OFF TOPIC discussions
That is sad news................I appreciate you posting that and I will surely remember his family and all those grieving his loss.
That is sad news................I appreciate you posting that and I will surely remember his family and all those grieving his loss.
I'm curious, did you ever get in touch with Terry Pattison? Let us know how your re-string goes..if you take your time it should go just fine. BTW, if you want you can also tune down to CGG and reduce string tension and play DAA tab. If I remember there are a few video's on youtube that will help you a great deal until you get the hang of it. Give us a yell and we'll do what we can to give you a hand.
Welcome..........I think you would be good with 12's-14-22 since some Darcyhorses had an action that was a bit high if I remember some other comments.
I use 12, 12, 14, 22 or if I use DAA tuning I like a firmer string so I use 14's and a 22 or 24 depending on what I can find that is handy.
You going to tune it to DAA or DAD?
I don't know how to contact him these days, however Terry Pattison I fairly sure lived in Union Township, Pa. on Wager Road.
You can test if it is sulfur based oxidation by doing this, (it works primarily on sterling but you can give it a try...........)
a ceramic bowl lined with aluminum foil, shiny side up
a tablespoon of baking soda
a tablespoon of salt and some hot water.
Put just enough water in the bowl to dissolve the baking soda and salt and cover the item you want to clean up.
stick the silver thing in it and see if the sulfur flakes off after a few minutes and moves to the aluminum foil. Dry whatever you stuck in there with a towel and see what you have. I know some jewelry folk put the soda and salt on the item and then pour the water on it.......my sister used to add tiny bit of dish soap on her sterling Native American Jewelry at the shop she had years ago, then buffed it up. She said it takes a bit of practice to get the consistency correct but it works after about 5-15 minutes of soaking as I recall.
This is a form of oxidation since your silver plate is not sterling silver. Silver plate that is not sterling will show a rainbow effect in varying degree as it ages. Ken is correct when he speaks of a chemical reaction. Are the strings that were plated made of nickel?
Folk Craft will make a custom bag for you. I would also check with Carl Gotzmer at June Apple Dulcimers since they have courting dulcimers for sale with gig bags. (Carl is an amazingly resourceful person and perhaps could direct you to someone.. look him up by name, works for the Navy....educated way above my pay grade) They might have a bag that they would let you buy. I checked the size of their courting dulcimer and it would require a big that should work for you. All the ones I checked on for you are pricey but unless you can find a cabinet maker to build you one out of plywood I don't know what options you have. A plywood one would be quite inexpensive to make and you could line it with quilted material and cover it with material from a fabric place. Just an idea.
True enough Randy......................
Well, they might be dated and ravaged by time, but then again so am I. There is amazing stuff on those sites, especially for folk who like the music from the era of good old Alphonso X. Jessica Comeau has a few Cantigua's on youtube that are great.
Wow Curtis..........I just read most of your website postings.........who knew? There's enough material in there to keep anyone with an interest in music and all sorts of other things occupied for days. I dare say anyone who reads your work would agree that your one of the hidden treasures on this site. I going to post a link to it so that other people can read your material and not take my word for it.
I'd take a look at McSpadden's Bass dulcimer fret pattern and make a comparison to what you have on those dulcimers. As the info there says they can be played DAD and while their's are three strings, I really think your OK. Before I'd can that dulcimer I check the pics on McSpadden's site, especially since the odds of using those high frets are not very frequent. Then again, I'm just a hack and I'll bow to the experts on here. Here's a link........
This might help you a bit figure out what you've got going on. BTW, if you ever come to Salt Springs, drop me a note and we'll try to figure it out if it's possible. Folkcraft has a chart that has fret measurements on it as do lots of others.........check it out on the link you can see some of it on page 2. The only dulcimer builder around you that I know of is David Beede in Melrose and a few in Jacksonville that might be able to give you some help.
This fellow was quite well known around Raleigh and Garner NC. His obit mentions him as a dulcimer builder among other things. Here's the link if anyone wants to read it.
