Steve Eulberg
On the Hammered Dulcimer
Steve Eulberg

Level 1 Absolute Beginners: String-Side UP
A series of 30 videos beginning by going over the parts of the hammered dulcimer and how it is laid out.
Level 2 Angels We Have Heard on High
This arrangement will work with an ensemble of both kinds of dulcimers or both mountain (in both tunings!) and hammered dulcimers. Get together with your friends to try it!
Level 3 Another Jig Will Do
This a fun Celtic slip jig based on the mixolydian scale. The term "slip jig" refers to both an Irish style of music and an Irish dance. The slip jig is in 9/8 time, traditionally with accents on 5 of the 9 beats.
Level 3 Arrange & Embellish 1: Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star
Beginning with a familiar nursery rhyme tune, Steve explores 10 different variations that are tools for learning how to arrange and embellish any tunes that we wish to play—a transferable skill.
Level 3 Arrange & Embellish 2: Dorsett's Four-Hand Reel
One of the most common questions asked in workshops is, "I get tired of playing a tune over and over the same way in a jam session. How can I make some changes to the arrangement? " This lesson includes several suggestions that can be applied to any tune.
Level 4 Arranging "The Ash Grove"
Although "The Ash Grove" is taught by Linda Thomas, in this lesson Steve takes us deeper into techniques for arranging. His variations include chromatic descending lines, playing in different modes and minors, filling in gaps, playing in octaves, and additional chords.
Level 3 Barlow Knife
The Barlow knife design dates back 400 years, and is a type of folding pocket knife that features double or single blades that open at one end only. The song about the Barlow knife is an old-time southern Appalachian tune. Unlike other traditional tunes, Barlow Knife has 3 parts.
Level 3 Blacktail Weasel & the Ground Squirrel Clan
This is an original modal tune by Steve with the feel of old-time music. This tune has a short-long rhythm like a Strathspey. The lesson also includes a twinning harmony, so you could perform this with a friend in two parts.
Level 3 Blues Scale on HD
The Blues scale consists of 6 different notes. They are the 5 notes of the minor pentatonic scale, plus one additional note. The note added is the diminished 5th. In this set of lessons, Steve demonstrates the Blues Scale in A, in D, and in E.
Level 3 Brachanloam
This is a Scottish air in 4/4 time. Mountain dulcimer players will enjoy the articulations of slides, hammer-ons and pull-offs.
Level 3 Breaking Up Christmas
The tradition of partying for 12 days, and the song, Breakin' Up Christmas, came from the Appalachian mountains. Party hosts would move furniture out of the house to make way for the festivities. The celebration lasted from the week before Christmas through the week after, usually winding down after those two weeks. Toward the end, they’d always play this tune.
Level 2 Building Chords
All chords required 3 notes, which is why they are called triads. This lesson examines the patterns and shapes to build major and minor chords on the hammered dulcimer.
Level 3 Caledonian Club
Caledonian Club is is a Celtic Strathspey dance tune in 4/4 time, easily recognized by the Scotch snap. A Scotch snap is a short note before a dotted note, a short-long rhythm, with the pulse on the shorter beat. In traditional playing, this rhymic pattern is generally exaggerated to enhance the musical expression.
Level 2 Celtic Music for Dulcimers
Even beyond Irish and Scottish natives, Celtic music is enjoyed by people who can trace no ancestry to the British Isles because of their infectious rhythms and the wide variety of tune types and interesting melodies. In this lesson series we first explore the timing and rhythms that undergird Celtic tunes in order to equip us to play them melodically later.
Level 2 Chariton River Bridge
The Chariton River is a 218-mile-long tributary to the Missouri River in southeast Iowa and northeast Missouri. Our composer was inspired by a bridge that used to go over Chariton River where she lived, but the river was dammed and the bridge was torn down. The song reflects her memories about the times they would walk down the lane to the Chariton River Bridge on Sunday afternoons.
Level 3 Chromatic Hammering
These exercises are designed to help you learn the location of the chromatic notes on your diatonic dulcimer. In the process, you will also gain dexterity and familiarity of sending one hand off to find the "unusual" note then return home by having the other hand stay put like an anchor.
Level 2 Club Footed Jib
This is an original tune by Steve Eulberg, and this one is in 7/8 time. He was inspired to write this tune while in the Florida Keys, sitting next to Butch Ross on a sailboat with a club-footed jib in the front.
Level 3 Crested Hens
The composer of Crested Hens is the French hurdy-gurdy player, Gilles Chabenat, and he wrote the tune when he was only 15 years old. Crested Hens is usually played as a waltz, but was actually written as a bourree - a French dance in 3/8 time.
Level 2 Cripple Creek
A "cripple creek" is a meandering or a crooked stream. Some speculate that the location of the creek in this bluegrass song is Cripple Creek, Colorado. But others believe that the song refers to Cripple Creek, Virginia. Regardless of the location of the creek, it's a popular tune at jam sessions.
