|Hobgoblin Music - HARPS|
The Celtic Harp is almost unchanged since the 11th century. Some mediaeval harps had a very slim body, but the famous Brian Boru has the same shape as the harps we sell today. Early harps had bodies carved from solid wood, and brass strings, and were diatonic, only playing in one key. Nowadays it is usual to use a softwood soundboard, and gut or Nylon strings, and to change key, the pitch of each string can be adjusted with semitone levers. The concert instrument was developed from the Celtic Harp, or Clarsach, and features increased tension on the strings, a greater range of notes, and pedal mechanisms.
Harps should be brought up to pitch gradually, in stages as the wood of the front needs to take up a slightly curved shape with the tension of the strings. First week tune up a tone and a half flat, then increase the tension a semitone at a time over the next week or so. Another useful tip when tuning is to first tune roughly to a diatonic scale, then get the Cs right, then go round in the circle of 5ths, first playing the Gs with the Cs, then the Ds with the Gs etc.
We use the Loveland brand levers made by Bob Bunker, because we believe them to be the best available for use on our harps. The sound is the most consistent and they deflect the strings the least of any that we have seen. We feel that the instrument must be tuned and stable before the levers are put on, so that the intonation is accurate. For this reason, we do not premark the kits. We have instructions available for people who wish to install levers.
Please read the rest of this article, and much more, on our FAQ page.