Yes, the pup can be adorable, she's a Lab and Bulldog I think. Really high energy 24/7. There were 8 of them at the shelter the day we got her. I think she's 4 mos. old today, ........old Fritz was one of the best.....when a big old Black Bear pinned my old Beagle against the backyard fence and was going to do her in, Fritz covered the 300 ft in a split second and wailed that Bear and rescued the Beagle....never got a scratch, when our 16 year old cat was lost in the forest after a hurricane tore the joint up.......I turned him loose in the forest and told him to find that old cat.........an hour later he brought her back...........125 lbs of spit and vinegar with a penchant for Boar's Head roast beef and fried chicken from Popeye's on Sunday. Bears at the kitchen door....he would run 'em off. Coyote's no sweat....'nuff said.
I enjoy seeing the critters!
@salt-springs I'm sorry about Fritz.
New Pup after Fritz was lost due to long term complications from a Rattlesnake bite......
On August 23, 2006 David Schnaufer, probably one of the greatest Dulcimer player ever, left us. I was thinking this morning that many new players may not realize the influence he had in making the dulcimer well known to both professional and amateur musicians. So many great players have gone on..........and by the way, Linda Paulus' book, PLUCK is a great read..........you should get a copy and reflect upon the musicians mentioned, some of whom are still around and members of FOTMD. (Thanks for doing what you continue to do!)
There have been so many...................
Good, I'm glad that worked for you..........so far as being computer smarter....I just wish I was smarter in general.
It might work if you try it this way...........go down about a page and a half to the July 30th post.
Try the youtube link if the first one jams at 4.20
So true Ron...........if you have never seen that sort of thing you can't imagine the speed and power of those things. Tragic situation all the way around.
Yes it's a mess. If the video would play through for you you would see tons of instruments just plain ruined......warped, glue not holding etc. Let alone some amazing machinery soaked.......and the dulcimers just soaked........I read they need about $25,000 bucks just to clean up the place................then we have the other side of the coin with people displaced, homes destroyed and folks dead and/or still missing...............prayers, money and lots of work needed.
New video inside Troublesome Creek Guitar Factory........worse than you can imagine. Video was posted by the Development director of the Artisan center.
Thanks for that update on Sarah!!!
Tragic news from Kentucky where a flood in Hindman has virtually destroyed the Dulcimer museum and Artisan School. Loss of life and great sorrow. Things can be replaced but lives tragically ended............great sorrow there. News reports say this may be the most devastating flood in Kentucky history. David Bennett has posted photo's on the TTAD site of some of the destruction..........
Steven......I've read some of these posts and I'll share what Kerry Coates told me before she passed on (Such a gracious soul and sorely missed). She built my first dulcimer years ago and told me to get Larkin Bryant's book which I did. (Sadly, Larkin has gone on too and another great loss). Anyway, after working with that book and ending up in a bit of a dither Kerry said, "Look, just play the darn thing". So I tuned it up to DAA and made all sorts of noise.
She was exactly right! After a week or two you'll get the hang of it and like she said, "tunes will come to you and you won't feel all flustered."
Now books, and there are tons of them, can help you learn all sorts of stuff. Some will make you crazy at first but sooner or later you'll find one or parts of many that will ring your bell and your journey is off and running.
I remember all the silly stuff I did when I first took a stab at playing this thing. I'd buy new strings, (OK, I broke few trying to figure out the difference between G and g; DAA, DAD, CGG and all that.........then I figured well it must be the instrument or the pick or the noter, maybe the tuner; all that sort of stuff. Don't fall into that that trap if you can help it. (I'll bet I'm not the only one who has done that and I believe that Dulcimer Acquisition Disease may be rooted here). I don't know much about modes. (The only mode I care about at this point is "a la mode", preferably apple and vanilla.)
The truth of the matter is that playing a dulcimer is for enjoyment. I'll never be a great player like those I see on youtube or other video platforms, but it's fun and the bottom line for me is........."who cares what folks think." One you reach that level of comfort, you can sing along and you might be surprised at how small or large your audience will be.........in my case it's just the old hound dog......the cats scram and flee to the great outdoors. (My wife just puts on headphones and listen to whatever).
