Trim: 6¼ x 9½
978-0-7391-9819-3 • Hardback • January 2015 • $108.00 • (£83.00)
978-0-7391-9820-9 • eBook • January 2015 • $96.50 • (£74.00)
Alfredo C. Colman is associate professor of musicology and ethnomusicology at Baylor University.
Chapter One: A Personal Note
Chapter Two: A Musical Instrument, A Symbol of Identity
Chapter Three: The Setting
Chapter Four: Harps, Harpists, and Luthiers
Chapter Five: The Music of the Paraguayan Harp
Chapter Six: Traditional Music in the Discourses Surrounding Cultural Performances
Alfredo Colman’s book is written with great clarity, sprinkled with many technical notes in beautiful Guaraní, the language of Paraguay’s native people. His in-situ knowledge and personal experience are essential because, in Latin America, information about music for the ‘lower income masses,’ with the exception of ceremonial religious music, has always been rather scarce. . . .Tracing the use of the harp in Paraguay among the Guaraní people, in the Jesuit reductions, and into the contemporary moment of official recognition, Colman’s exposition is well supported by relevant evidence throughout, and this highly recommended book makes a strong case that the harp is deservedly one of Paraguay’s national emblems.
— Journal of Folklore Research
In the world of Latin American traditional music, the Paraguayan harp is a giant. For the past half century, its international prominence has far outstripped its homeland’s relatively small population of seven million. It has been adopted by musicians in virtually every country of the mainland Americas, and an authoritative account of its history and ascendancy is decades overdue. Paraguayan musicologist Alfredo Colman is the ideal teller of this story, a story filled with close encounters with pivotal personalities, origin myths unmasked, and the powerful potential of a musical instrument to represent a people.
— Daniel Sheehy, Curator and Director, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings