I play a wire-strung harp, a triangular frame instrument traditional to Ireland and Scotland. The early harp has strong historical, cultural and spiritual connotations. I am particularly intrigued by the social journey of this instrument from a place of high standing in medieval times to near demise, overtaken by European pedal harps in the eighteenth century, to a renewed interest in more recent years in the historical harps and their specific construction and techniques of playing. The resilience of the harp and its power to soothe, to inspire and to connect is part of its charm and appeal.
If you would like to give yourself a moment of inspiration, click here for a free audio download of me playing Planxty Irwin a piece composed by 17th-century Irish harpist Turlough Ó Carolan. Arranged for wire strung by M. Byrne. Jim Meehan on guitar.