[Dixielandjazz] Hardest instrument to learn

Don Ingle dingle@baldwin-net.com
Wed, 19 Jun 2002 13:27:41 -0400

I would nominate the harp. If you can't chew gum and walk at the same time,
the harp is not for you.
It uses both hands and two feet to play, the chromatics made by shifting
pedals with the feet while plucking melody and chords with both hands.
Now before someone raised the obvious that this is about OKOM, let me say
that I had to pleasure to work in Aspen 1960 with Joe Marsala and his wife
Adele Gerard who played both classical and swing style harp. I would also
note the late Bobby Maxwell who amazed many jazz players with his ability to
not only play the hell out of the harp, but swing big time.
The hand and feet coordination, the ability to litterly play the equivalent
of a piano's innards standing up sideways and doing with fingers what the
hammers on the piano does to make the notes is awesome.
And it is the loveliest sound you'll ever hear this side of heaven -- or on
the other.
Don Ingle
PS -- Off to my fly fishing weekend and gathering of fellow trout bums. Off
line until Monday. Have fun, but probably not as much as I will have.