October 16, 2013 at 11:26 am #113103lyn-boundyParticipant
On a lighthearted note but something that’s nonetheless bothered me for a long time – does anyone else get as irritated as I do when, looking (particularly online) for harp music, I find myself being directed to pages and pages of music for the harmonica? Yes, I know these have been referred to as ‘harps’ for many, many years but why do they have to pinch our instrument’s name? Surely the players of an instrument like this must have enough ‘puff’ to be able to get the whole four-syllable word out before collapsing from lack of breath?
Okay, it’s not going to cause any major confusion – I can’t imagine anyone hiring what they think will be a harp player for a wedding then having the musician turn up and remove their instrument from a jacket pocket – it’s just a minor annoyance but I’d be intrigued to know more about the history of this usage and why the players of any instrument ever thought it might be a good idea to refer to their instrument by the name of another – not dissimilar to we harpers/harpists suddenly deciding to start calling our harps ‘trumpets’.October 16, 2013 at 11:55 am #113104Angela BiggsMember
Yes, that annoys me. I can’t imagine how that happened, either.
I often browse Craigslist on the search term “harp,” and the items I encounter most frequently are harmonicas, chairs, and a brand of old microphone! Blergh. 🙂October 18, 2013 at 1:02 am #113105eliza-morrisonMember
I was contacted by someone once who wanted harp lessons. The local music store had referred him to me. After about a minute of conversation, it became clear that he was asking about harmonica lessons. We both had a good laugh and wished each other well!October 18, 2013 at 4:38 am #113106
Angela – chairs? For playing your harp? Floor harp, lap harp or pocket harp? 😉
I always like to wait and see if anyone responds when we get the occasional post from someone who comes across this site and posts to it without checking it out first… looking for advice about the “harp”! Lol!!October 18, 2013 at 12:14 pm #113107Angela BiggsMember
Sherri – nope, they’re lyre-back chairs, but apparently around here they’re called “harp” chairs! Every time I see one I’m tempted to email the seller and pontificate about the difference between a harp and a lyre, but… nah. 🙂October 18, 2013 at 9:59 pm #113108wilma-hatcherParticipant
I live in WV and have often heard the harmonica referred to a “mouth harp.” I’ve also heard about “harp” chairs.October 19, 2013 at 4:36 am #113109
That’s pretty neat… never heard of those before! Sort of a Victorian style, like the balloon-back chairs?
My current “real harp” chair – for sitting and playing a harp like we know them, is in need of re-upholstering – kitty cat likes the fabric too much! Maybe will get done by Christmas…October 22, 2013 at 8:19 pm #113110jessica-wolffParticipant
Be glad they don’t expect you to teach Jew’s harp.November 3, 2013 at 11:38 pm #113111TacyeParticipantNovember 4, 2013 at 2:50 am #113112
Thanks for the link… I’ve never seen that style before. Quite an asking price for the chair, even for an antique! The lot notes were an interesting read.
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