Level 3 Dorsett's 4-Hand Reel
Dorsett's 4-Hand Reel is a fishermens' dance from Bridport, England. Steve learned this tune from the first band in which he ever saw a hammered dulcimer player (Burr Beard was his name; Devilish Merry was the band's name) back in the 1970s.
Level 2 Extending Chords
We can use the triangle and ladder patterns to extend chords and play them as arpeggios, going both directions, from the bottom to the top strings of our hammered dulcimer and back down again.
Level 2 Front Range Rambles
This tune was written by our own Steve Eulberg as the Dulcimer Crossing "theme song." He was inspired by his view of the front range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. You will hear this tune as the intro to our videos, and it's a lot of fun to play.
Level 2 Garry Owen
Garryowen is an old Irish drinking song that can be traced back as far as the early 1860s. The word "Garryowen" is derived from Irish words meaning, "Owen's Garden," and is actually a suburb of the Irish city of Limeric.
Level 3 God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen is an English traditional Christmas carol. It is also known as "Tidings of Comfort and Joy," "Come All You Worthy Gentlemen," "God Rest You Merry, Gentlemen," God Rest Ye, Merry Christians," or "God Rest You Merry People All." It is one of the oldest existing carols, dating back to the 16th century or perhaps earlier.
Level 1 Hammer Control
Saying the word Mississippi for rhythm control, Steve takes us through an exercise to help you gain better control of your hammers and eye-hand coordination. First try the exercise leading off with the right hand, then leading with the left hand.
Level 3 Hand Independence
Learning to play "The Lullabye of Muffe" also gives us the opportunity to work on hand separation and hand independence skills.
Level 3 Hand Separation
In the lesson for Su-La-Li, Steve plays the melody with his left hammer, and strikes the bass line with his right hammer along the bass bridge. This technique is good for practicing hand separation.
Level 2 Harvest Home
"Harvest Home" can be found in fiddle tune collections from the 1840's so it is believed that this lively tune was brought over to America by one of the Irish immigrants in the 1800's.
Level 3 Higgedy Jig
This tune was composed by our own Vi Wickam in the key of G. It is a double jig in 6/8 time with the accent on the 1st and 4th beat. Steve teaches the melody, the chords, and the twinning harmony.
Level 3 How to Use Dampers
First Steve gives a little history about the damper pedal as it evolved for dulcimer players, and then explains the mechanical functions of dampers.
Level 2 Hunting Buffalo
Mountain dulicmer players will learn about the use of a capo and how to play the song in 4 different tunings. Hammered dulcimer players will learn how to play a minor mode gapped-scale tune in box and the straight up and down patterns in E minor.
Level 3 I Wonder As I Wander
Few Christmas hymns capture the poignancy of Christ’s birth as well as this old folk song. It was discovered by John Jacob Niles, a historian and song-writer who spent most of his life traveling across the Appalachian Mountains in search of new folk music.
Level 2 Liberty
Liberty is a very popular old-time and bluegrass fiddle tune, great for contra dances, and it's tons of fun to play at jam sessions.
Level 2 Liberty for MD & HD
In this lesson, Erin Mae and Steve show us how to play Liberty when playing with a mountain dulcimer and a hammered dulcimer together (or actually, any two instruments). They give us plenty of ideas for variations to add to the arrangement. And then they show us how to listen for cues and be sensitive to what the other person is trying to do, and how to give the other person room to do it.
Level 3 Lullaby of Muffe
The Lullabye of Muffe, also known as La Berceuse de Muffe, is a traditional Belgian tune. Muffe was a small town in Belgian that was devastated during World War Two.
Level 2 Mairi's Wedding
This is a Scottish folk song originally written in Gaelic by Johnny Bannerman for Mary McNiven, a well-known singer at the time. Johnny first played the tune for Mary in 1935 at the Old Highlanders Institute in Glasgow's Elmbank Street.
Level 3 Modes
A mode is a seven-step series of notes that can also be called a scale. In this lesson, Steve reviews the ionian, myxolydian, dorian, aeolian, phrygian, lydian, and locrian modes.
Level 2 Off She Goes
The popular fiddle tune "Off She Goes” was popular throughout the British Isles and North America. Some sources say that, in the days of sailing, it was a tradition for the fiddle player to sit on the deck of the ship playing “Off She Goes” as the ship departed harbor.
Level 1 Over the Waterfall
Over the Waterfall is a popular jam tune which packs some surprises. The humorous lyrics tell of an old man who pushed his old wife into the water - thus the title "Over the Waterfall."
Level 2 Parallel Hands
Parallel hand exercises help you develop accuracy. In these exercises, one hand plays a scale going up or down, while the other hand answers with a drone tone.
