Joellen Lapidus: Pioneer of Contemporary Dulcimer

joellen_lapidusJoellen Lapidus is one of the pioneers of contemporary mountain dulcimer playing, songwriting, and instrument construction and is the author of the dulcimer instruction book “Lapidus on Dulcimer”. Joellen blends the Appalachian, Indian, Arabic, jazz, classical, and pop musical styles to give the dulcimer a new range of rhythmic, melodic, and tuning possibilities.

As a dulcimer maker, her work influenced many of the dulcimer builders of the 70’s and 80’s. Her instruments were known for their innovative shapes and exquisite soundhole and peghead inlay work. She introduced the dulcimer to Joni Mitchell and made three instruments for her between 1968 and 1976. She has also made instruments for David Crosby, Jackson Browne, Wendy Waldman and Garth Hudson. The March 2004 concert, recorded on her album, Joellen Lapidus In Concert, marked her first performance in over 10 years.

Joellen teaches dulcimer in West Los Angeles. She has also returned to her original musical loves – the clarinet and the accordion. She performs with the band “Extreme Klezmer Makeover” and with violinist Yvette Devereaux.  Joellen’s newest album is called Dulcimer Music for the Pelican Ballet.

Recently, KC Cafe Radio Music Director Kathy Forste talked with Joellen, about her unique dulcimer influences, her musical upbringing living in New York, and how her musical horizons broadened as she traveled across the United States.  They also talk at length about her unique dulcimer instrument creations, and the inspiration behind Pelican Ballet.

Downlad the interview here: Interview: Joellen Lapidus, 5/10/2016.

 

New Music on KC Cafe Radio: April 26, 2016

Victor and Penny - Electricity Victor & Penny – Electricity

  • Pop/Jazz

Request this album

Brian Ashley Jones - Out of the City Brian Ashley Jones – Out of the City ~New Artist~

  • Americana

Request this album

The Deep Hollow - The Deep Hollow The Deep Hollow – The Deep Hollow ~New Artist~

  • Country

Request this album

Bruce Michael Miller - Faith in Water Bruce Michael Miller – Faith in Water ~New Artist~

  • Americana

Request this album

Meg Braun - Restless Moon Meg Braun – Restless Moon ~New Artist~

  • Americana

Request this album

Heather Platts - Lighted Windows Heather Platts – Lighted Windows ~New Artist~

  • Pop/Pop Rock

Request this album

Freebo - If Not Now When Freebo – If Not Now When ~New Artist~

  • Folk/Americana

Request this album

Helen Lapakko - Got to Keep on Going Helen Lapakko – Got to Keep on Going ~New Artist~

  • Country/Blues

Request this album

 Robinlee Garber - Resilience  Robinlee Garber – Resilience ~New Artist~

  • Folk/Jazz

Request this album

 3 Bricks Shy - Still 3 Bricks Shy  3 Bricks Shy – Still 3 Bricks Shy

  • Folk/Rock

Request this album

Josh Harty - Holding On Josh Harty – Holding On

  • Americana

Request this album

Wes Weddell - Songs to Get You from Here to There Wes Weddell – Songs to Get You from Here to There

  • Pop/Folk Pop

Request this album

Wes Weddell - My Northwest Home Wes Weddell – My Northwest Home

  • Pop/Folk Pop

Request this album

Andrew Foshee - Corvair Andrew Foshee – Corvair

  • Pop Alternative

Request this album

Johnathan Cavier - January (single) Johnathan Cavier – January (single) ~New Artist~

  • Folk/Pop

Request this album

Kylie Hughes - Never Ever (single) Kylie Hughes – Never Ever (single)

  • Pop

Request this album

Landon Williams - Tonight (single) Landon Williams – Tonight (single) ~New Artist~

  • Pop

Request this album

RJ Comer - Nightly Suicide RJ Comer – Nightly Suicide

  • Rock

Request this album

Tanner Qualls - Clarity Tanner Qualls – Clarity ~New Artist~

  • Pop/Acoustic

Request this album

Wyatt Brewer - The Drawing Board Wyatt Brewer – The Drawing Board ~New Artist~

  • Pop/Acoustic

Request this album

The Teraways - Girls Who Love Cars The Tearaways – Girls Who Love Cars (single)

  • Rock

Request this album

The Teraways - Name That Tune (single) The Tearaways – Name That Tune (single)

  • Rock

Request this album

The Teraways - Stuck on Stupid (single) The Tearaways – Stuck on Stupid (single)

  • Rock

Request this album

New Music on KC Cafe Radio: March 15, 2016

The Tearaways The Tearaways (singles)

  • Rock

Request this album

Kylie Hughes - Calipopicana Kylie Hughes – Calipopicana

  • Pop

Request this album

KC Cafe Radio Rich O’Brien (singles)

