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Celtic Harp info, please....

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Little Hawk 10 Mar 01 - 12:45 AM
alison 10 Mar 01 - 12:56 AM
Tom D. 10 Mar 01 - 12:58 AM
Little Hawk 10 Mar 01 - 01:02 AM
Little Hawk 10 Mar 01 - 01:03 AM
Sorcha 10 Mar 01 - 01:16 AM
Sorcha 10 Mar 01 - 01:31 AM
Susan of DT 10 Mar 01 - 06:33 AM
John P 10 Mar 01 - 08:52 AM
Julia 10 Mar 01 - 09:49 AM
Peg 10 Mar 01 - 10:03 AM
black walnut 10 Mar 01 - 10:16 AM
black walnut 10 Mar 01 - 10:18 AM
Little Hawk 10 Mar 01 - 10:31 AM
GUEST,leeneia 10 Mar 01 - 11:11 AM
Malcolm Douglas 10 Mar 01 - 11:58 AM
black walnut 10 Mar 01 - 12:55 PM
Little Neophyte 10 Mar 01 - 01:21 PM
Sorcha 10 Mar 01 - 02:22 PM
Little Hawk 10 Mar 01 - 02:31 PM
black walnut 10 Mar 01 - 02:48 PM
Helen 10 Mar 01 - 07:47 PM
hesperis 10 Mar 01 - 09:10 PM
Sorcha 10 Mar 01 - 09:26 PM
Sorcha 10 Mar 01 - 10:22 PM
Julia 10 Mar 01 - 10:34 PM
alison 10 Mar 01 - 10:40 PM
catspaw49 10 Mar 01 - 10:59 PM
Little Hawk 10 Mar 01 - 11:18 PM
black walnut 11 Mar 01 - 08:01 AM
Helen 11 Mar 01 - 07:25 PM
hesperis 12 Mar 01 - 06:53 PM
Deni 13 Mar 01 - 02:11 AM
DonMeixner 13 Mar 01 - 06:40 AM
harpmolly 13 Mar 01 - 12:03 PM
hesperis 13 Mar 01 - 09:48 PM
pastorpest 13 Mar 01 - 10:28 PM
Bearheart 16 Mar 01 - 05:10 PM
Margaret V 16 Mar 01 - 09:55 PM
Margaret V 16 Mar 01 - 10:04 PM
Roger in Sheffield 02 Sep 01 - 03:38 PM
Helen 02 Sep 01 - 07:10 PM
Gloredhel 02 Sep 01 - 08:49 PM
black walnut 02 Sep 01 - 09:14 PM
IanC 14 Sep 01 - 10:32 AM
Matt Woodbury/Mimosa 14 Sep 01 - 04:01 PM
John P 15 Sep 01 - 08:43 AM
GUEST,nyanna 05 Sep 15 - 01:25 AM
GUEST,leeneia 05 Sep 15 - 12:24 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 06 Sep 15 - 06:11 AM
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Subject: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 12:45 AM

I have been attending a meditation circle recently, and it is led by a man who plays wonderful music on the Celtic Harp. I am very curious now about this instrument and would like to hear from people who know about it or play it.

I have looked at a number of good sites on the web already, and these harps are beautiful and expensive (like $2000 to $5000 typically).

I gather that the notes are all in a single key (like C major/A minor, for example), which should make it rather easy to get pleasing sounds out of the instrument.

Anyway, if anyone's got info, please respond.

- LH


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: alison
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 12:56 AM

It is pretty easy to pay... I have a little 17 string lap harp I picked up from a music shop 2nd hand for $200 (Australian)... admittedly I then spent about the same again to put levers on so I can change key without having to retune the whole harp....

they are in a fixed key... and... it is reasonably difficult to make it sound bad.... lol

I love mine..best purchase I ever made...

if you want to talk to a real harp fanatic.. send Helen a message....... she'll be only too happy to gush about them.... hahaha

MargaretV is another mudcatter who plays the harp.... and she plays it beautifully on paltalk most days....

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Tom D.
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 12:58 AM

You might consider contacting Thom Larson at the Whistleshop (THOM@THEWHISTLESHOP.COM). Thom has been a solid friend and friendly square dealer to folks interested in Celtic Music and Celtic Musical Instruments for a few years now. I believe he was going to feature an affordable, entry level harp.

