Hammered Dulcimer Player/Instructor/Recording Artist
Linda Thomas' musical career began at age seven when she started playing piano. She eventually
earned a degree in music education at Southwest Missouri State University and has taught music
at the elementary school level for 35 years. Linda became intrigued by the hammered dulcimer
after hearing it played in live performance at the Walnut Valley Festival in the 1980's.
"My formal training consisted of maybe five lessons to learn the tuning and set-up of the
dulcimer; however, I consider myself pretty much a self-taught player." She quickly
mastered the instrument and has become well known both in the US and in Europe as a
performer, recording artist and instructor.
Teamed with guitarist Dan DeLancey since 1980, the duo has recorded twelve albums and
Linda has published several instructional books with arrangements for hammered dulcimer.
Linda also facilitates workshops for beginner to advanced players and has been a competitor
at major dulcimer contests. She took 2nd place in the Southern Regional Hammered Dulcimer
Finals at Mountain View, Arkansas in 1994, 1995 and 1996. In 1997 Linda was a finalist in
Lone Star State Dulcimer Competition and took first place there in 1999. In August, 2001
she was first place winner in the Scottish Highland Games Hammered Dulcimer Competition at
"Linda Thomas demonstrates a great ability and mastery over the hammered dulcimer. She weaves the melody, chords
and embellishments into a tapestry of music. She has the ability to make a fast fiddle tune
bounce and the sensitivity to perform slower pieces that sing."
"Linda Thomas is a solid and rhythmic player who really understands the intricate style of group playing. She knows how to make the melody stand out in a group and is equally at home on back-up playing."
"Linda has the ability to forge a comfort zone including American music and tunes from afar; this is done with an ease
which belies the difficulty of mastering such intricate and wide-ranging music." Walt Michael
Dan's exposure to Old Time String Band and Bluegrass music began at an early age listening to
his mother, grandparents, and uncles play music on various stringed instruments. "My grandmother
kept a huge stack of old 45 rpm records...people like The Carter Family, The Blue Sky Boys, The
Stanley Brothers and many more." He learned to play rhythm guitar from those recordings and
his interest in flatpicking lead guitar was sparked when he heard Doc Watson and Dan Crary
playing on a public radio station in the 1970's. Twenty years later Dan has gained recognition
as a seasoned flatpicker known for his fluid style and original arrangements, some of which
have appeared in Flatpicking Guitar Magazine and Mel Bay Publications.
Dan has performed and recorded since 1980 with hammered dulcimer player Linda Thomas
and recently released a solo CD showcasing his flatpicking skills titled "A Few Favorites."
"Listening to him play, it is certainly evident that arrangement is something Dan does very well.
His arrangements are interesting, exciting, tasteful and well performed." Dan Miller, Editor, Flatpicking Guitar Magazine
In addition, Dan facilitates flatpicking workshops for beginner to advanced level players
and has been a formidable flatpick contest contender as evidenced by the long list of
awards he has received:
1983 1st Place
1996 1st Place
Missouri State Guitar Championships
1985 1st Place
1988 1st Place
Oklahoma State Guitar Championships
1988 1st Place
1992 1st Place
Kansas State Guitar Championships
Colorado State Guitar Championships
1997 2nd Place
1998 2nd Place
Steve Kaufman Guitar Contest
1998 1st Place
26th Rocky Mountain BG Festival
For a more complete biography read Flatpick Profile: Kansas City's Dan DeLancey in the Nov/Dec 1997 issue of Flatpicking Guitar Magazine.
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