, this is good because, I have not found a dulcimer with better action than McSpadden. It was closest to the sweet action of the hourglass dulcimer I built several years ago. So when I say yours was equal, I think you have done an excellent job!!! I might have brought it home, except for some very pointed threats to my well being (by my wife) before I went to see it, LOL. We have incurred rather large travel debt with all these trips around the country to three grandchildren's weddings. The last of the three will be the end of this month, when it will be back to Seattle by air again.
Anyway, I told her what I was doing, and she listened in. After I did the A-Bing, I played a number of songs on your instrument, so she could hear how it sounded (and I could have a few more pleasurable moments with it!). I played "Bless This House", and she said, "That's beautiful! What is the name of the song?" I told her, and she said, "Is that your arrangement?" I told her it was, and that most of what I played were my own arrangements as well. She asked if I had a book out of my arrangements, and I said I had put many of them into tablature, but hadn't readied them for a book yet. I said I was thinking of doing it one of these days though, and she thought it would be a good idea. That made me feel good. She also said I could come back and play on the instruments anytime. I told her that I thought they ought to consider carrying some of your instruments. I hope they will consider carrying them for you.
What a nice surprise to hear from you!! Yes, I do have some questions. The number of my dulcimer is 1133. Can you tell me when you made it and what kind of wood is used? I believe the top and sides are walnut. I don't know what top is made of. Anything else that you can recall about the instrument would be appreciated.
I appreciate the way you used the figures in the wood to create such attractive and flowing patterns in the dulcimer. I like the extra wood inlay you put on the base with the four painted Kokopelli figures. That is a very nice touch. My cats also enjoy the dangling leather strips with the beads hanging from the peghead.
I find the unique shape of the dulcimer helps to stabilize the dulcimer on my lap. It doesn't slip like the hourglass or teardrop shapes do. I am enjoying playing it and I simply like to admire it and appreciate your artistry and workmanship that went into its construction. You are a true artist and I appreciate your creative eye and detailed craftsmanship.
I received my new dulcimer yesterday and I love it! It's very, very nice. My wife and I started playing last night to see how we sound together. As you know I wanted to get a dulcimer that looked "tough" as in one that looked like something for a guy and I believe I made an excellent choice. It's perfect... no hearts, flowers or birds! It was difficult finding one that had different shaped sound holes. The design and look is awesome! It has an excellent sound/voice. Thanks so much!
--Randy C. Hunsucker
--Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Your workmanship is superb. The finish is great. And it has a wonderful voice. It is much more than I expected. I have built around 30 dulcimers and none of mine even came close to yours. Thank you soooo much.
The "Cooters" were perfect.
(((HUGS))) right back to you,
--Crystal River, Florida
Thank you so very much for creating such a beautiful dulcimer for me, even down to the turtles (Cooters). Don't know if Pete explained the meaning of the "Cooter's", nickname my Grandfather gave me as a baby.
The dulcimer arrived in beautiful shape and has a beautiful voice. I seem to be stuck on the adjective "BEAUTIFUL"! Just wanted to let you know that it had arrived safely and that I am trilled with my 40th Anniversary gift. Thanks again, know I will have many hours of pleasure learning to play and playing with Pete on his guitar.
--Crystal River, Florida
I think it's wonderful! The walnut and butternut combination is perfect. It looks like a work of art, but I can hardly believe the sweet sound of this creation of yours. Now that I've bought mine, you should triple the price.
--Corpus Christi, Texas
Thank you again for creating such a lovely instrument for me! The grains you selected on the woods I chose are just beautiful! She sings sweetly and is very enjoyable to play. Your student model is much more than I ever expected for a first dulcimer! My instructor is very impressed and told me I made a fine choice. I couldn't agree more!
Thanks again for helping me off to a fine start! I look forward to doing business with you in the future!
Hope this finds you well,
--Fruitland Park, Florida
I received the dulcimer Christmas ornaments yesterday. You out-did yourself. They're wonderful!
--New Orleans, Louisiana
I wanted to thank you again for the lovely dulcimer you made for me. The craftsmanship is superb and the sound rich and mellow. It is obvious that quality is important to you, as it is there in all the details. I love the colors you chose for the hearts and the peg turners! Thanks for all your correspondence and e-mails on the progress of the making of my dulcimer, too!
Enclosed is a bracelet that I made for uou as a token of my appreciation. It is made out of Lapis, black onyx and Bali silver. I hope you like it!
You may not remember me but I purchased probably the last dulcimer you sold in Brainerd. Lester sent along your last e-mail to him in November and I thought you might enjoy a picture of our group.
We have continued to meet monthly since you had us out to your house--what was it ten or twelve years ago. I am in the front left, Ruth Fyhr is center and Linda Larson with one of your dulcimers on the right. In the back it is Archie Frenz with probably the first kit dulcimer you sold, Dale Fyhr with one of your dulcimers but I am uncertain how he obtained it and then Al Larson. I still play your dulcimer but have it tuned to DAd and just forgot to use it for the photo. Mark purchased a McSpadden for me a few years back and have that tuned to DAA.
Our playing has improved a whole lot since we last saw you. Granted we still won't play in public but we sure have a good time. This pictures does not show another five or so who have been coming. People come and go, we've been up to 15 at some times. Les Sod normally plays with us but could not make it last night.
Just thought you'd enjoy the update and to realize how much we thoroughly enjoy your instruments. They are played on a regular basis and we've found your building skills far surpass many duclimers we've had an opportunity to try through the years. I would not hesitate in the least to recommend your dulcimers to anyone considering a purchase.
I have just received my Dulcimer today.
Thank you so much, it is a beautiful. I love the wood, I love the shape and I love the sound.
It has been a pleasure dealing with you.
I will let you know how I progress in learning how to play this fine instrument.
--Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
WOW, he's beautiful!!! He arrived at 4pm my time. I thought that I knew what I was getting. But, when I opened the case I was totally blown away! The colors you chose are perfect. I love everything about it, especially the way he sounds. I've been playing him since he arrived. So I thought maybe I should take a break and email you. I'm going to play Christmas songs this year when my family gets together for Christmas.
I'll email you again after I learn a couple of songs and show him off to the local music stores!
--Mary Ann McMaster
Then Mary writes again . . .
I just wanted to say how proud I am to have one of your dulcimers. He is giving me so much pleasure when I play.
I went to "Nanbo's" today and showed him to Mason Sebastian. He's the one that did the beautiful dragon inlay on a guitar for Carlos Santana. That guitar is in the Smithsonian museum. I thought that was really cool. He builds guitars and has made a banjo. He was really impressed with my dragon. When he put it on his lap and tried it the first thing he said was "that's what a dulcimer is supposed to sound like". He said that nobody in this area makes a dulcimer of your quality. I felt very good when he said it was worth every penny and more that I paid. He stated that I had a professional heirloom quality instrument that would just get better with age.
Anyway, you know I'll be passing around your name to anyone interested in dulcimers.
Thank you again for the beautiful work of art that's as much fun to play as look at.
--Mary Ann McMaster
Just to let you know-the dulcimer arrived safely and just slightly out of tune! It is gorgeous! "A mighty fine dulcimer"! Very easy to play and sound really nice finger picked. The painted hearts are just right-nicely blended with the wood. I am going to two dulcimer related events in October and will bring the dulcimer with me and talk it up. I am going to the Stringalong and Katie Waldren's dulcimer day at Folklore Village in Dodgeville. I will be taking a class with Steve Seifert (Stringalong) and Don Pedi(Folklore Village). I am sure I will have lots of comments on it!
It is really a different experience playing and looking down at those painted hearts!
You have done it again....what a beautiful dulcimer!!!! The sound is so sweet and mellow! Thanks so much, it is very lovely, I don't know how you can part with them after you have made them. The beads, the color stripe, the tuners...very very nice. It is exactly what I had pictured in my head. Thank you, thank you!
My only complaint with my dulcimer's are I don't have enough time to play them....I should have said that too! You take care Kerry. All my best!!!! Hugs!