Be well, and good luck in your lyrical endeavors,

Tom D.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 01:02 AM

Thank God, I was expecting another wisecrack from Spaw. He's been following me around tonight like a hound dog. I will be hitting the sack soon, but will follow up on your suggestions tomorrow, and talk to Helen and Margaret. Thanks, Alison!

- LH


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 01:03 AM

Thanks, Tom!

- LH


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Sorcha
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 01:16 AM

I have a 29 string which is almost too big for a lap harp, and a bit too small for a floor harp. It has no sharping levers, and I usually keep it tuned (??) to C major.

I built it from a Hughes Dulcimer kit. (That's the company name) They are in Denver, Colorado, US. I did do some adapting to the kit. It's been several years, but I think the kit cost me about $250.00 US, and my up grades added about $100.00.

If you have any woodworking skills at all you can do this.I can probably scare up a website for Hughes if you're interested.

It's not the best harp in the world, but I don't play it very well either, and it's the only thing I could afford.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Sorcha
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 01:31 AM

Can't find a website, but here is snail mail/phone info:
Hughes Dulcimer Company
4419 W. Colfax
Denver, CO
303-572-3753
I don't know for sure if he is still in business......

You might also check out Musicmaker Kits


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Susan of DT
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 06:33 AM

The International Society of Folk Harpers and Craftsmen has a magazine with ads from lots of Harpmakers. Also look for the Sylvia Woods Harp Center on the web - she sells several different "brands" and books, etc. My last issues of most of these are several years old, but a few gave email or web sites that MAY be current:

Triplet Harps tripharps@aol.com a popular make
Mountain Glen Harps mtglen@aol.com
Folk Mote Music - dealer, several makers www.folkmote.com
Dragonwhispers, where mine is from brtruitt@ix.netcom.com
I'll try to find some more recent info


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: John P
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 08:52 AM

Hi LH,

I work at Dusty Strings in Seattle. Besides making several models of folk harps, we also sell several other makers' harps in our retail store. The least expensive harp we build is $995. 26 strings, levers on C and F strings. If you call the store, talk to Eileen. She's the harp maven. Other good places to call are Sylvia Woods Harp Center in Glendale, CA and Melody's Traditional Music and Harp Shoppe in Houston, TX. They both have good web sites as well.

John Peekstok


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Julia
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 09:49 AM

Just for comparison, a decent pedal harp typically goes for $20,000.... And yes, they are set up in one key at a time, but with the levers one can get up to 8 keys with all related modes, and with adjustment of levers during a piece you can get accidentals.You can also split the tuning to have half the harp in one key and half in another. Not a simple minded instrument.There is a great internet "digest" that can answer your questions at Harplist@yahoogroups.com.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Peg
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 10:03 AM

I got a 23 string wire-string harp from the Mudcat auction a few months ago. It took so long to get it that when it finally arrived I hoped to be able to play it right away. But it was missing two strings and very out of tune.I know nothing about these instruments and a couple of harper friends have looked at it and said many of the strings need replacing. I have been lazy about finding someone local to do this; but I DO know a couple of people locally I could get lessons from...thanks for this thread, it is inspiring me to get this process started.

peg


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: black walnut
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 10:16 AM

Much trouble posting....but until Bonnie cuts and pastes something for me, try this:

Inexpensive Quality Canadian Lever Harp

~black walnut


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: black walnut
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 10:18 AM

Or, if that doesn't work for you (it doesn't work for me, either), try this:

http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/josephus/#Home Page

~black walnut (luck of the irish?!)


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 10:31 AM

Okay, lookin' good. I already checked out the Sylvia Woods site, and it's great. Thanks for all the other stuff too.

How about playing technique? How does it compare to guitar? Does the left hand play the bass notes normally? Do you tend to set up an alternating bass and then play melodies with the right hand?

- LH


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 11:11 AM

The first thing you need to do is to tell a harp-owner that you are interested in taking up harp and to ask if you may try playing their harp. You may be like me and find that you hate the feel and that you see two strings where one ought to be!

Also, see if the American Harp Society has a chapter in your city. Go to the meetings and talk to the members. Can you rent a harp and take some lessons?

Do not teach yourself by buying a Sylvia Woods book. Her harp technique has a dubious reputation.

