Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafesj

User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Sandy Andina How to tune a 3 string dulcimer (16) RE: How to tune a 3 string dulcimer 12 Sep 09

I use the most common Mixolydian modal tuning, DAD (low to high, with the high D as a unison pair). Lends itself best to adapting the widest variety of songs, especially Celtic and those played in open tunings on guitar. I play mostly two-finger chords with either the bass or the treble pair as drones, and I play melody notes on all three strings. (This was the method championed back in the mid-70s by Force & D'Ossché in "Stalking the Wild Dulcimer," where they advocated holding and strumming the dulcimer like a guitar). Traditional players originally used Ionian, or DAA, playing the melody usually only on the treble pair (sometimes a single treble string), with a single finger or a stick called a "noter." David Massengill uses a "reverse Mixolydian," or ADD (or since he prefers to sing in C, CGG, with a single treble string). He usually chords using the bass and treble, with the middle as a drone, except for more complex chords. He plays his melodies using mostly chords rather than single notes. Janita Baker pioneered the use of equidistant 4-string Mixolydian (D-A-D-D) as well as variations, in order to play more complex jazz & blues chords & scales.

Those are primarily major modes, which also allow you to play in the relative minor keys and the keys a fourth above the bass string. Dorian mode is the most common minor mode. and have much more info as to various tunings.

Post to this Thread -

Back to the Main Forum Page

By clicking on the User Name, you will requery the forum for that user. You will see everything that he or she has posted with that Mudcat name.

By clicking on the Thread Name, you will be sent to the Forum on that thread as if you selected it from the main Mudcat Forum page.

By clicking on the Subject, you will also go to the thread as if you selected it from the original Forum page, but also go directly to that particular message.

By clicking on the Date (Posted), you will dig out every message posted that day.

Try it all, you will see.