top of page
Unique 'Harp Guitarist'
Concert & Recording Artist
"Masterful performance...the ability of the instrument to teleport the listener is breathtaking" (BritishTheatre.com)
"An amazing music experience"
(Andrew Knutt, Creative Innovation Center)
"A consummate musician"
"A truly amazing soundscape"
(BBC Radio Somerset)
"You want to close your eyes and let the music take you..."
Fine Times Recorder
"A sensitive and versatile player"
"The Master of the HarpGuitar..."
"I've never seen anything to match this!"
Old Theater Royal, Bath
Behold, the Harp Guitar! This very special instrument (that I designed myself) is available for Concerts and House concerts - for 'listening' audience events (e.g. not for background music).
For a truly unique listening experience I offer performances on an amazing and very rare instrument - a 23 string 'Harp Guitar.' This wonderful instrument has to be seen and heard to be believed!
Harp Guitars can have any combination of fretted and un-fretted strings and have been around for many centuries - longer than 6 string guitars in fact, and have a rich and varied but elusive history all across the globe.
They have a sound all of their own - bigger, richer and more resonant than any 'normal' guitar - and a wider range with lower sub-basses and higher super-trebles. The extra strings open up new worlds of musical possibilities and sonic scope.
This instrument has a normal 6 string guitar neck, but also 7 low 'sub-bass' strings (like a Theorbo) and 10 high 'super-treble' strings which sound a little like a zither.
I designed this modern incarnation of the instrument myself (inspired by other similar versions) and had it made by renowned UK luthier Stuart Mewburn - a lengthy and challenging process that took nearly 5 years, but that's another story...
I compose new and original music for Harp Guitar and that was my main reason for creating this instrument. As a composer I draw inspiration from people, events and places I have known and tend to write in a semi impressionistic way, often trying to capture the mood or spirit of a particular place or person.
I also play works by other Harp Guitar composers who have inspired me and also arrange existing guitar repertoire (Bach works well) and popular songs for it.
To hear how it sounds, have a look at these videos below.
Harp Guitar Videos
Harp Guitar videos
O'Carolan's Concerto, arr. by Jon Pickard
The Shepherd in the Temple - Fretless HG, by Jon Pickard
Lon Dubh (Blackbird), Trad. Arr. by Jon Pickard
Un Flambeau Jeanette, Isabelle / Three Ships, Trad.
"Stream of Intention" by Jon Pickard
"Festival" (John Dean), performed by Jon Pickard
"Liquid Moonlight" (Fretless Harp Guitar) by Jon Pickard
La Fille aux Cheveux de Lin (Claude Debussy), arr. J Pickard
"In the Garden of Dreams" by Jon Pickard
Londonderry Air (O Danny Boy) arr. J Pickard
"The Princess & The Walnut" by Jon Pickard
Down By The Salley Gardens (Yeates/Britten)
"St Patrick In The Spirit" (John Doan)
"Prelude / Ave Maria" J.S. Bach, arr. J Pickard
"Bonny Portmore" Trad. Irish. Arr. J Pickard
Herm Trilogy i. "St. Tugual's Retreat"
"Scallywag's Breakfast" by Jon Pickard
Herm Trilogy ii. "The Old Spine Road"
"Wayfarer On The Path To Holy Cross Abbey" (John Doan)
"Beating Heart" by Jon Pickard (Harp Guitar)
Herm Trilogy iii. "Tides At Alderney Point"
"Resting On Jacob's Pillow" (John Doan)
Interview for Frome FM
"Gazing On The Face Of The Sea" (John Doan)
Harp Guitar CDs
Harp Guitar CDs, by Jon Pickard
Please click the images below for more info / download / order page
This is my second Harp Guitar album, released in 2021. It is the result of a further 3 years learning, growing, and getting to know the Harp Guitar better.
I deliberately did not include any of my original music on this album, choosing instead to focus on arranging other tunes for Harp Guitar. This contains arrangements of piano music by J.S.Bach, C. Debussy, and a number of folk tunes.
Most notable is the inclusion of 5 tunes by master Harp Guitarist John Doan. These works are pure genius and are simply some of the best Harp Guitar music ever written (in my opinion). I do urge you to also listen to the original versions by John Doan himself.
Learning this album has really helped me to master more of the instrument's potential. I have performed most of these tracks live in concert many times over several years, and made videos (search youtube for titles), then recorded them all again fresh in October 2021.
Produced in 2018, this is my first Harp Guitar album. It is the result of 3 years learning, growing, writing and producing.
I recorded this whole album 3 times before I was happy with it, and before that spent months and years putting the compositions together so that you the listener can have the best possible experience.
It has been a process of gradual but constant change and 'morphing' for me as a musician as I get to grips with the new possibilities, challenges and scope of this incredible instrument. My musical brain now works a little differently than before, as do my fingers as they play.
I am now forced to think and practice in new ways, to try to make real some of the potential that this 'new' genre of Harp Guitar music offers. I say "new" but actually Harp Guitars have been around for centuries, when I finally got this one they were new to me as a player.
I am enthralled by Harp Guitars in general and hope to play some part in their ongoing future.
23 string Harp Guitar
bottom of page