50th anniversary of Joni Mitchell's "Blue"
General mountain dulcimer or music discussions
I've had Blue since it first came out. Love it! And love the other album's of Joni's that I have, too.
I pick it out on the melody string whether I hear the tune in my head or hear it on YouTube or elsewhere. It's how I learn to play any tune. Which means I generally don't consult a tab or sheet music. As I pick out a tune I usually do have to write it down bit by bit.
Irene, please know I'm thinking about you. To lose someone you shared your life with for 55 years has to be truly hard. I hope some of your children live close by. Thanks for sharing the love song you and Tomasi sang all of those years, and that wonderful photo.
I was fascinated with the striker, too. Wonder what he was using as the striker?
Three???!!! Who can only have three! Well, a few of my favorite ballads are:
Rothesay Bay, Ca' The Yowes, Caller O'u, The Gairdner And The Plooman, The False Lover Won Back, The Maid Gaed To The Mill, Maggie Lauder, The Golden Skein, Today, Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms, Lass From The Low Countree
I'm among the newer folks to go to a gathering, even with 50+ years with a dulcimer! I was delighted to meet the folks at Berea last May that have responded here--David & Karen Bennett, Ken Hulme, John Knopf, Steven Berger, Irene, as well as many others including Lois, Nina, Glenda, Bobby Ratliff & Deborah, Dan Cox, & Richard Streib that I can presently think of. But we missed Ken Longfield!
It was a great gathering and I hope to see the same folks again as well as new folks next May. I've already begun practicing for next year. What's more, if you're "on the fence" about coming, you won't want to miss the chance to win one of John Knopf's authentic, historic reproduction dulcimers!
Happy Birthday, John! That sawdust turned into a mighty nice looking dulcimer...
Being able to play a tune the first time I picked up a dulcimer is what attracted me to it and is still why I like playing it noter or finger and drone style. I have a 3 string, diatonically fretted dulcimer which I've had for 52 years. Until a couple of years ago I was unaware that anyone played a dulcimer any other way! I've learned more in the last year and a half since joining this group than I'd learned in all of the previous years combined. I usually play in Ionian, Bagpipe tuning, or Aeolian and sometimes Dorian. I also have a chromatically fretted dulcimer which I play noter/drone style as well. While I don't play it as often, it certainly is handy for comparing how a tune sounds in 2 different modes.
Mark your calendars, friends, for the last Saturday in August to join folks around the world heading outdoors (if possible) to make music!
So, Robin, how & when did you first learn of Music On The Porch Day, or did you initiate the world wide movement?
The word phrases were used in an FOTMD discussion, but not a discussion created by the person that posted what I was hunting for, so I should have said it was, as Strumelia suspected, a long comment. I'm not absolutely sure that it was Greg who posted it. He (Greg or someone else) was explaining to someone firstly that the name of a mode is determined by which note falls at the point at which the mode begins, & the key signature note is determined by which note falls at the 3rd fret. At the end of the posted comment he described Parallel Modes and Relative Modes. I'd like to re-read the whole thing.
Several month ago I read a post that talked of parallel modes and relative modes. I wanted to re-read it. Thought it may have been a response to someone by Greg Gunner, but am not sure. I've put in the search box both parallel modes and relative modes and neither has brought up the post I'm looking for. How can I find what I'm looking for?
Lisa, if you mean that the tabs are showing the D on the bass string as d, then that would confuse anyone! Capital letters C - B are how we indicate notes in the octave immediately below middle c. The octave beginning with middle c is: c - b, lower case letters. Two octaves below middle c is often indicated by an apostrophe as, C' - B' and on the other end of the scale it's c' - b'. So when you write your own tabs you can note it this way and when you come back to a tune you won't have to wonder "Did I mean c or C when I wrote this!" Hope this helps!
Yet another good book for DAA (or CGG) Ionian playing is Moods of The Dulcimer by Virgil & Norman Hughes. In the entire book there's only 7 songs with sharps or flats, and several of those also include a version with no sharps or flats. There's even a renditon of Old Joe Clark, Greensleeves, and Wayfaring Stranger with no sharps or flats--excellent for DAA!
This is an older book that can still be found on Amazon for $1.95.
Cedar Creek Dulcimers has a Red Meadow kit starting at $139.99. Red Meadow & other kits I have the Classic Walnut kit (shown at the top of the page) made as a chromatic dulcimer. I did not put the kit together myself and had them put the grooves for the frets & the sound holes in, which cost more. A 91 year old gentleman put the kit together for me and I tried to make it easier for him. The dulcimer sounds good. It is heavier than my diatonic dulcimer which is what I usually play. Scroll down on the page to click on the Red Meadow kit.
Lass From The Low Countree, by John Jacob Niles, in Aeolian--key of C. I just posted a question about it in the Noter & Drone Group...Maybe I should have posted it here. I'm still learning to navigate the site.
Lady Mary, AKA Palace Grand, is another favorite mournful ballad.
I'm glad to know about the Strothers string gauge guide. I can see that the gauge suggestions may be a little on the light side in view of what some folks have said, but it's a good reference to have when you're unsure. Thanks again to everyone for your responses.
Thanks to everyone for your input. I've made some notes. I realize there are variables, but even guidelines given are helpful. I broke a couple of 9 gauge strings a few months ago but, alas, I can't recall what I was attempting to tune to at the time.
I have strings in gauges 9, 10, 12, & 22 and dulcimers with 28 1/2" & 28" VSLs. What is the highest note (i.e. g4) that I can tune EACH of these gauges to without the string being likely to break? Info appreciated!