Monday, March 7, 2022

Be Thou My Vision - for Harp

This video is in honor of Ukraine, and also for my friends Ruth & Kermit Hugo, who could use some peace and inspiration right now.  I think we could all use some of that.  The melody is a well-known hymn, Be Thou My Vision, which has an Irish folk melody as its haunting and stately basis.  It's just over 2 minutes long.

Pictures in Video -

1 - Rainbow, painting by Archip Kuindshi, 1903
2 - Big Clouds, painting by Hans Emmeneggar, 1903
3 - The Rocky Mountains Landers Peak, painting by Albert Bierstad, 1863
4 - The Reedsee with Tischlergruppe Mountains, painting by Johann Varrone, 1864
5 - The Gate in the Rocks, painting by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, Germany, 1818
6 - The Voyage of Life: Childhood, painting by Thomas Cole, 1840
7 - Mountain Lake with Steep Rock Face, painting by Heinrich Heinlein, circa 1865
8 - The Wreck, painting by Frederic Edwin Church, 1852
9 - Fervaal, opera illustration by Carlos Schwabe, Paris, 1898
10 - The Christian Martyrs, detail of a painting by Gustave Dore, France, 1871
11 - The Voyage of Life: Old Age, painting by Thomas Cole, 1840
12 - K2-138, NASA illustration by Robert Hurt, 2019
13 - Kepler 47, NASA illustration by Tim Pyle, 2019
14 - White Dwarf Planet Death, NASA illustration by A. Garlick, 2009
15 - Pulsar PSR B1257+12 System, NASA illustration by Robert Hurt

Monday, February 14, 2022

The Banks of the Sweet Primroses - for Harp

Happy Valentine's Day! Here's a little traditional English tune I arranged for harp. The images with it are vintage Valentines, mostly by one of my favorite illustrators: Kate Greenaway. It's about a minute and a half of music-boxy harpy sweetness. (And just so you know, the lyrics of this folk song give a very real-world-and-less-idyllic depiction of romance.)

Pictures in Video -

1-3 Valentines from "The Quiver of Love," book illustrations by Kate Greenaway, 1876
4 - Valentine post card, circa 1905
5 - Valentine from "The Quiver of Love," book illustration by Kate Greenaway, 1876
6 - Valentine card by Kate Greenaway, circa 1880
7 - Valentine chromolithograph greeting card by Kate Greenaway, 1876
8 - Valentine post card, 1911

Saturday, December 25, 2021

We Wish You a Merry Christmas for Harp & Ukulele

Merry Christmas, everybody!  Here's a favorite carol of the season, arranged for ukulele and harp by my friend, Mary Roman and myself. A minute and a half of fun.

Pictures in Video -

1 - Christmas Card by Jenny Nystrom, Norway, circa 1900
2 - A Christmas Carol, newspaper illustration, Allentown, PA, 1900
3 - Christmas Eve, chromolithography print published by J. Hoover, 1880
4 - Frohliche Weihnachten, post card, Germany, 1906
5 - Frohliche Weihnachten, post card, Germany, 1906
6 - Buon Natale, post card, Italy, 1913
7 - Now Is a Goodly Feast Outspread, book illustration by Eliza F. Manning, London, 1894
8 - The Coming of Father Christmas, book illustration by Eliza F. Manning, London, 1894

Monday, December 6, 2021

Coventry Carol for Harp & Ukulele

This haunting lullaby was part of the nativity plays performed in Coventry, England by the city's guilds for centuries.  The melody goes at least back to 1591 when it was written down with the words to be sung by three mothers of Bethlehem.  Arranged for ukulele and harp by my friend, Mary Roman and myself, this is about 2 minutes of lutey-harpy poignant lullaby.

Pictures in Video -

1 - Nativity Scene, woodcut print by Lucille Oille, 1945 presumably
2 - When Life Is Young, by Mary Elizabeth Mapes Dodge, book illustration, 1894
3 - Armenian, book illustration by Franz Burger, 1897
4 - Scene in the Jewish Quarter of Constantine, painting by Theodore Chasseriau, 1851
5 - Centuries of Oppression, Persecution, and Ruin, book illustration, 1899
6 - A Flood, painting by John Millais, 1870
7 - The Young Mother, painting detail by Gerrit Dou, 1658
8 - At the Cradle, painting by Albert Neuhuys, before 1914
9 - Ix Voto, votive painting from Pfarrkirch Maria Geburt, Germany, 1767
10 - Ex Voto Gott Sie Dank, votive painting from Pfarrkirch Maria Geburt, Germany, 1867

Monday, November 22, 2021

All Things Bright and Beautiful

At Thanksgiving time, I think of this song and how thankful I am for Nature. Arranged here for harp, bells, lute, and bass, the video runs about 2.5 minutes.

