I'm just delighted Robin refers to a dulcimer as "tool." That makes it so much easier to justify buying another one. I must have a dozen hammers in my garage, so I should have at least that many dulcimers.
Don Pedi is an American treasure, that's for sure. He both collects and plays the old music. He's like the Seegers and the Lomaxes all rolled into one.
In the 2012 picture to which Strumelia links, he is holding a Modern Mountain Dulcimer, which he seems to have been using for his main dulcimer for several years now. It does indeed have both a 1+ and a 6+ fret. Most of the still photos he uses for media stuff show trad dulcimers with friction tuners and no extra frets, but he makes practical use of modern innovations like geared tuners and extra frets.
What impresses me consistently in Don's playing is not the speed of his fingering-as impressive as it is--but his rhythmic strumming. He never relies on a rote pattern but keeps tunes moving in a danceable and yet varied rhythm.
Dusty T., Northern California
As a musician, you have to keep one foot back in the past and one foot forward into the future.
-- Dizzy Gillespie