We are an outreach of the Shalimar Baptist Church

   

What:

  Jam Sessions

Where:

  17 Fourth Ave., Shalimar FL 32579

When:

  Most Mon. nights (see Calendar)

 
Home
Current Members
Calendar
Mon. & Next Gig Play List
Dulcimer History
Psaltery History
Walsh Shuttle Pipes
 
The audio clip is "Rosin the Beau," played with a pair of hammered dulcimers taking the lead and harmony and the lap dulcimer in the background doing soft chords.

 

 

Jam Session Etiquette

One of the best and most pleasurable ways of improving your playing is to participate in the jam (and gig) sessions. Participating is not necessarily as simple as walking up to other musicians and playing along with them, though. Common sense and courtesy will get you a long way. Here are a few tips:

  • Tune your instrument before the session starts (6 p.m.). After that time, please tune in a room down the hall.

  • Never play loudly at first. If you are a beginner, play along softly in the background. That will also encourage you to participate sooner than later.

  • For an upcoming gig on the calendar, we sometimes start a prior jam by practicing the play list (see below). The specific guidance or plan for each song is distributed prior to the jam via e-mail (or at jam via printout for those without e-mail). 

  • Our jam is an open circle where participants take turns suggesting a song to play. Be ready for the jam by having a list of songs you want to suggest when your turn comes around. Also if everyone is unlikely to know your selection, be prepared to play it first for the group (which can be a TablEdit file via Lisa's laptop if prior arranged--i.e., by 5:45). Otherwise, you'll cause the jam to be less productive (i.e., slow it down to an undesired level). 

  • Announce your choice clearly, which book, and who will start it (intro. is usually the last measure or two). There should be no noodling or playing through the song while fellow members are finding it in their book. Everyone then joins in to play at once. While most will play the melody in unison, some will provide a non-melody backup (e.g., playing chords to practice accompaniment).

  • Usually the person that starts a song decides when it will end. The signal for "this is the last time" is either to raise your foot in the air or say aloud "last time." Two to three times is the norm; more can get boring.

  • On noodling: A truly annoying habit is when someone "noodles around" on his/her instrument between songs. It often happens when someone is trying to ask a question or after the noodler hears the song selection. The result is that others cannot hear or the suggestor cannot easily start the selection. If your noodling around is a way of suggesting the next song, just go ahead and suggest the next song! If your noodling around is for showing your progress, select it next time as a solo, so others can practice accompaniment. If it is for a "quick practice," move away from the group (e.g., to one of the nearby rooms) to do by yourself.

  • Help us keep the break to 15 minutes and enjoy socializing then; chatting while in the open circle or within range of the jam is undesired. For additional social time, consider visiting after the jam at nearby McDonald's.

  • Go out of your way to be welcoming and helpful to newcomers. They represent the future and growth of the music and jam sessions we all love.

  • Once you figure out the ground rules, get rid of those fears and inhibitions, join in, and have fun! If the jam you've joined is not right for you, find another one or start one yourself with players of your general ability.

Note: Bluegrass jams differ from the above old-time jams mainly in that players take turns playing the melody lead while all the others provide a non-melody backup. The leader (or person who started the song) nods toward a player when it is his/her turn to take the lead part one-time through.

Play List for Next Gig (as of January)

Oh Susanna

Cajun Waltz

Si Bheag Si Mhor

J'ai Passe Devant ta Porte

Harvest Home

Tombigbee Waltz

Aloha Oe

Mississippi Sawyer

Chinese Breakdown

Danny Boy

Native American Indian flute solo

Whiskey Before Breakfast

Jesus Keep Me Near the Cross

Golden Slippers

Soldiers Joy

Ashokan Farewell

Rosin the Beau

Wildwood Flower

When the Saints Go Marching In

Angelina Baker

When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

I'll Fly Away

Amazing Grace


The Pelican Pickers is a group of dulcimer players and musician friends who meet weekly to play, learn, and share.

We believe in the power of music and in the ability of the dulcimer to put music in the hands of everyone.