I'm still very happy with both my dulcimers you made. They've broken in nicely. I just like the deep rich voice they have and they seem to be louder than others I've heard. I've found some other instruments that are pretty to look at, but none sound as good to me as yours do. Feel free to put any of my comments on your website.
A wonderful package arrived yesterday, what a joy to open an early Christmas present. We're in getting to know each other, trying to tune up in Ionian. What a voice she has, resonance is wonderful, bright but with depth. Horse head painting is very cool, a sylvan style.
--Southern Pines, North Carolina
I just got the dulcimer...and it is absolutely amazing...and the tone is so goregeous...I cant wait for him to see it...but my daughter who is an expert at playing made it sing...you truly are talented and I appreciate you rushing your creativity so i could have it for him for Christmas....have a great holiday and I will let you know what he says...thanks so much again...amazing!!!!!
I just wanted to drop you a quick note now that I've had my new dulcimer for awhile. I was very pleased with the way it looked and the colors you used painting it! Everything was just PERFECT, exactly the way I wanted it. Thank you so much!! You do excellent work, and I know I will enjoy both of my dulcimers for many years.
--Apple Valley, Minnesota
I bought a used dulcimer which I am sure is one of your creations. It is an Equus model. The inscription inside says "Kerry Anderson Johnson, Brainerd, MN, 218/746-3916, #51." It is a mahogany body with at spruce top. There is not painting around the f-holes as shown on your website. Any other information you might have on it, such as year of manufacture, would be appreciated? I bought if from a music store in Grand Junction, Colorado.
It sounds nice although it needs new strings. The tone is similar to my paduk dulcimer, which is made by Johnny Nickholson (phonetic) of Unicorn Woodworks. I am very pleased with your product and that I stumbled upon this dulcimer for only $200. As a used instrument it sound better than others costing much more. I also like the action. It is the best action of any of my dulcimers. There are four in this house. I have made four myself and given three away to family, so I believe that I am a good judge of quality. You make an excellent product. I use this one mostly for music in the key of G or C major. I keep my other dulcimers tuned in DAA, but in church, it would be nice to switch to a different key when needed by simply picking up the dulcimer you made.
--Carson City, Nevada
Thank you for all your compliments!! It was really great to hear from you!! That dulcimer was sold in July, 1993, to a lady named Debbie Bonnell in Grand Junction, Colorado. I have built about 150 dulcimers since then! Your dulcimer was one of the first Equus scroll heads I ever did.
Debbie traded out a hammer ducimer for it. The hammer dulcimer she traded for it had a cracked back and I replaced the back and the hardware, sold it, and it now lives in Roswell, New Mexico.
--Gila Mountain Dulcimers
Hello, again, Kerry,
I stole a half hour from my bedtime to try out the dulcimer, now that it came up to room temperature. The tone of the instrument sounds great. Especially nice for chord style (what I think of as guitar style) playing. My other dulcimer is an hourglass Appalachian style which is great for fast strummed tunes. But it is weak sounding for regular tab work. So I think that your creation is going to get to me to branch out into more tab instead of staying in my (happy) traditional strumming rut. (Also the dulcimers won't get into any arguments - they'll each have their own job).
Thank you very much for your lovely work. The tuners work very smoothly, there are no sharp bits on the edges of the frets, the colors and grains of the woods are wonderful, the action is springy without being stiff - and I love the geckos! Can't wait to have an excuse to bring it to school for the children to see.
Comments in regards to this web site:
Just found your site and wanted to congratulate you on it. My interests include the traditional folk music of the British Isles (ie England, Scotland and Wales) - both songs and for dancing. (primarily ceilidh but also Morris). As being a (rather bad) rhythm guitarist with a limited knowledge of musical theory as well as a novice mountain dulcimer player, I was struggling with working up decent chord progressions for a DAdd-tuned dulcimer having worked out pieces that were feasible given the melody line and the keys in which fellow musicians like to play.
Although your site doesn't have everything I need to become a halfway-decent musician (probably a lifelong quest really!), it's answered a whole lot of questions and helped me better understand how to approach what I want to do at this point in my musical jorney -- which is to be able to sit in on sessions more effectively (where I'm often blown away by the abilities of fiddlers to pick up a tune and melodeon/anglo-concertina players to busk chord progressions in their keys almost effortlessly). Your site has given me a better and richer understanding of musical options through lessons 1 - 7 and 10 and the vocabulary to discuss things better with other people.