Then, if you think the harp is for you, at least buy one with levers. I have played with a lot of harpers, and a harp which must be retuned simply to go from C to G is not worth it. Remember, if the harp is for you, then you might own this thing all the rest of your life.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 11:58 AM

There are some useful links at Ceolas:  http://www.ceolas.org/instruments/#harp


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: black walnut
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 12:55 PM

L.H.,

Try my harp! I'll show you how it works!

~b.w.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Little Neophyte
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 01:21 PM

Hello everybody, this is Black Walnut's secretary here, sending a memo from my boss................

  You'll be shocked by the low price of these excellent harps from British Columbia, Canada:
Harp Site
  I looked around Ontario for my first harp. I saved much much much money by having one made for me by Josephus Harp Shop, and shipped to my home.  It has a beautiful aubergine padded case.

The reason the price is so low is that Joseph Jourdain, the builder, sells only direct, never through a store.  So, you are buying it at what is actually the "wholesale price" of the instrument.  He concentrates on giving great sound and quality in a simple yet quite elegant design. This is not a harp made from a kit....it is a harp made from scratch from a very good builder, who loves what he does and really knows his stuff.  Also, Joseph says that since he lives in a tiny mountain town, he doesn't need much money, so he doesn't charge any more than he needs to!

My harp is a 36 string black walnut (go figure)
Wellspring.  It is very lightweight compared to any other harp of this size that I have tried, and fits in the back seat of most cars, so it is not difficult to take to song circles or on trips.

My teacher, Toronto's Sharlene Wallace (an amazing internationally lauded celtic harper), recommended I get my harp from Josephus.  She regularly teaches at the Mountain Arts Camp in Wells, where the Josephus Harps are made.

  Definitely worth a look!

~black walnut


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Sorcha
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 02:22 PM

For some reason, Bonnies link didn't work. Let's try again. Click


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 02:31 PM

That link works, Sorcha. Nice stuff!

- LH


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: black walnut
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 02:48 PM

Thank you, Bonnie and Sorcha!

(Sometimes I need elves to help post my ideas.)

~b.w.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Helen
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 07:47 PM

Hi all,

Sorry for arriving late, but hell, it looks like you didn't need me after all (grin).

My 34 string lever harp was made by a local instrument maker from the Cambria harp kit sold by Mountain Glenn harps from their Markwood range.

Mountain Glen Harps mtglen@aol.com http://hometown.aol.com/mtglen/harps.htm - go to the Markwood or Cambria sections of the site

I'm super-pleased with this harp. I've had it since 1992. The Markwood strings are wonderful. They are light, flexible, easy to play and have a warm vibrant tone. Laurie Hill at Markwood has a string analysis computer program and she charges a small fee to run the details of individual harps through and get the best string design - composition, gauge etc. They do mail order.

My 28 string was made by a man in Canberra, Oz, and I made contact with him through the e-mail harplist which Julia mentioned.

As for playing, my best advice is probably to find a teacher who likes or understands your style of music and who is knowledgable about teaching adults.

Once you learn the chord shapes you can get stuck into it, and knowing guitar chord notes will help there. It can work much like a guitar, as you said, usually with melody in the right hand and chords/rhythm accompaniment in the left, but melody-left and chords-right is also acceptable.

More complex accompaniments can also be done - I'm not up to that stage so far, and may never move past the chords stage because it works quite nicely enough for me.

It's more similar to playing a keyboard/piano except that the right hand is going in a different direction to the piano, i.e. high notes are thumb, index, lower notes are middle and fourth finger. On a piano low are thumb etc. so whatever type of general accompaniment arrangements which work on a piano are similar to what will work on a harp except for the need for changing levers for accidentals. That's why folk and Celtic music works so well on the harp because there are lots of tunes with no accidentals.

Sylvia Woods Harp Centre has a huge selection of harp CD's and music, and other gear. She also does mail order. I haven't checked out Dusty Strings (Hi John, has Eileen recovered from her near miss in the earthquake, yet?) but they have an excellent reputation.

Finally, join the e-mail harplist - lovely bunch of folks, (classical, folky, traditional, Celtic, new age, healing, you name it) and very welcoming, knowledgable and helpful.

Helen


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: hesperis
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 09:10 PM

Hi, I couldn't find "harplist" under yahoo groups. Do you guys know if it changed names or anything?

