Artist Biography of Timothy Seaman

Timothy Seaman on the Hammered DulcimerAcoustic soloist Timothy Seaman, a proud native of West Virginia, has lived in Virginia since 1956 and in Williamsburg since 1970. An English graduate of the College of William & Mary, a four-summer backpacking instructor as a Philmont Ranger, and a veteran of nineteen years of school teaching, he has continually been involved in music and has made it his sole endeavor since 1994. Most of his many recordings have been done in collaboration with Virginia’s National and State Parks and other agencies, representing their natural and historic themes. His musical achievements have also involved partnerships with guitarists and Celtic harpers in a folk-jazz-classical blend of styles -- with Paul Montgomery in the early ‘70’s, with his wife Rowena and Hallett Hullinger for a decade in the trio Springs of Joy, with Chuck Haas in Pilgrim and Midwinter Spring, and with Ardie Boggs, Ann Robinson, Phillip Skeens and Peter Budnikas in Celtic Awakening, Virginia Sky, Artisan, and StringWind. Major recordings include To the King (1978), with Springs of Joy, and Scratch the Sky (1990), with Midwinter Spring, as well as fifteen discs currently available, totaling more than 124,000 tapes and discs, plus countless downloads.

Equally at home on a concert stage, at a reception, in a studio or a classroom, Timothy plays and teaches distinctively original music using his own techniques developed for the extended-range hammered dulcimer, a large collection of flutes and whistles, psalteries, mountain dulcimer and guitar -- both solo and in ensembles -- with a unique emotive and sometimes powerful style revealing influences of such varied performers as Ken Kolodner, early John McCutcheon, Paul Sullivan, Glenn Gould, Hubert Laws, Arthur Rubinstein, Noel Paul Stookey, Gordon MacRae, Helmuth Rilling, Herb Alpert, Rudolf Serkin, Alasdair Fraser, and George Szell. The instruments seem at times to burst forth into a vocal form of expression -- and indeed on occasion his baritone voice’s warmth joins in.

Mr. Seaman’s performance and teaching log includes dates with the Virginia delegates and governors and U.S. Congressmen; Lady Thatcher; concert stages shared with Pierce Pettis, Robin and Linda Williams, Phil Keaggy, Dean Shostak, Bob Zentz, John Turner, and Mike Seeger; the Waterford Fair; the Augusta Heritage, Highland Maple, Sawdust, Evart, and Buckeye Festivals; twenty First Nights in several cities; the Mordecai Outcry in Lafayette Park, D.C.; An Occasion for the Arts; the Trellis Restaurant and Williamsburg Inn; guest appearances on public radio programs; locations in Hungary, the Netherlands, and Germany; numerous concerts for Colonial Williamsburg and State and National Parks; collaborative programs with hiking author Jeff Alt and wood artist Bob Lentz; and an invitation to play for the elder President Bush.

Works in progress include an album Hymns from Childhood; a second disc of folk hymn interpretations called Loving Kindness, plus one of Baroque transcriptions; a compilation for ballroom dance; and a fourth Christmas album and a suite of new compositions on nature themes, both featuring solo hammered dulcimer.

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Last update January 2013

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