About Sandi

Frequently Asked Questions

How long have you been playing Celtic harp?

Since March of 1992. I’ve been making a living with the harp since approximately 2004.

Do you play other instruments?

Yes, I played piano and organ for many years and professionally before I even learned harp. I also played violin in orchestra in my younger years. I play a little African drums, harpsichord and guitar, as well.

How did you start playing harp?

I wanted to buy a 12-string guitar. When the salesman wouldn’t sell me one until I learned on a 6-string, I walked across the street and bought a 29-string harp instead. (It was my angel guides giving me a push!!) In retrospect, the salesman was wise. My guitar skills are still quite limited on a 6-string.

Is playing harp difficult?

Everyone asks this and I don’t know how to answer it. It’s individual depending on motivation and background. I believe that knowing how to play piano and reading music is quite beneficial and helps with quicker progression.

My best advice is to approach it the way one does yoga — with complete acceptance of one’s ability and skills at that moment, with joy and keeping an open mind to lessons other than just harp skills that can be gained through this practice. And PRACTICE is the key, of course.

Have you ever done anything besides music as a career?

Yes, I have long resumes as a mother, journalist and visual artist. I have two wonderful grown daughters, a degree in painting and printmaking and nearly 20 awards for my journalistic efforts.

What is your favorite “event” to play for?

Any day playing harp is better than doing any other kind of work, so I enjoy it all. I particularly like my work as a hospice harpist. Playing for the actively dying has a special place in my heart and soul. And by extension, any place where my music is used to soothe, reduce stress and tension, comfort and heal — even in corporate settings — is a favorite place.

Whatever the venue — wedding, luncheon, memorial service — I think of my playing as a service, rather than a performance. It is really not about me, but about the positive energy my music can contribute to the celebration or event. It’s about the client, not about me.

What is your favorite music to play?

Anything that sounds lush and correct on the harp. I have quite a large and eclectic repertoire. I’m particularly fond of minor keys. And, I confess to a little bit of prejudice against adapting country music for harp performance. Some of the popular music doesn’t translate as well, either.

How do you determine your standard rates for bookings?

My rates are formulated from the recommendations of the New Mexico Musician’s Union.

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