About Harp Brian

“. . . plays from the heart . . .”

Brian has studied harp with several teachers, incorporating elements from a variety of technical lineages including Reniť, Grandjany, and Salzedo. He performs with the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony and the Redwood Symphony. He enjoys giving recitals in private homes for small audiences, often via Groupmuse.

Brian holds the Doctor of Music degree in Organ Performance from Indiana University. He studied organ in Paris with the famous French organist Marie-Claire ALAIN and received a Premier Prix in organ from the Conservatoire National de Région after a year on scholarship from the French government. Click the images below to visit Brian's organ and carillon music website.

Also a carillonneur, Brian received the Final Diploma with great distinction from the Royal Belgian Carillon School after two years of study on a Fulbright-Hays grant. He won the silver medal in the 1990 Queen Fabiola International Carillon Competition in Mechelen, Belgium. In 1996 Swager was awarded a research fellowship in the Anton Brees Carillon Library at Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales, Florida, where he was in residence as a Carillon Scholar. He was Assistant Professor of Music and University Carillonneur at Indiana University where for nine years he taught carillon, piano, and organ, and played weekly recitals on the Arthur R. Metz Memorial Carillon. He is the carillon editor for The Diapason.

Brian Swager, D.M.


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When in death I shall calmly recline,
O bear my heart to my mistress dear,
Tell her it lived upon smiles and wine
Of the brightest hue, while it linger'd here.
Bid her not shed one tear of sorrow
To sully a heart so brilliant and light;
But balmy drops of the red grape borrow,
To bathe the relic from morn till night.

When the light of my song is o'er,
Then take my harp to your ancient hall;
Hang it up at that friendly door,
Where weary travellers love to call.
Then if some bard, who roams forsaken,
Revive its soft note in passing along,
Oh! let one thought of its master waken
Your warmest smile for the child of song.

Keep this cup, which is now o'erflowing,
To grace your revel, when I'm at rest;
Never, oh! never its balm bestowing
On lips that beauty hath seldom blest.
But when some warm devoted lover
To her he adores shall bathe its brim,
Then, then my spirit around shall hover,
And hallow each drop that foams for him.

"The Legacy" by the Irish poet, singer, and songwriter, Thomas Moore

updated: 25 JULY 2022