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Carolina Rockman

How To Become A Better Dulcimer Player - 12 Bending Notes

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How To Become A Better Dulcimer Player - 12

Bending Notes

 

The majority of the songs that we dulcimer players play are usually straight forward and do not require, either a 1½ fret or the bending of one or more notes to achieve a sharp or a flat note.

In order to play most contemporary music and some hymns, there are two things that you will need to have. The first is a 1½ fret. The second is the ability to be able to bend notes. Most dulcimer players are uncomfortable when they see a + sign following a note. It is really no big deal.

I will tell you how I bend notes. It may or may not work for you. If the note to be bent is on the melody string, I usually use my thumb on the required fret and push inwards.

If the note to be bent is on the middle or bass strings, I use my middle or index finger to pull the string(s) towards me. Pushing/pulling should be done as close to and next to the fret wire.

You will find that when we have to bend notes, the most common are:

D# on the melody string. It is difficult to bend the string that low on the fret board so we bend the string at the third fret, middle string, which gives us our D#

G# on the melody string. You can bend the string at the third fret, melody string or go up to the 6½ fret on the middle string for a G#, no bend involved.

A# on the melody string. You bend the note at the fourth fret, melody string. If it is an A# on the middle string, you go to the bass string, fourth fret and bend the note there.

You can see the value of knowing your fret board. Each note that we play can be played on any of our three strings

Go to the tab section of this website to find my arrangement of “The Old Rugged Cross” There are two sharped notes in the song that are normally not seen in the Key of D. That is a G# and an A#. The use of a 1½ fret is not required for this song.

To play the G#, you can bend the melody string at the third fret or go to the middle string 6½ fret with no bend involved.

To play the A# you will bend the fourth fret on the melody string.

Hopefully these techniques will help you in How To Become A Better Dulcimer Player.

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On 6/21/2020 at 9:44 AM, Carolina Rockman said:

How To Become A Better Dulcimer Player - 12

Bending Notes

 

The majority of the songs that we dulcimer players play are usually straight forward and do not require, either a 1½ fret or the bending of one or more notes to achieve a sharp or a flat note.

In order to play most contemporary music and some hymns, there are two things that you will need to have. The first is a 1½ fret. The second is the ability to be able to bend notes. Most dulcimer players are uncomfortable when they see a + sign following a note. It is really no big deal.

I will tell you how I bend notes. It may or may not work for you. If the note to be bent is on the melody string, I usually use my thumb on the required fret and push inwards.

If the note to be bent is on the middle or bass strings, I use my middle or index finger to pull the string(s) towards me. Pushing/pulling should be done as close to and next to the fret wire.

You will find that when we have to bend notes, the most common are:

D# on the melody string. It is difficult to bend the string that low on the fret board so we bend the string at the third fret, middle string, which gives us our D#

G# on the melody string. You can bend the string at the third fret, melody string or go up to the 6½ fret on the middle string for a G#, no bend involved.

A# on the melody string. You bend the note at the fourth fret, melody string. If it is an A# on the middle string, you go to the bass string, fourth fret and bend the note there.

You can see the value of knowing your fret board. Each note that we play can be played on any of our three strings

Go to the tab section of this website to find my arrangement of “The Old Rugged Cross” There are two sharped notes in the song that are normally not seen in the Key of D. That is a G# and an A#. The use of a 1½ fret is not required for this song.

To play the G#, you can bend the melody string at the third fret or go to the middle string 6½ fret with no bend involved.

To play the A# you will bend the fourth fret on the melody string.

Hopefully these techniques will help you in How To Become A Better Dulcimer Player.

 

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