Parallel Hammers Exercises
For Hammered Dulcimer Players

Video 1



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VideoAbout the Lessons

1. Exercise 1: In this exercise, the left hand plays the drone on A, while the right hand plays a 4-note scale going UP beginning at D, with hammers starting a 5th (5 notes) apart.
2. Exercise 2: In this exercise, the right hand plays the drone on D, while the left hand plays a 4-note scale going UP from the A string, with hammers starting a 5th (5 notes) apart.
3. Exercises 3 & 4: In this exercise, you will play the drone with one hand, while the other hand plays a 4-note scale going DOWN, with hammers starting a 5th (5 notes) apart.
4. Exercise 5: In the exercise, the hammers will begin an octave (8 notes) apart. First the left hand plays drone on the high D, while the right hand plays a 4-note scale going UP from D.
5. Exercise 6: This time, again the hammers will begin an octave (8 notes) apart. Buft now the right hand plays the drone on D, while the left hand plays a 4-note scale going DOWN - starting from the high D.
6. Using the Bass Bridge: Now the exercises above are repeated, moving over to include the the bass bridge.
7. Play Exercises in
Different Boxes
:
Finally, Steve demonstrates how these exercises can (and should) be practiced in every box up and down the instrument.

PDFSheet Music

AnimationsAnimations for ABOVE

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Music GlobeExtras

  • Sycamore Rapids with the Trout is an original composition by Timothy Seaman, played on the hammered dulcimer. The tune tells the story of a canoe ride early in the morning through rapids on a Virginia river.┬áThe arrangement, intending to create the impression of paddling through swift water, incorporates a variety of hammered dulcimer techniques, including parallel octaves.

  • One song where you could apply the parallel hammering techniques taught in these exercises is Carol of the Bells. In this video, Ted Yoder is playing one of the best arrangements for this Christmas tune I've heard.

  • There is another exercise on Octave Drones, taught by Linda Ratcliff. You should check it out after practicing all the videos in this lesson.

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