Pedal or Lever Harp

Teach Yourself to Play the Folk Harp by Sylvia Woods

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  • Book
  • $15.95
  • PDF Download
  • $15.95
  • Companion CD
  • $8.95
  • mp3 Download
  • $8.95
  • DVD
  • $54.95

For lever or pedal harp.

Teach Yourself To Play The Folk Harp is the most popular beginning book for people of all ages who want to learn to play the harp. This book teaches the student step by step how to play the harp. Each of the 12 lessons includes instructions, exercises, and folk and classical pieces using the new skills and techniques taught in the lesson. It is an excellent book for any student, regardless of previous musical training. 44 pieces all in the key of C, with no sharping levers required. Fingering and placing brackets included. 80 pages. The book is spiral-bound.

In this 30th Anniversary edition (2008), Sylvia Woods has updated the introductory and appendix pages of this well-loved book. If you have a previous edition of the book, click here and follow the links to print PDFs of all of the newly revised pages. The companion cassette, CD, video, and DVD are all compatible with ANY copy of the book, as the music has stayed the same throughout the various editions.

Click here to watch 5 video excerpts from the 1 hour and 40 minute DVD.

Buy two or more Teach Yourself to Play the Folk Harp products and receive a 10% discount.
Buy three or more Teach Yourself to Play the Folk Harp products and receive a 15% discount.
Your shopping cart will automatically reflect these lower prices.

Companion CD or mp3 downloads

The companion CD or mp3 downloads will assist harp players learning the pieces in this book. Since many of you will want to "play along" as you are learning, Sylvia has recorded most of the pieces slower than they are usually played, and as "straight" as possible, with little or no expression or rhythmic variations. The pieces are in the same order as in the book.

All the mp3 tracks have been zipped into one very large file that you will download to your computer once your order has been completed. This zipped file is very large, and may a few minutes to download and open on your computer. You may need to unZIP the files before you can listen to them.

DVD

In this informative companion to the "Teach Yourself to Play The Folk Harp" book, Sylvia Woods gives helpful hints and instruction as she plays the pieces in the book. This is an excellent way to see "how it should be done," and receive helpful advice from Sylvia. This wonderful teaching tool is available in DVD format which can be viewed on a DVD player in your computer or TV. The DVD is 1 hour and 40 minutes long, and follows the book, lesson by lesson. Click here to watch excerpts from the DVD.

Lyrics

Sylvia Woods has included the lyrics in most of her books of songs, because it is fun to be able to sing-along (at least in your head) while you are playing. However, some of her earliest books, including this one, did not include the lyrics. You can download and print a FREE PDF of these lyrics.

We are selling this music in a variety of formats:
  • The Book, Companion CD, and/or DVD will be mailed to you
  • You will download the PDF and/or mp3 files to your computer.
  • Please order the versions you prefer.

  • Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star
  • Yankee Doodle
  • Go Tell Aunt Rhodie
  • Lavender's Blue
  • Are You Sleeping?
  • The Water is Wide
  • White Choral Bells
  • Long Long Ago
  • Country Gardens
  • Allemande
  • Joy to the World
  • Blue Bells of Scotland
  • Minuet (Bach)
  • All Through the Night
  • Robin Adair
  • Ode To Joy (Beethoven)
  • Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes
  • Planxty George Brabazon (O'Carolan)
  • Scarborough Fair
  • The Grenadier and the Lady
  • My Love is Like A Red Red Rose
  • Searching for Lambs
  • Greensleeves (What Child is This)
  • Planxty Irwin (O'Carolan)
  • Trip to Sligo (Lark on the Strand)
  • Minuet (Bach)
  • Farewell
  • The Christ Child's Lullaby
  • Cherry Blooms (Sakura)
  • St. Anthony's Chorale (Haydn)
  • Lullaby
  • Johnny Has Gone For A Soldier
  • Flow Gently Sweet Afton
  • Theme from the New World Symphony (Dvorak)
  • Cockles and Mussels
  • Au Clair de la Lune
  • Shenandoah
  • Gilliekrankie
  • Ash Grove
  • Wild Mountain Thyme
  • Minstrel Boy
  • Southwind
  • Sheebeg Sheemore (O'Carolan)
  • Jesu Joy of Man's Desiring (Bach)

