Forum Activity for @stephen-seifert

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
12/15/18 06:38:40PM
23 posts

Group sync


Playing and jamming difficulties...HELP ME!

If your strumming motions aren't moving to the beat and it's subdivisions when you're NOT hitting the strings, you can end up dragging or rushing. Must people that strum like this rush. It's not the only way to strum but I think it's the best FIRST way to strum: ALTERNATE STRUMMING. The exceptions come next. 

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
12/15/18 06:34:18PM
23 posts

Using Metronome apps


Dulcimer Resources:TABS/Books/websites/DVDs

I love TIME GURU. According to your settings, it can randomly mute some of the metronome clicks which trains you to maintain your own pulse.

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
12/15/18 06:31:09PM
23 posts



This question just broke my brain. :)

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
11/16/18 10:49:01AM
23 posts

Hearts Of The Dulcimer Podcast In Its 4th Year


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

A truly great podcast. Thanks for all your hard work. I love it!

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
11/15/18 03:56:23PM
23 posts

Comprehensive List of Dulcimer Festivals


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

UPDATE: The site is going well. Organizers, clubs, and individuals are signing up. I recently sent the following out to many event organizers. Please spread the word!

I made a website for listing and searching mountain and hammered dulcimer events: http://dulcimerevents.com . It's easy to submit and edit your events. You can search present and past events, see everything on a map, and even search for events near you. Dulcimer clubs and jams, it even allows recurring events so you can add your upcoming meetings. Visit http://dulcimerevents.com and register to create a free account. Your events will appear after an administrator approves them. If you have any questions or need any help, please let me know.

Thanks,
Stephen Seifert
stephen@stephenseifert.com

I'm attaching an image of the map. It looks pretty cool!


Screen Shot 2018-11-15 at 2.46.21 PM.png Screen Shot 2018-11-15 at 2.46.21 PM.png - 246KB
Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
10/28/18 03:31:41PM
23 posts

Comprehensive List of Dulcimer Festivals


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

The Eulberg site events page is news to me. I hate that I missed it in the searches and in asking around. I’ve already put about $300 into the site and a good bit of work. Maybe it’s good we have two sites in case one of us dies or something! Perhaps Steve and I can link to each other.
Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
10/17/18 09:20:35PM
23 posts

Comprehensive List of Dulcimer Festivals


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

If you tried to sign up and had trouble, try again. We fixed it.

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
10/17/18 03:25:31PM
23 posts

Comprehensive List of Dulcimer Festivals


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

And here it is: http://dulcimerevents.com . Are any of you interested in helping me test this website? Head on over there and submit an event. I hope everything's clear and easy. If not, post back to this forum topic or use the contact form. THANK YOU!


updated by @stephen-seifert: 10/17/18 03:34:46PM
Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
10/17/18 11:50:55AM
23 posts

Comprehensive List of Dulcimer Festivals


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

I'm going to go with Strumelia's advice. I'm creating an online hub for dulcimer events. I'll get the details out when it's ready. 

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
09/20/18 03:03:51PM
23 posts

Comprehensive List of Dulcimer Festivals


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

Where is there a full list of dulcimer festivals? I see some on this site but I would very much like to see festivals for all of 2018 and perhaps past years. I've been searching. Any ideas? Thanks!


updated by @stephen-seifert: 02/18/20 04:32:56PM
Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
12/30/16 10:44:47PM
23 posts

Playing in a Jam....


Playing and jamming difficulties...HELP ME!

Love my TMBs. Love Bruce and Don playing together! 

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
12/30/16 12:11:44PM
23 posts

Playing in a Jam....


Playing and jamming difficulties...HELP ME!

Maybe someone mentioned this already, but I learned from Don Pedi to tune EAE. The A is on the melody string at the 3rd fret.

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
11/01/16 09:06:25AM
23 posts

Cactus Brothers' Fishers Hornpipe


Dulcimer Resources:TABS/Books/websites/DVDs

What's called a hornpipe in american southern rural pre-bluegrass dance fiddling is not played the same way as an Irish hornpipe. David Schnaufer's Fisher's Hornpipe comes from the playing of Bonnie Russell's Galax recording. Take the common version and ignore the second note of every eighth note pair and you will have something close to what David played.

