David Malone of Augusta plays during the Mountain Dulcimer Jam on Saturday at Mistletoe State Park.
Photo by Donnie Fetter
The lilting sounds of mountain dulcimers sweetened the chilly air of the lakeside cabin.
Dulcimer strummers from across the Southeast traveled to Mistletoe State Park last Saturday for the annual Mountain Dulcimer Jam.
"Dulcimer is Latin for sweet music," said Rose Taunton, who traveled from Tallassee, Ala. with her husband Bob to play in the jam. "Appropriate for the sweet sound that it makes. It's a very beautiful instrument."
Originating in Appalachia, mountain dulcimers are four-stringed, fretted instruments of various shapes and sizes. It is played resting on the lap of the performer.
"I'm very pleased with the turnout," said Peggy Ertz, who co-organized the jam with her husband, Rick, for the past four years. "We've got people here from Alabama, Florida and North Carolina. There were a couple of regulars that couldn't make it this year for personal reasons, but there are some very good players here and we're all having a good time."
Open to the public, the jam gave many nonplayers a chance to hear the instrument, ask questions about it and test them out. In the past, it has won over converts to the instrument.
"I came here for the first time last year and I thought it was beautiful," said Kathy Wetzler of Grovetown. "One of the players showed me and my son how to play a song on one in about five minutes. I bought a dulcimer that day and have been playing ever since."
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