November 22, 2019

Performers and Instructors 2020

The Colorado Dulcimer Festival includes great performers and instructors who teach classes, perform, and help everybody enjoy the music!

In addition to our out-of-state Guest Artists we welcome our list of local Festival regulars (in alphabetical order) Bob Elieson,  Tina Gugeler,  Dianne Jeffries, Judy Jones. We also welcome back “Honorary Coloradans” Steve Eulberg, the founder of the Colorado Dulcimer Festival, and the always delightful Erin Mae.

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By the way, our local performers and instructors have included
National Champions who have won several titles,
including First Place winner,
at The National Dulcimer Championship,
Walnut Valley Festival, Winfield, Kansas.

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For the 2020 Festival, we’re excited to present the following performers and instructors.  The Festival team would also like to thank Donna and John Hammer for hosting some of out out-of-state artists.


Tina Bergmann

Tina Bergmann

Teaching Hammered Dulcimer and Performing

Hailed by Pete Seeger as “the best hammered dulcimer player I’ve heard in my life,” Tina Bergman has been performing concerts, and teaching workshops and private lessons from an early age.  A fourth-generation musician, Bergmann began playing usic at age eight, learning the mountain dulcimer from her mother in the aural tradition and learning the hammered dulcimer at the knee of West Virginia-native builder and performer Loy Swiger.  Demonstrating gifts for both performance and teaching, she has been a featured performer across the United States, performing solo, with her stringband, and with Cleveland’s world renowned Baroque Orchestra.


Sam Edelston

Sam Edelston

Teaching Mountain Dulcimer, Guitar and Performing

Sam Edelston plays rock, pop, blues, country, traditional folk, and a lot more on acoustic and electric mountain dulcimer (and on guitar and banjo).  He believes that dulcimers belong in mainstream popular music, and are a much more logical entry instrument than guitars.  Sam draws his musical inspiration from rock bands, symphony orchestras, modern a cappella, and anything else he hears.  His online videos have over 550,000 views.  He has performed or taught at dulcimer festivals, folk festivals, and other venues in the Northeast, and at festivals as far-flung as Kentucky, Minnesota, Louisiana, and (coming soon) California.  One workshop student commented, “As zany as Sam is, he is s patient, knowledgeable, caring teacher also experienced, smart, creative etc.”  And as a preschooler once told her mother, “Rosie’s daddy came in and sang to us today.  He was so much fun.  Can he be my daddy, too?”  Sam is also chair of the Nutmeg Dulcimer Festival in Connecticut.


Bob Elieson

Teaching Mountain Dulcimer

More information coming soon.


Steve Eulberg (Honorary Coloradoan)

Steve Eulberg

Teaching Mountain Dulcimer, Song Writing and Performing

“. . . a superb dulcimer player . . . and a first rate composer.”

—Neal Walters, Dulcimer Players News

Steve Eulberg is a versatile full-time folk musician who specializes in fretted and hammered dulcimers. But his first instrument was his mother’s ukulele. At a youth retreat the weekend after Jim Croce’s plane went down, he became so fired up about the guitar that he grabbed the only thing in the house with strings. His mother wanted her ukulele back so for that Christmas, he got a guitar. As a college student, he heard his first dulcimers, but never thought he could afford his own. It wasn’t until graduate school when he realized that he wouldn’t have to live on peanut butter sandwiches the rest of his life, because the Hughes Dulcimer Company was just down the street. He bought a kit and built his first dulcimer. It’s been love ever since – through a career performing folk for kids to seniors, as a composer, and as an inner-city pastor, this award-winning touring musician brings joy to all who hear him.

Steve has a musical soul influenced by many, including Tchaikovsky, Jean Ritchie, and Stevie Wonder. He’s shared the stage with folk artists John McCutcheon, Bryan Bowers, Maggie Sansone, Emma’s Revolution, and Mundy Turner. Steve is a five-time National Winner in Mountain Dulcimer and a three-time National Finalist for Hammered Dulcimer, in addition to other honors.


Tina Gugeler

Tina Gugeler

Teaching Hammered Dulcimer, Bodhran and performing

2015 National Hammered Dulcimer Champion

Tina Gugeler first heard a hammered dulcimer in 1986 while living in Ketchikan, Alaska. It quickly became her passion and soon it seemed everyone on the island had heard Tina and her band, BearFoot. She played on the docks for cruise ship tourists, for weddings and dances, and at the Alaska Folk Festival in Juneau.

Since moving to the Denver area in Colorado in 1990, Tina has become a full time musician; performing solo and in small combos with fiddle, guitar or piano, and in several local contra dance bands. Along with her busy performance schedule, she teaches students on the dulcimer and bodhràn.

Over the years, Tina has won many local and regional competitions and in the years 2000 and 2015 she won the U.S. National Hammered Dulcimer Championship. She appears on recordings with John and Sue Reading as the Grandview Victorian Orchestra.   John, Sue and Tina also play local contra dances under the name Balance and Swing.


Stephen Humphries

Stephen Humphries

Teaching Hammered Dulcimer and performing 

Stephen Humphries is a national hammered dulcimer champion (2007), freelance percussionist, and music educator.  At present, Stephen has released five albums as well as two instructional method books for students of the hammered dulcimer.  Stephen, his wife, Taryn, and their baby boy, reside in Chattanooga, TN, where Stephen serves as the instrumental Music teacher and percussion instructor at Silverdale Baptist Academy.  In addition to this position, Stephen also teaches as an adjunct professor of percussion at Covenant College and keeps a private studio of percussion and hammered dulcimer students in and around the Chattanooga area.


Dianne Jeffries

Dianne Jeffries

Teaching Mountain Dulcimer

Dianne Jeffries saw a dulcimer for the first time in 2003 at Silver Dollar City in Branson, MO.  Because she enjoys bagpipes, the drone sound of the mountain dulcimer immediately appealed to her and she returned home with one.  With very little musical background, she attempted to teach herself how to play it.  She is extremely grateful for her very patient husband who encouraged her during the time when she didn’t know her dulcimer needed frequent tuning.

Meeting & taking lessons from Steve Eulberg was a tremendous blessing. He helped her overcome bad habits, develop her musical skills, face the fear of playing the dulcimer publicly, and rise above mediocrity.

The dulcimer has become her favorite way to drive away the stress of her very busy schedule as an entrepreneur, church volunteer, belly dancer, homemaker, wife & grandmother. Musically, she coordinates a diverse dulcimer jam group which meets twice a month, gives mountain dulcimer lessons, demonstrations, and performs with the Loveland Heart Strings at various locations near Loveland, CO. She finds introducing others to the sweet sound of the dulcimer extremely rewarding.


Judy Jones

Judy Jones

Teaching Mountain Dulcimer

More information coming soon.


Erin Mae

Erin Mae

Teaching Mountain Dulcimer and Performing

Erin Mae got her first Mountain Dulcimer at the age of seven. Ten years later, in 2004, she won the prestigious National Mountain Dulcimer Championship—making her the youngest winner of the award at the time. Now, after playing for 20+ years, Erin has developed a unique and progressive style, with her signature percussive chop and flat-picking fiddle tunes. One guitar player quipped, “Erin can do more with three strings than I can do with six.”

Erin studied classical piano at Sterling College in Sterling, KS before pursuing a degree in Commercial Music, with an emphasis in bluegrass and acoustic jazz, at South Plains College in Levelland, TX. Graduating in 2010, she is the first Mountain Dulcimer player to complete the program.

As a cancer survivor, Erin firmly believes that her music and faith were paramount to her healing. Erin strives to let her music and story act as a beacon of light for those going through difficult times, and is currently writing a book documenting the effect this experience had on her music and worldview. You can hear that passion as Erin Mae culls from her instrument music, which lifts the spirit and heals the soul.

Erin tours full time as part of the duo Scenic Roots. Erin has also participated as an instructor at children’s music camps; as well as various festivals, and providing private lessons.


Butch Ross

Butch Ross

Teaching Mountain Dulcimer, Ukulele and Performing

When Butch Ross opened for Bill Staines last fall, he received a rare accolade: a standing ovation for an opening act.  He transforms the lowly mountain dulcimer into a virtuoso’s instrument, drawing from it unexpected power and expressivemess.  He mixes old contry and Appalachian songs with his own wordy, literate, poetic ballads about people, places, and situations you might read about in a good book of short stories.  He has a strong clear voice and a stage presence of boyish charm.  –Minstrel Coffeehouse

Butch Ross is a rockstar.  he plays the mountain dulcimer and in case you’re thinking “Rockstar” Mountain Dulcimer? Doesn’t compute,” let me fill you in on a little something.  Butch Ross does something that no one else can touch.  What he does is amazing.  His genius is in the fact that he found something unique to him and he just worked it to a point where no one can come close to matching it.  He’s seriously brilliant. –Hayley Graham


Kendra Tunnicliff

Kendra Tunnicliff

Teaching Hammered Dulcimer and performing

Kendra Tunnicliff gravitated towards the hammered dulcimer the first time she heard one.  Though she had several years piano experience, the free nature of the dulcimer appealed to her.  She started dulcimer lessons at the age seven, and loves to arrange and improvise her own music.

Now seventeen, Kendra is a music performance student at her local community college, majoring in voice and percussion.  Dulcimer is still a top priority, and she is recording an album with her group, Tonal Depravity.

Along with original songs, Irish, classical, and pop songs commonly find their way into her repertoire.  In addition to dulcimer, she studies singing, a variety of percussion instruments, and piano.  Kendra lives in Wyoming with her band-mates (aka siblings) and parents.


Randy Zombola

Randy Zombola

Teaching Hammered Dulcimer and Performing

Randy Zombola lives in Colorado Springs and has played the hammered dulcimer for almost 40 years.  His music has its roots firmly planted in both Celtic and American traditional music.  He played in the Celtic Band Blarney Pilgrim for about 16 years and currently is a member of the Swallowtail Celtic band.  In addition, he also plays old time, classical, ragtime, and tunes of his own composition.  Like many contemporary dulcimer players, he has made an effort to expand dulcimer repertory by arranging tunes that are not normally considered to be standard fare for the dulcimer.  The winner of the 1988 National Hammered Dulcimer Championship at Winfield, Kansas, Randy has recorded three albums of diverse dulcimer music.