Not the first place you’d expect to see a harp – in the band.  This is Florence Welch, of Florence and the Machine.  Her band is one of many who are including harp.  (Lady GaGa is another…but nothing she does is surprising anymore)  I think this is a hopeful sign of the times: it’s all about collaboration.   Collaboration between artists – and most importantly, across genres, is the future of music.  As genres and styles adapt to include each other, I think the inherent elitism within set styles of music will break down, and a wider range of musical enjoyment and output is opened!  When everyone can stop having to defend their own music’s inherent “better-than-your-musicyness” then we can all have alot more freedom to enjoy our drive to listen.

The first collaborative concert I experienced was in high school.  The Grand Rapids Symphony combined with the  Grand Rapids ballet for a setting of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons with modern dance.  That alone was a step – but then on top of that they added a jazz quintet improvising throughout.  Edgy.  It was fantastic.  From that moment I’ve loved the idea of mixing it up.  Too bad Lady GaGa already found a harpist….

Here’s Dog Days by Florence and the Machine (watch for the harpist – in a hooded cape)


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