Thanks,
~*hesperis*~


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Sorcha
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 09:26 PM

Try Harp-L


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Sorcha
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 10:22 PM

L Hawk, are you at all interested in building one? Or do you just want to buy one? Kits, even to up grade them are about half what a finished harp would be. If you are at all interested in building a kit, I found a lot more Kit Sites.........if I can do it, it's not that difficult.

I want a Hurdy Gurdy and no way can I afford one. Even the kits are expensive and they are labeled "Extremely Difficult" so I'm not even going to try. Partly at least because I don't have a weather proof shop.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Julia
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 10:34 PM

If you have trouble getting the harplist at yahoo, try e-mailing skaryd@DULCIMERS.COM She is the coordinator for the list


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: alison
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 10:40 PM

there was a local harp maker here.. who rented out some of his harps... maybe one of your local harp makers rents.... worth a phone call to find out

try before you buy...

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: catspaw49
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 10:59 PM

Let me put in a plug for Dusty Strings. There are a lot of very fine individual builders around who will cater to your tastes on harps and Hammered Dulcimers and such, but Dusty Strings is a wonderful and trustworthy operation that makes solid, quality instruments. Their pricing is very competitive and they stand behind their product.

I say this as a Hammered builder who has plenty of folks playing my dulcimers, but I never regret not making a sale to someone who decides on Dusty Strings.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 01 - 11:18 PM

More good stuff. Yeah, I might try building one all right. Sorcha, are those kits good? I mean, can you build a pretty high quality harp from them? Instrument kits are sometimes kind of mediocre, I think, so I'm wondering about that.

I have gotta get a chance to try playing one a couple of times, and take it from there, I guess.

Maybe I'll take you up on the visit, Black Walnut, next time I'm in Toronto.

= LH


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: black walnut
Date: 11 Mar 01 - 08:01 AM

Looking forward to it!

~b.w.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Helen
Date: 11 Mar 01 - 07:25 PM

Hi again,

The address for joining the harplist is here.

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/harplist/join

One of the main reasons I am so happy with the Markwood harp plans (they also sell kits) is that I read some articles written by Mark Bolles, the designer of the kits, in the folk Harp Journal about 12 or so years ago. He made a very strong argument for saying that the harp should be designed around the harmonic curve, ie the ideal length of each string required to create the right pitch for a full musical scale of octaves. The other key aspect is the composition and gauge of the strings, which makes a difference because the change in those factors will reduce the length required to get the harmonic curve.

To "see" a harmonic curve imagine laying each string parallel, side by side at equal distances, and all starting along the same line. The other end of the strings would form a curve if you connnected the dots. Without changes in gauge and composition you would have to have extremely long strings for the bass strings. The change in these factors allows for shorter strings to be used.

All of the above is in layman's terms, not very technically written or understood by me, but what I liked about Mark Bolles's designs is that the harp is not drawn up, made and then fitted with strings which fit the shape of the harp, but the other way around. The string lengths determine the shape of the harp, and therefore probablity is increased that the sound quality and performance quality of the harp are going to be good, other factors considered.

Some harpmakers I have heard of - the backyard variety who are after a quick buck, but not the reputable makers - look at a harp and say, that looks pretty easy, I'll draw it up and make it. The results are haphazard. They may fluke it (fluke = Ozspeak for hit on a good solution by sheer chance) but it's more likely that the result will be mediocre at best.

The point I'm trying to make is that there are harp kits and there are harp kits. Find one that is well designed with thorough knowledge of instrument making and theory.

Be especially aware that a harp is a very seductive being, like a mythical Siren. Even the worst of them can sound beautiful to the ear to someone who has not heard any better ones. Don't jump at the first one you see: wine it and dine it first, do a bit of carefully planned courtship, and get to know him/her/it first before you jump into bed with it, with stars in your eyes...and ears.

Harpily yours, Helen


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: hesperis
Date: 12 Mar 01 - 06:53 PM

Cool! Thanks. I wanted to be sure we both had the right list. I signed up for a couple of other ones, too.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Deni
Date: 13 Mar 01 - 02:11 AM

Little to so with this, I know, but I've been reading a book called Turlough, about the blind harper. it seems to me that if you are into harps, you might be interested...anybody read it?


