Indonesian Custom Harp Guitar Craze!

You all remember Iwan Hasan from Jakarta, I expect…he’s the one-time student of John Doan, who played his similar 1991 21-string John Sullivan harp guitar on the very first harp guitar compilation CD, Beyond Six Strings.

At left is a more recent concert appearance.

Last November, Iwan wrote me about the influx of a new generation of Indonesian harp guitars.  In just a few short months, these now number four – all custom instruments, and each by a different luthier!

This one is Iwan’s latest, the first harp guitar built in Indonesia, a solidbody acoustic-electric.  It was made made between 2008 and 2010 by Sulis and Wada, with piezo pickup by Bone Custom Gitar.  It has 21 strings with levers on the super trebles.

The first of the recent projects is this all nylon-strung, 18-string harp guitar built in Bandung, Indonesia by Zakki.luthier guitar workshop for Rene Nessa.

Here’s the first video…I’m not sure who’s playng in the video (Iwan, please let us know!).

In addition, there are two more unique Indonesian harp guitars that I believe are completed.  There is also a second Zakki with 16 steel strings (2 less subs) that appears here…I’m not sure if this is in addition to the instruments Iwan mentioned.

I’m hoping Iwan and these other builders and players chime in, so I can add them to this blog and their country’s ongoing harp guitar story!

  1. Iwan Hasan Says:

    Thanks Gregg! The person playing on that video is Zakki himself. Zakki is a fine guitarist. That nylon strung horp guitar actually in the USA right now, in the hands of it’s owner Rene Nessa, an Indonesian classical guitarist living in NYC, who comissioned Zakki to build it. The steel string Zakki harp guitar I believe belongs to Indonesian pop songwriter Bembi Noor.

    I am in the process of commissioning Zakki to build myself a nylon strung harp guitar too. It will be my third harp guitar. I plan it to be nylon strings with steel super trebles. And the usual sub basses of course.

    The other harp guitar was built by Wayan Tuges in the Indonesian island of Bali, and is owned by Arya Pratama. This one has sub basses only. Wayan Tuges may have built a few more at this point, but I am not sure.

    Thinks are getting exciting here!
    Regards,
    Iwan

  2. Arya Pratama Says:

    Nice Post !

  3. Stephen Bennett Says:

    Very cool!

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