Monthly Archives: June 2006

July Meeting

[originally posted in June 2006 on, copied and posted here on 4/11/2009]

Memphis Area Mountain Dulcimer Players:

Our next meeting WILL NOT be the first Sunday in July;

it WILL be Sunday Afternoon, July 9, 2006 at Carla’s house from 3-5PM.

    We hope you will join us as we play:
        Three Ships (in Jig time)
        Fidgety Jig
        The Banks of the Allan

Note the above are Jigs that Jae Graves gave out at the last meeting and taught the jig strums.
    Other old favorites we will play will be:
        Aragon Mill
        Waltz Across Texas
        Wildwood Flower
        Square Creek Tune
        What Will I Leave Behind
    I really missed being with you at the last meeting,
but Carla did hold the phone while I listened to you play jigs. 
It really sounded good!  
If all goes well Linda and I will be at this July meeting and we look
forward to playing dulcimer with you.   Hope to see you there.

June Note from Carla

[originally posted in June 2006 on, copied and reposted here on 4/11/2009]

Hi Friends,

Today is the first day of Mountain Dulcimer Week at Western Carolina
University!  I’m in a dorm at Western Carolina University,
Cullowhee, North Carolina, where I will be spending the week in Steve
Seifert’s advanced players class.
During our next meeting I will share some of the highlights of the
week, pictures, and experiences in the jams.  Tonight I joined a
jam led by Don Pedi.  He slowed down some of his fast fiddle tunes
so everyone could keep up!  Don is a gracious jam leader.  He
spent last week in Kentucky playing for square dances, he said. 
He always looks like he loves what he is doing! 

I was excited to be able to keep up in the jam this year.  When I
left Cullowhee last year, I made my goal to “know my fretboard.” 
Playing the chords, changing chords, varying the chords, and knowing
when to change chords is SO much easier when you really know the

Larry Conger taught about chord shapes in our Memphis Dulcimer
Gathering with Larry Conger one year.  I understood the
information he presented, but I didn’t really apply it, until this past
year.  Larry demonstrated how all the chords on the mountain
dulcimer can be classified as one of four shapes:

  • Bar
  • L
  • Slant
  • Extended Slant

I guess that lesson was one of those times when the information I
received had to sink in later to be fully understood.  And, now
that I really understand and know the four chord shapes and where the
chords are on my fretboard, I am really enjoying the music that I am
making in a jam. 

At our July meeting, I will be glad to share with you what I have
learned about playing backup chords, improvisation, and rhythm with
other instruments.  Chords don’t have to be used only in a
“jam.”  Playing chords with a few other players playing the melody
is a lot of fun, and adds a lot of interest to the music! 

Well, I’m off to crawl into this dorm bed — not looking forward to
sleeping on a plastic mattress with no mattress pad — but I need to
get some sleep tonight!  Breakfast is at 7 a.m. and classes start
at 8:30.  

Don’t forget, our next meeting is the second Sunday, rather than the
first Sunday, in July.  It will be at my house, and I look forward
to seeing you all there. 

See you then!