Start Playing Your New Dulcimer Guitar
It’s very exciting when you finally get a new musical instrument that you’ve been dreaming about. Maybe you were able to visit a local music shop, happened upon one at your favorite gently used store, had a dulcimer guitar passed down to you by a family member or friend, or you might’ve finally clicked “buy” on a new Seagull merlin you’ve been wanting.
Whatever way it is you got your new dulcimer it’s now time to dive into the joy of learning; however, you may be asking yourself, “Where do I even start?!” There are so many resources to begin learning a new string instrument out there it’s hard to choose the right ones. But we’re here to help you figure out the best ways to start your journey to becoming the instrumentalist you’ve always wanted to be.
Start With the Basics
Before you try to play anything, get to know your new dulcimer guitar. Learn about the different parts like the body and neck and whether or not it has an additional fret. Know what it’s made of such as a maple neck, maple body, or if it’s maple mahogany topped. Make sure you understand how to take care of the instrument and if there’s anything else you need to do before getting started such as bass strings or anything else to make sure your instrument is in good playing condition.
If you don’t know anything about music, take a quick theory lesson. You don’t have to be a musical guru, but it’ll be great to understand some basic music theory. Most easy to play instruments have a quick guide for notes, chords, and simple how-to-play beginner guides. If you’re wanting to learn the stick dulcimer guitar, download this dulcimer guitar chords guide to get started.
Get Help from the Pros
It’s never a bad idea to ask for help, and when learning a new mountain dulcimer, why wouldn’t you? Consider a private, one-on-one lesson either from someone in-person locally or virtually from anywhere. There are many great sites available to help you find your next dulcimer guitar instructor. Not only will you be learning from someone who knows the ins and outs of their instrument, but you will also be supporting a guitar player in their music career, and it’s always a good idea to support musicians when possible!
There are also many tutorial videos like this Free 1-Hour Video Tutorial to help you learn the stick dulcimer. You can search for specific technics or even how-to videos to learn a song you are dying to play. There are whole YouTube Channels devoted to these easy to play instruments, and when you do watch those videos, like and subscribe to support those musicians.
Download the Apps
There’s an app for that, and when it comes to music it’s no different. There are some super helpful music apps on the Apple App Store or on Google Play to assist you musically. Some of my favorites include digital tuners and metronomes. Most are free, or a small one-time download fee. That makes educating yourself on the guitar mandolin easy even on the go!
Learn Something You Love
When you’re just beginning a new instrument, start by playing a song you not only know fairly well but enjoy. Begin with a song with a very simple melody or only a few chords. You might be surprised how many of our favorite songs aren’t as complex as you may think. You can find many of your favorite tunes online whether full sheet music, a chord chart, or a TAB.
You may find yourself eager to try something that is originally in a difficult key. Don’t fret! (And yes, that was a bad music joke for the guitar players) There are simple ways to change the key of your favorite song to something that might be better to play as a beginner. You can download this free key change guide for the dulcimer guitar.
You may experience some frustration or some growing pains, but push past the learning curve and remind yourself you are just starting. Enjoy the process because you are a guitar player no matter what level you are at in the beginning!If you have questions about how to begin playing dulcimer guitar, what Seagull merlin is best for you, or anything you may want to know, contact me–I’d be psyched to help you any way I can.