• See Posts section below for the latest news, activities that might be of interest even though not featuring hammered dulcimer, and general music-related tidbits.
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  • Crofton Celtic & Traditional Slow-Jam Sessions. The Crofton Slow-Jam is no longer holding a regular, scheduled monthly Slow-Jam.  They are, however, gathering at times in smaller groups in various places. If you are interested in joining these jams when they plan a gathering, email Jackie Elgie and ask to be put on their email list.  She will notify you when there is an upcoming Slow-Jam with information on time, date, and location.
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  • Ken and Brad Kolodner host old-time jams in the Baltimore area.  See Ken's post below for more information.
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  • Donation to Fairfax Library Foundation.  The Fairfax libraries have offered us very nice space for our jams at no cost for many years.  In 2013 we collected donations totaling $80 to send to this Foundation which provides assistance to the libraries.  Thanks to all those who contributed.  If you missed this opportunity, you may donate directly to them using the choices on their website,  See their thank you letter.
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  • Web Site Updates: Notification by Email.  A list has been developed of musicians and listeners who want to be emailed when the site is updated each month.  To get your name on the list, send an email to Ellie with the subject of "Add Me for HD email."  Use the subject "Remove Me from HD email list" to be taken off.  REMINDER:  If you were on the list, but Ellie's email to you bounces, you'll have to resubmit your email address as she then has no way to contact you!
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Folk College, 5/23-25, Huntingdon PA

posted Apr 3, 2014, 2:57 PM by Eleanor Holsopple

FC logo
MAY 23-25, 2014 Huntingdon, PA 
A fun and friendly weekend of playing and listening to folk music

Register Today!


Click here for details 


2014 Faculty

 Bruce Molsky 

Old Time Guru 


the Hot Seats

The Hot Seats 

Sizzling String Band


Members of Genticorum

Yann Falquet & Pascal Gemme of Genticorum 

Quebec Cool 

Dede Wyland

Dede Wyland 

Vocal Viruoso 

Orrin Star

Orrin Star 

Hot Picking 



Middle Eastern Master 

  Mariel Vandersteel & Laura Cortese

Laura Cortese & Mariel Vandersteel 

Fiddle Phenomena 

  Richard Sleigh

Richard Sleigh

Harmonica Wizard

  Simple Gifts

And Your Hosts

Simple Gifts 



and more!


Master Classes  



Folk College  
Early Bird Registration  
Deadline is April 15

Register Now and SAVE
There are just a couple of weeks to take advantage of  Folk College 2014 Early Bird Discount.
The Registration Form must be postmarked by
Tuesday, April 15, 2014 to Save $40
off the regular registration price.

or NEW this year, register online at

Folk College Brochure in the Mail

Check you mailbox in the next few days for our exciting 28 Folk College Event Booklet page Event Booklet. Full of details about our 3-day Folk Music Festival, this showcases the great line-up of faculty for 2014, as well as all of the workshop descriptions, master classes and logistical details.


Yes, we are late. So don't miss the Early Bird Deadline of April 15. REGISTER NOW and SAVE.


Not on our mailing list. Just send a quick note to and we would be glad to mail get one of our Event Booklet to you.  

Join us May 23 - 25, 2014

Folk College, held May 23 - 25 at Juniata College in central PA, is a fun and friendly weekend camp for folk musicians of all levels - from absolute beginner to professional level.


Visit us online for all the details on this year's event, which includes 3 concerts, lots of  workshops, 2 coaching sessions, plus jamming, singing, and dancing.


Musicians of all instruments and levels are welcome, and there are also choices for non-musicians who want to listen, learn, and experiment with folk music. Each evening features a staff concert followed by staff-led jam sessions. Saturday after the concert, we hold a contradance with an open band. You'll also have an opportunity to be coached by a professional musician in a band setting and to perform in the student concert. Professional development will be offered for school teachers, including Act 48 credit for Pennsylvania teachers.


Register today!

Contact Us!

Folk College is sponsored by the Huntingdon County Arts Council

Ilona Ballreich, Executive Director
Visit us online or join us on Facebook Like us on Facebook.

We hope to see you this year!
This email was sent to by |  
Huntingdon County Arts Council | 212 Fourth Street | Huntingdon | PA | 16652

Soldier's Joy: An American Classic

posted Jan 31, 2014, 3:14 PM by Eleanor Holsopple

Library of Congress blog <>
> 01/16/2014 06:24 PM EST
> "Soldier's Joy" is one of our favorite fiddle tunes, and one of the oldest  and most widely distributed tunes in the English-speaking world. There are 
> numerous renditions of this piece located throughout Library of Congress  collections, many of which are online.  Let?s take a brief tour of this
> American classic."Soldier's Joy"  appeared in late eighteenth-century  sheet . . .
>      ------------------------------
> This service is provided by the Library of Congress at<>

The Sandbridge Dance Tune Collection

posted Oct 11, 2013, 6:55 PM by Eleanor Holsopple

From:  Ken Kolodner, Oct. 11, 2013

Nine years ago, I launched a weeklong retreat in Sandbridge Beach, Virginia for hammered dulcimer players. I started “Sandbridge” (see to provide an intensive learning environment in a relaxed setting. Since its inception, Sandbridge has evolved into three weeklong workshops that draw 50 intermediate and advanced players from around the U.S. and beyond. This collection draws heavily from arrangements developed at Sandbridge and over the course of my

30-year career as a hammered dulcimer performer and instructor.


To order the book, call me at 410-746-8387 or click here on my website Order The Sandbridge Dance Tune Collection  (


  • Repertoire draws from Celtic, Old-Time, Quebecois, Shetland and Cape Breton Islands
  • Includes standards and many lessor known gems
  • Includes basic tunes with chords and one or more arrangements for each tune
  • Arrangements cover a wide range of levels of complexity
  • Backup and harmony parts are provided for many of the pieces
  • Includes a discussion of over 20 arranging ideas/techniques
  • A lifetime resource for players of all levels
  • Tunes are selected from Kolodner’s vast repertoire of thousands of tunes! 

New CD from Ken and Brad Kolodner

posted Oct 4, 2013, 10:35 AM by Eleanor Holsopple   [ updated Oct 4, 2013, 10:38 AM ]

My son Brad and I are proud to announce the release of our 2nd album of traditional and original Old-Time music. The album features hammered dulcimer, banjo, twin fiddles, guitar, bass, vocals and more!  

Purchase a hard copy from my website

Preview and purchase the album digitally via CDBaby

"We could not have asked for a better setting to record this album: right here in the house where we have lived for the past 21 years. The creaks in the floor, the chirps of the birds outside, the beaming Baltimore summer sun shining through the windows, and the comfort of playing in our living room was the ideal setting. For a few weeks in the summer of 2013, our house temporarily turned into a makeshift recording studio." - Ken & Brad


Ken Kolodner: hammered dulcimer, fiddle
Brad Kolodner: banjo, gourd banjo, banjola, fiddle, vocals
Robin Bullock: guitar, mandolin, cittern
Alex Lacquement: bass
Elke Baker: fiddle, viola
Kagey Parrish (of The Honey Dewdrops): harmony vocals


Track List for "Skipping Rocks"

1.       The Orchard (2:25)

2.       Down On My Knees (4:39)

3.       John Brown’s March (4:09)

4.       Falls of Richmond (3:00)

5.       The Reunion (2:23) 

6.       Grub Springs (3:18)

7.       Skipping Rocks (2:43)

8.       Caspian's Dream (3:54)

9.       The Cowboy Waltz/Tombigbee's Waltz (4:48)

10.   Boatman (2:46)

11.   Reuben's Train (2:38)

12.   Red Rocking Chair (4:23)

13.   Billy in the Lowground (3:28)

14.   Garfield’s Blackberry Blossom (3:20)

15.   Lost Indian (2:43)


“Father and son have reached that musical telepathy that family members can sometimes achieve. The  blend of the hammered dulcimer and banjo is exceptional.” Old Time Herald, 2012

Fall/Winter Skipping Rocks CD Release concerts

October 12Baltimore Folk Festival w/ Brad (@ 7:00 p.m. Liam Flynn's Ale House)
October 19: Stony Run Friends Meeting House w/ Brad, Elke Baker and Alex Lacquement (@ 8:00 p.m. 5114 North Charles Street)
October 23: McDonogh School w/ Brad and Alex Lacquement (@ 7:00 p.m.)
November 29: An Die Musik w/ Brad and Alex Lacquement (Two shows @ 7:30 p.m. AND 9:00 p.m.)
December 21: Helicon's 27th Annual Winter Solstice Concert w/ Brad, Robin Bullock and Alex Lacquement (Two shows at 3:30 p.m. AND 8:00 p.m.)
February 28: The Cellar Stage w/ Brad and Alex Lacquement (@ 8:00 p.m.)

New CD - A Civil War Scrapbook - from Hesperus & Maggie's Music

posted Sep 5, 2013, 2:54 PM by Eleanor Holsopple   [ updated Sep 5, 2013, 2:55 PM ]

In the recent issue of Dulcimer Player News ( volume 29, NO. 3,Summer 2013).

Maggie Sansone reviewed the new Maggie’s Music CD by Hesperus Early Music Ensemble called A Civil War Scrapbook ( MM236) ( and also, a guest musician , she played on some of the tracks and included her solo arrangement of the beautiful Irish ballad Shule Aroon .

 Maggie says: “  I have heard this beautiful air for many years but never played it on hammered dulcimer. For this recording I used a Nicholas Blanton Forte). My first step was to sing this song for many weeks until I knew it well from memory and then could really feel how the words and sentiments could inspire my arrangement. From learning the song first, I was able to hear how the melody and words would express the emotional loss of a lover going off to war. I wish I was on yonder hill, it’s there I’d sit and cry my fill, and every tear would turn a mill, oh, Johnny’s gone for a soldier. I played the melody in various octaves around the dulcimer adding variations and free flowing improvisations using pentatonic scale notes that rise and fall to the lower end of the dulcimer concluding the arrangement with a drum type rhythm as Johnny slowly marches away into the distance; and probably to a very sad end.”  Enjoy.

