Hi, I'm John Lozier. I call myself a harper for harmony. I say that anyone who touches the strings of a harp adds harmony to the universe. Therefore, every harper is a harper for harmony. That's the meaning of the ancient inscription: when all have touched my strings, the world will be in harmony. In the diverse world of folk harps, my personal focus is on the Latin American traditions that are little-known outside that region.
After a lifetime of different roles and careers (among them anthropologist, small businessman, bureaucrat, agricultural educator, father, and grandfather), my calling in retirement is to be a harper for harmony, and my personal mission to promote harmony and community, locally and globally, through harp music. (I am also a K-12 substitute public school teacher, teaching Spanish and other subjects in Monongalia County, West Virginia.)
It was in Venezuela, in 1991, that I first encountered the harp as a folk instrument. I was immediately hooked. Following the example of my friend John Kovac, I began building small harps from scratch. In 1994, I took six small harps to El Salvador, where I commissioned local artists to decorate them. I took some home, like the one in the picture, and left some behind. I was in El Salvador with Companion Community Development Alternatives, assisting with reconstruction after their civil war. That same year, I started Harping for Harmony Foundation, inspired by a fine potter and friend, Stephen Earp, who had spent time in Nicaragua with Potters for Peace. The vest shown in my picture returned with me from Guatemala, where I traveled a few years later.
Harping for Harmony Foundation is a 501(c)(3) exempt charity in the State of West Virginia, established in 1994. Donations are tax-deductable. FEIN 550746741.