Free Dulcimer Tabs
These free arrangements of tunes or songs for mountain dulcimer all use tablature AND musical notation. If you haven’t seen dulcimer TAB before, it is laid out in three lines which represent the three dulcimer strings seen from above. The melody string (nearest to you) is therefore at the bottom, the bass (furthest) string at the top. The numbers on the strings are the fret numbers which you need to press down. If you’re not sure how these tunes should sound, you will find versions of most of them on YouTube.
The TABs are in pdf format for easy printing. If you do not have the free reader for these type of files, it can be downloaded here. To see a tune, just click on its title.
NEW Tunes for Christmas
A mix of British and American, well- and less well-known.
Bring Us In Good Ale – a very early song where the revellers plead for drink rather then food from their hosts (tuning DAC – easy).
Good King Wenceslas – the well-known carol in two versions (tuning DGD – easy and intermediate)
It Came Upon the Midnight Clear – more modern carol, with the tune which is best known in the UK (tuning DAD – easy)
Jesus the Christ is born – a lovely modal tune from Tennessee which can be played as a duet (tuning DAC – easy to intermediate)
Lulle Lullay – also from Tennessee, this is a demonstration of why some modal tunes should be left to hover naturally between minor and major. Can be played in DAC or DAA using the same fret numbers on the melody string – which key do you think sounds best against the same D and A drones (tuning DAC or DAA – easy)?
Sussex Carol – one of my favourite British carols, sometimes called “On Christmas Night, all Christians Sing” after the first line (tuning DAD – easy to intermediate).
The Holly and the Ivy (Bromsash) – a curiosity perhaps, but a rather good one. This is a very local (to me) version of the popular carol collected as recently as the 1950s and it has a really good tune (tuning DAD or DAA – easy).
Old Joe Clark – An old time favourite in its simplest form (tuning DAD)
You are my Sunshine – Three different styles and levels of difficulty in one piece…try the first! (tuning DAD)
Scarborough Fair – Three different versions of this well-known traditional song…and yes, I know it’s the S**** and G******** adaptation. The first version is just the tune on the melody string (tuning DAC)
Amazing Grace – A good starter tune which moves slowly (tuning DAA)
Wildwood Flower – Classic, lovely tune which only uses the melody string for simplicity (tuning DAA)
The Tennessee Waltz – Another old time tune, with some quite tricky passages (tuning DAD)
Sussex Carol – On Christmas Night – A lovely, but lesser known English carol (tuning DAD)
You are my Sunshine – Same tune as the Easy one above, but this time try the 2nd version (tuning DAD)
Branle de Marienbourg – Great French tune which can be played as both a solo and a duet (tuning DGD)
Scarborough Fair – Traditional song, as above, but the chordal accompaniment in version 2 is more challenging (tuning DAC)
The Star of the County Down – A well known traditional English/Irish tune (tuning DAC)
You are my Sunshine – The final version of this well-known song is more ambiguous in tone, with a complex chord accompaniment (tuning DAD)
Polska Eklunda No3 in G – An interesting – but difficult – Swedish piece (tuning DGD)
Zwiefacher – A Bavarian dance tune which moves irregularly between 2 and 3 beats to the bar…one tricky run (tuning DGD)
Scarborough Fair – 3rd version of this well-known song is a complex finger-picked accompaniment (tuning DAC)
Sackpipslat efter J L Olsson – Haunting short pipe tune from Sweden (tuning DAC)