or what is the bridge on it? Dulcimer fingerboards are usually hollowed out to make them lighter. I wanted to learn to play an instrument but I think the frets have not been placed in the usual manner. It seems to me that making the dulcimer chromatic instead of diatonic, is making it into a three(or four) string guitar. The downside is that you are pretty much playing in one or two keys, and if the song you are playing happens to include a sharp or flat note that is not in the basic scale, you just won’t find it on your fretboard. As a preview from the article… Would Diatonic fretting be something that could be used on 3 and 4 string guitars. Then, when the note is ready to be played, pluck the string using the pad of your fingertip, not your nail, by pulling the string sideways.В  As your finger leaves the string, your nail with catch it and give a sharp leading edge to the note.В  It’s important that you pluck the string sideways, rather than vertically, to avoid the string rattling against the frets. So if your instrument had one string and that string was tuned to the key of “C”, starting at the third fret would be the key of “F”. Sign me up! Some dulcimer players favour plastic or even metal fingerpicks, which seem to work particularly well on the banjo as they give a clear and loud sound.В  I prefer to use my fingers however, which allows me to fingerpick more quickly, precisely and expressively. Yes, I would like to receive emails from C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply. These titles are sold directly by Folkcraft Instruments. This Fret Scale and Fingerboard Length Calculator can be used to calculate fret scale and fingerboard length. Not to get too involved, but if you start your “do re mi” scale with the open (unfretted) string, and go up the fretboard (skipping the blue note), that is one key. Using the thumb for the chanter string will naturally give slightly more volume to that string, which has several advantages.В  In melody-and-drone fingerstyle playing, the melody on the chanter string is emphasised and not drowned out by the drones on the other strings.В  When I arpeggiate chords in DAA, the thumb will typically play the melody note and this will often be on the first beat in the bar.В  The thumb will therefore help to impart a sense of the melody and also help to reinforce the rhythm. The origin of the dulcimer is as elusive as its haunting sound. Think of the “DO RE MI” scale that kids learn. I am assuming throughout that the reader is right-handed and that their dulcimer has 3 strings, or 3 sets of strings. Madeline MacNeil brings her considerable expertise in teaching the dulcimer to this fine beginning text. indicates 13th, 23th and 35th positions, also indicated with a pair of ‘*’. There are various other fretting layouts that have been used throughout the history of stringed instruments, but the most common variation to the chromatic style discussed above, is based on what is called the diatonic scale. all the flatpicking ones can be converted/swapped too. We’ll discuss the dashed line frets (#10 and #22) below. In general, your nails should be short enough to allow your fingertips to touch and dampen the string when it is plucked but not so short that you have to hook your fingers to catch the string.В  Indeed, this is the key to successful fingerpicking. By using this tool, you can determine the length fingerboard you should purchase. Explaining compensation and intonation here presumes action (a.k.a. Thoughts? We’d need a little more specifics as to which article you mean Joanne. Oh my GOSH! Note to Dulcimer Players - The chords in the following sections will work for Mountain Dulcimers but they will be reversed. 1 reply; 62 views; Bob E; October 21; Delco Dulcimer Forms David Green By Kristie, October 16. Why is the bridge of a strumstick slanted. They're also available Many dulcimer solos are also contained. The 4½ note, A# on the melody string requires a bend. Thanks for posting the new song tabs for CBG’s. Always file your nails using a fine emery board, never cut them using scissors or clippers, which can stress the nail.В  Shape your right hand nails into a smooth curve, avoiding sharp corners. So it is natural that when people think of frets, or a fretboard, they think of a guitar fretboard – an evenly distributed collection of frets that get closer together the further you go up the neck towards the guitar body. I have probably made many mistakes in my music career but one thing I don’t regret is spending a little time with the virtuoso guitarist Martin Simpson, leaning right hand technique to play fingerstyle well. 11 finger exercises. We’re happy to help. Thanks for your time. I have the fret slots cut. This article about scale length will help to answer your question with more depth: https://www.cbgitty.com/news/what-is-scale-length-why-does-it-matter/ In other words, for bars 1 and 3, you would hold down the 3-0-2-3 chord and for bars 5 and 6, you'd hold down the 1-0-3-3 chord. You can check this before you buy a book. The scale length of the canjo shown in the article photo is fretted to a 24.5 inch scale. Adding that fret gives you what is often called the “blue note” of the dulcimer scale. We’re always happy to help! OK now about the dashed lines on frets #10 and #22. You will need a chart showing the dulcimer fret board as well, some dulcimer books have a few charts, at least for one or two tunings used in the book. Your right hand is in charge of strumming and plucking. If you put your fingers down anywhere there is a dot and strum across the strings, the result is some kind of D chord, or D chord fragment. ), the string is played close to the bridge, to the right of the strum hollow.