Author: Dan Evans

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music in Kathy Browns Garden

a very informal presentation of folk airs and nature-themed compositions on dulcimer & guitar by Dan Evans

in Kathy Brown’s beautiful and famous garden, Stevington near Bedford MK43 7QB

on Saturdays 12th and 19th Aug – from 2pm, subject to the weather

tickets & booking


Amazing Grace 250th celebration performance

Dan wanted to be a a part of this event, as he has many connections with Amazing Grace and the dulcimer is traditionally played in a shady grove

for this relaxed performance, Dan will be playing instrumental music on dulcimer, including some folk melodies and his own, nature-themed compositions



in praise of DAA – the forgotten tuning ?


I was first introduced to the Appalachian dulcimer (as we called it then) back in the early 70’s and, at that time, DAA would have been the main tuning used for major scale songs and tunes.  For me, living in England, London’s Roger Nicholson was a major influence when I started out and Roger used DAA as his major scale tuning.

Today, as the reader will know, DAD is by far the most dominant tuning for the modern mountain dulcimer and DAA is now perhaps seen as a dated and/or beginner’s tuning.  This film however, made in 2021, of Roger’s pastoral piece Spring Season may challenge that perception.

In this article I’d like to demonstrate that DAA is not only alive and well but can be used to play meaningful, and perhaps even moving, dulcimer music.


HAM concert East Yorkshire

feedback from the organiser: ‘Thank you again for a great show, we all enjoyed the evening and meeting you both.’

York House concert with Rebecca & Andy

we have had lots of very nice feedback from friends and supporters who attended the concert – but my favourite comment is from a young musician …

‘being at your concert, on the Friday, was a delight. I’m constantly fascinated by your music, and it was a charming evening with a very enchanting atmosphere’



The Garden Waltz duet

the Garden Waltz is one of Dan’s nature-themed compositions – imagine having cream teas on the lawn of an English country garden – then, being in England, it rains, then thunders, then rains again, ending on a jazzy chord, symbolising a rainbow from a repentant sky

performed fingerstyle on my old Flyde Goodfellow guitar in Open C tuning (CGCGCE) with good friend and international classical guitarist Martin Vishnick

live at Kathy Brown’s garden ~ III

guitar instrumentals: Plain Sailing (D Evans) interlude & The Garden Waltz (D Evans)

performed on Dan’s Auden Chester cutaway guitar in Open C tuning (CGCGCE) using delay effects from the Boss DD-500 and sampling/looping using the Boss RC-30

The Garden Waltz is one of Dan’s nature-themed compositions – imagine having cream teas on the lawn of an English country garden – then, being in England it rains – you’ll hear thunder, the pitter patter of rain, a downpour, more rain then, at the end, the repentant sky offers a rainbow as an apology

live at Kathy Brown’s Garden ~ II

the guitar instrumental version of the song Which Will (by nick Drake) & (Evans’ own) Chinese Water Garden, about water cascading down small rock pools – is followed by Dan’s own Waves, a guitar instrumental about waves lapping on a lonely shingle beach

both are performed in Kathy Browns’ famous garden in Stevington, Bedfordshire on Dan’s Auden Chester cutaway acoustic guitar in Open C tuning (CGCGCE) using delay effects from the Boss DD-500 and sampled sounds from the Boss RC-30 loop station

Nick Drake (1948 – 1974), was a British singer/songwriter/guitar player, whose fame grew after his death – in the song Which Will, Nick perhaps airs his depression over his music not being more popular, a sentiment shared by many songwriters no doubt

book review: Pluck, David Schnaufer’s biography

‘Pluck – The Extraordinary Life and Times of David Schnaufer’

by Linda Paulus

an informal book review by Dan Evans

first impressions

At over £37 from Amazon UK and with over 500 pages for the main story alone, this paperback represents quite an investment of time and money.  So is it worth it ?

Schnaufer’s story is written in the present tense with an ease that seems to make the pages turn more quickly than usual.  I enjoy reading but I’m often put off by very long stories.  Here however, I found myself on page 300 in seemingly no time, eager to read on and find out what happens next.


live at Kathy Brown’s garden ~ I

‘Mary’ a new original guitar piece by Dan Evans and his arrangement of Turlough O’ Carolan’s Si Beag Si Mhor, performed live at Kathy Brown’s famous garden in Stevington, Bedfordshire

both performed on Dan’s Auden Chester cutaway guitar in Open C tuning, capo’ed to key of D

‘Mary’ is dedicated to Dan’s wife: Mary Evans

Turlough O’ Carolan (1670 – 1738) was a famous blind Irish harper, considered by many to be Ireland’s national composer ~ many of his tunes are called Planxties, a term that O’ Carolan might have invented, meaning

Si Beag Si Mhor, meaning ‘Small Fairy Mound, Big Fairy Mound’, is one of O’ Carolan’s most popular compositions and might refer to two small hills, possible burial sites, from his birth county of Meath

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