Some general, non-technique related thoughts on ways to stay pain-free while playing the harp. Please note: I am not a medical professional! 🙂
A look at Alphonse Hasselman’s lovely “Petite Berceuse“. In the key of C and playable on a 25 string harp, the sheet music is in the public domain and can be found at archive.org – https://bit.ly/2Jo2aY9
Is playing a separate pattern in each hand a challenge for you? In this episode of Harp Tuesday I offer some ideas of how to coordinate playing with both hands at the same time, using as an example a small section from my arrangement of The Skye Boat Song.
You might also find this episode useful: http://www.joshlayne.com/harptuesday/ep-110-coordinating-two-hands-contrary-motion-and-practicing/
My arrangement of The Skye Boat Song is available as a PDF at http://www.joshlayne.com/store/
Relaxation is so important when playing any instrument – both for speed and to remain injury and pain free. Making sure your fingers don’t stay clenched into the palm when they aren’t playing is one key to staying relaxed. In this episode I talk about how to achieve that (including using a rubber band as an aid!) and demonstrate how it looks.
In this episode I show how to learn an easy version of Oh Come, Oh Come, Emmanuel / Veni, Veni Emmanuel. Find the free sheet music at http://www.joshlayne.com/emmanuel
A quick look at left hand muffling with open octaves. Also check out Episode 24.
In this episode of Harp Tuesday I offer a few practical tips on tuning your harp. For some additional information on tuning, see Harp Tuesday ep. 5
In this episode oI talk about chord progressions and working on the ability to automatically go up and down a chord sequence (root, 1st inversion, 2nd inversion). As a companion to this episode you might find these two episodes helpful:
In this episode I talk about how to play a 4,3,2,1,2,3,4,3,2,1 pattern – a great basic exercise and good workout for the fingers!
In this episode I take a look at a contrary motion exercise you could use to practice coordinating two hands at once. But the practice principle I talk about can be applied to anything you’re working on!
Welcome to the 100th episode of Harp Tuesday! 100 is a big number and I feel proud to have reached it! 🙂 Thanks to all of you who watch and comments on my videos – you’re the reason I’ve made it to #100!
In this episode I offer some thoughts and advice on buying a harp, with an emphasis on advice for someone looking to buy their very first harp.
I hope this is helpful, and thanks for watching!
The complete episode is below, but I also split this episode into individual sections if there’s something specific you’re interested in.
1. Introduction https://youtu.be/lY2PVTGFb-A
2. General advice/synopsis https://youtu.be/znZ6D3Pyss0
3. Three categories of harps https://youtu.be/IINfg-emaQo
4. Celtic harps – how many strings? https://youtu.be/8m-vBBdJY7c
5. Celtic harps – do I need levers? https://youtu.be/OrqoGgxEc8I
6. Build quality and ergonomics https://youtu.be/JcdPXdPgG6k
7. Sound quality https://youtu.be/Q_hj0a-OvRQ
8. Strings – gut or nylon? https://youtu.be/P1xQUAT1mDw
9. Pedal harps https://youtu.be/9tz-M-EvqCQ
10. Other type of harps https://youtu.be/S87aHF79BiE
I talk about learning En Roulant from Betty Paret’s First Harp Book.
Among other things I discuss counting/clapping a 6/8 rhythm and looking for patterns when learning a new piece!
Harpist and composer Bernard Andrès has written a lot of music for harp, here in these episodes I look at three pieces from his book Ribambelle – a set of 10 short works for lever or pedal harp
In this episode of Harp Tuesday I finally (!) finish my look at how to read music. In December of 2010, for my fifth episode of Harp Tuesday, I talked about how to decipher notes on the printed page and translate them into which strings to play on the harp… In this episode I talk about the other aspect of written music – Rhythm!
This was a tricky episode to put together, and I’m still not sure how much sense it makes, but if you’re trying to learn to read music hopefully this will help!
You can download the PDF sheet showing what shapes equal what note durations (Whole note, half note, etc.) here.
In this episode of Harp Tuesday I talk about some ways to try and make playing with both hands at the same time feel easier…
A chord/jumping exercise! Download the free PDF here!
In this episode of Harp Tuesday I take a quick look at “Two Bagpipe Tunes” from Mildred Dilling’s “Old Tunes for New Harpists”.
I take another look at the basic finger/hand motions involved in playing the harp, including some close-ups that give a clear picture of what I’m talking about!
I talk about using the metronome and some of the things that it can and can’t do
In this episode of Harp Tuesday I talk about three different types of exercises – scales, finger independence, and arpeggios. I give a somewhat in-depth look at arpeggios starting at 14:26
In this episode I try and cover some fingering basics and rules
I talk about looking at patterns as a way to help memorize music, and demonstrate by memorizing “Flowers in the Valley” from Betty Paret’s “First Harp Book”.
I talk about chords – some very basic theory (what is a chord, anyway?), inversion, some possible exercises.
In this episode of Harp Tuesday I demonstrate learning the Old English Country Dance from Mildred Dilling’s “Old Tunes for New Harpists“.
In this episode of Harp Tuesday I talk about learning “O’Carolan’s Air” from Betty Paret’s First Harp Book.
Arm and wrist movement:
How to change a harp string:
I later did a follow up to this episode, plus an episode on changing wire strings:
And low octave gut strings:
In this episode I talk about how to play one of the quintessential sounds on the harp – the rolled or broken chord:
Your second harp lesson. In this episode I talk about playing multiple notes at the same time (chords) and some fingering basics (connecting, etc.)
In this episode I cover two topics – tuning your harp and learning to read music. I’ve also included the conclusion to my look at learning to read music, Harp Tuesday ep.
Your first harp lesson! I talk about some basics to get you started playing the harp: