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869RE: [clairseach] A Belgrade made harp and more

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  • Chad McAnally
    Apr 14, 2008
      Hi again Joe,
       
      Don't get me wrong, the type of research that you are doing is extremely valuable to all of us. Sometimes the smallest piece of information can lead to a major discovery.  That there may be any link between Irish players to the Paraguayan tradition is tantalizing!! Moreover, the great spirited Latino harping traditions have a great deal to teach us Gaelic harpers as far as approach if we are willing to listen. Good luck in your quest and let us know what you find!!!
       
      Europe in 17th century got very messy for all involved. Many talented musicians were killed as result of the many conflicts of the time and conditions afterwards were appalling. When you look at all the upheaval of those days it's nothing short of a miracle that we have anything left to research!

      Take care!
      Chad
       




      To: clairseach@...
      From: bigjoe@...
      Date: Mon, 14 Apr 2008 06:53:02 -0500
      Subject: RE: [clairseach] A Belgrade made harp and more

      Hi Chad

      I think we are saying much the same thing....

      Some Gaelic Iridh Harp makers went to the Americas, I am interested in the ones that emmigrated in the 1605 to 1650 period. But my research shows that more Gaelic Irish went to Germany and got lost in the 30 year war.

      On Harp styles, I "would like to show" that the Gaelic Irish Harp building went to Paraguay; BUT I can not find any evidence that this happened.

      On Harp styles, my opinion is still that a Harp is its strings and the rest is a frame to hold the strings. The strings are important in tracing the Harps history could benefit from looking what the strings are and where they could possibly come from. Also the wood is important, if the wood is not available it affects style. Also if a string material is no longer available, then the Harp maker is forced to change.

      So I have looked a lot and not found much.

      Joe

      ---------- Original Message ------------ --------- --------- ----
      From: Chad McAnally <chadmcanally@ msn.com>
      Reply-To: clairseach@yahoogro ups.co.uk
      Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 23:04:27 -0500

