The triple harp has obscure origins, in the eighteenth century; it has three rows of strings, the outer two in unision to each other, the middle for accidentals, making it a fully chromatic instrument. It was popular for a time throughout Europe, in art music as much as folk, but was later superseded by the pedal harp (which uses the pedal for accidentals). The triple harp lived on only in Wales, where it was extremely popular, and much cheaper and lighter than the new pedal harps. It became known as the Welsh national instrument in the nineteenth century
Born in Liverpool (the unofficial 'capital of North Wales', despite being in England), to Welsh-speaking parents, Robin learned simple celtic harp while at school, inspired by the Breton harper, Alan Stivell. He was first exposed to the triple harp by the brothers Dafydd and Gwyndaf Roberts who played the instrument with the traditional Welsh group Ar Log. They had learned from Nansi Richards, the last of the Welsh gypsy harpists, and he in turn learned from them. He played locally for serveral years, and joined the Welsh traditional group Mabsant in 1986, toured and recorded with them for two years and then set out on his own. Since then he has played solo and with the vocal duo Cusan Tan, with whom he currently tours.
In a linked strand, he worked for some years at the Welsh National library. While there he discovered several old collections of Welsh tunes and arrangements for harp. He set up his own press, Gwasg Teires (Triple Harp Press) to publish this material, one of the only current sources for traditional Welsh music; his book of two hundred hornpipes, Tro Llaw, mostly from this archives was published by the Welsh National Library.
1995 Harp Music of Wales Saydisc 412 1994 Hela'r Draenog (Hunting the Hedgehog) Teires 1988 Cyfarch Y Delyn (Honour the Harp) Sain 600 1991 Telyn Berseiniol Fy Ngwlad Teires/ (The Sweet Harp of My Land) Flying Fish FF70610 with Cusan Tan: 1992 Cusan Tan (Kiss of Fire) Fflach with Mabsant 1987 Trwy'r Weiar (Through the Wire) Sain
CD Universe sells two of his albums online.
Copyright (c) 1994,1997 Ceolas.