Monday, October 17, 2016

30 Days of Weird Instruments, Day 29 -- the Harpitar

Ahhh! Hybrid instruments!

In September of 1918, Popular Science featured R.E. Bates's creation, the Harpitar. Electric amplifiers would not exist until the 1930s, so Bates strung six strings over the body of a harp and made an instrument with the beautiful tones of the guitar and loud projection power of the harp.

It makes me wonder what he'd think of today's guitar pickups and amplifiers.

A modern version of the harpitar can be seen and heard in this wonderful video performance from musician, Andy McKee. The original didn't use a double neck like this one, so it's a great example of how the instrument evolved.

Tomorrow's instrument will be our final post in this series! I can't believe we're almost done!

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