Salty-Strings-Music-Ministry-00040-minBecause of the instruments they use, folk music just comes naturally.  In fact, John & Connie picked up most of their instruments after watching and hearing other musicians.  Although not experts on any of them, they play fairly proficiently (that means they’re pretty good).  People keep asking them back, anyway, and they clap instead of throwing tomatoes, which is a really good thing!

Folk style tends to permeate most of what they play, but some of the specific examples would be: old time traditional American, Celtic music from the British Isles, 60’s & 70’s folk, singer/songwriter stuff like John Denver, James Taylor, Gordon Lightfoot, Harry Chapin,  & the likes, and sometimes a good classical piece or old hymn  with dulcimers & such.  Even the songs John writes have a folk flare.

Some of the popular places for their folk music are house concerts (public & private), coffee houses, community festivals, local concert series, and quiet background music.

Music Samples

Road to Lisdoonvarna (instrumental)

Old Rugged Cross

Servants of the King

Simple Gifts




Stringed Instruments:
Hammer Dulcimer (dulci + melos = sweet music)
Autoharp (automatic for those needing help in chording)
Bowed Psaltery – mentioned in the Psalm’s by David
Guitar – John has two; one for strumming, one for pickin’
Irish Bouzouki – long neck member of the mandolin family
Mountain Dulcimers (also known as Lap or Appalachian dulcimers)
Octave Mandolin – a large, fat mandolin, one octave lower

Wind Instruments:
Sweetheart Flute – much like a tin whistle only made of wood
Soprano Recorder – high pitched nice sound, made of rosewood
Tenor Recorder – large, haunting mellow sound similar to an Indian flute
Ocarina – clay “soap on a rope” with a beautiful whistle sound
Jaw Harp (also known as a juice harp, depending on how much ya spit when ya play)

Rhythm/Percussion Instruments:
Bodhran (bow-ran) – Irish drum, played with a wood “tipper” (no relation to Al)
Bones – made of various woods – purple heart, walnut, wenge
Washboard – pronounced warsh-bored, emphasis on the “r”
Spoons – wooden “sporks” and relish spoons – ask us the story!
Chickatas (cha-kee-tahs) – tiny little maracas with a cute shaker sound
Keyboard – used for whatever sounds we can’t get from all the others
Piano – great with guitar especially for background music