Robin Clark


Location: Tywyn, Gwynedd, Wales
Country: GB

My Latest Followers:

Grandma Rosemary jost Mick McLaughlin traildad oldmdpicker sparrowbirdy Mary Barnsdale Judith tssfulk Ballad Gal Elvensong Exukaden Ariane Banjostray chris hornby PapaSims Don Grundy Peppermint Tennessee Jed Kevin R. MaryB Magdalena DianeL Black Dog Bess Repp dulcinina Jane Syers kb9jlo Kathy V JGD m.hagen05 Salt Springs Kandee Slate Creek Dulcimers Dan Michael Fletcher Stephen Mathews Charles Thomas Annie Deeley Cat Brown Volha David Pedersen Bob Reinsel Lexie R Oakley Cynthia Wigington Richard Wojtulewicz Pete Answer Barbara Berg Don Kemper Bob


SoundCloud Tracks: 11
youtube videos: 20
images: 21
videos: 2
audio tracks: 70

Arkansas Traveler - North Wales Bluegrass Festival - Conwy · 6thJuly 2013

musician/member name:
Duration: 00:03:10
A few friends turned up at the Bird Rock Dulcimers stand for a couple of tunes in the afternoon sunshine!
Rick Kennedy
07/15/13 10:30:44PM @rick-kennedy:

Looks like you had a real nice display there--and some good live advertising. Thanks for those great notes for us new players about jamming.Grin.gif Thanks for posting!

Robin Thompson
07/12/13 07:25:41PM @robin-thompson:
What fun! (I was just playing my PVMB recently, too!). And your jamming advice is spot-on, Robin.
Gary Sager
07/12/13 03:04:17PM @gary-sager:

Dusty Turtle: That box dulcimer is one that I built a while back. It has been some time since I built any of those. They are not Tennessee Music Boxes as some have alluded to, as TMBs are fairly specific in build. It is just a box dulcimer. But it has pretty good punch. Gary Sager..Prussia Valley Dulcimers.

Scott Allen
07/12/13 10:29:13AM @scott-allen:

That's what it's all about, right there!

Patty from Virginia
07/12/13 09:46:58AM @patty-from-virginia:

That's wonderful Robin! Looks like you all had great fun with this. Thanks for the advice on jamming. My first experience with jamming was at Wartz last October. I understand what you mean about mistakes and being able to pick up again in rhythm...I made plenty of mistakes109.gifSmile.gif

Marion Seaman
07/12/13 07:44:56AM @marion-seaman:
great advice - thanks again. i lack the discipline to sit and play with a metronome; my son tells me exactly the same! i will try..........have a serious cae of SASS (short attention span syndrome LOL)marion
Robin Clark
07/12/13 07:19:44AM @robin-clark:

Many thanks - it was great fun Grin.gif

Watching the video again I've spotted a few bluegrass/old time jamming conventions that we are all doing pretty unconsciously. Once the tune is started (the first instrument setting the speed and rhythm - in this case the dulcimer) all play together for a round and the the lead is being passed between the instruments with a glance or nod - this is most noticable at 1:33 and 2:05. The other instruments back off when not in the lead and either go to off-beat chucks or harmony parts. You can see this back-up being played on the dulcimer at 2:05. On the last Part B, towards the end of the banjo lead, we all begin playing together (like at the start) and this indicates that everyone is ready for a finish - there are a few glaces around to confirm this and Nick lifts his foot (out of shot) to indicate that's where we are heading.

Jamming is not a rehearsed performance it is a creative activity. Although we all know each other, that particular 5 piece had not sat down and played together before that session last Saturday afternoon. It is the interaction between the players that is really the exciting part of jamming. You cannot just 'play the tune' the way you normally dobut have to work with those musicians around you and pay attention to the whole sound.As you can see, there is no place for TAB at a jam session. You have to know the tune and then be prepared to move the way you play it to fit with the session. This may mean changing phrases slightly or altering the rhythm. I normally play Ark Trav in the key of D (as we are here) but using a 'd' tuned melody string. Here my melody string was tuned to A (too thick to go up to 'd') so I had to switch my start point down4 frets and change the end of my usual run down to an octave up.

If you are interested in learning how to jam then my top tip would be to spend some of your practice time playing with a metronome - it will train you to listen to what's going on around you and you'll learn how fit your playing toa rhythm set externally. A jam will not stop or break rhythm when you make a mistake and nor will a metronome - so learning how to pick the tune up again, in rhythm, after an error is a crucial skill.


Marion Seaman
07/12/13 03:06:02AM @marion-seaman:
nice one robin - looks like a lot of fun.Marion
Chuck Moseley
07/11/13 08:12:28PM @chuck-moseley:
07/11/13 07:22:09PM @folkfan:

What fun, and so nicely done. Toe tapping type of music.

Guy Babusek
07/11/13 07:08:09PM @guy-babusek:

That was fantastic!!!

Robin Clark
07/11/13 06:44:09PM @robin-clark:

Thanks Smile.gif

I was at the North Wales Bluegrass Festival last weekend. Nick (banjo), Shirley (guitar), Roger (bass) and Eryl (mandolin) stopped by my stall so we played a few old time tunes. The dulcimer I'm playing is a Prussia Valley Box Dulcimer that I bought second hand a couple of years ago. I've not played it for a while and I took it to the event to sell on the stall - but after playing it at this little impromtu session I decided to keep it Grin.gif

Dusty Turtle
07/11/13 06:33:20PM @dusty-turtle:
Very cool, Robin. That looks like lots of fun. The tune really dances along and the whole group was remarkably tight, really staying together. Who made that box you're playing?
Karen Keane
07/11/13 06:27:22PM @karen-keane:
This one made me smile. Awesome playing everyone!