Another Snowy Day to Spend in the Shop

Well, we woke up to another snowy morning. Canceled a doctor appointment and settled in for a work day. I have been busy getting things ready to travel on our first music related trip for the year. I'll be headed to Hattiesburg, MS next week for the Southern Strings Dulcimer Festival. I've never been before, but have heard good things about the festival and the folks that run it. Looking forward to a great time and itching to join in on lots of jams.

I've been working on some new stock for the year. I have been delayed on most of what I should be working on by a new design of a baritone psaltery. Finally worked through that and have started building them and getting back to the other psalteries. It's easy to get distracted by a new instrument and constantly think of tunes I want to try on it.

We travel in a motor home, which is actually a 1980 MCI bus conversion. There's always some maintenance to perform on it. I've have just changed out the transmission fluid/filter and the gear oil in the differential. Pretty good chore, but doing all this is key to keeping these old buses on the road. It's definitely not one of the super fancy Prevost coaches I see on the road, but it works for us and is comfortable. When I totaled up the amount we were spending to stay in hotels per year traveling to do the craft fairs and demos I knew it was time to put that money into something we would eventually own.

Worked up my schedule for travels this year. I decided to stop exhibiting at craft fairs this year, I've been doing that since 1991. They are just getting too hard to prepare for and do. Always lots of stress and can be a gamble if it's an outdoor show, you never know what to count on as far as weather is concerned. I am going to do a couple of dulcimer festivals and then schedule more craft demos at some of the Southern Highlands Guild craft shops. I always enjoy those and they are easy set-up and slower paced. I can usually pull right up to their door to load in and out. Gives me time to talk to folks and share the bowed psaltery with them and not be overwhelmed with a crowd of folks in front of me. Folks are more willing to try the psaltery when there's not a lot of folks watching or listening. It's always great fun to hear someone play their first tune and get that grin on their face. Lots of times folks have said it is their first of any musical instrument to play. You builder's know what I mean, or anyone else that has shared their psaltery with others. It's always fun for someone to say they don't play any instruments and then help them through a simple tune, even if it's the first eight notes of "Joy to the World". I kind of trick them into it. I have them play a higher "C" and play every note down the scale to "C" an octave lower. They do that, then I say "play those same notes and think "Joy to the World". Most all can do it, then I have to comment, "I thought you said you couldn't play anything". Quite few of them will start hunting the next notes of the song to continue on. It's a good feeling.

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Comment by John Henry Charles Crocker on February 16, 2010 at 1:41pm
I agree Rick, I sometimes think I get more of a kick from 'seeing the light go on' when someone plays a tune for the first time than I do anytime when playing myself. Regards, JohnH

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Members who build bowed psalteries for sale

Spring Creek Psalteries - Sharon & Terry Kirby

http://www.springcreekpsalteries.com/

330-323-0618

From the Wood - Wayne Gaydos

765-468-7387

http://fromthewoodsinstruments.com/

to see his work visit

http://shop.indianaartisan.org/collections/musical-instruments

Waynie Psaltery - Wayne Simms

http://www.wayniepsaltery.com/

 

Prairie Psaltery - Richard Celata

http://www.prairiepsaltery.com/

 

Loon Song Psalteries-Charlie Marshall

http://www.loonsongpsalteries.com/

 

New Tradition Dulcimers- Dan Daniels

http://www.newtraditionsdulcimers.com/index.html

 

Psalteries by Dave- Dave Lucas  

http://www.davespsaltery.com/

 

Jon Williams Psalteries
(386) 853-0944

Westman Instruments - Tish & Greg Westman
http://www.westmaninstruments.com

Ringing Strings - Rick Long
http://ringingstrings.com

Michael J King Instrumetns - Diatonic Psalteries
http://www.michaeljking.com/psalterymaking.htm

Inspired Instruments – Carol and Joe Esch
http://www.windridgefarm.us/bowedpsaltery.htm

James Jones Instruments
http://www.jamesjonesinstruments.com/bowedpsaltery/bowedpsaltery.html

Omega Strings – Richard Spencer
http://www.omegastrings.com/

Master Works Bowed Psalteries - Russell Cook
http://masterworksok.com/

Members that teach Bowed Psaltery

Paul G.Sykes - MS  

Located in Hattiesburg
Contact Paul at
 pgsykes1@hotmail.com

or call him at

601-583-4115

 

Gregg Schneeman - California
Contact Gregg here on Psaltery Strings
greggschneeman@psalterystrings.com

 

Peter Tommerup - California
San Francisco Bay Area
Bowed Psaltery and other Instruments
408-867-4324
ptommerup@juno.com

 

Celeste Howard Ray
Bowed Psaltery lessons via Skype
347-796-4484
Skype name celesteray88

 

Maureen Barnes - Illinois
Bowed Psaltery lessons in Bloomington, IL
309-828-7957
dulcimergal98@yahoo.com
http://www.dulcimerdreams.com/

 

Dona Benkert -
Illinois

Lessons at Old Town School of Folk Music, Chicago, IL
Phone: 773.728.6000
& Folk-Lore Center, Warrenville, IL
Phone: 630.393.1247
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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.
1-304-575-0998
tishwestman@yahoo.com
www.westmaninstruments.com

Rick Long - Tennessee
Lessons at Rick's home/workshop in Clinton, 30 mins N of Knoxville
(865) 660-4026
http://www.ringingstrings.com/lessons.html

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
karlaarms@upontheharp.com
http://upontheharp.com

Carol Esch - Kentucky
Lessons in Carol's home/workshop south of Lexington.
606-676-0128
esch@qx.net
http://www.windridgefarm.us/bowedpsaltery.htm

Honey Smith Walls - Florida
e-mail Honey for more info honey@offthewalls.us
Melbourne, FL
http://www.offthewalls.us/Psaltery.htm

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