Joanne Bois
  • Female
  • Fredericton, New Brunswick
  • Canada
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Joanne Bois's Discussions

Looking 4 A New or Used Bowed Psaltery

Started this discussion. Last reply by Charlie Marshall Feb 11, 2012. 3 Replies

I am looking for a new or a used Bowed Psaltery. I am thinking a Tenor if possible. I live in NB, Canada and I can't seem to find one around here. I thought I would put an ad on here first, before…Continue

I Want A Bowed Psaltery, But Don't know Which One

Started this discussion. Last reply by Tim Smith Jan 28, 2012. 36 Replies

From watching Youtube Videos, I know I definitely want a Bowed Psaltery. I just don't which kind to choose.  I know I definitely don't want a Soprano right off as I find it too high of pitch for me.…Continue


Joanne Bois's Page

Profile Information

Do you own a bowed psaltery?
No- not yet
How did you discover the bowed psaltery?
I belong to the FOTMD Site and have a couple of MD
Who built your bowed psaltery?
I don't have one yet. I am looking to purchase or build one.
Do you build bowed psalteries for sale?
No, maybe in the future if I can build one for myself first
Do you teach the bowed psaltery?
How did you find out about our Psaltery Strings network?
By someone on the FOTMD site

Comment Wall (5 comments)

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At 1:05pm on January 13, 2012, Rick Long said…

Hi Joanne,  I do build a tenor psaltery that is tuned to the key of D.  The notes are all along one edge and it works great playing along with a dulcimer, or using dulcimer tab.  You can see and hear them on my website at  

The problem with this type of psaltery is, if you ever want to move on to playing in different keys.  This one will limit you in that sense.  I sort of intended the D Tenor to be an easy second instrument for someone to learn, that is already playing the dulcimer.  As I state on my website, it is probably not the best choice for an "all around" psaltery.  The chromatic model works best for that.  It's just a personal choice that you will need to make.  The chromatic model does require playing notes along each side, depending on the key.  The process to learn this is not difficult, it just takes time and practice.  I don't know of many instruments that don't require time and practice to learn to play and become proficient at them.  The bowed psaltery has one advantage of being a very simple instrument to learn, much like playing a piano using one finger.  Don't shy away from a chromatic model just because you think it might be hard to learn.

If you have more questions send them to my e-mail address -

At 10:27pm on January 9, 2012, Bonnie Blue Crouse said…

Boring???? It's like carrying your own personal cathedral with you. You can play it anywhere, in any setting, and it sounds awesome, even played by a beginner. It literally stops people in their tracks as they cluster around to see/hear a terrific instrument with rich, almost haunting tones . I love the continued ringing of the strings as you play successive ones. It makes for the most nuanced layers of sound.  So, yes, definitely do mail order one for yourself. Greg and Tish are wonderful people, very down to earth, very very knowledgeable about all kinds of instruments. They are a pleasure to work with. They're in West Virginia, which is Eastern time zone. Check the website and call or e-mail them. That's a great start.

At 9:17pm on January 9, 2012, Bonnie Blue Crouse said…

Some things you don't want to buy sight unseen. Similarly, you wouldn't want to buy a musical instrument "sound unheard." You'd want it in your hands so you could listen to its particular tones before purchase. BUT...if I had no choice, I would mail order one without hesitation, especially if it's from an experienced luthier. Tish and Greg Westman make amazing instruments, and reasonably priced, I think. I've got one of theirs. It was custom built so, actually, I too bought it "unheard," since of course the first time I heard it was after I'd commissioned it to be built. I absolutely love it. Check out

At 7:49pm on January 9, 2012, Bonnie Blue Crouse said…

Welcome. Do get a psaltery as soon as you're able. It's a most wonderful instrument. Having played the dulcimer, you will find the bowed psaltery fabulously easy to pick up.


At 7:14pm on January 9, 2012, Donna Malus said…

Hi Joanne! Welcome to Psaltery Strings. We're happy to have you join us and hope that you find the site helpful and entertaining. Don't hesitate to ask questions, we have quite a few builders on the site that are very helpful.

Please visit often and don't be shy!



Featured Video

Amplified Psaltery with Cello Strings built by Rick Long

This video is a personal favorite because it shows a unique type of bowed psaltery with a gorgeous sound. When I heard it I broke out in goose bumps!

Featured Song

Click on the title for the current
featured sheet music!

Clergy's Lamentation




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Members who build bowed psalteries for sale

Spring Creek Psalteries - Sharon & Terry Kirby


From the Wood - Wayne Gaydos


to see his work visit

Waynie Psaltery - Wayne Simms


Prairie Psaltery - Richard Celata


Loon Song Psalteries-Charlie Marshall


New Tradition Dulcimers- Dan Daniels


Psalteries by Dave- Dave Lucas


Jon Williams Psalteries
(386) 853-0944

Westman Instruments - Tish & Greg Westman

Ringing Strings - Rick Long

Michael J King Instrumetns - Diatonic Psalteries

Inspired Instruments – Carol and Joe Esch

James Jones Instruments

Omega Strings – Richard Spencer

Master Works Bowed Psalteries - Russell Cook

Members that teach Bowed Psaltery

Paul G.Sykes - MS  

Located in Hattiesburg
Contact Paul at

or call him at



Gregg Schneeman - California
Contact Gregg here on Psaltery Strings


Peter Tommerup - California
San Francisco Bay Area
Bowed Psaltery and other Instruments


Celeste Howard Ray
Bowed Psaltery lessons via Skype
Skype name celesteray88


Maureen Barnes - Illinois
Bowed Psaltery lessons in Bloomington, IL


Dona Benkert -

Lessons at Old Town School of Folk Music, Chicago, IL
Phone: 773.728.6000
& Folk-Lore Center, Warrenville, IL
Phone: 630.393.1247

Tish Westman - West Virginia
Lessons at Tamarack, Beckley, WV. Wednesday workshops also available for individual classes and to teach at festivals.
Sunday "Jam" 3:30 to 6:00. All instruments welcome, play mostly Old Time, Celtic & Gospel Music, not opposed to trying any tune called, once did a rap on Bowed Psalteries.

Rick Long - Tennessee
Lessons at Rick's home/workshop in Clinton, 30 mins N of Knoxville
(865) 660-4026

Karla Armstrong - Pennsylvania
Karla plays a variety of instruments and does workshops as well. Please visit her web site for additional information or contact her via the web site or the information below.
(717) 632-8099

Carol Esch - Kentucky
Lessons in Carol's home/workshop south of Lexington.

Honey Smith Walls - Florida
e-mail Honey for more info
Melbourne, FL

Visit Friends of the Mountain Dulcimer

Please sign up on the bowed psaltery players list

Tish's list is a valuable resource when searching for other players.

If you are already on Tish's list, why don't you stop in and update your info? While your there take a look to see if there are new players in your area. Who knows, you might get together and make a recording.

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