Now ya'll don't get me wrong, what I'm saying is this, "Just go slow and as one feller out here in the woods one remarked, "a good outhouse ain't built in a day".
Don't get discouraged...just have fun!! And by the way........welcome to this great group, "wheez glad yer here"!!!
For those who have asked, that old hound is still getting over the nasty Rattlesnake bite and the University of Florida Vet Hospital is pleased that I've paid their light bill for the month. The good news is that will end in another few weeks.
I'm with you on that one Ken. After working through all the posts, re-reading Ralph L. Smith and the history of Scotch Irish Music there are so many contributors that it really boggles the mind, let alone giving consideration to different types of Mountain dulcimer fret patterns, and unique tunings popular in different parts of the country. The idea of setting aside a day to honor all the musicians and the instruments they played is great and will certainly not take away from Jean, who I believe was the most important of many players. She pretty much kept the mountain ballads in the forefront. I especially remember her songs mourning the devastation of the mountain tops and the beauty that was lost to some types of mining. So I think that a day to honor the "American Dulcimer" and as she might have put it, "The Sweet Sound in the Wind" could be all encompassing. Heaven knows we don't want to get into all that stuff about Noter and drone vs. Chording or whatever....amplified or electronically modified etc., it's all part of the instruments history and there is place for it all.
Let's not forget Loraine Wyman who is considered by some to be the first one to start the Urban Folk music revival after collecting Kentucky and vicinity mountain music. There is a photo on Wiki showing her on the cover of Vogue Magazine holding a Thomas Dulcimer in 1917.
3 Warren May's in Walnut
Cherry Ray Epler
Gila Mountain by Kerry Coates
Walnut and Spruce Folkcraft Baritone
Deluxe German Scheitholt by Carl Goetzmer
Cherry McSpaden Baritone
Pritchard Reproduction by Kevin Messenger
6 String by JR Beale
Large Irish by Carl Goetzmer in Mahogany
Bobby Ratliff Virginian
I got a quick note from Jessica Comeau who endured the storm without having serious damage to her home.
While Pensacola took a major hit, our friend seems to have weathered the brunt of it. Any others of our community who were affected let us know if we can provide some emotional support and encouragement.
"Southwind", and I'll bet Duane Porterfield is the musician.
Larry Conger did an arrangement of "Unchained Melody" that the Righteous Brothers did in the 60's. Simple tune, good lyrics, and easy play with 158. Check it out on youtube, you might like it.
"Where are you Tonight" with Archie Campbell. (you tube/with Johnny Cash etc.)
Yup, check the hex nut directly under the string too if you have not........my McSpadden is a bit touchy and I can make it buzz if I use pick and hit the string too low. Good luck with it all!
Update: I just checked mine and two of those hex nuts were a bit loose...you could actually turn one with just two fingers.
JUst as an experiment, check the nut below the bass string tuning peg and see if it is tight as compared to the others. I have a walnut/redwood McSpadden and for whatever reason the bass string peg will loosen itself there as well as the knob on it. Perhaps the buzz is in the peg since it seems that you have tried just about every string adjustment you can think of. Likewise check the screw underneath the peg and see if it could be loose.
I had the same issue with one of mine many moons ago. It just about drove me nuts because for awhile everything was fine and then the buzz thing would crank up. I finally figured it out when like Ken points out, it was me catching the string on the strum and pulling it up a bit. I also put a bit of a heavier string on the bass then I found was included in the string sets you buy. As I recall I went from a 24 or so to a 28. (I think the Strother string calculator is a bit light.) That helped a great deal but it still happened. Steve Siefert once mentioned that a heavier string could correct some problems like this when using a 155 tuning.
The next time it happened I froze on the chord and it dawned on me that my bass string was not being held with the same amount of pressure as the others allowing it to buzz......
I am not saying that your issue is the same, but in my case it was due to several different things.......too light a string, a weak ring finger and an inconsistent pick angle. I also switched to a lighter gauge pick too. That made it harder to lift the bass string.
As suggestion, if you have not tried this, tune it up a to maybe EBE and see if the higher tension makes it stop.
All in all, Ken's comment fit my predicament and was right on the money.