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Since becoming a Swannanoa Vally resident Joshua Messick has made his Hammered Dulcimer Christmas shows a not-to-be-missed holiday tradition, guaranteed to fill the White Horse Black Mountain with happy listeners.

He has an extra reason to celebrate the season this year as he marks the release of Hammered Dulcimer Christmas Volume II at 8 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 30. Demand for the shows created the need for a second show, also set for 8 p.m. on for Friday, Dec. 7. 

In addition to the sparkling tones of the dulcimer Messick’s crystalline acoustic arrangements of seasonal favorites include the sounds of Celtic harp, strings, flute and percussion.

Messick’s loyal fans had long been asking for a Christmas CD, and he rewarded their patience with the release of 2014’s Hammered Dulcimer Christmas. Dulcimer Christmas Volume II seems destined to follow its predecessor as a favorite holiday listen.

The hammered dulcimer is a percussive instrument, but its ringing overtones also create beautiful, ethereal sounds that Messick uses to great advantage in his arrangements, always in touch with the spiritual power of the melodies.

Renowned Black Mountain multi-instrumentalist Robin Bullock reviewed the first Christmas CD, stating that “Messick has set a new standard, for both hammered dulcimer and Christmas albums…He balances tradition and innovation superbly to give us a fresh, exciting take on holiday favorites that never violates their spirit."

If you go to one of Messick's shows...

Where: White Horse Black Mountain

When: Friday, Nov. 30 and Dec. 7, 8 p.m.

Tickets: $18 in advance at whitehorseblackmountain.com or $20 at the door 

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