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
06/16/15 11:39:26AM
23 posts

In need of someone in the Nashville/Mt. Juliet Tn. Area for mountain dulcimer repair.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Absolutly worth the trip to visit Dan Blom in Fairview, TN just outside of Nashville. He spent years with David Schnaufer and me doing dulcimer repairs. He's very good.

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
06/16/15 10:16:19AM
23 posts

Friends of Don Neuhauser Needed


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

That sounds great, Ken. Thanks. I'll take you up on this.

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
06/16/15 10:01:13AM
23 posts

Friends of Don Neuhauser Needed


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

I need help writing text for http://donneuhauser.com. Don asked me to handle it. I told him I would find folks who want to help and he told me to go ahead with it. He's building again after a year and I want to encourage him. I think it's important to honor Don with our words and actions.

 

It's OK to have words from more than one person on each page, and even single sentences will be helpful. Please check out the website and let me know what you're interested in. Some of these pages just need a single paragraph. I can quote you or make your words anonymous. 

 

Want to help? Let me know and please spread the word!

 

Thanks,

 

Stephen Seifert

stephen@stephenseifert.com 

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
05/23/13 03:36:19PM
23 posts



You are right. I should be more careful in the future. I WOULD like to know the truth.

Strumelia said:

Hi Stephen, I wouldn't conclude that Aunt Rhody came from a hymn, based on a 1930's 78 recording. I'd be much more likely to guess the hymn on the 78 was built around the old melody, since traditional melodies are so frequently borrowed and new lyrics are applied, and vice versa of course.

The current familiar Rhody song with melody was written down in books already in 1913 and 1918 in appalachian ballad collections, and had already been passed down for a while by then, but the melody was also apparently included in a 1752 folk opera by Jean Rousseau, and was sung by a shepherdess character. Perhaps Rosseau was the Aaron Copland of his time, incorporating traditional rural folk tunes into his musicals...


Stephen Seifert said:

The melody of Go Tell Aunt Rhodie is from an old hymn. I've got a recording of an old 78 (maybe from the 30's) of a guy playing and singing Go Tell Aunt Rhodie to the exact melody of the hymn (I can't think of the name right now) and the form is AABA.... Could someone help us find the hymn?

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
05/23/13 09:55:30AM
23 posts



The melody of Go Tell Aunt Rhodie is from an old hymn. I've got a recording of an old 78 (maybe from the 30's) of a guy playing and singing Go Tell Aunt Rhodie to the exact melody of the hymn (I can't think of the name right now) and the form is AABA. Here's a quarter-note version. (You add the extra strums.) I use this B almost every time I play it. Make sure every time through you play AABA, AABA, etc. Could someone help us find the hymn?

1st A:

2 - 2 1 | 0 - 0 - | 1 - 1 3 | 2 1 0 -

4 - 4 3 | 2 - 2 - | 1 0 1 2 | 0 - 0 -

2nd A:

2 - 2 1 | 0 - 0 - | 1 - 1 3 | 2 1 0 -

4 - 4 3 | 2 - 2 - | 1 0 1 2 | 0 - 0 -

B:

2 - 2 3 | 4 - 4 - | 5 - 5 - | 4 3 2 -

2 - 2 3 | 4 - 4 - | 5 - 5 - | 4 - - -

3rd A:

2 - 2 1 | 0 - 0 - | 1 - 1 3 | 2 1 0 -

4 - 4 3 | 2 - 2 - | 1 0 1 2 | 0 - 0 -

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
05/27/13 11:00:08AM
23 posts

Are There More Than Ever?


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

I agree about YouTube. Combine YouTube with software like Transcribe! by Seventh String Software where you can change the speed and key of the videos, and there'smore opportunity to learn by ear and eye than ever before in history.

Scott Collier said:

This is a great discussion! I can relate to the Tab vs. playing by ear this way. My Son plays the bass guitar and since he has "grown up" in the digital age, never even thought of taking lessons or buying books. He started watching songs he wanted to learn on Youtube. He was able to quickly learn them. I was amazed at his ability to grasp the concept of a song by just watching someone else play.

Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
05/04/13 12:16:21PM
23 posts

Are There More Than Ever?


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

I've been wondering about something lately and I'm not sure what the truth is. Here's some groups that sometimes feel underrepresented in the dulcimer world at events and in materials:

  • Pure Diatonic (no half-frets)
  • Noter/Drone
  • Galax
  • DAA
  • West Coast
  • Non-Tablature/Play By-Ear
  • etc.

