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Dulcimers And Pizza With Mushrooms

October 13, 2023

Good Morning, Y'all!
I'm going to keep it short, because we're doing double the work this week. We're busy prepping for the weekend's festival - the Black Mountain Music Fest - which starts on Saturday, October 14. And we're trying to get a few more instruments out the door before we leave for North Carolina.
We just finished building a dulcimer with some unique sound holes. Our customer requested morel mushrooms for the upper sound holes (see below).

morel mushroom sound hole on a folkcraft dulcimer

and crawdads for the lower sound holes (see below).

crawdad sound hole on a folkcraft dulcimer

We've done crawdad sound holes before, but this player had a specific request for the look of the critter's claws, so we had to start from scratch on that design, too.
With the detail we provided in the mushrooms, and in the crayfish, I didn't see a good way to get any actual sound holes in the artwork itself, so I ended up putting some holes in a decorative border. We've done this before, and it looks good and sounds good.
I'm happy with the result for our customer, but I'm still a dull-and-boring "Classic F" sound hole type of player myself. Which is what I have on nearly all of my personal instruments (photo below).

classic f sound hole on richard ash personal folkcraft dulcimer

Ignore the scratches - the dulcimer pictured above has seen a LOT of use!
I'll send you some photos of the Black Mountain Music Fest next week.
Have a great weekend - Thanks for reading!
Richard Ash - luthier-who-now-wants-a-pizza-with-mushrooms-for-dinner-even-though-it-is-only-9-AM