В  Ponticello gives a bright, crisp sound with high harmonics included in the texture of the sound. I hope you found this article helpful.В  You will have noticed that I used the term вЂ�best practice’ several times.В  To me, there is no вЂ�correct’ music and you can play what music you want and how you want.В  By all means learn best practice and then deviate from it for stylistic effect.В  But by learning best practice first, you will generally play better and avoid giving yourself problems later on. This holds especially true for heavier-gauge strings. Those of you who are familiar with my music will know that I play the dulcimer (and guitar) mostly finger-style.В  To me, fingerpicking is one of the prettiest ways of playing the dulcimer.В  This article outlines what I see as best practice fingerpicking technique and it should help you play fingerstyle too, should you wish to do so. What I meant is the fret markers which I intend to do with mother of pearl dots. But if you are building an instrument for folks who don’t know how to play, or for kids, or elders, or just the general public who want to be able to quickly pick out a tune, diatonic can be a good option. I suggest that you get a variety and try them out and choose the kind which you like the best. There is a custom case available with the pack as well that further contributes to the ease of transportation of the instrument. Once you have identified the notes, and located their position on a dulcimer chart, mark them on a blank dulcimer Tab sheet. Having this “blue note” in the scale is necessary to play a number of popular songs. VIDEO: The Essential Canjo – Part 4 – Advanced Playing Techniques How long is is a Canjo? All are arranged for the mountain dulcimer in 1-5-8 (Mixolydian tuning), except for one in 1-4-8 (Reversed Ionian tuning). Hi Gitty, And the distance of that end to the nut is your scale? The 6-String Dulcimer is not any harder to play, it just offers a unique, fuller string sound along with more tuning options. Notice how there are wider gaps between some of the frets, than there were on the chromatic fretboard above? This requires a bend. Above: The Mountain Dulcimer I built in August ’17. You will need to look after your nails to fingerpick well.В  Strong nails need a healthy diet and to that end some guitarists eat a cube of raw jelly (US=jello) each day.В  If your nails regularly crack or break, then you might look to adding a calcium supplement to you diet.В  Do check with your GP or pharmacist first though, as too much calcium could be harmful.В  Oils help too, either a commercial nail oil or pure olive oil.В  A drop of oil В massaged into your nails on a regular basis will help to keep them strong. I was wondering why “Ti” was sounding so flat…. What is the length of the dulcimer fretboard in Glen’s article? If you have further questions, please feel free to reach us at [email protected]. In other words - you would need to use a mirror image of these chords on the Mountain Dulcimers. Second, deciding on a good way to hold it for playing. It’s hard to get a good idea about what you’re describing without seeing it. Also, since slanting the bridge changes the scale length, which one should be used to calculate fret placement? The "Fingers Of Steel" imprint is a series of books and videos published by Folkcraft Instruments. However they often add what is called the "6 1/2" fret. If you are uncertain whether or not to include the blue note frets, a good plan would be to not put them on your first build. Diatonic fretting can be used with pretty much any scale length. The total length of ours are usually 28 inches though that can vary depending on the style. how to finger-pick the dulcimer . Your email address will not be published. The Mountain Dulcimer is a special kind of exception to the rule. indicates 13th, 23th and 35th positions, also indicated with a pair of ‘*’. Counter-intuitively, you do not actually pluck the strings with your nails.В  Just before you pluck, let the pad of your fingertip rest gently on the string.В  This dampens the string, stopping the previous note.В  Even if you are fingerpicking very quickly, every single note is stopped before the next one is played. See more ideas about dulcimer, mountain dulcimer, dulcimer music. Hold a pick in your right hand between your thumb and index finger. The dulcimer may also be placed in a similar position on a piece of furniture such as a table or chest of drawers, to enhance the sound. Absolutely, especially on 3-stringers. By contrast in ponticello (or pont. Using this choice of fingers as your default will impart the most energy to the strings and so give the most volume for fingerstyle playing.