I Wonder, As I Wander
Arranged for Mountain Dulcimer Players, D-A-C Tuning

Video 1

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VideoAbout the Lessons

1. Introduction and Tuning Steve introduces "I Wonder as I Wander" by telling about its origins from a song fragment written by folklorist and singer John Jacob Niles. Then he explains the DAC tuning and the Aeolian mode.
2. Melody Only The tune can be divided into 4 phrases, and Steve demonstrates each one for us.
3. The 4 Melody Phrases
Put Together
Here Steve plays the melody line through the entire tune, first with his index finger, and then with his thumb, to demonstrate how a noter would be used.
4. The Melody
Using Multiple Fingers
Even though this is a linear type of melody, it doesn't have to be played with one finger only. Steve invites you to experiment to see which way of playing the melody suits your style of playing best. He also prefers to strum from the low note up, because he likes to hear the low note first. But he shows how the strum can be reversed.
5. Chords There are several chords that can accompany the melody in this tune including D minor, A minor, A7, C, D7, and G.
6. Arpeggiate the Chords You can simply strum the chords. But you can also pick, i.e. arpeggiate, the chords as well.
7. Chords with Melody,
Part 1
Now Steve plays the first phrase of the melody with chords, using a combination of strumming and picking with a pick as well as a finger.
8. Chords with Melody,
Part 2
Steve demonstrates the remainder of the tune, using this blend of picking and strumming chords against the melody.
9. Chords with Melody,
Part 3
Now Steve puts the entire tune together with melody and chord support in the higher octave.
10. Melody Only, Lower Octave It is possible to play this tune in a lower octave with what Steve calls a "dulcimer workaround," by simply substituting another note for the missing notes.
11. Melody with Harmony,
Lower Octave
In this video, Steve demonstrates the way to add harmony chords to the melody played in a lower octave.
12. The Arrangement Finally Steve plays his arrange completely through.


I Wonder, As I Wander



Music GlobeExtras
  • The story behind I Wonder, As I Wander

  • Lyrics for the carol

  • This beautiful hammered dulcimer and guitar arrangement by Steve and Ruth Smith is available on their Winter / Christmas CD, "An Appalachian Winter." available at www.steveandruth.com. Steve and Ruth Smith are a duo from Western North Carolina near Boone who play a blend of Celtic Appalachian traditional and original music.

  • Here is another beautiful arrangement on hammered dulcimer by our own Steve Eulberg.

  • MP3 rhythm back-up tracks
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