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     Schnaufer, David (1952-23rd August 2006)

    He was a dulcimer player, composer, researcher and teacher born in Hearne, Texas, and grew up in La Marque, Texas.  When he was young he started his musical interest by learning to play the harmonica and mouth harp but after he had bought a dulcimer for $40 when he was older he knew that would be the instrument for him.  Quickly becoming proficient, he won several contests and decided to move to Nashville in 1985 to bring the dulcimer back into public attention once again in mainstream music.  First he would perform in restaurants and just receive tips but he quickly progressed to becoming a backing/session musician for The Judds, Chet Atkins, Johnny Cash, Mark Knopfler, Hank Williams Jr., Emmylou Harris, Alison Krauss, Linda Ronstadt, Dan Seals and numerous others as well as being the opening act for the Everly Brothers when they were on tour.  At the same time he would be a member of the group The Cactus Brothers and in 1995 he was recruited as an Adjunct Professor of Dulcimer in the folk music program of Blair School of Music, along with other teachers such as Mark O'Connor, after he had been heard playing at a dinner by the Dean.  Teaching many students, at the Blair School of Music and in various workshops, the art of dulcimer playing over the years, one of his pupils was the singer Cyndi Lauper and he would later work with her in the recording studio.  During his career he appeared on numerous recordings including A Smoky Mountain Christmas with Craig Duncan, Conversations in Silence with the Nashville Chamber Orchestra, Merry ChristmasHave a Nice Life! and Sisters of Avalon by Cyndi Lauper, Elysian Forest and New Nashville Cats by Mark O'Connor, Adieu False Heart by Linda Ronstadt and Ann Savoy, Arkansas Traveler: Music from Little House on the Prairie, The Cactus Brothers, the soundtrack from Cold Mountain, Hundred Miles or More: A Collection by Alison Krauss, Pure Hank by Hank Williams Jr. and his own Delcimore, Dulcimer Deluxe, Dulcimer Player,  He was also the co-writer of the successful "Blackberry Winter" with Conni Ellisor.  He researched the instrument called the "music box" which was a Tennessee dulcimer, which he co-wrote about for the Tennessee Folklore Society Bulletin, and his huge collection of dulcimers have since been left to a Tennessee museum.  He died from lung cancer at a hospice in Nashville in 2006, aged 53.


    Craig Duncan and David Schnaufer recordings

    Angels We Have Heard on High (Traditional French/James Chadwick/Edward Barnes)

    Brentwood CD-5089J (CD: A Smoky Mountain Christmas)

    Hammered Dulcimer and Fiddle - Craig Duncan

    Mountain Dulcimer - David Schnaufer



    1. http://home.usit.net/~ndq/ds.html
    2. http://www.vanderbilt.edu/news/releases/2006/8/23/dulcimer-virtuoso-david-schnaufer-dead-at-53-taught-at-vanderbilts-blair-school-of-music-since-1995
    3. http://www.myspace.com/davidschnaufer
    4. http://www.homespuntapes.com/staticsite/artistpage384.asp
    5. http://shopping.yahoo.com/p:David%20Schnaufer:1927001785?sort=az


    Here he is on dulcimer performing "Fisher's Hornpipe" with The Cactus Brothers...

















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