Mountain dulcimer group meets monthly at library

| May 15, 2018

COSHOCTON – There’s something about the sound of a dulcimer that takes you back to the early days of Appalachian music. A group of people with a love of dulcimer music meets the third Saturday of each month at 10 a.m. at the Coshocton Public Library to play mountain dulcimers and learn new pieces together.

The mountain dulcimer group started meeting in the large meeting room in the basement of the Coshocton Public Library last February. Previously, they met at Clary Gardens and the Coshocton Community Center.

“Everybody should bring something they love to play to teach it,” said Jackie Cichon, who is in charge of the group. “Everybody brings what they like to play. The first hour, we play what we’ve been learning and the second hour, we play something new.”

Cichon said people who have never played a dulcimer and who would like to learn are welcome to come to the group.

“We had someone who had never touched [a dulcimer] last April,” said Cichon. “She just showed up with one and we put her with someone with experience.”

If you don’t have a dulcimer, call Cichon beforehand at 740-502-6144 and she will bring an extra dulcimer for you to borrow.

The group is very casual and usually has about five to eight people show up each month. Last year, the group played at First Fridays, the Sacred Heart Parrish Festival, and at Clary Gardens.

“We just like to sit over at Clary Gardens and play in the evenings,” said Cichon.

Cichon first started playing a hammered dulcimer, which is different from a mountain dulcimer. Mountain dulcimers can be held on your lap with a band around your waist to keep it from sliding and is played with a pick. A hammered dulcimer is larger and stands on a pedestal and is played using mallets.

“I got my first hammered dulcimer about 30 years ago when my father built it for me,” said Cichon. “The only reason I started getting interested in the mountain dulcimer is because it’s easier to carry a mountain dulcimer with me than a hammered dulcimer.”

Cichon said that she is excited for Dulcimer Days, which is June 15 and June 16 at Roscoe Village.

“All of our friends come from different states,” she said. “We have friends from Oklahoma and Michigan who come down. It’s like a big family.”

Cichon said that playing a mountain dulcimer can be done in many different ways, all producing its own unique sound.

“Some people chord it, some people do harmony, and some do the melody,” she said. “All people play it differently, but when we all come together, it all works out.”

The next meeting of the mountain dulcimer group is Saturday, May 19 at 10 a.m. at the library.

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Category: Clubs & Organizations

About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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