Reviews

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Starting Out
By Daniel Patterson
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Teach Yourself to Play The Folk Harp Book, is an excellent teaching book. I am a self taught harpist from this book, and I was able to develop my skills very quickly through the exercises. I also recently started taking lessons, and all of the folk harp teachers in my area use this book in their lesson plans. I would reccomend this book to anyone wanting to learn how to play the harp, even if you are taking lessons, this book will only help you progress further.


Teach Yourself to Play the Folk Harp DVD
By Deva Kolb
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More than 30 years I have dreamed of owning a harp and learning to play. Finally my dreams are coming true. I now live in a small town with no harp teachers. I stay home everyday to care for an elderly, Alzheimer's mother. Now that I have a harp, I just have to figure out how I am going to learn it. Sylvia Woods has answered my dream with this DVD tutorial! It is better than having a harp teacher. She is so clear and organized that even I (with not music background and unable to read music) can easily follow her step-by-step guidance. I can replay the parts I need as many times as I need. I can play anytime of the day or night. So many years of tears and prayers have at last come true and this DVD is so far superior to anything I had imagined it would be like (or COULD be like). I sat and watched the whole DVD twice and kept saying out loud, over and over, "I can do this!" Sylvia, thank you for all the time it must have taken to write and record this DVD so that your instructions are so inspirational. I feel like you are standing in front of me, actually teaching me to play the harp! I am a very happy woman now. There is a God and she is wonderful!


We did it!
By D.C.
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Teach Yourself to Play the Folk Harp is a wonderful resource for anyone starting out. Both my daughter and I used this book for several years as we learned. She eventually took lessons for a couple years, but I am self taught. It still remains one of our favorite books.


You can play!
By Elena Bittasi
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I am a pianist, but harp has always been a dream for me. Finally, some months ago I purchased a Dusty Strings Ravenna and I began to look for a teacher. I live in Italy and here celtic harp teachers are very very few, like pandas in bamboo forests. What could I do? I found your Website and I sent an E-mail. You suggested to me Sylvia's method and some others lovely books of yours and now... I can play!


If it weren't for this book...
By Michelle
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If it weren't for this book, I'd never have learned to play the harp at all. I purchased the "Teach Yourself" book, video, and cassette set about ten years ago when I purchased my first harp. I was 17 or 18 years old and knew (to some degree) how to read music from music class at school, but had never played a "real" instrument before. The book enabled me to enjoy my new harp from the very first day. When I was about three quarters of the way through with it, I began taking lessons with a teacher in my area; she was a classical pedal harpist and was not previously familar with the series, but I remember her being quite impressed with how much I had learned on my own in just a few months. "Teach Yourself" is perfect for people (like myself) who are self-motivated and like self-paced instruction. Although there's probably no substitute for personalized lessons with a teacher, this series is great for starting out, especially in cases like mine where the hurt of the initial harp investment made paying for lessons right from the start impossible. In fact, I'm rather glad I didn't pay by the hour to have someone teach me the basics that I so easily learned from Sylvia's book- priceless!


My Harp Journey
By Susan Jayne White
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My husband John bought me an Evensong therapy harp two years ago along with "Teach Yourself to Play the Folk Harp" book. I had been wanting to play the harp for some time. I proceeded to embark on what has been one of the most rewarding journeys of my life! I found the book helped one to progress very satisfactorily. I am a trained oboist and it's very exciting for me to be a beginner on another instrument again! If I didn't have a music background, I would have purchased the video as well. I highly recommend Sylvia's book to anyone who wishes to begin their harp journey!


