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Creativity

I taught school for three years in a very small, parochial elementary school. The first two years, I had a combined classroom with 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders. But the next year, I was told I would be teaching the combined 6th, 7th, and 8th grade classroom.  OH. MY. GOODNESS.

First problem, I couldn’t use any of the materials I had developed that worked so well with the sweet middle graders. Second problem, they were TEENagers. Third problem, I needed to come up with some lessons and activities t…

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How to Recover From a Baaaaaaad Performance

You just played the last note in a performance, and you know you messed up. It was bad. You let your nerves get the best of you, and the longer you played, the worse it got. You want to go straight home and lick your wounds. But you can’t just run out the back door. There are people approaching you already … with smiles on their faces. (Why????) What to do … what to do.

  • Accept compliments and congratulations graciously. Even though, to your own ears, the performance sounded like a disaste…

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If My Dulcimer Could Talk

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Your faithful, highly treasured, beautiful dulcimer is sitting by itself over there in the corner. What would it say if it could talk? What if it could tell you what it’s really thinking? Well, I’ve taken a guess about a few things you might hear it say.

  • I’m so honored that you chose me. Choosing your first dulcimer is important, because if the workmanship turns out to be an inferior quality, it may not hold its tuning properly. Many think they will start off with an inexpensive dulcimer,…

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Get a Handle on It!

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Are there still some licks and tricks you still can’t play on your dulcimer? You feel like you just can’t get a handle on them? Yet? Well, I have found that, if you want to get a handle on a new technique, you have to handle the dulcimer and (oh yes, I’m going to say it) practice.

  • Get a handle on … the basic chords. We play most music in the Key of D, so you need to know the D chord, the G chord, and the A or A7 chord. If we’re playing in G, you need to know the G chord, the C chord, and …

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Staying Calibrated

Calibration

My husband had open heart surgery last month and, with all the doctor appointments preceding the surgery, and a one-month vacation before that in Colorado, I haven’t had time to pick up my hammers and practice.

I have to admit, my hands and hammers have lost some of their calibration. And when people have come over to see my husband and keep him company during his recuperation, they see the hammered dulcimer on its stand in the living room and ask what it is. I explain about the instrument, but…

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Muscle Memory Saved the Day

Glasses

I wear glasses some of the time. I have distance glasses that are perfect for driving (well, at least I passed the driver’s test using them). I have reading glasses. I have computer glasses. I have glasses throughout the house on side tables and in my home office. I have more glasses and back-up glasses at the office where I work.

But I still have a problem. And, as I age, it is getting worse. I can’t see the strings on the hammered dulcimer clearly anymore.

I have experimented with different s…

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Live Events at DulcimerCrossing

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Live Events at DulcimerCrossing

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by Steve Eulberg

Live Events Schedule

While the main focus of DulcimerCrossing has been to provide filmed video lessons that are accessible according to YOUR schedule, we also recognize the limitation of learning when we aren't able to ask questions of the instructor.  To address this, we have created and curate several regular Live Events at DulcimerCrossing.

Wednesday LiveStream

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Each Wednesday at 9 am MDT we host a 30 minute Livestream on our Facebook P…

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Winning at Winfield

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The Value of Contests

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by Steve Eulberg

Defining what “winning” means to you.

For some people the notion of combining “competition” and “dulcimer” is oxymoronic.  They just don’t go together!  I see music competitions as an opportunity to prepare some music to share with appreciative listeners.  (Where else can you buy such an attentive audience for $.05 a head?) ($10 entry fee/200 people)  The process of preparing tunes for this kind of presentation is an intensive artistic endeavor!

I’ve …

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The Gold Standard Dulcimer

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Dulcimer players often joke about having DAD — Dulcimer Acquisition Disorder.

It’s true that most of us have more than one dulcimer, and some people have large collections of instruments. We can become addicted to “just one more instrument”. I, personally, have a relatively small collection, with “just” 5 mountain dulcimers (though, I have to admit that I also keep about a dozen student dulcimers and seem to have a revolving door of instruments passing through my home to pass onto young people …

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It Only Takes a Spark

by Linda Ratcliff

The first instrument I learned to play besides the piano was the guitar. I attended a Catholic church at the time, and had played the organ for years at our church. But a couple of nuns wanted to bring the worship music up to date, and they introduced playing guitars at church (but NO drums yet). What a concept!!!

I got a new guitar, an Alvarez, and learned some basic chords. I was on fire … practicing until my sore fingertips could take no more. When I could play in about …

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