The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #12211   Message #95623
Posted By: Helen
15-Jul-99 - 08:32 PM
Thread Name: Tuners
Subject: RE: Tuners

I had my first Celtic harp - 36 strings - for at least five years, with no teacher, until I met an American woman staying over here in Australia who could play the harp. For all of that five years I didn't know that there was such a thing as an electronic tuner. Every time I tried to play the harp I would spend at least an hour, usually an hour and a half, trying to tune all of those strings. By the time I got it halfway in tune, at least with itself, but maybe not to perfect pitch I was so frustrated that I would pack the harp away again in the corner and not feel like playing it for another few weeks, by which time it was out of tune again and the whole frustrating process would start again.

As a consequence I made no progress with the harp at all for the first 5 years. I couldn't play anything. When my friend told me about the electronic tuner it completely changed my ability to do some *real* practice and learning on the harp. I could tune up all 36 strings in less than 10 minutes and then check that they sounded in tune with each other by playing some chords and then I was off.

There are some situations where to "get rid of these" tuners also means getting rid of the whole learning and playing experience. I don't think that that is a viable option. We all have different musical needs, and different uses for playing music, so we also have different needs for electronic tuners. I'll never be a professional musician - I'm an amateur, in the true sense of the word. I do it because I *love* it, not because I want to play professionally.

Regards Helen