Another life lesson – always have a light

Posted In: Coffee Break

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    Gretchen Cover on #188008

    My guitar partner and I played a 3 pm Friday church wedding. I went to the church a week earlier to rehearse with the music director who was singing with me during communion. I noted to myself the church seemed very dim even with lights on and made a mental note to bring my Mighty Bright lamp – just in case. As it turns out, there was a power failure just as we were to play the gathering music 20 minutes before the processional. We were informed that the power would not be on for a while and the wedding would continue as planned. Thankfully, we had our music lights and the light from our iPads or it would have been a disaster. Even with some doors open, the church was very dark. As much as I try to keep my gig bag uncluttered, I will always take a light with me along with fresh batteries.

    randal on #188009

    I suddenly realized, yesterday – that a clip-on light is going to be a valued/vital accessory. I’ve been playing (wire) mostly by feel, and some visual reference (as much as light conditions allow), but have recently put some color to a few of my strings on my large harp – for which I need more visual reference. And with a light (from now on), this is really an aid for me. 🙂

    carl-swanson on #188012

    Your story reminds me of an incident that happened many years ago when I was living in Paris. A very fine American college choir from Bemidji University in Minnesota was giving a concert at a large church in Paris(I can’t remember now which one). They were on the third or fourth number in the program, which was some contrapuntal 18th century a cappella work. Almost as soon as they started the number, the lights in the church started to get brighter and brighter, and I thought, Oh no!!! Maybe a minute into the work, every light in the church went out. The choir was singing this very complicated work in pitch darkness, and the poor conductor couldn’t even stop them without shouting out. So they continued to sing in the darkness, and the conductor just let them sing. They finished the piece perfectly. No hint that anything had gone wrong. By the end of the piece, several candles had been lit, so there was very dim light. The house exploded into applause and shouts. At the reception afterwards I talked to the conductor about the incident. He said that at the moment it happened he nearly fainted. “But now” he said” I’m thinking of having someone turn the lights off at every concert.”

    brian-saville on #188045

    My wife was playing at an open mike in a local pub. They had red and green spot lights. She started to panic when her red and blue strings both looked black. They managed to find a table light that got her through it. After that I fitted LED lights. They have been very useful. Even allow her to play in the dark.

    Harp lights

    Gretchen Cover on #188047

    A Heartland carbon fiber harp with the light kit. Cool!

    brian-saville on #188049

    No. It is not a Heartland. I made it myself. It is Carbon Fibre though.

    mae-mcallister on #188050

    Off-topic, having now played both a Heartland and the harp in the picture I might venture the slightly sacriligious opinion that Brian’s plays and sounds better than the Heartland:)

    balfour-knight on #188053

    Neat harp, Brian! Mae, we want to hear your new double!

    brian-saville on #188064

    Thank you both for the comments.

    My apologies. I did not mean to hijack this thread.
    If anyone wants to know more about my harp, send me a PM. If people are interested I may start a thread telling you how it came about.

    Back to the lights. I did not buy a kit for the lights. They are a self adhesive strip of white LED’s bought from Ebay. The strip is 5 mts ( 16 Feet.) long and can be cut down. They are made to run on 12V but I found they are adequate on 9V. I use a PP3 ( I am not sure what they are known as in other countries could be 1604D or 6F22 ) These last many hours. Just solder on some wires, add a switch and battery connector and there you go. As the harp is black and the strip that the LED’s are on was white, I filled in the gaps with a Sharpie. (Indelible marker pen.)

    balfour-knight on #188065

    Hi, Brian!

    I’m glad you did “hijack” this thread! (You really did not hijack it, all comments are welcome!) I somehow missed your first post of the carbon fiber harp (Obsidia). I, for one, would love for you to start a thread about how you built this beautiful little harp. It is so sweet that you made it for your wife–I do similar things for my sweet wife of 39 years. The lights are real nice, too!

    My best to you,

    Gretchen Cover on #188073

    Another thread on the carbon fiber harp would be great. Meantime, back to the lights. I did a key word search on google “led lights for harp” and came up with 2 light kits. One is by Musicmakers, the other by Heartland Harps. Both are worth taking a look.

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