Is it possible, contrary to what some might perceive, there are more of these types of players than at any other time in history? I certainly think it's possible there's more dulcimer players in general than ever before.

I recently heard someone bemoaning there just aren't as many non-tablature/by-ear folks as there used to be. They talked about how all the clubs seem to be more standardized and tablature based. I suggested to him there are not only more tablature players than ever, but also more non-tablature/by-ear folks than ever.

It looks like if someone's into noter/drone, there's more resources and possible playing partners than ever before. Same seems true for folks that are into chromatic. I understand it's hard to find workshops for either at most events BUT I'm also seeing way more noter and chromatic folks at events compared to 15 years ago.

The mainstream is strong but the branches seem to be doing encouragingly well. Being all down about the lack of West Coast style players seems like a first world problem along the lines of, " My 5 dollar latte came with one shot of espresso instead of the two I asked for!" I'm basically suggesting we've got it better than we've ever had it no matter what you're into. I realize there's exceptions but do see what I mean?


updated by @stephen-seifert: 02/25/19 12:27:03PM
Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
04/20/13 12:23:25PM
23 posts

Why So Much American Southern Rural Fiddle Type Music in Dulcimer Jams?


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

Starting a new thread as was recommended: (The original discussion centered on 8 jam along videos .)

Robin Clark wrote:

"What intrigues me is why the dulcimer teaching repertoire is so regularly centred around old Appalachian tunes when there is such a wealth of contemporary music that would equally suit a contemporary dulcimer jam?"

and then,

"Wouldn't it be better to do tunes like this for Join the Jam on the contemporary mountain dulcimer, asthey arelikely to come up at a campfire jam?"

and,

"Shouldn't'True Colors'be an absolute contemporary dulcimer players 'standard' rather than 'Old Joe Clark'?"

First off, I haven't been able to dedicate myself to one kind of music. What works for me personally is focusing on a style, genre, or musician for 1 to 3 months at a time. I go through cycles. The holidays of November and December get me on Irish. When I'm stressed, I turn to jazz. Throughout the year, I pass through bluegrass, blues, electronic dance music, old-time, rock and roll, Indian, and others.

What I play in a Jam depends on the "campfire" and who's around it. I'm up for anything, but the jams I'm usually in include a bunch of dulcimer players who's shared body of knowledge and experience is, much more often than not, centered around pre-bluegrass Southern rural fiddle tunes or anything that's even a little like them.

When I get together with folks, I'm just not real focused on what style we're going to play. I'mobsessed, actually, with HOW we're playing. If I sit down knee to knee with another dulcimer player, I'm not there to play TUNES . I'm there to PLAY tunes. I'm looking for good vibes, clear communication, and creative risk-taking. It's really about community for me. The tunes are the vehicle for the expression. They're not the end goal.

So, why these tunes? I do think they fit really well on the instrument. In the long run, they're easier to transmit and execute than some other types. They're also great for traditional dancing and what it requires. The notes are just enough to keep folks busy and happy. The feel is just right.

A lot of music from the last 60 years has been more groove oriented as opposed to melodic. Take "Walk this Way" by Aerosmith, for example. It's one of my favorite songs but it's just too much about the rhythm to be the kind of material melodic jammers can embrace AS A WHOLE. There are exceptions.

Strongly melodic pop tunes over the last 100 years are often not rhythmically busy enough to work as dance music. I can play "Begin the Beguine" on the dulcimer but there's a certain density of notes that just doesn't fit the bill.

I'm not saying "Walk This Way" and "Begin the Beguine" aren't appropriate for the dulcimer or for a dulcimer jam. I AM saying they're less likely to show up because of the type of rhythm and melody they depend on. There won't likely be enough people who are prepared to play that kind of music.

Traditional type jamming tunes have certain features in common that lead to success with what we're going for. Consider tunes from the following traditions: Shetland, French hurdy gurdy, Irish pipes, German polkas, African singing and drumming, etc. In most cases, it's enough of the right stuff to keep it interesting and accessible and not too much of something else to ruin the communication and community. We're not talking about specialized show music; we're talking about group play along material that welcomes a wide range of abilities and levels of involvement.

There's also the fact, for me, that I had relatives who played Southern rural music. I also had relatives who came from the mountains of Tennessee and Kentucky. The old-time melodies we play makes me remember folks I knew as well as folks I never got to know. I'm sure I look fondly back on agrarian ways. I have a heart for the pioneering type and it's centered around the rural and rocky parts of what's considered the South. (Yes, I was born in Cincinnati but I love grits and red-eye gravy so back off!)I even blame Hee-Haw which I grew up with and loved.

Why are we playing old-time even though we're not playing old-time with folks at old-time festivals? Part of the reason is we have become our own thing. We play dulcimer music. Through time, we've found the right kind of material to keep us together long enough to laugh and enjoy the eating. These tunes fit the bill. You also have to realize our versions of these old-time tunes have been somewhat simplified to accommodate the limitations of our instrument. Our versions don't always mesh. (Also, quite often, as a whole, we're not as mature musically as the folks we want to sit in with. I know there are exceptions and I find them exciting and inspiring.)

Basically, I just want to get together with some friends and trance out to whatever kind of music will work. I didn't know any of these tunes when I started. I just wanted to join the jam. I was looking for friendship and a common goal. These Southern American tunes we favor fit the bill pretty well.I really don't care what we're playing as long as we can do it well together and feel good about it as and after it happens.

There ARE different kinds of jams. At Dulcimerville in Black Mountain, NC, you'll find all kinds of jams at night. You've got the Don Pedi old-time crowd. There's the standard dulcimer fiddle tune jam. You've got the bunch who likes to sing. There's a doo-wop jam. There's the away-from-the-dorms building where all the electric players are plugging in. There's all KINDS of jams to suit your interests but when we all get together in one big room, you're going to hear the common repertoire.

One last thing. You can't get around the copyright issues. For me to publish a book of modern tunes legally is one thing and it's possible. John Sackenheim and Tull Glazener have pulled it off, just to name a couple. Putting out a package that includes a book, a CD, and DVD video is a whole other level of complexity. I've gone to a couple attorneys about this in Nashville. One department handles print publishing. Another handles video. Since your audio CD has 15 versions of the same tune, you sure don't want to go through Harry Fox or you'll be paying 15 times the statutory rate. It's all got to be magnificently coordinated. Add digital distribution to the mix including custom websites and it's enough to make you want to stick with public domain. I sincerely hope things change in the next few years and I suspect they will. (Please someone tell me things have changed. I'd love to hear all about it in another forum or privately.)

That's enough rambling. Back to jamming. Robin, when you and I get together knee to knee, let's play some Beatles tunes. I'm all for it.


updated by @stephen-seifert: 05/16/18 07:40:48PM
Stephen Seifert
@stephen-seifert
01/17/13 10:12:15AM
23 posts

Dulcimers and Airlines


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

I always stick my Lee Felt double-dulcimer bag in the overhead. Especially if I only take one dulcimer, I can fit clothes and product into the other side. I like that my bag looks like something my grandma made me. I've also used the compact looking McSpadden soft cases. Sometimes I hide the top of the second instrument by covering it with a shirt or something. I don't want them to think I'm over doing it. Here's my routine:

  • I do my best to get to the gate early. I want to board as soon as possible.
  • Before they start boarding, I wait as close as I can to the gate door with my bag unzipped. I want everyone including passengers to know I don't have golf clubs. I also want the gate workers to see I'm not trying to sneak an oversize item on board.
  • I keep the instrument in plain site as I hand over my boarding pass. If offered, I always take the baggage claim ticket. As soon as I'm in the tunnel, I put it in my pocket.
  • I smile at everyone and make eye contact. I don't want them to sense I'm going to be trouble. I keep the open bag in front of me as I board. (I really think they hate it when you try to trick them.)
  • When they ask me what I have I often say, "miniature guitars called dulcimers." I want them to think SPECIAL and SMALL. I get them talking right away. I ask, "ever seen one before," or "do you play music?" I really need the stewardesses in particular to be on my side.
  • If anyone says, "You'll have to check that. It won't fit in the overhead," I say, "I promise to cooperate either way but may I please try? I've never had a problem in the past. Most of this bag is filled with air. These instruments are very narrow."
  • I pick the first overhead that's available incase there's none in the back of the plane.

I've never had to check an instrument on what's got to be at least 100 flights. If I ever have to, I'm likely to do what David Schnaufer did after they wouldn't let him fly with an antique dulcimer he'd acquired at a gig. He took the dulcimer out of it's case, put the case in the trash, and handed them the naked instrument. He said they all treated it like a baby the whole way.