The Guitarp

The guitarp is the fusion of a guitar and a harp. In this case, a high-register harp. Designed by Phil deGruy and originally built in 1983 by Jimmy Foster in New Orleans, this guitarp has 7 strings (high A) for the guitar part and 10 tunable high strings for the harp part, tuned to the key of D flat. There is no separation between the guitar and harp parts, enabling the right hand to do a 17 string arpeggio.

My 3rd guitarp (pictured here) used on Hello Dali was designed and built by Ralph Novak in San Leandro, CA. Ralph enabled me to 1) tune up to pitch (primarily because of his genius fanned-fret system), 2) create new sounds and techniques because of this system and, 3) stand up and play because of the lightness and design. I dedicate Hello Dali to Mr. Novak.

Thank you, Jeff Boudreaux, for coining my instrument, "guitarp."

                  -- Phil deGruy, April 2001

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