Harp Harmonics - Introduction

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Harp Harmonics - Soft Acoustic Harmonics

Welcome to the Harp Harmonics Tutorial! Here we will lean how to play harp harmonics as well as how to incorporate them into musical contexts.

Harp harmonics are played when a finger on your picking hand gently touches a string 12 frets above the note you're playing. It doesn't always have to be 12 frets above the note, but that is usually the most common as the 12th fret harmonics are the clearest in sound. In the tablature, you will see "hh" markings above the notes where harp harmonics are to be played.

Let's go ahead and try to play one. Let's say we want to play a harp harmonic for the open G string note. We'd then place our index finger gently above the 12th fret on the G string. At the same time, we'll need to hold the pick with our thumb and middle finger. Then once you pick the note, you'll need to simultaneously lift your index finger from the 12th fret. You should then hear a harp harmonic.

It is also very critical to note that your picking-hand finger doesn't need to put pressure on the string or fretboard. Just slightly touch it. We must have a very gentle touch in order for the harp harmonics to sound properly.

Once you're comfortable with the motion and you're getting a decent harp harmonic sound, start experimenting with other open strings. Then, try playing the notes of a chord using harp harmonics.