Having owned a three row chromatic nyckelharpa since May 2014, when I collected it from Olle Plahn in Falun, I was having a lot of fun getting to know the instrument.

I knew that at least one other type of nyckelharpa existed, since I had seen Olov Johansson playing one – the kontrabas nyckelharpa. This has a sound that is rather different to the three row harpa, and for me it is attractive.

It would be a bit expensive to buy a kontrabas – it’s not as though I NEED one – but it would also be a lot of fun to build one. So after a bit of research, and some consultation with Kjell Lundvall whom I had met at Halsway 2015, I was able to start planning.

My kontrabas won’t be a copy of either an old one in a museum, or a modern one made by a modern maker (though it will no doubt have a lot of the features of Kjell’s kontrabas instruments). I have several ideas I’d like to try, so it should be a lot of fun seeing if I can make one of these lovely instruments.