Once again, my congratulations and thanks - it's sites like yours that make the web so empowering and a reminder that knowledge shared isn't knowledge lost. The wisdom of your web pages suggests that cultural values are effectively passed on by gift rather than by commerce -- although I will certainly buy your book when it comes out!
I wish you well.
I can't tell you how much I appreciate your festival listings! I'm a newbie, and finding festivals to go to in my area should be pretty simple. But for some reason, the festivals just aren't advertised. I haven't even had much luck finding them listed in the state's calendar of events, either. For some of us, work requires us to let them know early in the year when we want to take time off. Your listing is a true blessing. Oh! And I love the tunes you have on each page! I'm on dial-up, but it's well worth the time to let them download. They are wonderful!
--Scattered Oaks Morgans
Thanks for all the hard work you are doing to promote the dulcimer.
--Dulcimers and Accompaniment of Chattanooga (Tennessee)
Your site has indeed come a long way.
Thanks for your support of the dulcimer world - literally.
I've been swamped with business concerning the festival and have not had time to write back until now. I wanted to tell you that your website is really great. It does on the web, what Maddie does with the DPN. We have needed things like this for at least the twenty plus years that I have been teaching dulcimer to keep the novices connected with the goings on of dulcimer people.
Thank you very much.
I just spent some time reading about dulcimer clubs on your website. What a terrific service you perform for everyone. Thank you.
Just want to let you know that I think your web site is one of the best I have ever seen. Thanks for adding "Stone Soup" by Sunset Dawn to your list. I'm Madge Moore, and I'm one of the band members. I just love all your little graphics on the site. I checked it out a long time ago, but you have really added to it since then. Great job! Hope I get to meet you sometime.... Thanks again...
I do want to compliment you again on your web page: in my experience, you don't often come across one as pleasant to visit, or one that also has such excellant links to other sites.
I am working on a teaching credential for elementary school students in California. Thank you for a beautiful website! The information you have supplied help to capture the beauty of the ancient people of the Americas. Kokopelli is such a delightful character and truly captures ones imagination.
Great web site. I've had a mountain dulcimer that an old friend made lying around the house for many years. Your lessons have been a treat and helped breath new life into the old instrument. I grew up in North Carolina and remember hearing the dulcimer as a child at various festivals. It is so fun to have that distinctive sound take me back in time.
Just letting you know on this year's Dulcimer Day in Duluth festival program I'm going to put your website. It IS the best site for festival listings and so much more. Thanks for keeping it up!
--DDD IV organizer
Love your website !!! Very good info and in a way that is easy to understand. Excellent way that you related the different patterns for chording. Keep up the good work, we dulcimer challenged folk, appreciate your efforts.
This is Billie, Stephen Bennett's manager, writing to thank you for your site! I am constantly looking for venues, large and small, to fill concert tours. I just spent the last hour emailing everyone you have listed in Texas, because he's going to be touring there in October.
Thanks so much for the information you provide. And the Dulcimers you have on your site are gorgeous! Do you go to the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, Kansas? If so, we'll see you there!
--Harp Guitar Website
--Stephen Bennett's Website
--Stephen Bennett's Music
I just loved your site and the flying butterflies, the dancing chicken and all the information. I have a used dulcimer that I bought at a music mart. It needed restringing and my husband is trying to fix it up so I can take a lesson or two. I love the sound of the music that a dulcimer makes and have no talent whatsoever but your dulcimers are a work of art. I have no expectation of ever being fluent enough to really play it, but needed to let you know how wonderful your site is. Keep up the good work.
--Barbara Deibel (Mrs. Tom)
I had not said hello in a while and was looking at my website stats report and thought you would like to know that I have recieved 685 hits back to my website from folks visiting your website. Thanks for the link. I only got 222 hits from Google. Thanks again.
I invite you to explore these pages and
introduce yourself to this lovely American instrument.