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Looking For A Harp

17 Mar 03 - 11:25 AM (#911966)
Subject: Looking For A Harp
From: Sandy Creek

I am looking for a harp...not the Blues Harp or related mouth organs.
I want a big floor model with hundreds of strings that I will have to buy a tux for. You are dealing with complete ignorance on this subject. So guide me as only Mudcatters can. Thanks, Sam

17 Mar 03 - 11:28 AM (#911969)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Uncle_DaveO

Google for Lark in the Morning. I'd bet heavy money they've got them in stock.

Dave Oesterreich

17 Mar 03 - 11:31 AM (#911976)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Bonnie Shaljean

Hi Sam -

Can you tell us what it is you're looking for? I mean, do you want to learn to play it, is it needed as a prop or decoration, is it a gift? The "floor models" (love that description!) cost mega-money, and if you want to begin lessons you could start out on the smaller Celtic (or lever) harp, which costs far less, until you're sure it's what you want to do. Also, where are you based? There are a number of harpers on the 'Cat, so perhaps you might fill us in with a bit more background info?

17 Mar 03 - 11:49 AM (#912001)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Bonnie Shaljean

Here are two websites to look at:

Harp Mall

Affairs Of The Harp

The second of these is British-based (sorry I can't get both blue clickies to work, so you'll have to type or paste)

17 Mar 03 - 11:59 AM (#912007)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Leadfingers

And I thought this was someone looking for bad lager!!!

17 Mar 03 - 12:01 PM (#912011)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Sandy Creek

Ah, Mudcatters come through again.

Bonnie, I live in central NC (USA). I do believe that the smaller Irish harp is what I need. This is for me to learn to play. I play guitar and autoharp (on the road for 16 years) and fell in love with harps along the way. I'll check the websites but please keep the help coming.

17 Mar 03 - 03:22 PM (#912043)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: michaelr

Sandy -- check out Sylvia Woods Harp Center (a Google search should bring up their website). They're in Southern CA and have everything and anything you could want.


17 Mar 03 - 05:49 PM (#912104)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Bonnie Shaljean

Sylvia Woods Harp Center is at

Also check out Melody's Traditional Music in Texas at

The above are retail businesses. Another portal website (based in Seattle) is

and in Ireland & Scotland respectively there are
(sometimes these go offline so keep trying if you get the dreaded This Page Cannot Be Found)

If you want to try to link up with other North Carolina harpers, I belong to a large active email forum devoted to harp, and if you PM me with an email address I can put it out on the jungle drum that you're looking for a harp buddy in your area to connect with (assuming that you are). Or you might want to join this list yourself?

Do find someone to advise you and to look at any harp you're interested in before you buy, just to make sure you're getting exactly the instrument you need. They DO vary, and what's perfect for one person may not be the asnwer for someone else. Best of luck!!


17 Mar 03 - 07:22 PM (#912155)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: GUEST,Helen, at work

Hi Sandy Creek,

If you do a search in the search box on the top left of this page for the word "harp" (without quote marks) in the Forum then you will find a lot of threads which we have had about harps. Just be aware that you will find some threads about the blow/spit type blues harps (ducking for cover from the blues people ;->   ) but recently we have had a few threads about buying a harp.

Hope you find a good one.

in Australia, with a Celtic lever harp

17 Mar 03 - 10:48 PM (#912251)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp

I was going to buy a harp but I had'nt the pluck!!!

07 Jan 08 - 09:27 PM (#2230810)
Subject: Any info about The Harpolute Company from Boston?

i purchase a harp type instrument at an auction, and would like to know more about it and it's worth. it's from The Harpolute Company, Boston, Mass. it is an odd shape. five sided.the longest part being about 18 inches. any information would be greatly appreciated.   thanks! patricia

07 Jan 08 - 09:34 PM (#2230819)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Bonnie Shaljean

There's some info in the link below. It appears to be a type of zither. Look down the page for "Gideon's Harp" c.1910

08 Jan 08 - 03:41 AM (#2230921)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Megan L

This lad does lovely work I often hear him playing locally.
Harps from Orkney

08 Jan 08 - 07:23 PM (#2231586)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: GUEST,Val

A reasonably comprehensive list of links to various harpmakers & sellers around the world:

The Harplust List

Also, since you're US East Coast, if you can wait until July to make your choice I strongly recommend you think about dropping in on the Somerset Harp Festival . MANY makers will be there so you can try various harps side-by-side, many wonderful performers giving concerts, and some workshops you could benefit from even if you have not yet touched a harp.

They also do "harp tastings". Several different harps are put behind an optically (not acoustically) opaque screen, and one or two professional players will play the same short ditty on each one, identified only by number. "Tasters" may take notes about the sound quality of each. This way each person can make his/her own decision of which harps sound "best" to them (this is very much a subjective thing - what I would describe as "crisp and bright" might strike you as "brittle and clinky", or your "deep & resonant tone" might seem "muddy" to me). After everyone has had a chance to form opinions WITHOUT being swayed by the appearance or price or brand-reputation of an instrument, the specific models are then revealed. (sometimes the "ugly, off-brand" instrument sounds terrific). This is a terrific aid in deciding which model harp you might want to buy.

Have fun on your quest!


08 Jan 08 - 07:44 PM (#2231596)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Sorcha

Er, this thread is almost 5 years old. I doubt if Sandy Creek is still around. Probably found a harp by now.

08 Jan 08 - 09:30 PM (#2231663)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: dulcimer42

I play harp, and I started out with a small Heartland Harp, decided I need a little bigger one,   so I bought another Heartland harp. Finally outgrew that one too, so now I have a 32 string Heartland and think I have what I can love for a long time.   I have played many brands of harp, but Heartland has a nice curved back, so it is comfortable to play.   It has a big and rich sound. And best of all, you can go to their website and select the harp you want and Dave Woodworth, the harpmaker, is totally honest and wonderful to work with. He'll call and talk with you about the choices of woods, the size you might most likely be satisfied with.   And his prices are not outrageous.   They are quite reasonable for the wonderful harp you will be purchasing. Go to heartlandharps dot com.   You won't be sorry.

09 Jan 08 - 04:45 AM (#2231833)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: Bonnie Shaljean

Read again, guys - this thread was revived by Guest (Patricia) at 9:27 on 7th January, and she was enquiring about a specific instrument which she already owned, a five-sided "Harpolute". This is actually a zither* and there's a picture of it in the link I provided.

*Gideon's Harp: The Gideon's Harp (also sold as "Harpolute") is a simple 20-string all-melody zither. It was produced by the Phonoharp Company around 1910-20. Functionally, it is identical to Exhibit No. 2, which dates from several decades earlier.

09 Jan 08 - 10:31 AM (#2232053)
Subject: RE: Looking For A Harp
From: oombanjo

John the Harp is a mudcater over in Beverley UK he makes all sizes of harp and plays regularly in the local pub