UPDATED: Fourth Edition - October 2018
This book summarizes a vast amount of material that is vital to a broad understanding of the layout, patterns, and chord theory that are foundational for playing the hammered dulcimer. The hammered dulcimer is in many ways unique as a visual/spatial instrument. We can significantly accelerate our mastery of the instrument via thorough knowledge of the patterns. Much like a guitarist uses chord patterns, we can do the same. This book focuses on the spatial nature of the hammered dulcimer with the purpose of gaining mastery of the organization of the instrument. The charts and diagrams are supported by brief discussions of supporting theory.
When you purchase this PDF, you will receive PDF updates for all future editions. What a deal!
Printed book also available - Spiral bound and printed on heavy stock to support lots of use!! Click here
What others say about this book:"Finally! A 'how to' dulcimer book that's really worth buying!
Since I started teaching in 2006, students have asked if there's a particular book from which I teach. The answer has been 'no'. I typically make my own handouts and information sheets based on the method from which I learned, i.e. the Ken Kolodner method. I am thrilled that Ken has recently put together a book that contains everything you need to know to master the hammered dulcimer. Those are BIG words, but seriously, there's a LOT in this book! This spiral-bound, easel-style book began as a collection of cheat sheets and charts to help students navigate the instrument. In subsequent editions, information and explanations were added to create a compact, easy-to-read summary of music theory for the hammered dulcimer. The information presented is essential to mastery of the instrument. Self-motivated players can work through this book on their own, although it might be helpful to have an experienced teacher give some guidance. If no such teacher is available (and even if there is) or if you simply want more "foundation" information to explore all of this on your own, check into Ken's "Big Bundle" on his website. That'll keep you busy for awhile :-)"
-- Sue Wilson, published in "Trapezoids of the Triangle" blog, May 2018
The book covers the following concepts using charts and discussion:
- Shortcuts for learning ALL the notes
- How to see intervals on the hammered dulcimer
- The circle of fifths organization of the hammered dulcimer
- The circle of fifths and relation to chord movement
- Scales (four critical methods) and location of duplicate notes
- Root and inversion patterns
- Derivation of three note chord patterns (three right and three left hand patterns)
- Understanding triads
- Root arpeggio patterns (five common patterns)
- Combining arpeggio patterns to play the full range of arpeggios
- Definitions of various types of 7th chords
- Patterns for 7ths chords on the HD
- Theory of secondary dominants - "The Secondary Dominant Pattern"