Christmas Music at Heritage Assisted Living

It was a very cold crisp December morning as the Athens Dulcimers gathered to play at Heritage Assisted Living on County Line Road in Madison. We were warmed when the residents sang along with us to the Christmas tunes we played.

David B <><


I-65 South Welcome Center Pics

7 December 2017 two different groups of Athens Dulcimer players performed at the Ardmore Welcome Center on I-65 southbound.

David B <><

Absolutely Alabama: Old Time Fiddlers Convention

Absolutely Alabama: Old Time Fiddlers Convention
Episode #601 Segment #3
(If you look carefully you’ll see Jerry Todd in the background)

Also, be sure to look (again) at our December schedule as I’m continually making updates:

Athens Dulcimer Christmas Tree at the duck pond

Athens North Pole Stroll: Christmas trees next to the Athens-Limestone Visitor Center in the Big Spring Memorial Park in Athens.

I did not take photos of all the trees, so go out and see them for yourselves!

Click on the first image and you can scroll through the stroll…

Merry Christmas!

December Dulcimer Dates

5 December 2017 (Tuesday) Friendship Church “Operation Santa” for Mental Health Clients By Lady Civitan

7 December 2017 (Thursday) Alabama Rocket Welcome Center (Ardmore Welcome Center) on I-65 southbound

9 December 2017 (Saturday) Heritage Assisted Living on County Line Road

14 December  2017 (Thursday) Dulcimer Christmas Dinner JAM

28 December 2017- Regular jam.

29 December 2017- 1:00 pm – Traditions Senior Living off Hwy 72 (by Jacks)

For more specifics on times etc see

Let me know if there are any corrections/additions that need to be made.

David B <><

Updates to December activities

Be sure to check the Athens Dulcimer website for updates to December activities, we have many gigs and opportunities to play dulcimers for the community. Scroll down to December:

The Athens Dulcimer Christmas Tree is up at the Big Spring Park duck pond (in Athens), so go check it out. Thanks to Jerry & Louise for decorating it.

Today I happened to look at the Fiddlers Convention website and saw these three notices:

a.  “Relive the good times and great music of the 2017 Old Time Fiddlers Convention this weekend! For those of you that live in the Huntsville area, tune in to WAFF on Sunday, December 3 after the late news for a Fiddlers Convention segment featured in Absolutely Alabama!”

b.  The dates for the 52nd Old Time Fiddlers Convention are October 4 – 6, 2018

c. At the Fiddlers Convention the Friday evening entertainment (besides the dulcimer contest) will be Rhonda Vincent & the Rage on the Founders Hall Stage on October 5, 2018.

Now, go practice some Christmas tunes








David B <><

Limberjill “My Darling Clementine”

Jerry Todd made the limberjack Karen was playing at the last jam though Karen made the outfit.

Click on images for larger picture

Karen says this of her creation, “I painted the face, added the chain hair and handkerchief dress, and put ‘No. 9’ on her shoes because her shoes look like boxes.  Also added the duck “and she quacks back” and I know it’s Clementine!  So, she is a limberjill and I named her “My Darling Clementine”

In a cavern, in a canyon,
Excavating for a mine,
Dwelt a miner, forty-niner
And his daughter – Clementine

Oh my Darling, Oh my Darling,
Oh my Darling Clementine.
Thou art lost and gone forever,
Dreadful sorry, Clementine.

Light she was and like a fairy,
And her shoes were number nine,
Herring boxes without topses
Sandals were for Clementine…

Well, you probably know the rest of the song.

For those who don’t know, the limberjack is an American folk percussion instrument consisting of a dancing wooden doll and a flexible plank and was popular in many areas including Appalachia. Wikipedia says, “…In London they were frequently operated by street entertainers… In England, old soldiers from the Great War (WW I) sometimes busked with them to supplement their meagre war pensions…” Louise Todd always draws a crowd when she plays her limberjacks when the Athens Dulcimers play anywhere.

The jig doll goes by many names and I read that in the Appalachians the general term amongst the old-timers was ‘dancing man’. The term ‘limberjack’ may been introduced in the late 1800s when such homemade toys started to be commercially produced. The term comes from its loose ‘limber’ method of dancing and ‘Jack’ was the generic name for any boy (ref. the tradition of Jack tales).  Limberjacks go by many names such as clogging doll, jig doll, dancing doll, limberjack or limberjill, limbertoy, paddle puppet, stick puppet, and Dancin’ Dan to name a few.

For other limberjack shapes/examples see

David B <><