The Dusty Blog

Thumbnail for 2017 Harp Festivals
Posted by Dusty Strings - Mar 23, 2017, 2:52 PM
The scents of spring are starting to waft through our damp Seattle air, and our thoughts are turning to harp festivals! There are many wonderful harp-focused gatherings planned for this year, and we sadly cannot attend them all, so we're here to give you an update on where we'll be and when.
Thumbnail for Coming Spring 2017: New Mariachi 34 Harp!
Posted by Dusty Strings - Jan 27, 2017, 4:02 PM
Our newest harp model is geared towards playing Mariachi music, specifically in school programs. The Mariachi 34 combines traditional Mexican lighter-tension strings and closer spacing with the affordability and time-tested reliability of our Ravenna harps.
Thumbnail for Stories from the Harp: Playing Harp with M.S.
Posted by Dusty Strings - Dec 22, 2016, 2:55 PM
If you think you can't play harp, think again. Ginny Oman tells us what it's like to play harp with secondary progressive M.S., including the challenges she's had to overcome and the joys of her hospice work with harp.
Thumbnail for How to Keep Your Harp or Hammered Dulcimer Safe from Cracking in the Winter Months
Posted by Dusty Strings - Nov 11, 2016, 4:51 PM
You’ve probably heard at some point that bad things might happen if a wooden musical instrument gets too dry, but what does that actually mean? How dry is too dry? Is it the inside air or the outside air that matters? How do you measure it? What’s actually at stake if you don’t pay attention to the humidity? Is there any reason to panic?
Thumbnail for Quiz: Which harp wood are you?
Posted by Dusty Strings - Sep 15, 2016, 6:19 PM
Take this quiz to find out if your personality matches your harp!
Thumbnail for Can I replace my nylon harp strings with gut?
Posted by Dusty Strings - Aug 17, 2016, 3:36 PM
The short answer is yes, you probably can, but there are some important things to take into consideration so that you don't hurt your harp. There's also a lot of mystery surrounding harp strings and string tension, so we'd like to explain some of the basic concepts and hopefully clear up a few common misconceptions.
Thumbnail for The practicalities of therapeutic music from a dulcimer player's perspective
Posted by Dusty Strings - Jul 14, 2016, 1:19 PM
Bill Johnson, Certified Music Practitioner and hammered dulcimer player, answers some practical questions about what it's like to be a therapeutic musician.
Thumbnail for Stories from the Harp: Our Furry Companions
Posted by Dusty Strings - Jun 29, 2016, 12:09 PM
Music isn't just for humans! Today we have a little collection of stories about the therapeutic effects of music on our four-legged furry friends.
Thumbnail for Stories from the Harp: We Can All Make a Difference
Posted by Dusty Strings - Jun 24, 2016, 11:43 AM
Years ago I was asked be part of a musical program at one of our local cancer treatment hospitals. Individual musicians were to play for ten or fifteen minutes at a time on various pre-assigned floors, then take their instrument to another floor, and so on, for two hours of music...
Thumbnail for Stories from the Harp: How it Began
Posted by Dusty Strings - Jun 17, 2016, 5:21 PM
One evening in 1990, long before bedside music was used in hospitals for other than hospice patients, and no certification programs yet existed for it, I learned that my father had pneumonia and was in Intensive Care. I packed my bag. At the last minute, I decided that since he was only semiconscious, perhaps the best way for him to know I was there would be to play my harp for him. I put it in the car...