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Carol Walker

Carol Walker laying in the grass surrounded by dulcimers

Carol Walker

Originally from Colorado, Carol has lived in the Northeast since 1963. Her formal training
includes a degree in Music Education, with majors in piano, harp, and voice. She was an
active high school choral director in northern NJ for 32 years, and in 2003 was a recipient
of the NJ Governor’s Teacher of the Year Award. She continues to freelance as a classical
piano accompanist and musical theater director.

In 2008 she retired from her school job and moved on to her next adventure: getting better acquainted with her Appalachian dulcimer, which she had purchased in 1999. This newly found avenue of folk music led her to connect with many other folk musicians, along with an invitation to join Wayfarers & Company, an eclectic old-time folk group based in Stroudsburg, PA. Carol was active with this group for over 15 years, adding vocal harmonies and playing dulcimer, upright bass, piano, melodica, and harp. The Wayfarers have produced two CDs.

She also began teaching dulcimer workshops in 2006 at her own Pocono Festival, and soon
became a popular workshop leader at festivals all across the United States. In 2014, 2016
and 2019, Carol entered the National Mountain Dulcimer Contest in Winfield, Kansas, each
time placing as one of the Top Five Finalists.

Carol is best known for her successful books of arrangements for mountain dulcimer. Eight
different titles are in use throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Australia. Her first two
books (Tailless Tunes and Tailless Tunes 2) contain dozens of traditional Manx melodies.
Her arrangements of these unfamiliar Celtic-flavored tunes from the Isle of Man have been
enthusiastically welcomed on this side of the Atlantic.

Two CDs of Manx music (Alas! The Horse is Gone and Tailless Tunes 2) were also
released in conjunction with the books, featuring Carol performing on dulcimer, harp,
piano, melodica. and upright bass, and accompanied by other professional musicians
playing Celtic fiddle, guitar, whistle, and bodhran.

Next, she published a trilogy of sequential instructional books (DNA* Dulcimer Ditties),
designed to guide dulcimer students from their very first simple tunes all the way up to
advanced show-stoppers. (*Songs so familiar they’re practically etched on your DNA)
In 2015, Carol released her first instructional DVD (Exploring the Beauty of the
Appalachian Dulcimer), produced by Happy Traum of Homespun Tapes, in Woodstock, NY.

Her long-awaited book of classical arrangements appeared in 2017: Classical Dulcimer
for Wascally Wabbits, in which dulcimer players discover that they are already familiar
with the best classical melodies, thanks to Bugs Bunny cartoons, and that these
arrangements, taken from full orchestral scores, are actually playable on a three string diatonic dulcimer.

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