Pictures in Video -

1 - Deer in a Sunny Forest Glade, painting by Franz Xaver von Pausinger, 1880
2 - Fox Stalking Thrushes, painting by Bruno Liljefors, 1887
3 - Highland Wanderers, painting by William Watson, 1907
4 - The Alpsee Near Hohenschwangau, painting by Karl Millner, 1872
5 - Common Eiders on a Rocky Islet, painting by Bruno Liljefors, 1899 6 - Loons, painting by Bruno Liljefors, 1913
7 - Geese, painting by Bruno Liljefors, 1922
8 - Stretching Swans, painting by Bruno Liljefors, 1915
9 - Deer, painting by Alfred Bassel Rehbrunft, 1903
10 - On the Prowl, painting by Otto von Groote, circa 1920
11 - Adirondack Black Bear, attributed to Oliver Kemp, 1902
12 - Deer in Repose, painting by Rosa Bonheur, 1867
13 - Morning in a Pine Forest, painting by Ivan Shishkin, 1889
14 - Playing Lions, painting by Wilhelm Kuhnert, circa 1900
15 - The Two Majesties, painting by Jean Leon Gerome, circa 1850

Monday, November 8, 2021

A Mighty Fortress - for Harp

This hymn was a kind of theme song from childhood for me and my brother in the 1960s.  It was featured in a children's clay-animated tv show produced by the Lutheran Church: Davey and Goliath.  One of my favorite hymns that we sang in the Methodist church, A Mighty Fortress was written by Martin Luther and later harmonized by J.S. Bach.  With that in mind, it was a pleasure to arrange it for harp - the video runs about 3 minutes.

Pictures in Video -

1 - A View of Tantallon Castle with the Bass Rock, Scotland, painting by Alexander Nasmyth, circa 1815
2 - Edinburgh Castle and the Nor' Loch, Scotland, painting by Alexander Nasmyth, 1824
3 - An English Frigate in Choppy Waters in the Tagus [River] Passing the Belem Tower, Portugal, painting by John Thomas Serres, circa 1790
4 - Belem Tower, Portugal, bookplate, 1917
5 - Conway Castle By Moonlight, Wales, anonymous painting, circa 1795
6 - The Gate in the Rocks, painting by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, Germany, 1818
7 - View of Mont Blanc, France, painting by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, 1813
8 - Conway Castle, Wales, painting by Thomas Moran, 1917
9 - The Norman Gate and Deputy Governor's House Windsor Castle, England, painting by Paul Sandby, 1765
10 - Medieval City on a River, painting by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, circa 1815
11 - Kidwelly Castle, Wales, 1791
12 - Mannorbeer Castle Moonlight Scene, Wales, 1815
13 - Gothic Church on a Rock By the Sea, painting by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, 1815
14 - Landscape with Pilgrim, painting by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, circa 1813
15 - The Voyage of Life: Youth, painting by Thomas Cole, 1840

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Bach's Toccata in D Minor - for Harp

 

Coming up on Halloween, here's a harp arrangement of Bach's Toccata in D Minor.  I've always wanted to arrange this, and I discovered that it takes 2 harps to make this pipe-organ piece sound good.  It's 2 minutes long.

Pictures in Video -

1 - Harp of Life, from book cover, written by George Augustus Lofton, Nashville, Tennessee, 1896
2 - Harp at Night, pencil drawing by Carl Gustav Carus, circa 1895
3 - Patrick Byrne, photo by Hill and Adamson, circa 1845
4 - The Harp Player, oil painting by Kenyon Cox, 1888
5 - Quadrangle at King's College Cambridge, etching by Thomas Rowlandson, 1811
6 - Elizabeth Francis Standing to the Left with a Harp, cut paper silhouette by Auguste Edouart, Philadelphia, 1843
7 - The Harp Lesson, oil painting by Jean-Antoine-Theodore-Giroust, 1791
8 - Prophets, Patriarchs, Saints, and Music-Making Angels in Glory, drawing by Giovanni Bautista Gaulli, circa 1670
9 - David the Boy Harper, from book cover, written by Mrs. Annie E. Smiley, 1900
10 - Angel with Harp, by Jan Matejko, Poland, 1895