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Ron Ewing Dulcimers, Dulcimettes, Baritone Mountain Dulcimers, capos, custom-made, straps, luthier

Western cedar and walnut/cherry aorell dulcimer

with a ron ewing ebony/pearl capo


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14th Annual NGFDA Fall Festival Bio-ettes

RON EWING, Columbus, OH, returns to Georgia as both vendor and faculty this year. He has been building and playing dulcimers since 1970. Ron has performed and taught at festivals throughout the country and has built over 1500 instruments. Ron is especially known for his innovative dulcimer designs (including the dulcimette and baritone) and for his lively and innovative renditions of Irish dance tunes and original compositions

DULCIMER CELEBRATIONSThe just-completed Western Carolina University Mountain Dulcimer Week in Cullowhee, NC saw the debut of a new CD entitled Dulcimer Celebrations produced by WCU. It is a compilation of memorable concert performances from the '00-'02 of WCU Mountain Dulcimer Weeks. It contains 19 cuts and over 60 minutes of music. The "recorded live" setting contributes an unusual excitement, and there are some unique collaboration among well-known performers.
Featured artists are many legendary dulcimer players: Howie Mitchell, Leo Kretzner, Phyllis & Jim Gaskins, Mark Nelson, Janita Baker, Stephen Seifert, Madeline MacNeil, the Trantham Family, Lois Hornbostel, Ralph lee Smith, Bill Taylor, Kenneth Bloom, Don Pedi, Karen Mueller, Linda Brockinton, Wayne Seymour, Mike Anderson, Flora MacDonald Gammon, Jim Miller, Ron Ewing, Jerry Rockwell, Lloyd Wright, and Deb Porter.

The music runs the gamut of styles from authentic traditional dulcimer music and ballads to original folk music, blues and jazz, and includes some outstanding vocals. An hour of outstanding music!
Some of The Mountain Dulcimers We Play

Ron Ewing Baritone Dulcimette, walnut with
western red cedar soundboard

Ron Ewing
A fine builder from Columbus OH, and a really good player as well. He is the developer of the "dulcimette" or octave dulcimer, and of the dulcimer capo, which I personally, would be lost without. I play a couple of Ron's dulcimers myself.

As I traveled, I met wonderful players from east and west, north and south, and I got the idea that they should all meet one another. I organized the 1979 Rabbit Junction Dulcimer Festival. The final festival memory was of Jerry Rockwell, Sally Rodgers, Mary Faith Rhodes, Ron Ewing, Leo Kretzner, Alan Freeman, Mark Nelson, Fred Meyer, Robert Force, Albert d'Ossché, Randy Wilkinson, Dorsey Williams, Baila Dworsky, Larkin Bryant, Willie Jaeger, Maddie MacNeil, Joellen Lapidus, Kevin Roth, David Schnaufer, Neal Hellman, and I singing Richard Fariña's Pack Up Your Sorrows. More or less. Another good memory was Al d'Ossché and Kevin Roth together hanging on to each other and a big inner tube floating by the Rabbit Junction festival on Boulder Creek. East certainly did meet west, and I made more lifelong friends.

Performers and Workshop Leaders

July 23 - 25, 2004

Workshop Leaders

Ron Ewing has been building and playing dulcimers since 1970. He is especially known for his innovative designs, including the baritone, dulcimette, dulcimer capo, the 1 1/2 fret; and his lively renditions of traditional Irish dance tunes. He resides in Columbus, Ohio.

Ron Ewing - Builder of Dulcimers, Dulcimettes, Baritone Dulcimers


Karen MuellerKaren's current dulcimers are a Blue Lion bass, Ron Ewing standard, Blue Lion standard chromatic, and Mize standard converted to baritone.

Nutmeg Festival

Playing with a Noter  (Beg-Nov) - Ron Ewing - A traditional Appalachian style with the melody played on one string to get a distinctive dulcimer sound.


Great Plains Folk Festival !
> April 28, 29 & 30, 1995
> At Marain Valley Community College, Palos Hills, Illinois
> (MVCC, 10900 South 88th Ave, Palos Hills, Illinois, 60465)

Performances by:
> Mike Anderson, Janita Baker, Dan & Dona Benkert,
> Larkin Kelly Bryant, Dorthy Kent, Rosamond Campbell,
> Liz Carroll, Jane Chevalier, Liz Cifani, Cooper & Nelson,
> Jack Daniels, Ron Ewing, John Geis, Doug Felt, Nelson Gill,
> Tull Glazener, Hazardous Waste String Band, Neal Hellman,
> Kim Hoffman, Jim Hudson, David James, The Jones Family,
> Wally Koch, Paul Kolodney, Esther Kreek, Maddie MacNeil,
> Karen Mueller, Bill Nelson, No Strings Attached,
> Neal Peck, The Ploughboys, Bill Robinson & Friends,
> Jerry Rockwell, Maureen Sellers, Cindy Shelhart,
> Small Potatoes, Don Stiernberg, Sweetwater, Julie Stevens,
> Diane Tate, Rick Thum, Donna Tufano

Rockwell Sorts Out the Differences
Jerry Rockwell

Mini-Dulcimers, Dulcimettes, or Octave-Higher Dulcimers
Many dulcimer makers have offered a mini-dulcimer in recent years. These are usually tuned one octave higher than the normal D-A-D, although I've seen a few designed to be a fourth or fifth higher than standard as well. They are generally quite short in overall length, twenty-four or twenty-five inches, with a correspondingly short string length (fifteen to eighteen inches).

Ron Ewing may be the best-known builder of the smaller dulcimers, which he calls "dulcimettes." He offers these in standard 4-string configurations but makes 6-string models as well. With three pairs of unison strings tuned an octave above the standard D-A-D, these 6-string dulcimers are powerhouses, truly a force to be reckoned with. They pack a whallop and are very reminiscent of the mandolin.

As you might imagine, most of the mini-dulcimers tend to have massive amounts of high-end response and "cut-through" ability, particularly in an ensemble setting. By the nature of the high tuning, they have very little bass response.


Steven K. Smith
A short biography

I later got better instruments, and got better at playing them, but I still play some of those compositions I did back in the "early days." In 1986 I won the Bob Evans Dulcimer contest, and bought a McSpadden teardrop dulcimer with part of my winnings. This was my main instrument for quite a long time, and is the one I used for most of the music on my first two cassettes. I also got a very sweet Ron Ewing four string dulcimer with a short string length. It's not a dulcimette, but has an intermediate length fret board that is really nice with a light set of strings tuned to a high A. I usually keep it tuned either EAea or DAea (Bass to treble).

Folk and Traditional Music by Khrysso


• 6-string Ron Ewing hourglass Dulcimette


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Ron Ewing Dulcimers
224 East Maynard Avenue,  Columbus OH, 43202   (614) 263-7246