James McGaw  James McGaw



Phone: (912) 349-5616

Email: hamrdul@comcast.net

Website: https://hamrdul.wixsite.com/jim-mcgaw

Art Disciplines:

Music, History of Colonial Period Musical Instruments

Core Content Curriculum Areas:

Music, Social Studies/History, Theatre/Drama, Science, Technology, English/Language Arts

Specialized Content Areas:           Character Education
Grade Levels:  

Pre-K, K-2, 3-5, 6-8

Special Populations: Special Needs Students


Pre-Service Learning and Professional Development: Professional Development for K-12 Teachers


Geographic Availability: Middle Georgia, South Georgia, Savannah and Coastal Georgia, North Georgia, Metro Atlanta


Program Fees:

$225 per performance/presentation - Travel costs, mileage, and lodging fees will be based on Georgia state mandated travel and per diem expenses. The fees charged will be based on the factors indicated above and budgetary requirements of the hiring organization.

Program fees determined per discussion with the artist - instruments would need to be provided by the employing organization

Program fees determined per discussion with the artist - instruments would need to be provided by the employing organization

Artistic Profile:


Jim McGaw grew up in Southeastern Ohio where he found a rich heritage at the crossroads of American mountain and country music. He has been performing and composing music for over 45 years. His Bluegrass/Jazz/Country crossover group, The New Vinton County Frogwhompers Marching, Singing, Strumming, and Plucking Society – The Frogwhompers, for short – were featured in the nationally syndicated PBS series, Hocking Valley Bluegrass, and have been highlighted in Bluegrass Unlimited Magazine. His music has been used for Emmy Award winning documentary films and commercial advertisements, as well as interpreted by various performers throughout the U.S. He has given seminars and workshops in the instruments of his specialty. He plays the six and twelve string guitars, autoharp, hammered and mountain dulcimers, and banjo. Although Jim has performed with numerous ensembles, his current single act is organized toward acoustic folk presentations including American, Irish, German, French, English, and Scottish music. He has given highly acclaimed performances in the Appleby Library performance series in Augusta and performed to large appreciative audiences at the Augusta Mall. He has been included as a regular at the Colonial Times Celebration in North Augusta, South Carolina; the Love Affair Festival in Tifton, Georgia; Frontier Days and numerous other events at Georgia’s Stone Mountain Park. He is also a regular performer in Georgia’s state parks and events throughout Georgia and South Carolina. He now resides in Savannah, Georgia, with his wife, Dr. Myrtle (Sam) McGaw. He continues an active teaching, composing, and performing life.

Teaching Experience: As a teacher, including part-time teaching, Jim taught Pre-K through 5th grade elementary music in the Dearing Elementary School in Dearing, Georgia, for 25 years. During this time he developed a specialized curriculum for teaching elementary students to read and play music. This curriculum was centered around computer based music software employed in the classroom allowing students to not only hear the music being performed but see the musical notation pitch and time values as the performance was taking place. When combined with the middle and high school band programs in Jim's locale his multi-modal learning approach produced a number of top flight professional and non-professional musicians. Jim even developed a program which, in the time between the end of daily classes and school bus loading, allowed students in third through fifth grades to produce their own computer based music compositions. These compositions also included vocal recordings produced by the students. The resulting productions were compiled in a CD each year and sold to raise money for the PTO and music programs. During his career as a music teacher Jim was asked to take part in the Leadership Georgia Program sponsored by The Georgia Power Company. This, in addition to officer training in the United States Army, gave him an opportunity to become further involved with his Thomson, Georgia community in a leadership role.
Sample Programs: 45-minute program for grades 3 through 8 consisting of a demonstration of playing styles on the hammer and mountain dulcimers intertwined with explanations of their historical and physical development from beginnings to current configurations. In period colonial attire the artist will explain how the hammer dulcimer became the piano and how the hammer dulcimer survived into current culture in the United States and abroad. The artist will play music from several cultures both acoustically and accompanied by computerized backgrounds. The artist will provide his own sound equipment and can present in classroom, auditorium or gymnasium. Best class size is from 20 to 100. The artist will allow teacher supervised playing of his hammer dulcimer for smaller groups.
Sample Lesson Plans/Study Guides:

Lesson Plan For Grades 3-8

Program Photos and Videos:

James McGaw on Hammer Dulcimer (video)
James McGaw Headshot

Presenting at 96 National Historic Site

Mountain Dulcimer

Colonial Jim

Colonial Jim 2

Colonial Jim 3

Augusta Folk Event

North Augusta Living History Park

National Science Center in Augusta