Level 4 Peek-A-Boo Waltz
The Peek-a-boo Waltz is attributed to William J Scanlan (1856-1898), an Irish American from Springfield, MA, and has become a staple in the repertories of many Canadian fiddlers during the last century. Vi emphasizes that this should have a waltz feel with a 1-2-3 danceable beat, and the odd measures should have a little bit stronger downbeat than the even measures.
Level 2 Portable Chord Shapes 1
Steve "sees" chords as shape patterns, that can be moved to different locations on the hammered dulcimer. In this group of videos, Steve demonstrates the Utah shape and the ladder shape.
Level 2 Portable Chord Shapes 2
In this lesson, Steve introduces the Mississippi chord shape, the bowtie shape, the kite shape, T-shaped chords, and more.
Level 3 Rich Chords 1
Rich chords are chords that have other notes in them, in addition to the 3 notes that go with either the major or the minor chords. In this series, Steve focuses on adding a 4th note to the major 7th, the dominant 7th, 6th chords, augmented chords and diminished chords.
Level 3 Rich Chords 2
In this 2nd part of the Rich Chords series, Steve adds tones to minor chords. Then he demonstrates how to apply this lesson to the old favorite, You Are My Sunshine.
Level 3 Sarah Armstrong
This tune is known by the name of the person who played it, Sarah Armstrong. Sarah Gray Armstrong (3/18/1883 - 8/12/1957) was a well-known fiddle player. She began playing the fiddle when she was five, and learned most of her tunes from her uncle and father who were also accomplished musicians.
Level 2 Silent Night
This arrangement will work with an ensemble of both kinds of dulcimers or both mountain (in both tunings!) and hammered dulcimers. Get together with your friends to try it!
Level 3 Soaring
Soaring is a tune that was born when Steve was trying to learn another tune, but the melody kept coming out with its own voice. Steve originally wrote the tune for mountain dulcimer, but he has also adapted the tune for hammered dulcimer players.
Level 2 Spotted Pony
Spotted Pony is a traditional Missouri tune from R.P. Christeson's book, The Old-Time Fiddler's Repertory. Here Steve teaches our hammered dulcimer players the tune. In addition, Erin Mae teaches both standard and chromatic mountain dulcimer players in the D-A-d tuning, Vi Wickam teaches it to our fiddle players, and Butch takes it to the next level with his breakdown version. See links to all the lessons for this tune here.
Level 2 Still, Still, Still
This is an Austrian Christmas carol, and was also arranged by Steve for an ensemble of both kinds of dulcimers or both mountain (in both tunings!) and hammered dulcimers.
Level 2 Stir Up Your Power, O Lord
This is an original song written by Steve for the Advent season. Before he plays the melody for us, Steve shares church history that inspired the song, how he met Guy George, and about the time Guy asked to play this tune.
Level 1 String-Side UP
A series of 30 videos beginning by going over the parts of the hammered dulcimer and how it is laid out.
Level 3 Su La Li
Su La Li is played in A minor. It was composed by Bonnie Light for Music Together, an internationally recognized music program for children from birth through age 7. It is a classic example of a “song without words.
Level 2 Tablature Reading
Tablature was developed long ago for stringed and fretted instruments. First we examine and learn how to read tablature and then we look at some different examples.
Level 3 Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
Using a familiar nursery rhyme tune, we explore 10 different variations that are tools for learning how to arrange and embellish any tunes that we wish to play—a transferable skill!
Level 3 Versuvienne
Versuvienne is a slow, graceful dance in ¾ time with an accented downbeat in alternate measures. It combines elements of the waltz, mazurka, and polka. The dance originated around 1850 in Warsaw, Poland, but American cowboys also sang this tune and they called it "Put Your Little Foot."
Level 3 Wild Rose of the Mountain
This is an old traditional fiddle tune played in the key of A. Legend has it that a certain fiddler fell in love with a young lady whom he saw repeatedly at the local dances. As he was providing the music, the fiddler could never seem to strike up an acquaintance with her. He noticed, however, that the girl would stray from one fellow to another, so he likened her to a 'wild rose of the mountain' and composed this tune for her.
Level 3 Wind That Shakes the Barley
This traditional Celtic reel also goes by the names An Ghaoth A Bhogann An Eorna and Little Pack of Tailors. Note that the A part is 4 measures repeated, but the B part is 8 measures long and played only once. The tune also challenges us by ending on the IV chord, rather than at home!
Level 3 You Are My Sunshine
This is a popular song written by Jimmie Davis and Charles Mitchell and first recorded in 1939. It has been declared one of the state songs of Louisiana.The song has been recorded so often that it has been named "one of the most commercially programmed numbers in American popular music."
Level 2 You Name It Blues: Hammered Dulcimer
Steve shows how this tune can take on a different character if we “lean forward” rhythmically and give it a Chicago-Blues feel, rather than a laid-back Delta blues feel.

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