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Celtic and beyond: Duo plays traditional, original music on unusual instruments

Lisa Lynne and Aryeh Frankfurter are living the farm life, only without any animals.

The musicians are on tour so often that having animals would create a big obstacle.

“So we’ve turned our farm into a musical farm,” Lynne says in a recent phone interview. “We’re in between two hip towns in Oregon. We host concerts and put on events. We hope to transform the farm into a performing arts center.”

Lynne and Frankfurter are a Celtic harp and multi-instrumentalist duo.

Both have a background as progressive rock musicians who later discovered a love for Celtic, Renaissance and Swedish music on unusual acoustic instruments.

Lynne says they perform as a duo and are sometimes are joined by legendary harpist and storyteller Patrick Ball for special concerts.

The duo will have four concerts in New Mexico this week.

“Aryeh and I have been performing as a duo for over a decade, as well as other groups,” she says. “We have found that with all of our instruments, we were carrying two harps. Our concerts are a mix of traditional and original songs. We also tell stories which are a presence in the show. Of course, there are certainly stand-alone musical pieces.”

Lynne has a long history in music and has more than 15 albums under her belt.

She is widely acclaimed for composing music on the Windham Hill/Sony music labels that have repeatedly placed in the Top 10 & Top 20 on the Billboard New Age music charts.

Frankfurter is a renowned Celtic harper and multi-instrumentalist who went from virtuosic progressive rock violin to intricate Swedish folk and Celtic music. He began with classical violin at age 3 and has studied music throughout his life. He has 17 albums to his credit, works on film and television scores as a composer and arranger, and continues to teach himself to play a variety of instruments, most recently the rarely seen Swedish nyckelharpa.

She says that when the two work on music together, it’s a simple process.

“I wrote more of the original music,” she says. “Aryeh is more the arranger of traditional music. His passion is finding traditional music and bringing it to today’s world. I’m known more for my original compositions on Celtic harp. We have jam sessions, and usually something comes out of that. It’s being in front of people performing that we enjoy the most.”