Forum Posts

Mike Baldwin
Jan 18, 2021
In General Discussions
Although a little late having been postponed before Christmas, I will be holding an online launch for my book, Harp Making in Late-Georgian London, on Saturday 20 February from 18:00-19:30 GMT. Tickets are free and can be booked here. All are welcome
Book Launch - Harp Making in Late-Georgian London content media
0
0
15
Mike Baldwin
Aug 27, 2020
In General Discussions
My new book went on sale last Friday. It's been a long time coming (10 years of continual solid work - over 25 years working on and off) and has been doubly hard as I chose to start a publishing company and to release it myself. I hope you like it. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- At the end of the eighteenth century, after the French Revolution, the centre of pedal-harp making moved from Paris to London.  There, building on the work of its Bavarian originators and Parisian developers, mainly immigrant makers elevated the instrument to new musical, technical, and decorative heights, and placed it in the hands and salons of the British upper classes and aristocracy.  Until recently, the story of harp making in England has been dominated by the Erard family who built about 7,000 of an estimated 15,000 harps made in London during the nineteenth century; some 20 other makers have been all but forgotten.   This book, the story of harp making in late-Georgian England, assesses the role and consumption of the harp in society whilst describing its decorative and technical development.  Forgotten makers and their innovations are identified. Through the lens of newly discovered documents and the reinterpretation of others, Jacob Erat's manufactories are reconstructed.  His working methods, illustrative of those used in the wider industry, are rediscovered, and employees and suppliers are revealed anew. ​-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Some online retailers have decided to charge considerably more than the £60 r.r.p. Blackwells.co.uk are offering the best price at the moment (£58.40 with free U.K. postage), though if you'd like to buy a copy, please consider using your local bookshop; it will take a little longer but they need our business more than Amazon etc. Publisher: Bright Light Books ISBN: 9781527265110 428 pages Price: £60
New book: Harp Making in Late-Georgian London content media
0
0
54
Mike Baldwin
Jun 16, 2020
In General Discussions
Does anyone know the whereabout of Erard single-action, no. 357, bought by the Princess of Wales on 11 November 1800? A site member is revising the late Sir Oliver Millar's work on British pictures in the Royal Collection and has enquired about the instrument that appears in the portrait by Thomas Lawrence of Caroline, Princess of Wales, with Princess Charlotte. The harp was exchanged for a double-action in 1813... what happened to no. 357 next?
Erard single-action, no. 357 content media
0
0
23
Mike Baldwin
Dec 12, 2019
In General Discussions
In around 6 weeks theearlypedalharp.net will be a year old. Over the past year 60 people have signed up as members, and we've had excellent contributions to our blog and forum pages. What next? The website will continue its focus on the early pedal harp - that is non-negotiable - but we're open to suggestions about how we go forward. What would support the community, your research and practice best? Please share your ideas below. Mike
2
0
28
Mike Baldwin
Feb 23, 2019
In General Discussions
Whilst working through the journals of the J. G. Morley harp company, the following entry (20 July 1892) grabbed my attention. It refers to a Grecian harp (no. 11) by Head of Dublin. I've not encountered this maker before. That the harp is described as 'Grecian' suggests that it was made before c1850, and it is plausible that Head had some connection with Egan. Can anyone shed any light on this maker?
Head, harp maker of Dublin content media
0
1
38
Mike Baldwin
Feb 03, 2019
In General Discussions
Over the time I’ve been researching harp makers (some twenty-five years), I’ve held to the belief that it is best to keep my unpublished research close, to not share newly discovered sources or realisations, fearing that someone will ‘steal my work.’ I’ve sat on more or less all of it. I have a database with in excess of 500,000 variables relating to the Erat Harp Company, family, and their suppliers; add to this my work on Erard and other London harp makers, surveys of published music and performances (the last two built on the back of open access research by Simon McVeigh and the British Library), there are nearer to 1,000,000 pieces of data – and my databases continue to grow. I’ve heard some researchers talk of others ‘stealing’ their work (by which, as far as I can ascertain, they mean independently working on the same source, and coming to similar conclusions). So, having never really given this any proper thought, I’ve taken a protectionist stance. At a publishing workshop last week, hosted by The Paul Mellon Centre, London, I changed my mind. The publishers leading the workshop were genuinely open about the challenges of publishing, of the difficulties of understanding who and what a particular academic author is. They were firmly of the stance that putting your work out there, prior to publishing, was not a handicap; sharing work, whether it be new sources, draft writing, private databases, or something else, allows others to talk about it - and yes - to use it, but above all it enables open discourse. Most academic writers will cite work appropriately, hence the originator’s ‘ownership’ is protected. Few will deliberately steal. So, not sharing or sitting on work could be compared to closing a shop for fear of shoplifters – we all go hungry, and no profit is to be had. I recently finished my doctorate (a year or so ago). On doing so, my first action was to embargo my thesis whilst I looked for a publisher. My source materials, draft writing, and databases have been relegated to an external hard drive in the bottom of a drawer. Some of it, I hope, will form part of a published book; I have plans for other parts – articles, conference papers, blogs, etc., but a lot of it will, if I don’t share it, never see the light of day again. So how can I claim to advance knowledge, a tenet of doctoral study, unless I open up that drawer and start, albeit selectively, sharing? So, over the coming weeks, I will do just that – start sharing. I’ve already put two spreadsheets detailing harps sold and hired by the Erat Company (1821-1824) on my website – a blog on this site links to it. To this I will add spreadsheets of accessory sales (string boxes, music desks and stools, harp covers, tuning keys and forks, etc); I will also share three fantastic inventories which show how the Erat company changed between 1821 and 1824, and information about the materials used in the manufacture of single- and double-action harps. As I sort through some of my draft writing, it is likely that some of this will also go up on my website too. I hope that others in the field of organology, and particularly those researching harps, will consider sharing aspect of their work too, that this website will become a source for such material, and a place in which it can be discussed. Anyone want to join me?
1
2
65
Mike Baldwin
Jan 24, 2019
In General Discussions
It’s good to have you here! Feel free to share anything - stories, ideas, pictures or whatever is on your mind. Here you can start discussions, connect with members, reply to comments, and more. Have something to say? Leave a comment or share a post!
Welcome to the Forum! content media
0
0
34

Mike Baldwin

Admin
More actions