|Tuning Your Harp|
| (1) Electronic tuner .... like a guitar tuner
only a chromatic version so that all the notes you
need to tune are there. Much cheaper these days,
a better way for those who don't have a "good ear"
Can be purchased at most Music Stores.........
| 2) Tune by "ear" using another instrument
that has the notes needed for the harp:
ie. c,d,e,f,g,a,b,c. These instruments must be
accurate (some piano's are tuned down half a
key)....ideally a harmonica (not blues harp) or
penny whistle or recorder in the key of "C"
is preferable but electronic keyboards are OK.
| When tuning up (especially
by "ear") it is best to
tune all the "C"s (red) first,
next all the "Fs" (blue/black)
then fill in with the rest......
| There are a number of ways to tune your harp,
below are some examples.
....choose the type of tuning that is best for you.
| (1) DIATONIC TUNING
This is the regular tuning of most harps....
From the lowest C string (red) tune your harp....C D E F G A B C.
You can play almost any music written but it will need to be in the
Key of C (or natural A minor).....or transposed into that key.
You can change your harp tuning to any Key you wish by tuning
various strings either up or down one half step.( eg. F to F# or
C to C# or B to Bb)
WARNING: NEVER TUNE ANY STRING UP MORE THAN HALF
A STEP AS THE EXTRA STRESS MAY CAUSE HARP COLLAPSE.
Check out with the maker of your harp to see if the harp was designed
to allow this.
All "DENWAR HARPS" are built to allow this but it is recommend
returning to regular tuning after the session.....
| (2) MODAL TUNING(S)
All of the old Greek modes can be played on a harp with no levers, tuned to the scale of C major (no flats or sharps). Modes, like any other scales, are simply a pattern of tones and semitones (e.g. if you want to play in Dorian mode, you can start on any note as long as you follow the pattern - so you can play in D Dorian, or G Dorian). For the sake of simplicity, below I've listed the main Greek modes as they would be played on a harp tuned in C:
Ionian (same as "major"): C D E F G A B C
Dorian: D E F G A B C D
Phrygian: E F G A B C D E
Lydian: F G A B C D E F
Myxolydian: G A B C D E F G
Aoelian (also known as "natural minor"): A B C D E F G A
Locrian (rarely used): B C D E F G A B
The old modes listed above can be found in many types of music, from many different centuries. People wanting to play medieval music or the Celtic music of the Irish and Scots on the harp will often stick to playing in modes, however some of the modes can also be found in modern music. Dorian, Aeolian and Myxolydian for instance, are quite common in Folk Music
| Now....... help for actually tuning up you harp (string pitch)
try one of three methods below....
| (3) PENTATONIC TUNING
A pentatonic scale is a five-note, or "gapped" scale, e.g. C D E G A C (like a major C scale, but missing the F and B). A pentatonic tuning is probably the most restrictive in terms of limiting the different kinds of tunes you can play, but may be appropriate if you are exclusively playing one kind of music on that particular instrument. It may also be used on a very small instrument, such as a lyre or miniature harp. Pentatonic tunes are actually quite common, especially in folk music.
A CD that will play an Octave
" C to C"on a realtime Harp.
Then you can tune your own
harp to the sound. (By ear) as
it is playing......
Each string is named starting
from the "C" and working up to
an octave "C"......... ie
Now do it again and tune each
octave to those sounds, starting
with your "Cs" (Reds) and work
your way up each octave.
To purchase this CD....email us
putting "Harp tuner" in the
I will include a .Mp3 file so that
you can dowload it to your Mp3
player if you request it.
|Denwar realtime Tuner|