  • Americana

Request this album

Billy Jack Purnell - Simple Life Billy Jack Purnell – Simple Life

  • Americana

Request this album

Jaspar Lepak -Forgiving Wind Jaspar Lepak -Forgiving Wind

  • Country/Folk

Request this album

Jaspar Lepak - Send Me Home Jaspar Lepak – Send Me Home

  • Country/Folk

Request this album

Lee Sims - Deep in the Heart of Me Lee Sims – Deep in the Heart of Me

  • Country

Request this album

The Matchsellers - Songs We Made Up The Matchsellers – Songs We Made Up

  • Folk/Bluegrass

Request this album

Wes Weddell - By the Side of the Lake Wes Weddell – By the Side of the Lake

  • Americana

Request this album

Robot Raven - Greatest Hits Part One Robot Raven – Greatest Hits Part One

  • Pop/Rock

Request this album

Robot Raven - Greatest Hits Part Two Robot Raven – Greatest Hits Part Two

  • Pop/Rock

Request this album

The Railsplitters - The Faster it Goes The Railsplitters – The Faster it Goes

  • Folk

Request this album

Karrie Pavish Anderson - Twice As Nice Karrie Pavish Anderson – Twice As Nice

  • Folk/Pop

Request this album

David Hakan - Stone and Steel David Hakan – Stone and Steel

  • Folk

Request this album

Denise Glover - Pathways Denise Glover – Pathways

  • Folk

Request this album

Rick Malsick with Evan Smalley- Philodendron Rick Malsick with Evan Smalley- Philodendron

  • Modern Folk

Request this album

Barak Hill - All the Empty Space Barak Hill – All the Empty Space

  • Modern Folk

Request this album

FAI 2016: Conversations at Folk Alliance

KC Cafe Radio's booth at the 2016 Folk Alliance International ConferenceThe 2016 Folk Alliance International Conference and Music Fair was held for the third year in a row in Kansas City, Missouri February 17-21.  KC Cafe Radio was there once again, providing live coverage of the conference from our booth at the exhibit hall.

This year turned out to be a significantly rewarding year for us.  Not only did we have the opportunity to catch up with several old friends, we made several new ones as well.  Stay tuned to KC Cafe Radio, over the next several weeks and months you will begin hearing new music and voices, a direct result of these new friendships.

Louis MeyersSince the conference, we were saddened to learn of the passing of a very good friend to KC Cafe Radio and Folk Alliance International, Louis Meyers.  Louis had served as Executive Director of Folk Alliance International for several years, and had co-founded the South By Southwest (SXSW) festival.  Louis died on Friday, March 11, the first day of the 2016 SXSW festival.

Louis is also responsible for connecting us at KC Cafe radio with Folk Alliance International.  He had personally invited us to one of the regional conferences.  The following year we returned to the Folk Alliance Region Midwest conference with our live microphones.  Since then, we have attended and covered two regional and two international conferences.  Our involvement with this outstanding organization may not have happened without his invitation.

Here are archived recordings of the conversations we had during the conference:

Hali Hammer: Ringmaster of her own Eclectic Circus

Hali Hahali_hammermmer has lived a life that is as eclectic as her music. She grew up in New York surrounded by music.  “My mother and father were always singing,” she recollected. “My mother always had the record player on, and she would sing me to sleep at night.”  In college, Hali was wowed by the likes of The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and Peter Paul and Mary.  This was during the Vietnam war, and the words and songs she heard during that time would go on to play a significant role, not only in her music, but in her “public voice” as well.

Hali joined her first band in 1968 while she attended Queens College, and went on to play both with other musicians and as a solo act. She was a member of Citizens to Save Minnewaska in upstate New York, and had the inspiration for and helped produce the compilation album Save the Mountain in 1981 which aided in funding the legal fight. The property is now Minnewaska Lake State Park.

Hali later moved to the San Francisco Bay Area, and joined Freedom Song Network in 1985. She was a member of the chorus that sang onstage behind Nelson Mandela at the Oakland Coliseum. Her song Bottom of the Ninth was aired on KNBR-San Francisco preceding the first game of the 1989 Bay Bridge World Series. She became active in the San Francisco Folk Music Club (she is currently the Vice President) and was the coordinator of the 2003 Berkeley Free Folk Festival. Hali created and produced Sing Out for Earth Day, a video montage of 33 groups across the nation singing This Land Is Your Land on April 22, 2012, in the same key (D) and at the same time (noon Pacific, 1 pm Mountain, 2 pm Central, 3 pm Eastern). It debuted at a screening in San Francisco that July 14th, the 100th anniversary of Woody Guthrie’s birthday. She has been listed in Who’s Who of American Women.

Hali’s latest album, Eclectic Circus is preceded by three other albums, I Refuse To Believe, Gypsy-O, and The Best of Hali Hammer. Recently, KC Cafe Radio Music Director Kathy Forste visited with Hali via Skype. They talk about her various political and musical causes, her upbringing, and the significance of the “voice” behind the music.

Listen to the interview here:

Download the interview: download_icon

Music by Hali Hammer on KC Cafe Radio: