Dulcimer Duo

Seattle Dulcimer
Dulcimer Duo
Niels Andersen and Susan Howell

Niels Andersen and Susan Howell

Niels built his first dulcimer in 1975 after hearing Robert Force and Albert D’Ossché in a Seattle Folklore Society Concert and brought it to the first Kindred Gathering (the Pacific Rim Dulcimer Gathering). Susan got her first dulcimer just in time to go to Kindred Gathering II (the only one Niels missed.) They met at KG X and have been major organizers of this annual event ever since. This year is the 30th year of dulcimer lovers gathering for a weekend of community “somewhere on the West Coast sometime in August.”

At KG X Susan and Niels linked up their dulcimer music and their lives and have been surprising people with the dulcimer’s possibilities ever since. Niels is the chord man. (There’s not a chord he doesn’t know or can’t figure out—even on three strings! Do you need a G minor sixth or a B flat diminished? Just ask!) Susan is delighted to have an accompanist while she plays or sings a melody. Together they play swing tunes, Buddy Holly and Bach, the Beatles and Child Ballads, contemporary folk and fiddle tunes, Susan also does instrumental arrangements of tunes from Cole Porter to O’Carolan to Mozart.

Susan Howell and Niels Andersen have presented the following workshops:

  • Dulcimer as an accompaniment instrument
  • Swing and pop tunes
  • Duets in two tunings
  • Western swing and cowboy tunes
  • Chord construction on the dulcimer
  • Waltzes and slow airs
  • How to play songs in major keys while in DAC tuning

The Spring ’97 issue of Dulcimer Player News featured Niels and Susan and their duet version of The Burning of the Piper’s Hut.

They published a book entitled Dulcimer Accompaniments for Swing (and other popular tunes with snazzy chord progressions), enough music theory and wonderful tunes to keep you challenged for years! Click here to order

To book the Dulcimer Duo for your event, email dulcimerduo@seattledulcimer.com.