Dave plays his original harp guitar composition, “Black Walnut” on an S-12 harp guitar in this video. This tune is also available to purchase/download on iTunes and Google Play and was originally released in 2017 on the album “Tonedevil Bros. & the Fiddlers 3″
In the video Dave’s pink fingernail was because of a practical joke by his girlfriend. He didn’t remove the color before filming because it turned into an experiment to see if it was better or worse for concentrating. The outcome of that experiment is still to be determined.
“I composed this piece while playing the first black walnut back and side harp guitar we made at the Tonedevil shop. Our first shop was on Superior St. downtown Sandpoint, Idaho where we made our first 30-40 instruments in the first year and a half. We refined our harp guitar design and built our first molds and side bending jigs to produce what is now the S-12 Symphony harp guitar. The first few were Sitka spruce tops with mahogany back and sides. We purchased all the wood only a block away from the shop at Trader’s Building Supply. Bob was the owner at that time and he had some airplane grade Sitka in stock we promptly made into guitar tops. He kept African mahogany in stock as well which was nice when were were starting up so we didn’t have to go far to get materials. At some point we ended up with some black walnut and made the first S-12 using it and it had such a magical sound. Hearing the difference between mahogany and walnut was eye opening. That was the main inspiration of this tune, but of course the other half of the inspiration came from a Kottke melody i just now had to look up which one. It was “Peg leg,” off his live album. I definitely borrowed the intro and shaped it to have harp notes but let the structure of the chords go to a different place entirely. I think of this tune as more of an exercise for the harp guitar which is why i tabbed it. Now new players can learn it and develop some more integrated bass notes into their finger-style harp guitar playing.” -Dave