The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #56098   Message #875846
Posted By: Steve Parkes
27-Jan-03 - 12:30 PM
Thread Name: Mountain dulcimers: shape and sound
Subject: RE: Mountain dulcimers: shape and sound
Back in the 70s, we found we had a dulcimer player hiding her light under a bushel (Marilyn Fecher, sometime of Rhode Island, I think: I wonder what happened to her?). Her instrument was very quiet when played in a big room full of people, and I suggested a nuymber of modifications to the design to improve the volume. The main one was to use a flying fretboard like a violin fingerboard, which would be attached only at the nut end, so no compressive force to warp it; and have a proper bridge to transmit the sound to the top of the soundbox. You can probably imagine the response I got! I think I'd invented the viol di grembo. I know that traditional dulcimer is meant to be quiet, as it's played indoors; it's more entertaining than watching tv, and won't annoy the neighbours (who are probably joining in anyway).