Sunday, March 11, 2007

Sweet Dulcimer Music

Wow, what a weekend! Afternoon temperatures reached 67°F (20°C) with clear blue skies. Old man winter is loosing his grip and spring is just around the corner. I couldn’t let such a beautiful weekend pass without a little paddling. I slipped my canoe into Swift Creek and enjoyed a peaceful day on the water. Although I didn’t see another person the whole day, I wasn’t alone. A pair of osprey was riding the currents in the air above, snakes and turtles were sunning on the rocks, and a great blue heron drifted from the treetops to the marsh below. It was a rejuvenating day for all.

Our good friend Walt has again loaned a few treasures from his record collection to share with the riders on the Bus. This time he has brought some great old time banjo and dulcimer.

I haven’t posted much dulcimer music on the Bus and that is a shame, because the dulcimer is such a simple pleasure suitable for a weekend such as the one just passed.

Paul Clayton (given name: Paul Clayton Worthington) was attending the graduate school at the University of Virginia in the early 1950s. He had a strong interest in the music of the area. He was a founding member of the local folk trio, the Dixie Mountain Boys. Clayton is best remembered for his collection of field recordings and for his influence on a young Bob Dylan.

Paul Clayton - Boil Them Cabbage Down.mp3

Paul Clayton - Cedar Mountain Breakdown.mp3

In the past I have featured the dulcimers of Edd Presnell, and the unique dulcimer artistry of David Schnaufer. After my post on Edd Presnell I heard from his granddaughter, who told me she has one of her grandfather's dulcimers and still plays it.

In the photo above is a dulcimer I built many years ago. I have passed it on to my son now, but I had to take it out on the back porch Sunday, after returning from Swift Creek. Some sweet music from the dulcimer seemed just the thing to top off a wonderful day.


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