The Drifting Thread...
OFF TOPIC discussions
yep, let's see the mystery item. :)
For spooky...."Now Anne Bolin was once king Henry's wife, until he had the headsman bob her hair, ah yes, he did her wrong long years ago, and she comes up the night to tell him so, with her head tucked underneath her arm, she walks the bloody tower, with her head tucked underneath her arm at the midnight hour....etc.
There are several in the mournful and sad....1.The Silver Dagger (a man comes to court a girl and her mother's sleeping with a silver dagger.....her daddy was a handsome devil...)...2. The three brothers in Scotland, one had to turn robber to support the other two....3. (I forgot the name,words go)..."I sold my flax, sold my wheel, to buy my love a sword of steel, that he may in the battle wield, Johnny's gone for a shoulder. Shul shul shul a rue...."
I loved singing all of these songs, drove my mother crazy as she was a classical piano teacher. I was a Joan Baez fan. aloha, irene
ahhhhhh, thanks Robin. thanks for looking at us when we only had 8 at home. That was my first dulcimer, and my first bowed psaltery. All grown up now....youngest one there was three...now 33. sigh. I loved raising our big family and they all still love each other...music being a huge part in raising our family. They all play one or two instruments and all sing. An play a LOT of games in more ways then one. ha. We're going to have another family reunion this August. aloha, irene
When Susan got this beautiful dulcimer, her son found it at an Estate Sale, it was sooooooooo beautiful and made with great care. SUCH A DEAL....$150.00. I estimate it's worth to be about $600.00 plus. She had the right strings on it then. She moved to Arkansas and got in with a group (a great group, I'm sure) that only did DAD tuning. She was told to take off a string on each set, and she learned the chords and can keep up with the group....but when she played at home, didn't like the sound 1/2 as much. I think she didn't get the right set of strings when she replaced the strings. They were not an octave apart as suggested Ken...So I'll text her and ask the VSL and then she should be able to string it up. Her sweet husband strung it last. What I was wondering also would be if anyone knew of any dulcimer club there in San Antonio and via that...............someone could give her advice and or sting it up right with the right set of strings. I bet if she went to a music store there, she'd get some help as well. I'll get back with you on the VSL. thanks soooooooooo very much, aloha, irene
I have a "fairly newbie" QUESTION for my newbie friend that took her dulcimer to San Antonio and wants to know if there are any dulcimer folks there? She will be there for one week, and her dulcimer needs the right gage of strings. She has a 6 string one and loves to play noter drone style. I told her tonight that I'll post this question to my friends here. I check daily sometimes twice daily, so I'll be a looking. THANKS. aloha, irene
I play a lot of instruments as I wanted to teach our children the joy of knowing many instruments and we did a lot of caroling at Christmas time. So when I got the dulcimer over 30 years ago, I got Jean Richie's book and one night I thought I was doing really well, and played for almost 2 hours....then I got this shout out from my husband in the bedroom, "LEARN ANOTHER INSTRUMENT!" I still laugh at that one. I found the remedy for that scene. I brought home a very old autoharp (it had typewriter keys) and he picked it up as if he played it for years. I bought him a new autoharp. We began playing together and that changed everything on him liking or disliking the dulcimer sound. However, he doesn't like the minor keys. Polynesians don't do a lot of minor songs....almost none for the Tongans. We play our music daily. He's taught me to play by ear by him choosing the songs 1/2 the time. It is such a JOY to play music with each other. I posted on this site in one of the other discussions of our family playing for a little T.V. show with 8 of our 14 children 30 years ago in Hawaii. It's on youtube somewhere. ha.
