Thursday, March 29, 2018

Sweet Music




A few months ago, Sister and I attended a craft show in Mooresville.
There, we came upon a booth like no other.
Mr. Thomas Gillian is an artist who crafts dulcimers.
It was such a pleasure talking with him,
and he was kind enough to teach me a tune.
At that time, I shared how enchanted I became with this glorious instrument.
You can read about it here.
(Scroll to nearly the end of the post.)


Well, the time had come to take the next step.
I had been saving for one of my own,
and I figured that if I was still as charmed by this lilting sound
by the time I had enough to purchase one, then it was meant to be.
The fascination hasn't waned, so I called Mr. Thomas.
He handcrafts these gorgeous instruments at his home in Hickory, NC.


He suggested that I try out each of the three wood types,
black walnut, cedar and maple.
I was drawn immediately to the maple,
not only because of the stunning dark striations against the light color,
but the curious connection (maple) to this blog.
After playing the song that Mr. Thomas originally taught me at the craft show,
Sister helped me with the decision,
but in the end, the cedar dulcimer chose me.
The sound is amazingly clear and resonates so exquisitely .


 Music practice in the afternoon is now one of my favorite times of the day.
Having played guitar in the past,
I can tell you that this instrument is much simpler.
The bonus for me is that, although I played guitar and sang in choirs for years,
I never really got the hang of reading music.
The dulcimer lends itself well to those 
who are intimidated about learning a new skill, but want to explore a musical instrument.


As I tackle each new song in my accompanying songbook,
I feel a bit more confident and relaxed.
Even C gave me a boost when he told me
that he recognized one of the songs I was playing.
That keeps me motivated to keep practicing.
Hopefully, by the time the holidays roll around,
I'll have many hours of playing under my belt
and I will be able to scratch out some carols for us to enjoy.
In the meantime,
I will continue to get my practice time in and enjoy the journey.
I am grateful to Mr. Thomas for using his talents
to enrich so many lives.

What new skills do you want to undertake?