Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Just hammerers

After getting a hammered dulcimer, to learn how to play I . . .

took lessons from a teacher.
looked for, but couldn't find a teacher, so I taught myself.
couldn't find a teacher and have almost given up.
didn't seek a teacher, but bought books to get started.
just played around with it until I got it.
I'm still looking for a teacher.
didn't have scheduled lessons, but attended festivals where I took classes.
Total votes : 321

Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby barbh » Wed Dec 25, 2013 2:43 am

I haven't taken any lessons for the dulcimer with a teacher one on one, but have attended many workshops up at Evart. Along with that about 7 years back I took the extensive workshop that Rick Thum offered before Evart. Along with that I use a combination of written music and listening to the music to learn new tunes. I am one of those people who need to hear it and see the music when learning. I have also found some helpful videos on youtube.
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Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby mad mike » Wed Jan 15, 2014 11:27 am

i already play some other instruments, so i didn't have to start from scratch on the HD. but i'm still developing... playing melody is pretty much going ok, adding harmony and embellishments cause some problems. listening to recordings, sometimes i wonder if i'm hearing more than one person playing at a time, or maybe several tracks played by the same person, because i can't figure out how they played all those notes at once :shock: :mrgreen: its lots and lots of fun trying though. :D
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Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby Muskrat » Thu Nov 06, 2014 10:59 am

Self-taught. There are no teachers for piano dulcimers and the one book about them is, well, not very helpful.
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Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby Maurice » Sat Feb 21, 2015 10:03 pm

Self taught. Had 1 hour of "introduction" from the proprietor of the dulcimer store. (They went out of business shortly after that). Have been to many jam sessions like the Western NC Dulcimer Collective and Hammers n' Harmony here in Greenville SC. Have seen Heidi Haase-Smith and Joshua Messick up close and personnal, so "I know what I don't know".

I read music on vocals and other instruments, but seem to have a mental block about reading for my HD.

OK, back in my hole.

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Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby jt3d » Thu Mar 26, 2015 2:27 pm

I thought I had posted in this thread before, but couldn't find it.

At the very beginning I had 3 lessons from Jeff Sebens and a ton of on-the-phone and personal help from Dulcimer Dan Gilvary. Also, I spent many, many hours hammering away on my own.

For 3 years I played hard and heavy, then my daughter got involved in sports and that was all she wrote for my hammered and bowed dulcimer playing. Now that she is about to graduate from high school, who knows...may take it back up in a more serious mode again.
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Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby Dick Hauser » Mon Oct 19, 2015 3:00 pm

Couldn't find instructor. I especially like Richard Allen's Book. Wish it had a accompanying DVD.
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Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby Jim J » Sat Aug 27, 2016 9:09 pm

Well, obviously this board does'nt see a lot of action. I guess everybody's just playing away, trying to get better :) I am a noob to the HD, and I do mean noob! Have had one for about a week now - love the way it sounds. As far as I can tell the nearest teacher is about 1 1/2 hrs away from me so that is not an option. Books, videos on YT, and recordings are the way I am approaching this instrument. I have been a "musician" pretty much my whole life - trombone in school band, 2 yrs piano lessons, 50 years playing the guitar in and out of bands, harmonica, etc. A couple of years ago I was trying to get ready to jam on the guitar with a couple of friends and my left hand wouldn't respond the way it should. Kept pushing it and it got to the point where after about 15-20 min it was like my hand would just spasm - not good! One day my wife and I were watching a program on PBS that featured an HD builder/player - can't remember his name - and she said that I should investigate the HD since I couldn't play the guitar anymore. So now here I am. Wish me luck.
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Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby spen » Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:42 am

I had option 1; option 3 and did give up but back again; option 4 - have books that I'm reviewing and trying to work things out.

I'm still a newbie but sites like this definitely help to express problems I'm having.
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Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby Kevshirl » Fri Jan 26, 2018 6:59 pm

Self taught from books, also attended a dulcimer fest
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Skype lessons

Postby JonW » Sat Jan 27, 2018 10:24 am

Hi everyone -

If you think you would progress more quickly with the help of an experienced instructor/player (most do) but you don't have anyone local to help you,

I give in-person and Skype lessons and would be happy to work with you to at least get you going on the right (or left) foot. Check out my Lessons page at http://www.jonweinberg.com


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Re: Teacher or Self-taught: a poll

Postby BillR+ » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:26 pm

I have been fortunate that the hammered dulcimer has not until recently been my main instrument. I have played harp and guitar most of my career until surgery slowed that a bit. I've had a hd longer than my harp so I've tinkered with it over the years. I have been blessed with being able to play harp along with Maggie Sansone and Ken Kolodner and I have learned much just by watching them. I now watch a lot of youtube videos to get new ideas. Highly recommend them if your self taught.
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