Knock on the sound body

All percussive sounds that can be produced on the harp's soundboard can also be played on its sound body.


The sound body can be knocked, struck, tapped or slapped with the knuckles, the palm of the hand, the fingers or the fingertips.


Percussive sounds produced on the sound body are very similar to the ones produced on the soundboard. They are however slightly less resonant, since the sound body is made of thicker wood than the soundboard.

There is only a minimal change in the sound according to where the body is hit. The tendency is that the lower the hit on the body, the greater the resonance.


All percussive sounds played on the harp's body should be notated with x-shaped notes between the two staves. See: percussive sounds on soundboard notation.

Verbal specifications or symbols should be used for clarification of which striking technique is wanted. The symbols should be explained in the legend of the composition. Currently, there are no standard symbols, except that a cluster sign is normally used for a slap or a hit with the palm of the hand.

The placement of the percussive sounds on the body can be shown by means of visual notation. A hit notated below the line means to hit the lower part of the body, while notation above the line means a hit on the higher part of the body. See: percussive sounds on the sound board: notation.