ahhhhh, this is the post to put it in. A day before Christmas I got a DVD of our family playing and singing Christmas songs thirty years ago in Hawaii. I got somethings wrong in my speaking, but you'll see 8 of our 14 children. The older ones were gone....one in the Marines, some in school and some married. Happy new year to you all. https://youtu.be/clDzImgkYZo ALOHA, IRENE
Strumelia, I LOVED this story too, brought tears to the eyes...(I sent it onto my daughter)......I have one daughter that worked for Huntsman Institute in S.L.C. Utah for 10 years. They took blood from elephants ears at the zoo to compare and do lab work. She got to do that a few times and also loved it. One time the syringe dropped on the ground and she said, "oh, can you get that for me." to the elephant and it did, handed it through the fence. so intelligent. Elephants do not get cancer. That's why they are studied at Hungsman. aloha, irene
I've made 106 bowed psalteries. I do put fancy letters on the right hand side....I iron these on before I put the finish on. I have a decoration that I add as well, making the bowed psaltery more mellow. All of my psalteries are altos. It's too late at night to see if I can post photos....and yes, I'd love to make some little bowed psalteries to go with Dulcimers...that would be fun. That's a great suggestion. aloha, irene
Well now....this was interesting in that I wanted to know how his voice sounded after the comments here. I went to youtube and hear, I WONDER AS I WANDER....very interesting voice and it could be an aquired taste. When singing the "R"....it can stand out too much. Then I didn't know that he wrote this song. I've loved and performed this song often on the harp and will do so this year too. I listened to Joan Baez and another one sing it. Such a beautiful song with a message of great worth. aloha, irene
Ken, your lyre's are very very beautiful....and made to replicate really the REAL OLD ONES. wow. And....Lorraine, From the bottom note of the Old world Lyre....what note do you start with. "G"? and so when I go on up to the highest string...I have to skip the leading note, "B" and C is my highest string. Interesting that the olden days they were NOT sung with, but just played. hoooo boy. sooooooooo much to learn and so little time to learn it. Thanks so very much. aloha, irene
I have made both of these when they first came out. I've had a lot of fun with the old World Lyre as I introduce folks to all my instruments as "and this is a Lyre and I'm telling you the truth".....yeah, I know, bad joke. I love using this lyre to play very old melodies and it fits to more minor then major tunes. I chord and sing with it. I always wish for just one more higher string. The Lynda Lyre has a LOT MORE STINGS...and I can play a lot of tunes on this. I just sit by the fire and hold it with my left hand play with the right.....I like the thick strings in the lower end. I like it that I've chosen to use the nylon (you can choose to have metal strings if you like)....I sapose it would be much more expensive to use gut strings and find ways to sharpen and change keys quickly, but I don't see much need for that. I have other instruments that I can change the keys fast. These are BOTH great instruments. Unique sound. Lots to add your own touch of painting or wood burnings. I painted tulips on the larger Lyre, and used some ground turquoise on the smaller old world lyre. Both of these are a little challenging to make....but worth the trouble. For those that might want to tune the larger lyre to the key of D to play with dulcimers....just sharpen the C's and F's in the tunings. easy. That would be really fun to try.
TOTALLY BEAUTIFUL. however, the sound bite can't be heard, maybe send another way? Thanks for posting so much on this dulcimer as it taught me a lot too about restoration of old dulcimers. aloha, irene
and what PERFECT F holes. I wonder if he used a scroll saw or a coping saw. Beautiful dulcimer. aloha, irene
YES YES....FOTMD folks are truly GRAND!! THANKS on the tip about Howard's Feed n Wax, I've got that on my list to get when I go to town next. aloha, irene
You got a great find there.....Dave. This will be a big learning time for you and you'll be glad you bought that dulcimer. I'm interested in what those "fine tuners" are and how they work. The notches at the nut side are for putting the strings in different places to what you're used to. nice choice for a builder to make. aloha, irene
ohhhhhhhhhhh. where ever you go, TAKE THOSE DULCIMERS WITH YOU and help sooth those in the Shelters. (and you) Take care and watch out for one another. The rest of us will be praying for you...and as I live on the grand Mississippi river....it is quite high, but not flooding stages YET. aloha, irene
The comments here in....about RIVER by Bill Staines had me looking it up on youtube. No wonder it's a favorite. I've never heard it and I too can love that song. I live on the grand Mississippi....seeing the sunsets daily...sunshine and rain and big thunder clouds....remembering my past with all the kids and now just my husband and I ....looking and singing and playing our instruments together at ages 77....We'll sing our 54th anniversary in our round yurt this July 30th and be grateful for all our years together and then some. Thank you friends for posting your favorites for us to learn from them too. aloha, irene