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: DonMeixner
Date: 13 Mar 01 - 06:40 AM

Try WWW.Musikits.com Music Makers, Inc. some place near St. Croix. I've used their stuff for years and they are first rate.

I also have plans for a Bardic harp I'll copy and share.

Don


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: harpmolly
Date: 13 Mar 01 - 12:03 PM

I'll jump on the bandwagon for recommending Dusty Strings. My friend Davy works there (say hi for me, John P! ;)) and every experience I've had there has been glorious. I'm looking forward to acquiring my very own DS instrument in the future! If you're in Seattle you should definitely at least check it out--everyone there is incredibly friendly and they have some gorgeous instruments (guitars and dulcimers too!)

Molly


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: hesperis
Date: 13 Mar 01 - 09:48 PM

refresh


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: pastorpest
Date: 13 Mar 01 - 10:28 PM

I am not a harpist, but my wife is: she has three Celtic harps. There are good builders usually within driving distance for most people. Step one is to find a good teacher. Harp technique, hand positions, etc., are important to good playing. The harp teacher is probably the best person to steer you to a quality insturment. Listen for good sound. A cheap harp with cheap sound is no bargain.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Bearheart
Date: 16 Mar 01 - 05:10 PM

Hi Folks,

Got my harp from Ben Bechtel in Columbus OH. Ben is a great old guy whose specialty is early instruments, and he only builds a few a year but he warrantees them for his lifetime (he IS getting up in years...). Mine is actually a Gothic (French) style harp, but I love it-- lightweight, with a carrying case and a lot of sound for its size. Ben designs his harps himself and he designs them for optimum volume, sweetness of sound and light weight. In fact he'll talk your arm off about the physics of sound and etc. Ben was beginning work on a Celtic style harp when I got mine, but I decided I really liked the gothic and didn't want to wait. When I got mine I was planning to attend the Oberlin Harp Week (part of the Scottish Harp Society's Scottish Music week and Scottish Games, at Oberlin College north of Columbus OH) When he wasn't able to get it finished in time Ben lent me his demo harp for the week! This is by the way a very good event, Sue Richards, a very fine harper based out of DC, is usually on staff. It used to be a bigger event, but the teaching is solid and if you're interested in Scottish style harping it is good. Personally I think it's good to work with a regular teacher but also to go to some of the week-long teaching events that are held through the year. You get to hear some very diverse playing and it really broadens you. And it's fun. The Swanannoa Gathering near Ashville NC has Celtic Week; Augusta Heritage Arts Workshops in Elkins WV does Irish Week; and the John Campbell Folk Arts School (also in NC) is offering a beginning and intermediate harp class this year. I'm sure there's other stuff around the country. These programs are usually from Sunday to Friday or Saturday, and you can usually get a dorm room or go camping at a campground near by. The best part is that at Augusta and Swanannoa there's usually lots of informal music going on all evening long-- sometimes into the wee hours.

Good luck with your search-- it's worth checking out a number of instruments till you find what you want...


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Margaret V
Date: 16 Mar 01 - 09:55 PM

Hey, Bearheart, the thing that got me into harps in the first place was playing the gothic harp while I was a student at Oberlin. I sang in the early music ensemble, which at the time was directed by a real visionary named L. Dean Nuernberger. He was a true humanist and approached every piece of music and every concert with musical passion and intellectual fervor. The funny thing about going to Oberlin, which has both a college and a music conservatory, is that you sometimes found yourself shut out of musical opportunities (classes, private lessons) if you were in the college and not the conservatory. Mr. Nuernberger intentionally integrated his ensemble to ensure a variety of perspectives, and he was just not the least bit snobbish. Anyway, he needed somebody to play the harp for some troubadour song and decided I'd be fine (despite no previous knowledge of harp playing), and handed over to me a beautiful gothic harp to bring home to my dorm room and have a go at it... well, I wasn't exactly a natural, but I did well enough plinking away, and I will never forget that harp (made by Lynne Lewandowski, of Chicago I believe) or the trust Mr. Nuernberger placed in me without a second thought, or the careful crafting of thematic concerts, or even how he sort of foamed at the mouth and clutched at his chest while conducting and we all worried he was going to have a stroke... I've only recently taken up the Irish harp, and am playing an old Clark "B" model. I don't have much advice to offer anyone looking for a harp because my exposure's been pretty limited and I've never had to buy one. Just some good advice that dw ditty gave me recently when I was guitar shopping: "it helps to love it." Margaret


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Margaret V
Date: 16 Mar 01 - 10:04 PM

By the way, Oberlin is quite a bit closer to Cleveland than to Columbus, perhaps only 25 miles or so from Cleveland. Margaret


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 02 Sep 01 - 03:38 PM

Allan C wouldn't let me post to his thread so I found this one


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Helen
Date: 02 Sep 01 - 07:10 PM

And Roger, we won't let you post to this one unless you tell us something about harps, the physics of sound and the construction of instruments, or something about why you are passionate about your music. So there, nyah-nyah! (Big grin)

Helen


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Gloredhel
Date: 02 Sep 01 - 08:49 PM

I know that the main concern with any instrument is the sound, but there are also practical considerations like, "Does this fit in my car?" and "Can I carry it?" and "How easily does it get out of tune?" Unless you're willing to buy a new car in addition to a harp, don't get anything bigger than 29 strings, because they don't fit unless you have a van, a stationwagon, or a Lincoln towncar. (In fact, when I got a car for my 16th birthday, we took the harp shopping with us to make sure it would fit.) The two Triplett harps I've owned, because of the soundboard construction, were really bottom heavy, and the case construction didn't help--they are hard to carry. Even though my Thormahlen 36-string is one of the biggest Celtic harps on the market, at about 26 pounds and with a good case, it's easy to haul around, besides being beautiful and having one of the most full and gentle sounds of any harp I've played.

Another question you want to ask is, gut strings or nylon? Nylon's not as tempermental, so it's better if you're going travel with it a lot, but to me the warmer tones of gut make it worthwhile to put up with a little extra tuning.

The best thing you can do is to go to a store (like Sylvia Woods') or to the homes of several people who own different harps. Play them, but don't forget to try picking them up and asking about the carrying case and the strings.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: black walnut
Date: 02 Sep 01 - 09:14 PM

My 36 string Celtic harp fits in the back seat of my car, as well as the back seats of the cars of my 2 harp schleper-friends!

~b.w.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: IanC
Date: 14 Sep 01 - 10:32 AM

Hi!

Can anyone on this thread recommend any good harp books ... tutors, books of music etc.

Want to add an INSTRUMENTS/Harp section to the Basic Folk Library.

Cheers!
Ian


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Matt Woodbury/Mimosa
Date: 14 Sep 01 - 04:01 PM

I think the Sylvia Woods books are good – sometimes the fingerings are odd, and I don't personally like her hand position, but mines not "perfect" either.

I think my teacher, Geoffrey Ricketts , will be publishing his method soon, which I think works well for a folk music style approach.

I have 2 folk harps, shown here, I really love the Dusty Strings and the custom Mountain Glen. Both have sharping levers on all strings. Little Hawk, did you ever get a harp?

Mimosa


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: John P
Date: 15 Sep 01 - 08:43 AM

I work with a woman who knows all the harp books (we work at a harp factory / store). If you email her at Dusty Strings, she will put together a basic list for you.

Just to blow my own horn, I just had a book of harp music published by Afghan Press in Houston. Nineteen original tunes arranged for small harp.

Mimosa, say "Hi" to Geoffrey for me!

John Peekstok


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: GUEST,nyanna
Date: 05 Sep 15 - 01:25 AM

Does anyone have a Clark Harp? I just tried one out. I am told that it is over 100 years, but Melville Clark's dates don't seem to make it that old. I want to play to sing folk songs.   Any info appreciated. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 05 Sep 15 - 12:24 PM

Nyanna, I suggest you start a new thread and call it "Clark harp info needed."


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 06 Sep 15 - 06:11 AM

Yes, Nyanna do - or if you're feeling shy, say so here and one of us will start a thread for you. It's a great topic (and I think Clarks are lovely, perfect for what you want). Hope to see you in a re-surface...
:-)


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 06 Sep 15 - 06:16 AM

Related thread here (click on the title):

Clark Irish Harps: History?

http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=16900


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Subject: RE: Celtic Harp info, please....
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 06 Sep 15 - 06:18 AM

(Aaauuuggghh, sure wish we could edit our posts. I'd change my first one above to say):

Nyanna, why don't you try your question again in that Clark thread I just linked to?


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