hit tracker Ringing Strings Bowed Psalteries
Recent Updates
12-19-15  I finally am getting ready to list a few new psalteries on the site.  I have three new tenor psalteries, with three more that only require stringing to be finished.  There will also be a few of the small soprano psalteries.  I am working on building one special order baritone and have the wood ready to begin a few more.  Let me know if you have been waiting on my schedule to include building one.  I can put you next in line.  It has been almost two years, since I have listed any new baritones on the site.  Special orders for them have kept me busy.  I seem to only be able to build five to six of those each year.

I also plan to start filming some new playing videos to share on YouTube and this site.  These will showcase each of the psalteries I build and their capibilities.  I have also had a video in the planning stages for quite some time, totally dedicated to the process of double bowing.  It will be a great winter project.

10-23-15  Well, it's been quite a year.  My wife had some severe health problems back in January.  These continued throughout the year and are still ongoing.  A total of 109 days spent in the hospital in six different stays.  We are both worn out with that and hope we never have to set foot in another hospital. 

When you operate a one person business, something like this can bring that business to a standstill.  That's pretty much what happened to me.  I was still able to work at times, so I could keep up with most of the special orders that came in.  There hasn't been much time for updating the site, or getting new psalteries listed, especially when those new psalteries didn't exist.

My wife is currently doing some better, but is still bedridden.  The best thing is that we are at home, so I have been able to start working in the shop once again.  My annual psaltery gathering is at the end of next week.  I was beginning to wonder If I was even going to be there.  That wouldn't be a problem, other than for me not to join in on the fun.  The gathering will pretty much run itself, with the help of a written schedule and great friends that would step in for me to make sure it runs smoothly.

Being able to work in the shop again has started with me having lots of new psalteries in the works.  It's still a slow process that I don't want to rush.  The detail and time that I put into each one of my instruments is apparent to anyone that inspects them.  I'm not willing to compromize that and the quality my customers deserve.  When I am ready, there will be new psalteries appearing here on the website.

1-25-15  I have started working on a complete update of my website.  Lots of changes to make, new information, new ideas, and new products.  Check back often to see what's new.  Folks that like my new Ringing Strings Facebook page will have access to the latest info on what I'm working on.  It shgows up on there prior to making it to this website.  A few instruments have sold from that page before making to here.  The last baritone I built sold from my Facebook page.

2-20-13  I have some more tunes from a recent jam with my friends up in the Cumberland Gap area.  I am playing a D Tenor, since most all the songs were in D.  The D tenor sounds great with the dulcimers and I can even play the faster tunes, up to speed, not having to reach across to the left side for the C# and F# notes I need.  They are tuned into the scale along the right.  Four to five dulcimer players, two guitars, a mandolin, upright bass, and Terry was switching out between dulcimer, banjo, and the dobro.  Hope you enjoy the tunes, I just want to share how the bowed psaltery works great jamming with others.

Coleman's March                              Sugar Hill

Soldiers Joy                                     Southwind

My Old Kentucky Home                     Nail That Catfish to a Tree

Black Mountain Rag                           Come All Ye Fair and Tender Ladies

Whiskey Before Breakfast                  River (Bill Staines)

2-6-13  I have the page ready to tell the story of a new series of bowed psalteries I have started building.  It is the Chestnut Series, so click that to find out more about them.

Shall We Gather at the River

Life's Railway to Heaven

Uncloudy Day

You are My Sunshine

Spanish Fandango

The Fiddler has Played His Last Waltz of the Night

Ringing Strings

handcrafted by
Rick Long
Clinton, Tennessee
(865) 660-4026

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Here in my little corner of the "web" you will find -

  • Handcrafted Bowed Psalteries
  • Accessories
  • Helpful Information
  • Pride in Workmanship and Service

I have been building and playing bowed psalteries for the past 34 years.  A love of music and woodworking began at an early age.  At my fathers side, I became familiar with walnut, cherry, cedar and other woods native to North America.   I gained great love and respect for the use of these materials  The projects we completed provided the skills required for creating the beautiful instruments you find here today.  My love for music came from my mother, she is very talented and can play the piano really great by ear. Quality and service are my top priorities.  My long experience in playing the bowed psaltery gives me the knowledge to know what works well and what doesn't.  My goal is to create the very best bowed psalteries available anywhere.

I love to tinker and come up with new designs.  Some new ideas come out of my own head.  I do listen to customers, many design changes have come from customer comments and wishes.

Please take a moment to browse the site.  See the variety of figured woods used.   Listen to the samples of my recordings.  Visit my workshop page and see where these wonderful instruments are made.  I take pride in offering lots of sound clips and videos, showing how my psalteries sound and are played.  I even give you some sound clip examples of each psaltery I list for sale.  I believe I am the only builder that offers this on their web site.  The only better way to shop and compare, is to be standing in my workshop trying them out in person.  You are even welcome to travel to East Tennessee to do that.  I do all this because I am very proud of the quality bowed psalteries that I build and want you to be able to judge them for yourself.

Enjoy your time here, come back and visit often.

Green is Soprano

Blue is Alto

Yellow is Tenor

Red is Baritone

Purple is D Tenor

Orange is D Psaltery
Here's how the voices of all the different models of psalteries I build, compared to the piano keyboard in pitch.  You can clearly see that they all have quite a few notes in common.  Some folks are confused by the names soprano, tenor, and baritone, but they are just names to distinguish each model I build.  Other builders may have a different opinion of what they call the psalteries they build.  The important thing to consider is the range of notes, from the lowest to the highest.  This will tell you what to expect.  The first sound clip listed by each psaltery I offer for sale, gives you something to listen to and hear the entire range of notes.  Every builder should do the same, so you have a chance to hear and compare.  Even with some of the notes overlapping, there are still differences in tone.  The has a lot to do with the size of the psaltery soundbox and the type and size of strings used.
Click here to go to my new Ringing Strings Bowed Psaltery Facebook page.  I'll be putting things on there that you won't see on my website.  Be sure to like the page to
receive notifications of new content.  The Facebook page will also give you
another way to contact me for questions, post them on there or pm me.
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