A Musical Journey...
Tom started playing dulcimer in 1994 when he discovered Simple Sounds, a shop in Shipshewana, IN. His first dulcimer was built from a McSpadden kit, and he quickly found his musical voice in the dulcimer. He has since added three other dulcimers to his collection, and has learned from several renowned musicians, including Nancy Blough (pictured), Mike Howard, Mickey Slough, Maureen Sellers, Tull Glazener, Bing Futch, Butch Ross and Stephen Seifert. Tom was a charter member of the Northeast Indiana Folk Music Gathering.
He also began composing original music on the dulcimer and guitar in 1995. He performed at historical and arts festivals in northern Indiana, and recorded an original CD, Playing from the Heart, in 2001. In 2002 he returned to graduate school. Music took a back seat for a few years, but he is back to work on new songs, a new album, and has resumed a regular schedule of jam sessions and workshops. You'll usually find him at Black Swamp Jam meetings and Second Saturday workshops at Folkcraft Instruments in Woodburn, IN.
The renewed focus on music has also introduced a new instrument to the repertoire - the ukulele! Tom's first exposure to the uke was in 5th grade, but now he has gotten serious about playing uke, and is grabbing every opportunity to learn from some outstanding uke teachers, including Gerald Ross, Lil' Rev, and Peter MadCat Ruth.
Tom loves playing with friends, new and old, and is always looking for musicians interested in stretching the boundaries of acoustic music. He also is offering private lessons in dulcimer and ukulele in the Muncie, IN, area. Check out his Lessons link to learn more about this.
The musical adventure continues. Tom's expanding group of friends and musical interests have led to some wonderful collaborations, and there's much more music to be made. Come join in the fun!
One of the groups I play with is TRU Ukes, the "Three RIvers Ukes" club in Fort Wayne, IN. This group jams on the fourth Saturday of each month at Folkcraft Instruments, and we have a lot of fun! I enjoy singing with a very talented group of friends, and learning new songs each month! It's a very relaxed group - come join us if you want to sit in!!
Beginners are welcomed warmly!
The photo at the right is a shot of our Open Mic Performance at Mighty Uke Day, May 10, 2014, at Sir Pizza in Old Town, Lansing Michigan.
In December, 2015, I was honored to be published in the Dulcimer Player News! My article about an etude for practicing chords on the mountain dulcimer was accepted for print in the Winter 2015 issue. This is my first article in the DPN, but hopefully will not be my last!