The Complete Guide to Chord Theory and Mapping for the Hammered Dulcimer - ONLINE

LEVEL: All levels!!! 

The LIVE version of this course is ongoing during 2021. 

We will open the class for new students on Jan 3, 2022. Watch your email for details.

We have designed the course to offer you support as you work through the book. Watch the replays, use the flashcards and other supplemental videos we create, ask us questions, discuss concepts with other students. Request a practice buddy so that you can work through the book together—keeping each other on track.

While the opportunity to watch the sessions live is past, you will still receive the replay videos (uploaded the same day), homework, and email reminders, as well as access to our discussion group to ask questions throughout the year. As questions arise, Mary Lynn may do a quick extra video to explain something, all of which will be permanently available in HD Homeland to everyone who signs up.

This course is an invaluable companion to the book (note that you must purchase the book separately), and one that you can go back and reference whenever a question occurs.

Which one of these is you?

• A beginning player who would like to learn some music theory—explained especially for the hammered dulcimer in bite-sized portions so that you can build a great foundation for your playing.

• An intermediate player who can memorize tunes and enjoy playing them (but you know in the back of your mind that your playing will improve when you get a better handle on some theory).

• An advanced player who already knows a lot about music theory, but you also know you haven't had the time to really study it methodically and apply it to your playing of the hammered dulcimer.

What a difference it would make to your playing if you had a professional guide to walk you through topics such as: organization of the hammered dulcimer and shortcuts for learning the notes, intervals, Circle of Fifths, scales, duplicate notes, scale exercises, the Rule of Nine, triads, root arpeggio, inversion, and three note chord patterns, harmonizing a major scale, 7th chord theory and all forms of 7th chords, secondary dominants, chord progressions, relative and parallel majors/minors, slash chords, suspensions, augmented chords, modes, backup strategies....

What folks are saying:

"I envision Mary Lynn playing the role of Maria in The Sound of Music—singing, “Let’s start at the very beginning, etc.” No matter how much we think we know, starting at the very beginning is a great idea! I know I can always learn something." Denise C., TX

"I love that it is broken up into small sections. Theory is new to me. Too much info at a time overloads my brain. I have been playing for 1 1/2 years. The theory is becoming more meaningful and I am starting to see why it is important." Brenda F., WV

"We are a little over a third of the way through at this point, and I feel like a blind man who now can see. It has been such a revelation to me and I am finally feeling like I am getting to really know my dulcimer." Steve M., NC

"I know things I don’t know, don’t fully ‘get' … sure will be interesting to identify those things I don’t know I don’t know!" Sue W., NC

"This really is a book for all playing levels. It’s the book I wish I had read when I first started playing....I am so glad I am also doing the classes, it helps to really study the topic and really get the message home. Well done for a fantastic combination, I cannot recommend it highly enough."— Pete B., UK

Now for a short story

All Dorothy wanted was to get back home. Instead, she found herself confronted by all manner of strange and scary stuff as she proceeded through Oz. 

What if she had brought a map along or hired a guide to help her on the journey? She would have made it through Oz and home to Kansas a lot quicker, although the story might have been a little less exciting.

You've already bought a map: The Complete Guide to Chord Theory and Mapping for the Hammered Dulcimer by Ken Kolodner and Mary Lynn Michal (or - please check out the book to see what it covers and buy it here - NOTE: the latest edition published in October 2020 is a prerequisite for this course). You'll need it to study and follow along during the year.

If you own an earlier edition of the book, you will not be able to follow along. The new edition includes approximately 40 additional pages and revised content on nearly every page.

Even with the map/book in hand, you might be feeling a little overwhelmed. Each page is filled with new concepts. As Ken says, it's not a beach read. You really need to study and focus on each concept and understand how to apply it to the dulcimer and to the tunes you play. 

In this course, Mary Lynn Michal will guide you through the entire Chord Theory book from cover to cover: explaining concepts, demonstrating them on the dulcimer, suggesting exercises, and answering your questions. We've even got a private discussion board set up so that we can continue the conversation beyond the 1/2 hour.

FORMAT: 1/2 hour sessions covering a  few pages at a time. We are spending 40 Sundays through 2021 to digest the book in small bites. 

All sessions and exercises are recorded so that you can watch it any time, you can catch up, and of course revisit a concept whenever needed. 


• Thorough explanation of a concept

• Practice exercises and assignments

• Tune examples where applicable

In HD Homeland:

• Sessions available to revisit and replay anytime (lifetime access)

• a private messageboard to discuss with other students, etc.

• Discount coupons for other selected classes and products in HD Homeland and beyond

BONUS: no wicked witches or flying monkeys!


One time payment: $240 ($6 per session)

Monthly payment plan is no longer available

DATES for the live sessions in 2021 (remember, you will not have access to attend these live sessions—the replay will be available the same evening):

Jan 3, 10, 17, 24, 31

Feb 14, 21, 28

Mar 7, 14, 21

Apr 18, 25 

May 9, 16, 23, 30

Jun 6, 13

Jul 4, 11, 18, 25

Aug 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

Sep 5, 12

Oct 24, 31

Nov 7, 14, 21, 28

Dec 5, 12

Jan 2, 2022 - 1 hour grand finale 3-4

Dates are subject to change

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