Bobbie and Obie Ralphs are a couple with a shared passion for music and bringing musicians together.
It all started in 2010 when they went to a Mountain Dulcimer workshop in the Poconos, and noticed that over 30 people had traveled from our area to attend! This gave Bobbie and Obie’s fertile minds the idea to start a local music club to build a community of dulcimer and autoharp players. Their goal was to encourage anyone who wanted to learn to play and perform to have a place to do so. They found a local church which would allow musicians to rehearse in their space, and QUADAS, The Quakertown Area Dulcimer and Autoharp Society, was born.
Bobbie chooses new songs for the group to learn, acts as the treasurer, and helps organize their concerts. Obie writes the musical arrangements, decides which songs are “ready for performance,” and is the Musical Director. Today QUADAS has grown to over 40 members, and performs regular concerts at churches, festivals, and private events. And just as Bobbie and Obie envisioned, anyone is welcome to join!
Bobbie played piano since she was a little girl, using it as a way to express her emotions. Nine years ago, she went to a concert in Souderton, where she heard the beautiful sounds of a hammered dulcimer. She was fascinated and thought, “Maybe I could play that. It’s not much different than a piano.” Turns out it is very different as your fingers never touch the strings! Bobbie gives Obie credit for being her mentor, and encouraging her to keep at it. She likes a challenge so she feels good when she can finally play a song she loves.
Bobbie says, “You can do whatever you set out to do. You just have to decide to