A year ago I ventured into the Hammered Dulcimer festival at Evart, Michigan. http://evartdulcimerfest.org/
This was the beginning of me-as-a bowed-psalterist.
I’m staggered by how much I’ve been able to play and learn this year. I’ve accumulated reams of sheet music, but also picked out tune after tune by ear. I’ve memorized a couple pieces. I’ve participated in both a workshop and a festival with Tish Westman, and had gratis…
I received my new absolutely beautiful Waynie Ultimate Bowed Psaltery yesterday 26 Feb. 2016. The workmanship and attention to detail is nothing short of marvelous !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I chose Purpleheart wood and Wayne combined it with Curly or Flame Maple. WOW !!!!!!!!!!!!! My baby is one class act Psaltery !!!!!!!!!!!!! If you haven't checked out wayniepsaltery please do so !!!! You will not regret it !!!!!!!!!!
Oklahoma City, OK
Added by Linda Rodgers on February 27, 2016 at 10:09pm — No Comments
Please see this YouTube video of traditional Baltic instruments being played...https://youtu.be/hMrumB7xMWE Established authoritarian Musicologists have long held that "There were no bowed musical instruments in Europe before Byzantine versions were introduced in the 10th century AD."! The Bladder Fiddle Family sometimes called Basse de Flandre, Bumbass, and Poispil represents a long tradition of playing a bowed bass instrument of usually only…Continue
Added by Gregg E. Schneeman & Jean Gaffey on January 28, 2016 at 7:30am — No Comments
When I bought my psalteries this summer, I imagined I would enjoy playing, and at some point might be competent enough to play at church or maybe a farmers' market. I had no idea how quickly doors would open for me to share the pleasure it has brought me. Almost immediately, I was able to contribute music to a family event. My relations were superlative in their praise of my few tunes-- Amazing Grace, and I can't remember what else. I got plenty of practice trying to explain the instrument…Continue
Added by SUE C WHEELER on December 26, 2015 at 8:42pm — No Comments
I obtained my Baritone Roosebeck Psaltery on Aug 8, 2015, and my Cabin Creek Alto on October 19, 2015. I realize this is adding family members rather rapidly, but I'm guessing there's folks out there that understand this! I love the low tones of the baritone, and the fact that I never "run out" of notes. It seems that 37 strings is quite a luxury. On the other hand, the little cherry Cabin Creek is easier to play and to carry around. While exploring options, the friendly attention from the…Continue
The Bowed Psaltery consists of a scale of individual strings each tuned to a specific pitch and arranged to be played upon one at a time by a bow. Each individual string is a musical instrument in its self called a Monochord. Monochords are the earliest stringed instruments with all other stringed instruments progressing from that first development. Many different Monochords were developed by many cultures through out history. One of these, the Vietnamese Dan Bau, sometimes described as a…Continue
Added by Gregg E. Schneeman & Jean Gaffey on August 21, 2015 at 7:30pm — No Comments
Ten days after acquiring my bowed psaltery (baritone), I was able to play some tunes as my cousins scattered ashes--both of their parents had died last year. The service was brief, informal, but beautiful, on the banks of the Sauble River.The guitar player and I each found a seat on moss covered tree limbs. I was told my music was very significant. Amazing Grace, Simple Gifts, Come by the Hills, and a little noodling. In other news, my James Jones platform came yesterday and I'm all set up…Continue
Added by SUE C WHEELER on August 21, 2015 at 6:54am — No Comments
When you bravely take your Bowed Psaltery out in public you have to be prepared to say, "It's a Bowed Psaltery" while playing and explain about it little, so many people are amazed they have never seen one before and need to know "What is that?" RIGHT NOW! "Do you ever play the strings in the middle?" Is a pretty common question. You get all possible reactions ranging from complete indifference to absolute "Stop that and go away or I will hurt you." But you will find many people are…Continue
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/03/arts/music/jean-ritchie-who-revived-appalachian-folk-songs-dies-at-92.html?_r=0 If you look at one of the photos with this article about Jean Ritchie's life you might notice a Bowed Psaltery in the back ground. Jean and I crossed paths at different folk events often enough that she remembered my name and encouraged my Bowed…Continue
