adapting piano sheet music for harp

Posted In: Coffee Break

  • Participant
    deb-l on #107365

    There’s such a wealth of pop and rock piano sheet that I decided to give it a go on harp.

    Participant
    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #107366

    This is a very difficult thing to do, that took me years to learn. The first thing to do is to copy the melody out and either the chord symbols or the harmony. If there’s a bass line, include that. You need to use harpistic figures instead of standard piano writing. The Salzedo-Lawrence Art of Modulating is a good guide to that and to improvising. It explains the difference in harp writing. You also have to be prepared to transpose, and sometimes create alternate harmonies. There is also a book by Verlye Mills on pop-music patterns for harp.

    Participant
    deb-l on #107367

    thank you very much Saul, I’ll have a look at the books you referenced.

    Participant
    jessica-wolff on #107368

    Why limit it to piano, though? I’ll borrow from any source as long as they have the melody and chord symbols for guitar. Still, I like Saul’s suggestions and want to have a look at the Salzedo/Lawrence book too.

    Participant
    deb-l on #107369

    right Jessica, I have some song books that have it all, lyrics, melody, guitar chords, piano, trying to translate into harp doesn’t mean just translating the piano.

    Participant
    jessica-wolff on #107370

    My umpteen books include a shape-note hymnal. (Attention: the top line is NOT the melody line!)

    Member
    helen-rudd on #107371

    Saul, you don’t happen to know where I can find the Verlye Mills book do you? I’ve checked a few places.

    Participant
    deb-l on #107372

    I too searched for it endlessly and came to the conclusion the Verlye Mills book must not be in print any longer.

    I was happy to find however that the piano score for Last Dance by Sarah McLaughlin translates easily to harp and it’ a pleasure to play, all in the key of C, no accidentals.

    Participant
    onita-sanders on #107373

    My approach is quite different.

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