В  Volume is important, especially on the inherently quiet dulcimer, and achieving the most volume allows for greater dynamics.В  Dynamics (the difference between the quietest and loudest sounds) are essential to giving emotion and form to the music.В  Imparting the most energy to the strings is also key to highlighting expressive techniques played by both the right and left hands.В  Indeed this is how the late, great dulcimerist Roger Nicholson made is wonderful music come to life.В  There are exceptions to every rule, but by consistently using the same fingers as your default configuration, you will quickly develop muscle memory and play more fluently. The size of the dulcimer is not very large which makes it an easy to transport instrument. The scale of the chromatically fretted cigar box guitar is 25″. The scale of the instrument in the first photo is about 21″. Instead, you build chords by learning what notes they are composed of and how to find these notes on the dulcimer. To put it most simply, diatonic fretting makes an instrument easier to play, but less versatile overall. If instead you start at the THIRD fret, and go up the scale, playing the blue note but skipping the one after it), that is a different key. I am building my first dulcimer with diatonic scale with 17 frets. They're also available By the way, she's also very personable, and seems to enjoy a laugh from time to time. A more traditional look: scroll headpiece with an inlay stripe, inlaid stripe down the traditional fretboard and back. Students appreciate her solo and duet arrangements in large, visually-friendly format. La Mort de Coucy: If you’d like, send us the same question along with a photo to [email protected] and we’ll do our best to help. It is a 3-string, diatonically fretted instrument that was one of the early forerunners of the homemade/handmade music movement. This would seem to interfere with the formula used to come up with the fret spacing. ... Chords are shown in chord diagram form with photographs showing finger positions in relationship to the fretboard. But please feel free to ask any questions you have. There does appear to be an error in the spreadsheet that we are working to fix. The CD contains Ms. MacNeil's excellent teaching and is in stereo play-along format. The head should be to … Lynn gets down to basics from the get-go. The fingerboard … 32 fiddle tunes. В I manicure weekly, to keep my nails in good shape and also the night before a concert, as newly shaped nails give a crisp, clean tone.В  Using a blunt nail file, start by gently pushing back the cuticle using the flat side of the file’s smooth tip.В  This stops the cuticle from В growing over the nail.В  Then gently smooth the upper surface using a nail buff to reduce or remove ridges, which are where breaks in the nail are most likely to appear. These titles are sold directly by Folkcraft Instruments. Notice the note names starts over at the 7th fret. Often the bridge is the bottom/back of the can, though more advanced methods are possible. This is SO helpful!! Note: This can be fixed by a luthier. Best practice technique is to have your right hand fingers approach the strings vertically from above, not from the right.В  Whilst there are stylistic reasons why you may occasionally vary from this, approaching the strings vertically from above (in both planes) will give the best control. Check out the frets on the American Canjo Company canjo above. For that reason, you can see how scale length is a little more complicated than a single measurement.” Using a diatonic fretting style can make it a lot easier to play basic songs, since there are less frets (and therefore notes) to choose from. Most folks are familiar, at least by sight, with the six-string guitar – whether an acoustic guitar like a Martin or an electric guitar like a Fender Stratocaster™. Complete arrangements of all tunes with the melody of most songs in a second position (bass, octave) on the dulcimer fretboard. I meant the article above (diatonic Dulcimer-style ) fretting. … Since dulcimer strings are tuned to different notes in each tuning, there is no such thing as a finger position that is always a G chord or an Em chord. Personally I like a large, thin triangular pick when playing the dulcimer. All of the sharps, “natural” notes and flats. If you know the notes in a chord and want to find if you can play it on the dulcimer a fret board map can be useful. It’s all in there, and if you aren’t sure of what you are doing it is pretty easy to hit a sharp or a flat when you don’t mean to, causing potentially jarring discordance. Available in the same variety of woods and sound hole patterns as our Walnut Classic model. (You can unsubscribe anytime). Starting with tuning and the correct way to hold the banjo, she progresses to proper finger positions and chord structure from fret to fret. Hello, Nigel. By the way, she's also very personable, and seems to enjoy a laugh from time to time. 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