Welcome to Oregon Musician Mark Nelson’s Web Home!


“Every once in a while a musician comes along who can make an instrument speak in tongues.” – Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Corona Virus Update

Since most of the world is now practicing that most Orwellian term “Social Distancing.” I have a suggestion: why not use this time to learn a new musical skill? Take up a new musical instrument – though I’d suggest laying off learning the Highland pipes until it is OK to go outdoors again. Or learn some new tricks on one you already play. Like the old song says, everyone knows that music is love.

I have a number of short lessons for slack key guitar, Appalachian dulcimer and ukulele up on YouTube. And don’t forget my groovy books and CDs that will help you get the most out of your dulcimer, uke or guitar. Oh, and you can download my 2009 album, “Uke-a-Rama” free-for-nothing on Bandcamp.

Looking for something fun to do with your kids? Mighty Mel Bay has re-released “You Can Teach Yourself to Make Music With Homemade Musical Instruments” as an e-book. Learn to build simple musical instruments from around the world using every-day and recycled materials.

If you really want to to learn guitar, or improve you chops, might I suggest  JamPlay.com? They host my extended Slack Key Guitar lesson series, & have a number of truly wonderful new services for stay at home teachers, kids, and just about anybody. Some are free, some available to members only. But hey.

So stay home, stay well, and stay tuned.


Mark Nelson’s mastery of the Appalachian dulcimer, `ukulele and guitar wows audiences from coast to coast. His numerous recordings, books and instructional videos have redefined what these instruments are capable of – in his hands, they become instruments of uncommon expressive power.

In the early 1970’s Mark was one of a handful of free-spirited musicians who created a whole new vocabulary for the Appalachian dulcimer. He created a driving flatpicking style, playing the dulcimer with a force and passion seldom heard before. This led to a first place win at the National Mountain Dulcimer Championships in Winfield, Kansas in 1979, appearances at festivals, colleges and coffeehouses across North America and Europe, and a recording career spanning over 35 years.

He’s equally adept at the Hawaiian slack key guitar and ukulele, and any number of other instruments and musical styles from old time music to swing and just about everything in between. And yes, he really did once work as a banjo playing gorilla in Dublin…

Welcome to the website. Here you’ll find Mark’s many CDs and books to help you master slack key guitar, ukulele and dulcimer, free video lessons, piles of biographical trivia and perhaps even some pathetic attempts at humor.

Above all, stay tuned!

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