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Simon Chadwick's
Early Gaelic Harp Emporium

Books by Ann Heymann

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Coupled Hands for Harpers

Ann Heymann
Coupled Hands for Harpers
Clairseach Publications, Minneapolis, 2001
This tutor book teaches Ann's signature approach to the Gaelic harp. Based on her extensive research into Bunting's manuscript notebooks and other key sources, the technique makes a radical break from the classical treble/bass approach hitherto used by harpists, to take advantage of the distinct features of the brass strung Gaelic harp. The book includes almost 100 tunes, mainly Irish and Scottish but with some from various parts of Europe, all with detailed notes, and also has many exercises and photographs of techniques. There is also an appendix discussing historical evidence for this kind of approach. To me the key features of Coupled Hands are that the technique fits so well on the Gaelic harp, with its brass strings played with the fingernails, left hand treble and dominant right hand bass; and also that it is truly monodic, i.e. a complete harp arrangement can be instantly improvised from a plain melody line with no need for a separate chordal or counterpoint bass.
£25 +

Legacy

Ann Heymann
Legacy of the 1792 Belfast Harp Festival
Clairseach Publications, Minneapolis, 1992
One tune from each of the ten Irish harpers who played at the Belfast harp festival in 1792. Ann has selected these tunes mainly from Bunting's manuscripts, and as well as an arrangement for wire-strung Gaelic harp (though without fingering or damping information) she gives notes on each tune and its sources, and a short biography of the harper.
£8 +

Off the Record

Ann Heymann
Off the Record
Clairseach Publications, Minneapolis, 1990
Thirteen tunes taken from three of Ann's earlier recordings: "let Erin Remember", "Ann's Harp" and "The Harpers Land", arranged for Gaelic harp though without fingering and damping notation.
£8 +

Dialogue book cover

Daniel Tokar and Ann Heymann
Dialogue on Historical Wire for Gaelic Harps.
Edited and introduced by Simon Chadwick
Published by Early Gaelic Harp Info, St Andrews, 2011
58 pages, card cover.
The results of a series of experiments making historical alloys, drawing them into wire, and testing them on replica harps.
£13 plus postage; Click here for more information and to order

Éire-Ireland Fall 1991

Ann & Charlie Heymann
Cláirseach: The Lore of the Irish Harp
in Éire-Ireland, Fall 1991
This edition of the quarterly Irish Studies journal includes an article (p. 82-95) in which Ann and Charlie set out their theories on the mythical and symbolic frameworks behind the early Gaelic harp traditions. Covers the 'sister' strings, the three components of the harp, left orientation, etc. Long out of print and very hard to find.
One copy available secondhand, £25. Please contact me for availability and purchasing information.

Secrets of the Gaelic Harp
Secrets of the Gaelic Harp

Ann Heymann
Secrets of the Gaelic Harp
Clairseach Publications, Minneapolis, 1988
"Secrets" was the first and definitive tutor book for learning fingernail technique on the Gaelic wire-strung harp. Based around the tunes traditionally taught to student harpers, it included graded excercises, and many other tunes fully arranged for Gaelic harp. It also had poems, stories and decorative illustrations, and there was also an accompanying cassette of the tunes and exercises. Now out-of-print, "Secrets" is succeeded by the simplified and clarified First Tunes.
Available for sale secondhand. Spiral bound paperback, previous owners sticker on title page, otherwise in good clean condition complete with its original black-and-red errata slip. £100. Also, a second copy, spiralbound, no errata slip, some staining to page edges, with dedication by the author. £75. contact me.

A Gaelic Harpers First Tunes

Ann Heymann
A Gaelic Harpers First Tunes
Clairseach Publications, Minneapolis, 1998
A revised edition of Secrets of the Gaelic Harp , this tutor book explains the ancient fingernail and damping techniques used on the Gaelic harp. Its core is the tunes traditionally taught to students of the Gaelic harp, as detailed in the historical sources. These are augmented by progressive exercises and additional arrangements. Everyone with any interest at all in the historical harp music of Ireland and the Highlands and Islands of Scotland should definitely have a copy of this book. Now out of print