Discover the Harp

There was a time when a lot of people played music for fun. It was common for friends to get together and make music. Now people watch music videos, listen to iTunes, dance to music, study to music, and work or work out to music. Basically do everything but actually make music.

Isn't that sad?

Wouldn't it be nice to see more people playing musical instruments?

If you think about an orchestra, or a band, or a soloist, what instruments come to mind? Perhaps the most well known instruments are piano, guitar, and drums. Then there is the harp. Perhaps it seems a little obscure and random compared to the piano, the guitar, and drums. But here's a secret. The harp has elements similar to each of those. Like a piano, you can play multiple notes at once. Like a guitar, you can strum along to accompany voice. You can even add an element of percussion.

The harp has so much going for it. It is a welcoming instrument for beginners, as it really is hard to make a harp sound bad. It is used in therapy settings because the sound is so relaxing and soothing. But you can also hook it up to a distortion pedal and do heavy metal. Music from many genres translates nicely to the harp: from classical to pop to folk to Hawaiian to medieval, etc.

 

Although concert pedal harps can cost in the tens of thousands, there are many harps that are much more affordable. My first harp cost $300, and it is a real instrument- not a toy. For people who are handy building things, it is also possible to get a kit and put it together. For serious woodworkers, it is even possible to get blueprints and do one up from scratch.  

 

Now to find some inspiration: people making and sharing music. I have set up three different play lists on YouTube. Perhaps listening to these artists will make you want to pick up an instrument. And maybe it will be a harp! Note: computer speakers are not the best for listening to harp music, headphones are better!