Teach Yourself to Play the Folk Harp
By Karen Piper
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Simply put, this book is the BEST. It's been at least 15 years since I have done any "music reading" and I thought I remembered most of it... ha ha! Not only does this book refresh what I remembered, Syvia Woods has an uncomplicated manner of explaining what each and every note/rest/etc. means and why! My harp lessons began just one month ago and when I cannot be with my teacher this book is(without a doubt)the next best alternative. After reading the introductions please know how much your early" efforts in creating this book are appreciated. I am so glad you have continued to publish this wonderful item."


You really CAN teach yourself
By Lawrence Ingalls
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I was dubious of learning to play any instrument from a book after not having touched a piano for almost 40 years. It had been so long I had to re-learn to read the base clef. This book is wonderful. I STRONGLY recommend getting the company DVD as well. It adds a whole different dimension to the material. Some songs are harder than others (as she says on the DVD) so just stick with them or even skip over them and go back to them later. You really can teach yourself how to play the harp!


an excellent starter
By Eric Bryan
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This is an excellent starter book! Having learned a few different instruments over the years, I can say without hesitation that this is the most enjoyable beginner book I have used. The variety of tunes and skill progression makes for an enjoyable learning process, and I was able to get started on my own, before I had found a teacher. This book should be top on any beginning harpist's list!


a winning choice
By CHRISTINE REMONT
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excellent book, you can find anything you want when you are a beginner harpist. Easy to understand, easy to learn and growing very fast, being able to play rapidly nice pieces of music. thanks for making this available


Not everyone has this book?
By Natalie Wagner
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This was the first book my teacher asked my mother to get me so I could get started learning on my little lap harp. I've had it since I was eleven years old. When I found out that not everyone had this book I was in shock. It was such a vital part of me learning to play I found it impossible to believe anyone could learn without it! If you want to learn to play the folk harp, read music, and expand your beginner's repertoire then get this book.


Not just for self learners!!
By Jeane Jaramillo
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I am so glad I purchased this book!! I didn't think I needed this book since I take lessons with a teacher. How wrong I was!! This book is the perfect companion to lessons. I love being able to go over the material at my own pace and review it as often as necessary for this older beginner. Sylvia has such a wonderful way of explaining concepts.. I find myself saying "well.. what's so hard aboout that??!!" And I love the songs she has chosen for this book... it is very satisfying to play real music from the beginning. It sounds so much more complex than it is!! Which is great encouragement for me. I know I will be using this book for quite a while as I continue on my harp journey. I also purchased the DVD... which is awesome. Again... Thank you Sylvia... you answered all the questions a new harper has when beginning this fabulous instrument...


Love the DVD!!
By Jeane Jaramillo
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I love this DVD!! This DVD along with the book have provided me with invaluable information and tips... which is making my harp learning journey so much more enjoyable. I love the video closeups of Sylvia's hands to see how everything is supposed to look.. and how everything is supposed to sound as well... she seems to understand how challenging learning to play can be for a beginner and gives lots of encouragement along the way... letting you know you are on the right track... Thank You Sylvia... it's the next best thing to having you right beside me....!!


Sylvia taught me how to play the HARP!
By Dwight Miller
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I have been teaching myself how to play the harp and have thoroughly enjoyed learning from Sylvia's wonderful book! I am a disabled Navy vet and have enjoyed learning how to play my harp! It has inspired me and allowed me to be able to encourage others who are interested in the harp! I have taught several classes at SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism) events and have loved hearing from my students how they love playing the harp and how well I taught the class!! If you have never played the harp and want to learn then BUY THIS BOOK!


Excellent resource!
By Elanee Smythe
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This book has been a great resource to me, as I have been learning harp. I enjoy the pieces in the back of the book, and find the hand position and technique aspects of the book to be very helpful!