If you could hie to Kolob (I'll post the words to this some other time)...but any one song would become boring after too many times a playing it....We all have many. I've loved the answers....who will watch the home place....amazing grace...Music is in all our souls else we'd not be doing it daily and posting and reading here in. Thank you all for your posts. aloha, irene
Fabulous talent of that young woman. When I first came to Hawaii, I worked in a Japanese Department store that had just opened and I was the first Haole that worked there. They put me up in the art and music floor and some times I'd sell these instruments for over $1,000.00. I was paid $1.25 per hour. That was good 54 years ago. ha. If I'd only known that I'd be in learning how to play harps and dulcimers and such later on in my life. This is a kind of Japanese HARP. I love how this gal played. thanks for posting. aloha, irene
When this is all done, I'd like to play that dulcimer with someone. It's soooooo beautiful. A rosette on the bottom like the design on the top would work very well and might even play a little louder. I do a lot of scroll work on my instruments....but the little darling hearts on the top are really tiny...I could do them, but maybe not as perfectly as those are done. Ask Bob where he gets his lazer rosettes and maybe have one made the same as the top. Keep us "in tune" (pun intended) to what you decide to do with that lovely dulcimer. aloha, irene
I loved reading all the write up of this man. wow. It would be a shame to cut all those darling hearts out to make a round hole to fix the braces, but those braces can BUZZZZZ. bummers. I'd suggest maybe a possible nice made heart UNDERSIDE of this beautiful instrument. THEN fix the braces. Best of all I'd follow Bob's suggestions. aloha, irene
great news. however, I have an older computer and way slow internet. bummers. Could it all be downloaded to a THUMB DRIVE? I could have a friend do that and then I'd have all those tunes, and so much good info on building dulcimers and etc. Why can't someone else take it over? aloha, irene
Thanks so much for all you teach here, including a way to find old sites closed down. I read his letter as to why he's closing down and it's so understandable. I'm sure we all wish Bruce the BEST in where he puts his time and efforts. aloha, irene
My first cousin learned to play the harmonica while she lived in Sacramento, CA. She said that the trip accross town was sooooo full of stop lights. So she would play her harmonica while waiting at all the stop lights. I love it when my husband plays the harmonica too. aloha, irene
GREAT...I just put that date on the calendar. thanks.
Bob, I'd love to hear that same tune on the dulcimers you make. sweet and slow....I loved watching you play on your pipes....almost like a sit down dance. and Strumelia, I sooooooooo love all the sizes of recorders. I have a wonderful book to recommend to you to learn from. Mine are all plastic from Japan....Wood recorders in Hawaii had a very hard time. My fav. to play is the bass....That's how I got acquainted with SACRED HARP MUSIC was playing the recorders. all separate lines...then heard and sang that fabulous music at the OLD PAL MUSIC FESTIVAL for the first time last year. yep. going again this year. ALOHA, irene
Ken, so many sounds comes from these lyre's of different countries. I'm learning so much...thank you. I LOVE learning the history of anything, especially musical instruments. I'm sure you would play it differently as well. One Lyre I saw on youtube was as tall as the woman playing it. yep, only 5 or 6 strings. aloha, irene
VERY interesting. This leaves much food for thought...and I've not even had breakfast!! Thank you for showing the tuning key. In the gravesites, were most of them all wood? or were some covered with a "skin" like some banjo's were? I'd be very interested to hear the sound of these. hummmmmmmmm. gonna look on youtube. aloha, irene
GREAT POST and I'm smiling while reading all of them. When I lived in Hawaii so many years ago, I'd travel to the elementary schools by request and show and tell of the instruments I had. One of the first times I held it up and asked the children if they knew what this was(my dulcimer) ...........one cute little Hawaiian guy said, "I think it's a squashed guitar". One dulcimer that I rescued from a shop on the Big Island, it was written up in the DPN....I was told that this dulcimer was used as yard art and then taken to the dump. I restored her, and have named her, "Lilly from the dump." This last dulcimer that I've just finished #25....I did some different things to the lower sound hole...and used a viola floating bridge...my she's loud...sounds more like a banjo...so she's named SUSANNA. I've been reading all day APPALACHIAN DULCIMER TRADITIONS by Ralph Lee Smith. Totally enjoying reading by the fire while the high outside was 15....Thanks for mentioning this book on this site!! Got it used on ebay. aloha, irene
Ken, this really is a beautiful instrument. AS I look at all the pictures again, I don't see a sound hole. and interesting how you tell of the wrench that tunes the pegs. I wish I could see a picture of that too. When I first worked with Myrtle wood....looked like packing crate material...but putting on a varnish........wheeeeeeee. Maybe I'll get someone to send me some Myrtle wood. You're and inspiration. aloha, irene
ahhhhh, way cool. If you look on this photo, next to the banjo above it is a lyre. And that is what I use it for as well. I just chord it and sing a song. When I show my Lyre to friends, I'll say, "this is a Lyre, and I'm telling you the truth." I know, bad joke, but I have fun with it. aloha, irene