Sylvia Woods Harp Center 
June 2018 Newsletter
PersonalA Personal Note from Sylvia
 
I'm happy to announce that I've just completed an arrangement of Ed Sheeran's beautiful love song, Perfect.  If you play weddings, you'll definitely want to get this! See the article below.  

This issue's installment in my series on Hawaii features our wonderful, tropical weather.  You'll find the article at the bottom of this newsletter. 
 
 Congratulations to all dads and grads this month! 

Aloha,
Sylvia

Franco Extravaganza RobinEd Sheeran's Perfect arranged for harp by Sylvia
Ed Sheeran's Perfect is one of the most popular wedding songs of 2018.  
 
Perfect PDF - lg 
Well, I found a love for me.  
Darling, just dive right in, follow my lead.  
Well, I found a girl, beautiful and sweet.  
Well, I never knew you were the someone waiting for me.  
   
'Cause we were just kids when we fell in love,  
Not knowing what it was.  
I will not give you up this time.  
Darling just kiss me slow, your heart is all I own.  
And in your eyes, you're holding mine.  
 
Baby, I'm dancing in the dark with you between my arms.   
Barefoot on the grass, listening to our fav'rite song.  
When you said you looked a mess,  
I whispered underneath my breath.  
But you heard it, darling you look perfect tonight.

Sylvia Woods has made a lovely six-page arrangement for advanced beginner to intermediate harp players. The music is in the key of G (1 sharp), with no lever or pedal changes within the music. The basic harp range is 3 octaves, G to G.  (There is one lower D note that may be omitted if necessary.)  Lyrics, fingerings, and chord symbols are all included.
 
AND, Sylvia is giving you an added bonus!
When you're playing a wedding processional, you usually don't need to play the entire piece.  Plus, you don't want to worry about making page turns.  And so -- Sylvia is also including a shorter, two-page, one-verse version.  It is exactly the same as the first verse of the complete six-page version, with a short ending added. It was re-typeset to fit on just two pages, so no page turns are necessary!   
 
You get BOTH the full six-page version, and the shorter two-page, one-verse version in this same PDF or piece of sheet music!
 
As usual, the PDF is available NOW . . . and the printed sheet music will be ready in about a month.   
 
You can listen to Ed Sheeran's video of this song on YouTube.
 
(This music is NOT part of this month's sale.) 
TowelsNew Microfiber Towels with Embroidered Harps
2 towels 
Add some harp fun to daily dusting and cleaning chores with these 16" x 16" ultra-soft white microfiber towels. Sylvia's Kauai harp student Charlotte Turner personally machine-embroiders a pedal harp or a Celtic harp design on each towel.
 
You'll find hundreds of uses for these elegant towels, including keeping your harps dust-free! They'll also look great hanging in your guest bathroom. 
 
You can use microfiber towels anywhere you'd normally use a paper or a cloth towel. Dry towels can be used for cleaning and dusting, and damp towels work great on dirt, grease, and stains. They can be reused and machine-washed hundreds of times. They absorb moisture quickly, and dry faster than terry towels. The entire towel, including the embroidered area, can be lightly pressed with a steam iron, if desired. The microfiber composition is 80% Polyester and 20% Polyamide. 

The towels are white, and the embroidered harp designs are dark gold, light gold, and green. The design colors may vary depending upon embroidery thread availability.    
 
These fun towels are great gifts for harp students!
Whole Towel 
 
Dimensions:
Each towel is 16" (40.64 cm) by 16" (40.64 cm). The embroidered harp is 5.25" (13.33 cm) tall, and 4" (10.16 cm) wide. You can see the harp placement in the photo of the entire towel on the right.
 
These towels are individually machine-embroidered, and so they may not always be in stock. We will let you know right away if there will be a delay in filling your order.  
 
We're not sure yet . . . but these towels might be a "limited edition."  So, if you think you're going to want one . . . order right away, so you won't be disappointed! 
PDFs Extravaganza RobinMore new music PDFs
Last month I told you about a lot of new PDFs by Anna Dunwoodie.  
 
