Andrew Garrett & Richard Clayson

Dear members,

Currently in my workshop, I’ve a very nice double manual harpsichord after Dulcken made by Andrew Garrett & Richard Clayson in 1978.

Can somebody provide me with some more background on these harpsichord makers? I already found this on the internet:

The harpsichord pictured in this article looks suspiciously the same as the one I now have in my workshop. But probably they made several series of the same instrument.

I didn’t find anything useful about Richard Clayson. I suppose he’s retired(?).

Have a nice week,


Dear Chris

You should refer to p99 of Wolfgang Zuckermann’s “The Modern Harpsichord”, where along with the discussion, you’ll find three pictures of their work, and a list of all their models.

Clayson & Garrett also appear on ten pages commencing p237 of John Paul’s “Modern Harpsichord Makers”.

These are two standard reference books which all makers should own.

Clayson & Garrett were also renowned for their Tuning Compass, a simple rotating tool detailing several popular temperaments.



From that obituary:

Andrew’s achievement in continuing the business after Richard’s tragically early death in 1987 was heroic. Both were active in hiring instruments and influential in establishing the use of historical temperaments in tuning.

I recall obtaining from them a most marvellous analog device, way before mobile phones, a plastic dial device they called a Tuning Compass. It had a few of the more common temperaments and you could turn the dial and the tempering between the fifths on the circle of fifths would show in the circular windows. Very clever and imgenious and useful. I lost it years ago, but amusingly recently I found a paper photocopy I made of the Werckmeister temperament.

[I see thet @hpschdNU has mentioned this simultaneously with my post.]

Something rather fine from them:

Hi Chris,

If you cannot find J Pauls book on Momox or ebay or anywhere else I can send you a scan of the pages, personal use as subject to copyright, surely. I remember purchasing this in about 1990, remaindered out at a London bookstore. I do assume you have W Z’s book!

Wood for sale: perhaps Monsieur Michaud in the Jura might be interested too, here’s his site:

Thomas Murach

04870 St Michel l’Observatoire

(33) 04 92 76 60 81