nyckelharpa strings

When we were in Sweden, I had forgotten to ask someone to bring some nyckelharpa strings to Österbybruk for my stock – I like to change the playing strings every year or so. I was going to ask someone to bring some over to Halsway in September, but duckduckgo-ing revealed that the String Zone now stock them. Excellent!

Here are videos from the Nyckelharpstämma that I’ve put on YouTube. Thanks Marwyn for doing the recordings, this time on a little Nikon Coolpix A10 which at present is our video camera.

It starts with the spelmanståg (players’ procession), this year with the two tunes Brännvinsmarschen and Harpar-Klas Gånglåt.

Once we reached the stage, the allspel was started by Peo Österholm on cowhorn – the “inblåsning”!

The allspel followed; here are a couple of tunes. An old favourite, Polska efter Båtsman Däck:

The allspel finished with an audience request – a tune not on the allspel list. It’s Eric Sahlström’s “Spelmansglädje” which is not (yet) in my repertoire so I chickened out:

It was great fun and I enjoyed it even more this year as I know the tunes better.

nyckelharpa and bow

One object of the trip to Sweden was to pick up a new nyckelharpa bow from Erik Arro in Uppsala. I had tried a couple of his bows (owned by Vicki Swan and Pete Rigg) and really liked them. It’s a real improvement on the one I have been using. Here it is sitting on top of my lovely Olle Plahn nyckelharpa.

We visited Älvkarleby whilst in Sweden so that I could see the clock tower immortalised in two tunes which Byss-Calle wrote to win a bet. “Byggnan” is still on my to-learn list, but I played “Klockstapelvalsen”; here’s the video.

Byss-Calle is probably turning in his grave at the fluffed notes, but hey, when in Älvkarleby standing next to the Klockstapel you have to go for it.

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