Simon Chadwick's
Early Gaelic Harp Emporium

There are so few opportunities to study with a teacher, that many students rely entirely on tutor books. Luckily there is one author (Ann  Heymann) whose books are good enough to teach the old tradition properly. Other books are available to fill in the gaps for people who need more help or are unable to attend events like Scoil na gClàirseach. Ann's books are also very useful for people who, while not wishing to learn to play the early clàrsach, nevertheless wish to understand its musical possibilities.

Click on a title to read more about it and, if applicable, for ordering information from the Emporium

Secrets of the Gaelic Harp

Ann Heymann
Secrets of the Gaelic Harp
Clairseach Publications, Minneapolis, 1988
The first and definitive tutor book, now out-of-print and succeeded by First Tunes.

Ann Heymann
A Gaelic Harpers First Tunes
Clairseach Publications, Minneapolis, 1998
Explains the ancient fingernail and damping techniques used on the Gaelic harp. Essential reading!

Coupled Hands for Harpers

Ann Heymann
Coupled Hands for Harpers
Clairseach Publications, Minneapolis, 2001
A radical break from the classical treble/bass approach hitherto used by harpists

Chris W. Bayer
The Historical Method of the Celtic Harp
Nevada Music, USA, 1991
An impassioned though misguided essay on the supposed nature of Ancient Celtic music.

Traditional Beginnings

Cynthia Cathcart
Traditional Beginnings for The Harp
Highland Circle Publishing, Silver Spring, USA, 2000
Extremely basic exercises using American popular songs. 

Cynthia Cathcart
Highland Circle Publishing, Silver Spring, USA, 2003
A method using simple Scottish and Irish tunes.

The Wire Strung Primer

Gael A. Kathryns
The Wire Strung Primer
Paradise Music, Edmonds, USA 1989
A very basic and outdated introduction by an American Science Fiction author

Andrew Lawrence-King
Der Harpffenschlaeger
King's Music, Huntingdon, UK, 1988
Historical fingerpad technique for early harps

Bill Taylor
Sources for Fingernail Harp Technique from Wales and Ireland
Wire Branch of the Clarsach Society, 2003
Practical interpretations of the lists of fingernail techniques in historical sources.

Simon Chadwick