Rest in Peace, Larkin Bryant
My apologies for the odd spacing on the posting! I have tried to compact things yet have not been entirely successful. I hope you like reading the tribute to Larkin!
That was lovely. I didn't know her very well but appreciated Larkin's talent and kindness. Larkin was my first dulcimer teacher. Her beginner dulcimer workshop at the Memphis Dulcimer Festival was perfect for me, and I learned from her beginner book and accompanying cassette tape after that. I was very sorry to hear the sad news.
Here is a lovely and lovingly written tribute to Larkin posted on facebook by a dear music friend of mine, Kim, and used with permission here: Most everything I know about the dulcimer I learned from Larkin Bryant. Almost every Friday afternoon for five years, I would go to her house for a dulcimer lesson (with an old-time fiddle lesson thrown in occasionally). We'd sit in straightback chairs in her front room across from her piano with our backs to the windows so the sunlight could shine in onto our sheet music. The sheet music was for me, as Larkin could play anything from her heart and memory. Her elderly black and white cat, Sweetie Pie, would snuggle in on Larkin's lap in the space between her dulcimer and stomach. Ariel, Larkin's beloved Weimaraner, would sit directly on top of my feet, chewing her heavy-duty blue rubber dog bone until she fell asleep. Mr. Kitty and Hannah, her two other cats, usually found spots in our instrument cases to curl up and snooze. We'd usually start our lessons catching up with news in each other's lives. Larkin always took time to ask and genuinely cared about what was going on my life. She was a fantastic listener and always spoke carefully and with wisdom.
After talking a bit, we'd play music! She was a wealth of repertoire and music history, and she loved telling me the stories behind the songs. I soaked up everything I could. She would often walk me out to my car after my lesson and we'd talk about the many beautiful plants and flowers she had growing in her front yard. It seemed she even knew everything about those as well! A couple times, when I'd go back to my next lesson, she would have a clipping of one of the plants or a cutting of some of the flowers I had admired to give to me.
updated by @robin-thompson: 05/05/21 01:14:55PM
I have been unable to find a public obituary for Larkin to post. Here is a link to the webpage she shared with her husband, Andy Cohen:
I treasure Larkin's dulcimer instruction book and her Lark in the Twilight cd-- I wish I had more of her music!
Sad news indeed. Larkin Bryant's book has had a great and long-lasting influence on dulcimer players. She will live on in the playing of many others.
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
Sad news indeed, Robin. Thanks for letting us know.
She certainly gave a lot of people joy through her own music, and through helping others to find their personal music as well.
Those irritated by grain of sand best avoid beach.
-Strumelia proverb c.1990
Musician Larkin Bryant has died. Larkin's mountain dulcimer instruction book is a treasure I enjoy. I also have Larkin's last mountain dulcimer cd and it is one of my favorites. I post the following video in memory of Larkin-- in it, Larkin and Bonnie Carol are playing music together.
updated by @robin-thompson: 04/23/21 08:02:25PM