The first dulcimer player Don Pedi ever met was Richard Farina Boylston Street in Boston in 1964 that forever changed his life. In the next several years, he travelled the East Coast meeting and studying with influential dulcimer players like Margaret MacArthur, Jean Ritchie and Howie Mitchell, who is pretty much the father of contemporary style dulcimer playing. After experiencing the playing styles of all those influential musicians, Don, like many dulcimer players of the time, experimented with chording and playing popular songs of the day as well as folk music from varied traditions. After moving to Western North Carolina, Don immersed himself in mountain culture and music. He has developed a style of playing the dulcimer that matches the traditional old time fiddle note for note, including a rhythmic feel suitable for dancing and vocal accompaniment. A gifted player and teacher, Don shares his knowledge in a relaxed, friendly, and non-competitive manner, creating an atmosphere conducive to everyone learning at their own pace.
Cliff Cole fell in love with the hammered dulcimer at the Philadelphia Folk Festival three decades ago, and he’s been hammering on ever since. He started off as a drummer and has carried that musical experience and sense of rhythm over to the hammered dulcimer and folk music. Rounding out his musical expression, Cliff studies acoustic guitar, plays the blues harp, and enjoys singing. For many years, Cliff has presented workshops at dulcimer and folk music festivals, including The Cranberry Dulcimer Gathering, Nutmeg Dulcimer Festival, The Pocono Winter Fest and the French Creek Retreat. Cliff’s first regular dulcimer gig was playing Bluegrass with Steel City Strings in the late ’80s. He then founded the folk ensemble DayBreak in 1989, and they are still performing together today. The group has delved into many musical styles including Celtic, Old Time, Bluegrass, American folk, early music and their own original tunes, many of which Cliff created and arranged. Cliff has produced and recorded 6 recordings with them as well as two recordings with his daughter, vocalist Emily Rose Cole.
HEIDI & JOHN CERRIGIONE
Heidi and John live in Ellington, CT and also perform as a duo and as part of Jerimoth Hill, along with Aubrey Atwater and Elwood Donnelly. John plays guitar, banjo, mandolin, or acoustic bass for the group while Heidi plays autoharp, hammered or mountain dulcimer. Both sing lead and vocal harmony. Heidi teaches autoharp and hammered dulcimer and John teaches clawhammer banjo.
Norm Williams is a performer/teacher of the mountain dulcimer who also plays guitar, banjo, ukulele, native flute and vocals. He is a co-founder of The Pocono Dulcimer Club and a coordinator of their DulcimerFest held annually in Stroudsburg, PA: a co-founder of the Maiden Creek Old Time Music Festival.
Norm began teaching mountain dulcimer in 2002 and has been faculty at festivals throughout the Northeast. Additionally, he coordinates music for Quiet Valley Historical Farm & Living History Museum in Stroudsburg. He is also a volunteer host for news and folk programming at WDIY 88.1FM, Lehigh Valley Community Public Radio.
Norm also performs & records with the bands Wayfarers & Company, Tom & Betty Druckenmiller, and most recently with Cliff Cole & Rob Yoder in the band, Dulcimer Boys. He recently released his first solo recording entitled “…a wayfarer; songs of hope and encouragement”
NEAL & COLEEN WALTERS
Neal and Coleen live in Greencastle, PA. For over 20 years, Neal played with the Mill Run Dulcimer Band and recorded eight albums with them. Coleen is also a talented fabric artist. Neal provides the strong vocal lead of the group while playing guitar, mountain dulcimer, banjo, mandolin or autoharp. Coleen sings a low harmony and plays bass or percussion (rhythm egg or limberjack). Neal and Coleen also play as a duo at festivals and workshops across the country. They were elected to the Autoharp Hall of Fame in 2011.
SLOW DEER CROSSING
Slow Deer Crossing is the duo of Anne Dilker & Rich Kuklentz. Anne is, both through natural aptitude and formal training, a dancer so rhythm is a natural for her. Rich is well steeped the tradition of folk music and had been playing and singing for over 40 years.