Autoharp Facts – Shop for Autoharps and Accessories

Autoharp Facts

Autoharp Facts

Here’s one of the most interesting autoharp facts. Despite the name, an autoharp isn’t a harp at all. It’s actually a chorded zither.

How does it work? A series of chord bars are attached to dampers. When the chord bars are depressed during play, strings are muted to form the desired chord. Modern autoharps usually have 36 or 37 strings. Some have as many as 47 strings, and a rare 48-string model also exists.

In the United States, the autoharp often provides rhythm in bluegrass and country music. However, skilled chromatic players can perform a range of melodies on the instrument.

More Autoharp Facts

Fun Fact
A person who performs on this string instrument is called an autoharpist.

Notable autoharpists include Basia Bulat, Billy Corgan (The Smashing Pumpkins), Sheryl Crow, Brian Jones (The Rolling Stones), Janis Joplin, Linda McCartney, Dolly Parton, John Sebastian (The Lovin’ Spoonful), and Joni Mitchell.

Mother Maybelle and the Carter Family

The autoharp was a favorite with the historic Carter Family, including Maybelle Carter, her cousin Sara Carter, and her daughters Helen Carter and June Carter Cash. The Carter Family adopted an upright style for playing that was developed by Grand Ole Opry star Cecil Null.

Maybelle Carter’s granddaughter Carlene carries on the family tradition today, performing onstage as well as on her recordings. Carlene’s 1990 song “Me and the Wildwood Rose” was dedicated to her grandmother Maybelle Carter.

Maybelle Carter

Wildwood Pickin’
Listen with Unlimited Streaming

Wildwood Pickin Maybelle CarterWildwood Pickin’ Maybelle Carter

Listen to the Autoharp

Solo by “Mother” Maybelle Carter

The legendary Johnny Cash introduces his mother-in-law Maybelle Carter on the February 25, 1970 episode of “The Johnny Cash Show.” The musical piece is called “Black Mountain Rag.”

We Love Autoharps

Shop for the Best Music Gifts

Autoharp Facts

Click Here to See More Music Gift Ideas

Find an Autoharp Online

Oscar Schmidt 15-Chord Autoharp

Product details:

  • Handcrafted quality
  • Maple body
  • Rock maple pin block
  • 15 chords
  • Sunburst gloss finish
  • An extremely easy to play instrument
  • Fun for the whole family
  • 5-year warranty

Oscar Schmidt 15-Chord AutoharpOscar Schmidt 15-Chord Autoharp

Shop for Autoharps and Accessories

Autoharp Deals Online

Keep an eye on this automatically updating gallery of autoharps and accessories available on eBay. Find bargains on all kinds of stringed instruments including autoharps.

Explore String Kings Music

Autoharp FactsAutoharp FactsAutoharp Facts

1 comment for “Autoharp Facts – Shop for Autoharps and Accessories

Comments are closed.