Scheduled Appearances  -  Special Events  -  Booking Don Pedi

Relax and Enjoy!
A day dedicated to relaxing your body and calming your mind.
Improve your dulcimer playing skills and expand your repertory in a
relaxed, non-competetive setting.

Live and in person "Way of the Dulcimer" Retreats since 1993.
Online "Wayof the Dulcimer" Retreats, during the Pandemic.

Online Retreat Schedule


9:00 - 9:30

T'ai Chi Exercise

Gentle breathing and movement to reduce stress and improve flexibility


9:40 - 10:20

Dulcimer History

Slide presentaion and live demonstration of pre and post folk revival playing styles
on antique and contemporary dulcimers


10:30 - 12:00

Free Style Strumming & Natural Noting

Techniques for developing economy of motion to produce a clear melody
along with strong rhythmic support.


12:00 - 1:00



1:00 - 2:20

Old-Time Music for Dulcimer

Traditional Songs and Tunes from the Southern Mountains


2:30 - 3:00

Rejuvenation Exercise

Ideal for dulcimer players. Ancient techniques to imrove energy flow for, eyes, ears neck, shoulders, etc.


3:00 - 4:00

Folk Songs and Tunes

Ballads, Songs and Tunes from a variety of Traditional and more contemporary sources.





Jamming and Farewell

Cost: $60 .
Includes all Workshops, Tabs, MP3 sound files, Concert and Jamming.



Don Pedi has been playing the dulcimer since 1968. Before moving to the mountains of Western North Carolina in 1974, Don spent most of the 1960's and early seventies frequenting the Coffee Houses, Folk Music Clubs, Folk Festivals, Pubs, etc. around Boston and Cambridge, MA .

Richard and Mimi Farina at Club 47, in Cambridge, MA -1965.

The first dulcimer player Don ever met was Richard Farina, who was playing a concert with his wife Mimi, at the Unicorn Coffee House on Boylston Street in Boston in 1964. Richard's music has had a lasting effect on Don's playing.
In 1969 Don traveled to Vermont to meet the gifted and influencial dulcimer player Margaret MacArthur. In 1970 Don met Jean Ritchie. Later that year he journeyed to Washington, DC to meet Howie Mitchell who is pretty much the father of contemporary style dulcimer playing.
After experiencing the playing styles of the folks mentioned above, Don, like many dulcimer players of the time, experimented with chording and playing popular songs of the day as well as folk music from varied traditions.
After moving to Western North Carolina, Don immersed himself in mountain culture and music. He developing a style of playing the dulcimer that matched the traditional fiddles note for note, including a rhythmic feel suitable for dancing and vocal accompaniment.
A gifted player and teacher, Don shares his knowledge in a relaxed, friendly, and non-competitive manner, creating an atmosphere conducive to everyone learning at their own pace.
All levels of players are welcome.
While many of the songs and tunes are most suited for intermediate players, The history, playing techniques, exercises, and exposure to playing with more advanced players than ones-self, are of great benefit to even the newest beginner.
The playing techniques classes are designed to lay a solid foundation for playing traditional and more contemporary styles of music.

The Way of the Dulcimer
Fall Cyber-Retreat Schedule
(class descriptions below)

10:00 - 10:45
Orientation &  Relaxing Exercise
11:00 - 12:00 -
Dulcimer History
12:15 - 1:30 -
Basic Old Time Dulcimer
1:30 - 2:15 -
Dinner Break
2:15 - 3:30
Old Time Dulcimer II
3:30 - 4:00 -
Exercise for Rejuvenation
4:15 - 5:00 -
Concert -Don Pedi
5:00 - 5:45 -
Open Mic or Virtual Jam
10:00 - 10:30 -
Relaxing Exercise
10:45 - 12:00
Little Songs
12:15 - 1:30 -
Ballads and Sacred Songs
1:30 - 2:15 -
Dinner Break
2:15 - 3:30 -
Mixed Bag
3:45 - 4:15
Five Elements Breathing
Concert -Bruce Greene & Don Pedi
5:30 - 6:30 -

Class Descriptions
10:00 - 10:45 - Orientation &  Relaxing Exercise
Gentle Tai Chi related exercise to aid in relaxation and developing focus.
11:00 - 12:00 - Dulcimer History
A lecture/demonstration on the History of the Dulcimer.
Antique, vintage, and modern dulcimers will be utilized to showcase the development of the dulcimer and the music played on them from the 19th century through the Folk Revival.
12:15 - 1:30 - Basic Old Time Dulcimer
Combine techniques developed by Don, for Free-Style Strumming and Natural Noting.
Methods to develop relaxation and economy of motion while playing dulcimer.
2:15 - 3:30 - Old Time Dulcimer II
Building on the Basic Old Time Dulcimer class, we will explore tunings and techniques to play most any type of music on the dulcimer.
3:30 - 4:00 - Exercise for Rejuvenation
Exercises to strengthen the eyes and ears, and stimulate chi (energy) in the body.
4:15 - 5:00 - Concert with Don Pedi
Songs, Tunes and Stories from personal experience.
5:15 - 6:00 - Open Mic or Virtual Jam
A good way to close out the day.
10:00 - 10:30 - Relaxing Exercise
Repeat and expansion of exercises from Friday's session.
10:45 - 12:00 - Little Songs
Songs from simpler times. Clever and brilliant relics from America's past. Passed down from ear to ear.
12:15 - 1:30 - Ballads and Sacred Songs
Often tragic Old Love Songs as well as beautiful and sometimes haunting songs of praise.
1:30 - 2:15 - Dinner Break
2:15 - 3:30 - Mixed Bag
Traditional Songs and Tunes from Appalachia, England, Ireland, and Scotland and a few songs from the 60s Folk Revival.
3:45 - 4:15 - Five Elements Breathing
Simple breathing exercises to stimulate the flow of energy through the internal organs.
4:30-5:30 - Concert -Bruce Greene & Don Pedi
5:30 - 6:30 - Cyber Jam and Farewell

Some past Retreat participants.

More Dulcimer Heroes:

Jean Ritchie

Howie Mitchell

Margaret MacArthur

If you sit in silence and never speak,
What stories will you leave for the young people to tell?
If you live shut away in a forest thicket,
How can the sun of wisdom shine out?
No dried-up carcass can be the guardian of the Way.
Wind and frost bring sickness and early death.
Plow with a clay ox in a field of stone
And you will never see the harvest day!
T'ang poet Han Shan


Includes room and board, all classes, concerts and -jams.
Tablature, " handouts" and MP3 sound files.
Cost: $340. per person.

For additional information, contact Don Pedi:


or call 828-689-9126, (8am - 8pm, North Carolina time).

The Way of the Dulcimer RETREAT

Registration and dates for 2021 Spring and Fall Retreats depend on covid 19 restrictionss
Pay through PayPal, Visa, Master Card, Discover,
American Express
- or pay by mail -

send check and email address to:
Don Pedi
5456 Grapevine Rd
Marshall, NC 28753