      >
      >Hi there Joe,
      >There is no disputing that the Jesuits brought the harp to Paraguay as you stated! And having more harps and fewer televisions is a very good thing!!!
      >
      >Speaking as someone who very nearly became a Jesuit himself, I have no trouble accepting that the order was responsible for introducing the harp along side with many other Spanish instruments to the Paraguayan Indians. A certainly a large number of Irish Jesuits and Irish families no doubt were there too, as were their Spanish Jesuit counterparts. The Jesuits took genuine interest in the welfare of the native American peoples and felt it their duty to protect and educate them. The order repeatedly came to blows with officials of the Spanish crown over the Indian's treatment, a rarity in what was otherwise a terrible era for native peoples of the New World.
      >
      >But it is clear that these Latin American harps are direct descendants from the early baroque Spanish harp. There is little to suggest that the Gaelic harp had much influence on the Paraguayan aside of the similarities in nail technique. If the Irish clairseach of that period had been the parent of the Paraguayan harps one would expect to see things like wire strings and a much heavier frame that could tolerant their higher tension. Surviving Spanish and Portuguese baroque harps are remarkably like the harps of Paraguay, Colombia, Guatemala and Mexico.
      >
      >It would have been wonderful if the Clairseach had been sucessfully transplanted in the Americas but sadly this does not appear to have happened. We know of a handful of Gaelic harpers who moved to the Americans but it appear their traditions died with them. Luckily the Paraguayan harp did not suffer the same fate.
      >
      >Check out this beautiful website of the historical harp maker Pedro Llopis Areny, maker of amazing early style Spanish harps. His site has some great article the how the Spanish baroque harps evolved in Paraguay and the other central American countries into the folk harps used in those places.
      >http://www.vanaga. com/arpandes/ Nassarriensis. html
      >
      >Take care,
      >Chad
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >To: clairseach@yahoogro ups.co.ukFrom: bigjoe@mail. valp.netDate: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 17:22:18 -0500Subject: RE: [clairseach] A Belgrade made harp and more
      >
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      >Well ChadThe Harp is strong in Paraguay .. in the 20th Century there were more Harps than TV sets.The Paraguayan Harp was the first true Folk Harp, each Harper make their own Harp, only late 20TH Century could a "factory" built Harp be bought.The Paraguayan Harpers have a unbroken Master/Apprentice chain back to early 1600's.My Harp teacher's treacher is Paraguayan Indian and this cvontinues the chain.By the way, Father Montegue's SJ Diary (written in church latin) lists the early Jesuit Misssionarys and mentions Harp building. Also the Harp strings of his time was braded leather made fro the belly skin of female horses. The use of horse tail hair has passed out of favor.The I think that the Paraguayans will agree that a lot of their ansestry is Irish. Every Paraguayan Harper that I have talked to agrees that it was the Jesuits that brought the Harp to Paraguay.Also it is historical fact that in 1550 there were no Harps in Paraguay aned in 1650 there was thousands in the several Jesuits Missions alone.Joe--- ------- Original Message ------------ --------- --------- ----From: Chad McAnally <chadmcanally@ msn.com>Reply-To: clairseach@yahoogro ups.co.ukDate: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 13:00:23 -0500>>Hey Joe,>Excellent point about the Irish timber situation of the period and great use of research. At the same time many Irish land owning families were disposed of their property and those who worked for them were denied use of it's resources. This scarcity explains why bog timber came into wide use for everything from harps to hobs during the Penal era. The timber problem was complicated further by several horrible winters and storms that were know to have damaged many trees in Ireland and throughout Europe towards the end of the 17th century and beginning of the 18th. For example France was hit so bitterly by cold in the early 1700's that it wiped out all the walnut trees north of the Auvergne. (Yikes...no nuts for granola!!!) This came courtesy of the fury of the "Little Age". (FYI: For a extremely written book on this topic check out Dr. Brian Fagan's " The Little Age: How Climate Made History 1300-1850". )> I've read about the hard times faced by musicians and luthiers during the Commonwealth period. Despite the official puritanical fiats against concerts, music making and theater these activities did continue "underground" . The moneyed classes held private entertainments, and the common folk largely kept on as they were, but in a more discrete fashion. More high profile music makers didn't really disappear, but as you said they adapted or found other work. Many professional musicians in England emigrated to greater Europe, many instrument makers turned their skills to furniture making or similar work. Or they made instruments covertly; I came across a story of a keyboard instrument maker fearing retribution of the Roundheads was forced smuggle a newly made spinet to a client in the dead of night.> Interesting comment you made about Paraguay. Indeed there were a number of Irish emigrants to Paraguay and a number of other central American countries. The Jesuits were unusual at the time for demanding basic human rights for Indian peoples and played a vital role in preventing the horrors that befell others parts of the Americans. > >The Latin American harps bear strong resemblance to the diatonic harps that were common in Spain in the early Baroque. Their structure, playing positions, and even their tunings are all traceable to early Iberian influence. > >Their technique is interesting; many use their fingernails in a way that would work well on wire strings. Perhaps in this you have come on something Joe. Most scholars chalk up the use of fingernails amongst Latino harpers as another part of the early inheritance from Spain, but perhaps instead they were influenced in this way by Irish priests! But a word of warning...the Paraguayan harpers I know might throw their empanadas at you for saying so!!! > >The evidence for it being a native idea is quite strong. Paraguayan nail technique is virtually identical to the way they play fretted strings instruments like the guitar.> >Chad> > >___________ _________ _________ _________ _________ _________ __>More immediate than e-mail? Get instant access with Windows Live Messenger.>http://www.windowsl ive.com/messenge r/overview. html?ocid= TXT_TAGLM_ WL_Refresh_ instantaccess_ 042008>---[This E-mail was scanned for viruses by Declude/F-Prot Virus]
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