Autoharp Updates

1.  Well, I cannot say I have made much progress in learning to play my autoharp since I’ve been side-tracked by other parts of my life. However, when a good used Oscar Schmidt Autoharp with Chuck Daniel’s bars and fine tuners added became available for around the price of a new one I jumped into owning a GD diatonic autoharp.

As I see it, I’ll get a taste of what all the fuss is about diatonic autoharps at a comparatively low price and have a good loaner for introducing new people to my favorite folk instrument. It is a good all around purchase and I look forward to telling you all about it once I get my hands on it!

2. Delightfully, it turns out the gentleman selling the autoharp lives not too far so we are meeting half way so we can skip risking the autoharp by shipping it.  I get to meet someone who plays autoharp and have my hot little hands on the autoharp in less time than it would have taken to ship it.  HAPPY!!

3.  I recently managed to excite interest in the autoharp in one of my friend’s daughters and in my own older daughter– this is GREAT!

4.  Mark Gunn, who does some wonderful humorous autoharp music, has a new CD out as an MP3 download at CD baby!  It is Tolkien influenced and titled, Don’t Go Drinking With Hobbits!!  I MUST buy one for me.  I wish it were on CD though so I could buy a couple for gifts too! UPDATE: the music is his best yet– really GOOD!!

5.  How does one go about getting interested people together for a jam session?  I need to pull out some Christmas music and practice on it so I have something I can actually play all the way through.

6. I am quite pleased with the sound of my “new” OS G/D diatonic.  I see this as a really wonderful opportunity to encourage new players among the young people I meet.   I like the sound of the diatonic set-up.  Doubling the strings makes a nice sound.  If an OS done this way is nice, I wonder what a Luthier built high end diatonic would sound like?

7. Oh, and the gentleman who sold it to me seems like a very nice person and I was quite pleased to meet him, albeit very briefly!  Thank you for selling this nice autoharp to me!  🙂

8.  Now that I have one loaner autoharp, and two young people who might want to do a workshop if they could afford it and if it were local, I am thinking that it would be awesome to pull together a class and then try to find someone to come give us a workshop for beginners!

9. Charles Whitmer gives workshops and I think there is at least one other person within a couple hundred miles who also does.  I could offer a car pool to the youngsters I know who might be interested to the next beginner workshop Charles Whitmer gives.  I learned oodles from the ones I have taken and they are a really good deal for a reasonable cost!

10.  Well, I have spent some pleasant time playing This Is Our Father’s World on the g/d diatonic and yes, I can certainly hear why some people play nothing else!  Even though an OS cannot hope to come close to the quality sound of a Lutheir built autoharp, it is a delight to the ear and now I find myself wondering how my much loved Josey would sound as a diatonic…. but then what would I do without her in chromatic form that lets me play nearly anything?

I feel almost heretical to even think of Josey being something other than the perfectly wonderful chromatic she is now.  I do hope this diatonic bug settles down and lets me be less extreme– but I am feeling odd right now.  Something in the sound as I play is added, something seductive, addictive, powerful.  I’m not even much of a player and I’m feeling this pull to the D-side!


Anyway, this is my contribution to the autoharp portion of my blog– thank you and God bless you for reading my blog!


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