Great Fun!
By Scott Ashby
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When I began the piano, all the beginner songs were the awful typical 'Chopsticks' ""songs"".. but when starting the harp with this book..wow, These pieces are beautiful and even for advanced harpists, its great fun!


Teach Yourself book and DVD
By Sue
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I am sure I have dies and gone to harp heaven! I am at the very beginning of my harp experience and Sylvia's Teach Yourself to play the folk harp book and DVD are a God send. I have already shared them with a close friend who is also starting to learn. I have a wonderful teacher, who also uses these tools. Last year this friend asked my husband to build her a small, Celtic 22-string harp, which he did. And he didn't stop at one. He has built 13 so far. He has also built two 34-string harps and he is in love with the music. So am I. It appears to be reaching epidemic level in Camden, SC!!! The book and DVD is so inspiring to me. Thank you for providing this invaluable study aid. I can't wait to send you a recording of me playing one day soon!


learning to play the harp
By Clinton Erickson
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Although, I have taken 247 lessons from a harp teacher in the past. The teach yourself harp lesson book and vhs video was helpful to, what I bought from you, 5 weeks ago, I have learned a lot from it.


LISTEN TO SYLVIA!!!
By Rich Anderson
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After a lifetime of loving harp music, I decided to finally take action and undertake study of the harp. I got this book and subsequently bought a Dusty Strings Allegro from Sylvia. I started through the lessons, and soon got a little weary of Twinkle, Twinkle and Yankee Doodle. Being the stubborn old geezer that I am I wanted to play longer and more interesting pieces. So I bought more music (particularly because of Sylvia's Harp Essentials program), but found that even pieces that looked simple were beyond my grasp. The reason was that I had not yet conquered the fundamentals that Sylvia provides you in a very logical and methodical manner with this book. The related DVD is also exceptional. So I am going back to square one and doing things the RIGHT way. I have also started doing Skype lessons with her. Do not let her serious demeanor on the DVD or on her harp demonstration videos put you off. When you speak with her on the phone or in a Skype lesson, she is an absolute blast! She promised me this would be FUN and it was. I gained so many new insights in just a 30-minute lesson. So as the headline of this review says, listen to Sylvia. And when it comes to anything harp related, Sylvia is ALWAYS right. I feel so fortunate to have started my harp journey with her.


Great Teaching Combo...
By WA
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I've loved this instrument ever since I heard and saw one when a friend's aunt took she and I to our first ballet! I finally reached a point in my life where I would be able to live my dream and learn to play the harp!! My hubby bought me a "Harpsicle" beginners harp to start with. Consequently, that's when I began to search for "at-home study courses." That search produced "Sylvia Woods" web site and as I read the description decided to give it a go and I have not been disappointed! This course is so complete in my unprofessional opinion. I bought the book, CD and DVD. I have managed to put together several components to my learning process which include Sylvia Woods' products that enable me to enjoy, what I believe to be, a well rounded music learning experience. A least until I have the time to invest in and can afford lessons with an actual instructor.


Best harp beginner book ever!
By Candace Coates
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I bought this book over twenty years ago when I started playing the harp myself. The instructions are clear and concise. The best part is that there are a variety of tunes in each chapter to choose from. I continue to use this wonderful book all these years later. I based my two successful school harp programs on this book. One program was for a private school and the other for a community college. Every one of these students are now becoming the best harpers that they can be.


I love your arrangements, Sylvia
By Sheila J Seaman
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i was gifted my Salvi Harp for my 70th birthday, best gift ever! I have bought many many arrangements and books composed by Sylvia Woods and I love them. I find I am able to learn the music with practice and I love her spiral book style which opens and turns so easily on my music stands. Whenever I buy from other artist, they take second place to Sylvia's arrangements. Thank you so much. I've wanted to play the harp all my life and now I am doing it daily.


Best teach yourself program ever!
By Chiara Katzin
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I love this book! It is very informative and does not move on too quickly. I also have your DVD, and I love it. Thank you!

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