Wayfaring Stranger is a popular Southern US spiritual song.A reasonable approximation of the tune appears as "Judgment" in Ananias Davisson's Kentucky Harmony, 1816. It is related to the secular tunes "Man of Constant Sorrow", "East Virginia", "Silver Dagger", and "Come All Ye Fair and Tender Ladies". The song appeared in White and King's 1844 Sacred Harp essentially in the form that we sing it today.The tune is structurally pentatonic, lacking the second and sixth scale degrees. Here's it's played as hexatonic, using the second as a passing tone. You can find all its notes on Dorian and Aeolian scales. Arguably, you'll get better use out of your fretboard real estate if you play it in a tuning intended for the Aeolian mode.It appears in 3/4 time in Denson and Broadman and in 4/4 time in Cooper's "BF White Sacred Harp".As a kid in the 1950s, we sang it in 3/4 time at the Baptist Church and in 4/4 time elsewhere. It's played here in 4/4 time at a tempo of 168.I play it with metal finger picks in noter-drone style on a Kudzu Patch Galax strung with 0.010" strings straight across.The dulcimer is tuned DDCC (in a single octave) with a reverse capo on the fourth fret of the outermost drone string, yielding a tuning of ADCC with A at a higher pitch than D and C. This tuning starts an Aeolian scale on the first fret of the paired melody strings.
I just came across this through a search and I love it! It has a wonderfully lonely old-time feeling to it. I haven't been much of a finger-picker, but having seen how it works with the drones, I want to try it now. Beautifully done.
This is a very nice version of this song--I'm really glad it just popped up on my screen!
Thanks Genice. It's one of my favorite songs.
Beautiful Song and playing
Thanks Dave, Sue and Lisa.I sure do love the dulcimer. It's turned the last year around in a really good way.
Working on this Song, I tend to be to choppie "
This is Great "
Flint I love to hear you play and I like that finger style picking. I play around on the Banjo and I thought I was the only one to use the picks on all my instrumments. One day I was playing and then alternating my instrumments and left my picks on and I just love it ! you inspire me "
I know what you mean, John Henry. If I want to hear this kind of music in a church service here in Pennsylvania, the nearest venue is a Primitive Baptist church almost two hours away.Anglicans surely have some of the most beautiful choral music in the world, though.
Wish that we used tunes like this at our church (C of E). Flint, you've spoilt my Sunday, I will spend time trying to achieve that picking style again, I know how to do it , it's just my fingers that do'nt.!!!