Timothy Seaman's Youtube collection of informal videos is being expanded!

posted Sep 4, 2013, 8:20 PM by Eleanor Holsopple

Various friends and fans have posted Youtube videos of Timothy's playing at festivals and concerts over the past five years, and in the past year we've made some of our own: information about dulcimers, Christmas music on the hammered dulcimer, etc.

Now we've picked it up again with eight new videos in Youtube (and counting):

Feel free to click on any links!  We plan to add a number of other performances and informational items in the near future.  Whenever we do, we announce the news in our website as well as in Facebook and Twitter, in case you're in those digital realms.

Also, Timothy's blog in the website is continually being expanded as well --- music, nature, and life topics --- in several categories --- on about a weekly basis.  Have a look --- it may be helpful or inspiring!

And don't forget that Timothy performs live in one way or another at over 200 events each year!  The website schedule is kept up-to-date on a daily basis, and has helpful links and maps.  We hope to see you at some!

Many blessings on your early autumn ---

New CD from Maggie's Music: A Civil War Scrapbook

posted Jun 13, 2013, 7:33 PM by Eleanor Holsopple

Maggie’s Music announces a new CD on the label: A Civil War Scrapbook (MM236) featuring Hesperus Early Music Ensemble ( Tina Chancey, Director, fiddle, viol ; Bruce Hutton, guitar, mouth bow, harmonica, mandolin and Zan McLeod on guitar). They are joined by guests: Kathryn Montoya on baroque oboe, recorder, and penny-whistle; Matthew Olwell, percussion; Charlie Pilzer, bass, Chris Romaine, old-time banjo and fiddle and Maggie Sansone on hammered dulcimer. Maggie plays on  5 tracks including a Scots/Irish jig set and solo Shule Aroon.  Album information and audio samples here:

Tina, the director describes the recording as a musical patchwork of hope and healing, longing and loss with airs and ballads, Irish jigs, Appalachian fiddle tunes, marches, spirituals and hymns, and parlor music from the time of the American Civil War and beyond. You can visit the album page on the Maggie’s’ Music website to hear audio samples or purchase an advance copy of the CD from Maggie’s Music.( It will be available in stores and download sites starting June 25, 2013.)   from : Maggie,

Old-Time Jams - Baltimore area

posted May 27, 2013, 6:51 PM by Eleanor Holsopple   [ updated May 27, 2013, 7:05 PM ]

Ken Kolodner writes (5-27-2013):

Hello everyone,


For those in the Baltimore area, every other Tuesday, my son Brad and I have been leading an Old-Time jam at Liam Flynn's Ale House. The next Old-Time jam is this Tuesday, May 28 from 7:30-10:30 p.m.


This jam is free and a great way to hear Old-Time music in the heart of Baltimore. We have had a super turnout so far, with up to 35 musicians playing and many more listening and enjoying the scene. If you play old-time music, come and join us to play some tunes. Or just come, relax, have a drink and listen!  


Please invite friends and continue to spread the word. The next jams are 6/11, 6/25, 7/9, 7/23, 8/6, 8/20. I will miss 6/11 and 6/25 but should make the others. Put them on your calendar!


If you want to find out more about the jam on a regular basis, email Brad ( to get on the email list. You may also want to join the Facebook group:


Join the Baltimore Old Time Jam Faceboook Group


See you on Tuesday.



Ken and Brad

Automatic Dulcimer Music

posted Jul 16, 2012, 7:27 PM by Eleanor Holsopple   [ updated Jan 28, 2014, 8:16 AM ]

Andrew Kleeger of the Hammerheads Dulcimer Players writes:

Re:  Automatic Dulcimer Music

The volume is a little iffy … you might need to turn it up …

Also, Maggie Sansone's little buddy,

Patty Looman

posted Jun 6, 2012, 9:08 PM by Eleanor Holsopple   [ updated Jun 8, 2012, 8:55 AM ]

Please announce to my dear friends in the Hammer Heads that Patty Looman, the wonderful teacher and celebrated hammered dulcimer musician died quietly this afternoon in Fairmont, WV. Some of them had known her, or had heard of her.

Late this afternoon, a small group of musicians set up their dulcimers in her room and played softly as she made her final journey. Over the years, Patty had taught hundreds of people in five states, always giving her services for free. Recently, Patty made the request that at her funeral, she would like as many persons whom she had taught who cared to attend, to gather and play the old hymn "Over The Sunset Mountains". This afternoon, her students played this hymn for their dearly beloved friend. After the first verse, Patty slipped into eternity.

Patty's passing will be mourned by the entire state and several surrounding states. Her funeral must be held in a venue large enough to hold dozens of devoted and grateful students who will indeed play this old hymn, among others, at her funeral.

Thank you so much for sending this message, with my continuing love and gratitude to the dear ones in the Hammer Heads .


Mary Ann Spears

Morgantown, WV 26505

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