Doug Naselroad is the founder of the Appalachian School of Luthiery, Troublesome Creek Stringed Instrument Co., and a master luthier who specializes in the mountain dulcimer; an instrument which originated in Hindman, Kentucky in the late 19th century. The mountain dulcimer, with its curved silhouette and heart-shaped sound holes is as beautiful as it is musically authentic, and crafting one is a complex construction process involving precise cutting, shaping, carving, and tuning.
Today, at the Appalachian School of Luthiery and the Troublesome Creek Stringed Instrument Co., these unique instruments are still being fashioned under Doug Naselroad’s careful direction. Hindman, Kentucky, like many other communities in this region, is overwhelmed by the opioid crisis. In response, Doug Naselroad started the Culture of Recovery, an apprentice program at the Appalachian Artisan Center for people rebounding from opioids and other addictions. Those who study instrument making with him at the Culture of Recovery program have said that this opportunity is providing them with a new, positive outlook on life. Some of the graduates go on to become luthiers, and many take the ability to master a skill into other occupations.