I've tried quite a few kinds of bows including violin bows. My favorites are the light weight ones that Rick Long makes and I must have 5 or six sets including 2 double connected bows. Synthetic is OK but can be rather worthless in high humidity. Was playing outside on a rainy day under a trailer awning and couldn't get any sound with those! Like no rosin at all no sound. Dark horsehair seems to grab the strings best in situations like that. Tend to prefer the horsehair now since then.…Continue
Added by Mouth Bow on April 8, 2015 at 3:24pm — No Comments
First my disclaimer: I have never built any Bowed Psalteries, I am just an avid BP player and sometimes a luthier groupie! I have however adjusted the pins, strung, and restrung hundreds of Bowed Psalteries new and old. I see older BP's that had wound strings put on them. Often the wound on wire has worn to breaking and unraveling where it goes over the top of the rail pin. If you look at an AutoHarp you will see they have the wrapping stop before the core sting goes over the bridges to…Continue
I'm just dropping a line to invite you to our 4th Tuesday of the month folk music jam in Downey, CA, U.S.A. You can find details at www.Celticana.net. Hope we can make music together!
Added by Bea Romano on March 3, 2015 at 3:39pm — No Comments
Had a needle biopsy yesterday which indicates that I do not have cancer! Am celebrating today!!!!
It is with a feeling of great loss I call the attention of the world wide Bowed Psaltery community to the passing of Pete Shutler of the English folk group the Yetties, September 23,2014. Pete was a multi-instrumentalist and singer but also the most famous Bowed Psaltery player of the 20th century. On the Yetties' albums he played "King of the Fairies",a medley of "Parson"s Farewell and Hundson House he called "Beau Psaltery", "Coventry Carol", and other tunes on the Bowed Psaltery. One…Continue
Well this year is going fast! But I've been finding some time here and there to practice BP. I play mountain dulcimer with friends as a sort of ad hoc string band on a weekly basis. A few weeks ago I took the BP in to show it off. It was universally liked as a "cool" interesting instrument with an interesting sound. The double bass player naturally laughed his head off at my tiny little bow.
So the BP has been enlisted to accompany a contemporary christian hymn called Revelation Song.…Continue
If you try to play with a brand new bow with brand new horse hair on a brand new string nothing will happen. No sound whatsoever. Often a luthier will when the hair has been properly a fixed to the bow use prepowdered rosin and work it in thoroughly coating every hair, as besides supplying traction where it meets the string it also acts as weather proofing and preservative, it was part of the mummification process used by the Egyptians. For a normal getting ready to play rosining hold the…Continue
The new (to me) psaltery arrived yesterday so I had the pleasure of opening up the box and finally seeing it in the flesh (err... wood?) I was immediately struck by how beautiful it is, finely made. The low resolution photos on the Goodwill auction site do not do it justice. The soundhole design is more delicate than I expected. I could see a label inside but it was difficult to read through the soundhole's fretwork. The label appeared to be printed in a cursive font - I could make out…Continue
I have a psaltery on its way. It should arrive this Wednesday. I've bought it online, second-hand via Goodwill auction. A gamble, but I think it will be fine. Fingers crossed!
I've never played a bowed instrument so I know the bowing technique will not be easy but I'm patient. I do read music and understand how you're meant to play the psaltery - what the strings mean. This is a 2-octave, and I think it's right handed. Now I'm a left handed person - but play other…Continue
According to Victorian age musicologist W.F.Flood in his book "History of Irish Music" "The Timpan was, in reality, a small stringed instrument, having from three to eight strings and was played with a bow or plectrum, being also called a Benn Crot,or peaked harp, by an ancient Irish writer. Recent research has almost conclusively proven that the Nabla or Psalterium-a favorite Celtic instrument from the seventh to eleventh century was generally of eight strings, and hence called the…Continue
Added by Gregg E. Schneeman & Jean Gaffey on July 21, 2014 at 10:30am — No Comments