We took what we knew to make well - our regular Rabach jaw harp and made it longer, bigger, better, tuned it one octave lower and the result is just amazing instrument - not only according to our immodest opinion, but also according to reviews of proffesional players and teachers Petr Jasincuk and Wolf Janscha. You can find the Bass Rabach in our e-shop.
I first bought a Sesulka Jakutic in C2, which is the pitch I try out first in a set, and I liked it. The black finish wears with handling to a more steely shade and the instrument is neatly made with a spring geometry that makes it stable in torsion, useful in an instrument that has a fine interval between arms and leaf. It generates a satisfying sound with a full, warm texture which carries over well in both sustain and muted playing. The balance between undertones and overtones is good, as is the balance in feel, between stiffness and flexibility.
My only reservation was that the set did not represent my preferred end of the tonal scale, the original series running only from C2 to C3 whereas I like a set to run from C1 at the very least.
When I subsequently purchased an example of the Jakutic in A1 tuning I was pleased to also receive the gift of an example of a possible new type, a slightly heavier framed, stiffer springed version of the Jakutic, also in A1.
The only problem I have with these is that I like both of them, but after playing around with them for a while, I came to a conclusion of sorts.
The original Jakutic A1 is noticeably lighter and more delicate in feel than the C2 and correspondingly less robust in timbre: it represents a trend of limiting the frame size and relies upon thinning the spring to lower the pitch, making the low registers in a set progressively weaker.
Consequently if we think in terms of grading the instruments as a set, the stiffer new-type Jakutic A1 feels and sounds more closely related to the C2, whereas the older A1 feels and sounds more delicate.
Although I like the delicacy of the original Jakutic A1, I like the authority of the stiffer new version much more. This new type represents an interesting addition to a small but useful range of top quality jaw-harps and I wait with interest to see how the lowest tones are achieved.
Rod Parsons 18/3/15
During the past winter we spent time on developing a new harp. The feedback from many players and valued customers brought us to realise that there is interest in a larger harp and in lower pitches.
We sourced some new materials and explored other options involved in building these harps.
At first glance they might look just like a slightly adjusted version of the old Jakutic, but it represents a little more than this.
The difference will be recognised when the harp is played. I was amazed at the length and colour of the sound when playing a prototype for the first time.
Thanks to the stiff spring and heavier frame we are able to make instruments in a very low pitch with a relatively short stroke
The lowest key we offer is C1(33Hz).
These harps in the range from C1 to C2 perfectly complement the existing Rabach and Jakut collections.
See the new item in the e-shop.
In September we had the pleasure of meeting Neptune Chapotin, a great jaw-harp player, traveller and an altogether nice and interesting personality. Neptune visited Ivancice during his trip through Europe. It was a pleasant afternoon with Neptune giving me a basic lesson in playing the harp. And with time spent just talking about things jaw-harp related.