The latest news is this: we're not going to Curacao. Sure, they still want us to play, but the terms of agreement have been changed. Originally, the Festival Curacao organizers were paying for each band's round trip airfare, hotel rooms for the week, issuing a per diem for meals and sending everyone home with a percentage of American ticket sales. Just recently, however, the organizers put out the word that they were hoping bands could cover their own transportation, room and board. Seeing as how we're all poor people, we simply couldn't rise to this particular occasion - so we sent along our regrets in not being able to attend.

Yeah, it's a bummer - I was looking forward to the trip if ever-so-slightly, because I always keep it in the back of my head that nothing's assured until you're there on the day of show going "wow, we're here." Usually.

But no frets and worries - those play dates would've fallen on Jae and I's second wedding anniversary, so this year, we'll continue our tradition of celebrating in Key West, where we were married.

I just put a deposit down on my Dulcitar and I'm super-stoked. It'll be the first production model made after the prototype, which is pictured here, and Doug's doing some crazy-great customizations on it, including:

4 string design Chromatic scale
Color- transparent turquoise/blue burst, gloss top, flat black back/sides, “routed binding”
Finish type- 2 part Dupont or Imron
Custom inlay- dolphin as specified, left/upper bout
LED Fret markers- green/blue 12th fret
Wood- plain maple
Fingerboard- rosewood
Tuners- chrome Goto mini buttons
Custom bone nut- Standard cut slots(doubled bass strings, 2 melody strings with extra slots for equidistant spacing
Electronics- 2 p-bass pickups with piezo saddle/bridge

It's gonna be sexy. As production pictures are available, I'll post them here - but suffice it to say that I'm drooling over mid-April, which is around about when I can expect this baby to be shipped! I told Doug if I really liked it, I'd order another one, this time with a traditional dulcimer fretboard (well, with 6+ and 3+ frets).

Patrick McKinney, who was the luthier behind creating Angelique out of a Cripple Creek acoustic kit, is ready to go for bout number two, during which we're going to fashion a solid-body hot-rod of a dulcimer with traditional fretboard to be played in the original style. Based on his suggestion, we're going to make it a real speciality of an instrument and offer up a few for sale online - a signature dulcimer. We're in the design phase now.

Man, 5:30 a.m. comes quickly - heigh-ho, heigh-ho, and all that fiddle-jazz!
Bing FutchComment