This month I've added 5 PDFs by Carol Wood
Chaucer Songbook for harp and voice
Mermaids original music for harp solo, and harp and voice
Saxon Songs for harp and voice
Saxton's River Suite original music for solo harp
World of Dreams and Other Art Songs for harp and voice  
 
Two Handel Favorites: Pastoral Symphony from "Messiah", and Theme from Harp Concerto in Bb 
 
1 PDF by Kathryn Cater
A Walk in the Mountains original "colorful" harp solos  
 
1 PDF by Kim Robertson
Shall We Gather "hymns and inspiring airs"

(These PDFs are NOT part of this month's special sale.) 
thisMonthsSale Extravaganza RobinOur featured arranger: Erik Ask-Upmark
Erik Ask-Upmark
Erik Ask-Upmark is our featured arranger this month.  He'll be teaching and performing at the July 19-22 Somerset Folk Harp Festival in New Jersey. Here's what he has to say about himself and his music.

I come from Sweden's second largest city (Göteborg, on the west coast) and started out playing piano in the local music school, a rather unspectacular origin story but one that I proudly share with many fellow (and more famous) Swedish musicians! A bit later, in my twenties, I had picked up the bagpipes and some other wind instruments with which I performed at different folk and historical festivals. But I would always have liked to bring
Erik Ask-Upmark
along something more portable than a piano (and mine was a god-awful 80s synthesizer). Luckily, a friend of mine had just finished building his first harp, a cross-strung Celtic hybrid that I traded for an old violin. Considering that it was hardly a Stradivarius, I definitely came out on top in that deal! I later realized that the learning curve was unnecessarily steep, since beginning on a cross-strung harp is not the easiest. You might think that it would be simple, coming from the piano, but just being able to focus on the strings took a fair share of time! However, it was love at first sight (if slightly squinting) and I brought the harp on all my gigs, which at the time mostly consisted of different Renaissance faires, where a harper was always shown extra appreciation!
 
Erik Ask-Upmark
A few years later, my budding harp career took a turn for the worse - literally - when I found myself on-board a fast-moving train on the way to a concert in Basel, Switzerland. Somewhere in southern Germany a sharp turn caused my poorly propped-up harp to take an elegant nose dive to the floor, accompanied by a sickening sound of splintering wood. Disaster had struck - now what to do, with a concert the same night? These days, a quick Facebook message would surely inundate the poster with harp offerings, but this was in the Dark Ages before social media. Luckily, a friend knew a friend who knew a friend whose retired harp teacher kindly offered to lend me a Celtic harp - and it turns out that this harp was the last of a batch of harps (a gathering of harps? A string of harps? A clang of harps?) that had been donated many years earlier by a wealthy American harp patron whose only demand was that these
Erik Ask-Upmark
harps would find a home with promising young players. I was apparently deemed worthy of this moniker, and so I eventually made my way back home to Sweden with a brand new (actually quite old) 36-string Celtic lever harp, which marked a new chapter in my musical life. (I never remembered where exactly the train incident took place, but if I ever did find out the location, I had a plan to petition the closest village to change its name to Harper's Bend.)  

   

Erik Ask-Upmark
With my new Celtic harp I dove straight into the already familiar repertoire of Irish and Scottish tunes. It was only at a festival some years later that someone asked me if I could play any Swedish tunes. Since I had been to folk festivals (so-called "stämmas") in Sweden for many years, I was very familiar with the music but played it mostly on whistles and bagpipes up until then. But I soon realized that most of these tunes of course worked great on the harp as well. Apparently there was a big interest in Swedish and Nordic music abroad. The first time I gave a workshop at the Harfentreffen in Germany, I was shocked to find out that I had 35 participants in a single class! I'm happy to see that Nordic music keeps gaining in popularity. Back then it was mostly found at the peripheries of the Celtic repertoire, but now it seems to finally come into a life of its own. I like to study and focus on some shared features (of which there are
Erik Ask-Upmark
many). Sometimes I even use a moniker stolen from Oregon harper and kantele player Valerie Blessley, namely "Celtinavian music" for tunes that seem to have bobbed back and forth over the North Sea. What tends to put some people off regarding Nordic music, and why it is sometimes harder for beginners than Irish music (for example), most likely has to do with the rhythms of the most typical of Swedish tune types: the Polska. There really are a crazy number of polska variants out there, from the straight forward to the straitjacket, and it can be frustrating that certain tunes should not be played as notated - indeed, that it is impossible to notate them in the "correct" manner, whatever that is. But on the flipside, this is true of most types of traditional music to some degree, and it also adds to the challenge and allure of these tunes. That's why I keep coming back to traditional Nordic music and enjoy playing it so much (together with the odd Abba tune of course!)  

 

Erik Ask-Upmark
At the same time that I started to focus on traditional music, I kept playing early music. I acquired a number of Gothic harps and eventually also an Italian Arpa Doppia, having to practice getting those chromatic strings right again! What I enjoy most, however, is teaching traditional music at festivals all over the world, and taking part of new and exciting collaborations with other musicians. A recent highlight was when I returned to the Harfentreffen again this year and they asked me to host a dance evening together with Adriano Sangineto from Italy and Clotilde Trouillaud from Brittany. It turned into a spectacular, spontaneous panoply of European dance harp music (who even knew that was a genre?) and we kept going until about 4 AM or so. Too bad we all had our final workshops at 9 AM the next morning . . . but that's all part of a true festival experience of course!  

   

Erik Ask-Upmark
This year I look forward to going to Somerset Folk Harp Festival for the first time, plus more trips to Germany, Ireland and France, and even hosting my own harp festival in Sweden in November - the Nordic Harp Meeting in Lund (www.nordic-harp-meeting.eu) on November 1-4. Hope to see you somewhere!  


 

 -- Erik Ask-Upmark  
 
Photo 1 - Cover of The Nordic Harp Vol. 2 book 
Photo 2 - Playing at a summer night dance session somewhere in Sweden 
Photo 3 - Playing harp and the Swedish bagpipes at Rio de Janeiro Harp Festival 
Photo 4 - Historical Harping I: At the Dubrovnik Early Music Festival with medieval group "Compagnia della lauda" 
Photo 5 - Historical Harping II: Looking very bored, but actually being very concentrated, while playing the Arpa Doppia with a Baroque ensemble 
Photo 6 - Enjoying a break in the autumn Northwestern sun at the Dusty Strings Harp Symposium in Seattle, together with Harper Tasche and Sue Richards  
Photo 7 - Making wonderful music together with one of my all-time favorite harpists, Laoise Kelly from Ireland 
Photo 8 - My duo Dråm on tour in Hawai'i, featuring the strange contraption known as a "Nyckelharpa" (Swedish keyed fiddle)
MonthSaleThis month's sale
This month's sale features Erik Ask-Upmark's PDFs, and music from other Nordic and Scandinavian countries. The code word is erik
 
To get the 15% discount on the products below, enter the code word erik in the Promo Code box on your shopping cart page and click "Enter Code" by July 2, 2018. For more information, see the 15% Off section at the bottom of this newsletter.       
Nordic 1
by Erik Ask-Upmark
15% off with erik code
 
Nordic 2
by Erik Ask-Upmark
15% off with erik code
 
Northern Dances
 Northern Dances
by Kathryn Cater 
15% off with erik code

Scandinavian Harp
by Beth Kolle
15% off with erik code
 
Northern Folk Harp
 by Beth Kolle
15% off with erik code
 
Midnight Sun
 Songs for the Midnight Sun
 by Beth Kolle
15% off with erik code

Harpa Tunebook
by Beth Kolle
15% off with erik code
 
Richards Scandinavian
 by Sue Richards
15% off with erik code
 
Aryeh Scandinavian 1
 Music of Scandinavia Vol. 1
 by Aryeh Frankfurter
15% off with erik code

WeatherKauai Weather
This month's article about Kauai features our weather.
 
A few winters ago, the weatherman on the nightly local Hawaii TV news said:
"Bring out your extra blankets tonight, it is going to get down to a bone-chilling 58 degrees!"  The next morning, I gave a Skype lesson to a student in upstate New York.  I asked her how the weather was, and she said it was about 16°F.   We laughed at what Hawaii considers "bone-chilling!"
 
I live in the community of Princeville, Kauai.  Our annual HIGH temperature average is about 81 °F (28°C), ranging from an average of 78 °F in December and January, to 85 °F in July through September. Our annual LOW temperature averages about 66 °F (19 °C), ranging from an average of 62°F in January and February, to 69°F in August and September.    
 
It can get pretty humid here on the north shore. The average annual humidity is 75%.  So we LOVE it when the trade winds blow. Trade winds, winds from the north east or east north east, keep the humidity and temperature down, and they blow the vog (volcanic smog) away from the islands.  
 
Kauai's surface ocean water temperatures are also great for surfing, swimming, and snorkeling.  They generally range from a low of 73° in February to a high of 80° in October. 
 
Slipper
So, as you can see, our weather is almost always GREAT!  For example, in 2017 I wore shorts or capri pants every single day (no need for long pants!), and I never ever wore "real shoes" of any kind . . . just sandals!
 
Speaking of shoes . . . or lack thereof . . . I'll continue your education on the way we say things in Hawaii.  Flip-flops are called "slippers", or, in Pidgin "slippahs."  Also, it is customary to always remove your footwear when entering anyone's home.  
 
One of the many things I love about Kauai is the rain.  They don't call this "The Garden Isle" for nothing!  But, unlike our flood last month, normally our rain showers are very short . . . like 5 to 10 minutes!  And our rainbows are spectacular!  Also, I really enjoy that it often rains at night.  I keep my windows and sliding doors open almost 365 days per year, and I love waking up in the night to the sound of rain.

Palm Tree
Yes, the Hawaiian islands have had more than their fair share of natural disasters in the past few months.  But that shouldn't stop you from coming to visit.  Except for an itsy bitsy portion of the north shore of Kauai, and 1% of the Big Island near the volcano, we're open for business.  Tourism is an important part of the island economy, and has taken a big hit recently.  So, plan your Hawaii trip now and come to Paradise!

ALOHA!

(P.S. If you come to Kauai, you can rent a harp from me during your stay, take a lesson with me, or stop by and say hi. Just email me and let me know when you're coming!)

promocodes15% off select sale items when you use the code word: erik

Our newsletter promo codes are only redeemable online and can only be used for the items featured in the sale section of this newsletter. They are not valid for phone or e-mail orders. This month's code word is erik and it is good for 15% off the select PDFs in the sale section above. Just because an item is mentioned somewhere in this newsletter doesn't mean that it is on sale. It must be listed in the sale section.   
 
Here's how to get your newsletter discount at harpcenter.com : 
#1. Put the items you want to purchase in your cart. 
#2. On the page where you view the items in your cart, type this month's code word erik in the "Promo Code" box, and click on "Enter Code."
The actual price of the featured sale products on this page will then automatically change to reflect the discount. You'll also see a note below the Promo Code box saying the name of the promo code you entered, and the percentage amount of the discount.  
 
REMEMBER:  you must enter this month's code word erik in the Promo Code box
and click "Enter Code" on your shopping cart page by July 2nd 
to get the discount!
If you forget, or if you have trouble adding it to your order,
email Sylvia immediately.   

Offer expires at the end of the day on 7/2/2018.
Sylvia Woods Harp Center
  (808) 212-9525
newsletter@harpcenter.com
http://www.harpcenter.com

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