Established March, 1993. Melody's is 31 this year!
Specializing in harp print music and downloads, harp accessories, strings and more. Choose from over 4000 titles.

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Robert “John” Gill 1955 – 2024

John passed away at home the morning of May 26, 2024 with his loving wife of 38 years, Mary, at his side. John fought a courageous battle with small-cell carcinoma for two years.

John was born in Galveston, TX on March 3, 1955 to Robert Hugh Gill and Patricia O’Brien Gill. He grew up in La Marque and attended La Marque High School. He participated in cross country, choir and diving. Then he got bit with the music bug and started playing in a rock band called Elijah Foxx with 3 of his classmates. After graduating he attended North Texas State College (now UNT) where he studied many subjects including accounting and French. While in college he also made coffee shop appearances singing and playing guitar as part of a duo.

John’s love of music resulted in the pursuit of a career in the arts by first owning a recording studio (Magic Rat Studio). After that he photographed bands and musicians, both classical and rock under the name of “John Gill Productions”. His revolutionary ways of staging backdrops and overlaying band and artist names on the promo photos made him a sought after entertainment photographer.

During one photography session for the North Houston Dance Theatre he was recruited by them. Diving deep into this new experience, he went on to play the lead role in the ballet, Coppélia, and both King Rat and Drosselmeyer in The Nutcracker. He also performed modern dance and jazz with the American Academy of Dance – Houston.

He married harpist Mary Radspinner in 1986 and they made their home in Cypress, TX. During that time John worked as a warehouse manager, did renovations on their house, and earned his private pilot license. In 1993 John and Mary opened a unique harp specialty store called Melody’s Traditional Music. The store was named after their beloved Afghan Hound, Melody.

John became the premier harp repairman in the state of Texas. His accounting training made him an outstanding store owner. He handled inventory, ordering, and all store details. He made friends with everybody, and especially enjoyed speaking with vendors, one of whom said, “it was always a pleasure to call Melody’s and get to talk to John. I can’t think of very many people who have left such a wonderful legacy.”

The store went on to become a world-class seller of print music for the harp. A secondary publishing business grew. John packed many a box of hundreds of titles which shipped throughout the US, Europe and Australia. He was a favorite of many harpists with his patience. He tied string knots and showed infinite patience to computer challenged individuals.

John (and Mary) devoted time to the rescue of Afghan Hounds and Golden Retrievers. They fostered and foster-failed many. In addition to Melody, he would want us to remember Mastafha, Einstein, Andy, Hank, Sir Flounder, Harry, Mendelssohn and Joey who no doubt joyfully greeted him on May 26.

Over the past 15 years, John reunited with high school friends to play guitar, bass guitar, and sing in a classic rock band called “Whiskey In The Decaf.” He also took up the cello, achieving Suzuki Level 5.

John was loved by many people because of his honesty, friendliness, and ability to converse on many topics. He was truly a gem who fell into the harp “fishbowl” and he embraced every minute of it. He will be greatly missed. Before his death, John acquired an extraordinary peace of mind when on April 1, Nick and Sue Pickus took over the ownership of Melody’s.

John was preceded in death by his parents, Robert and Patricia Gill. He is survived by his wife, Mary Radspinner, sisters Leslie Gill Biesiadecki, Linda Gill Johnson (David), brother James Paul Gill (Dana), nieces, nephews, many friends, colleagues and customers.

Thank you to all the wonderful caregivers who tended to John during the course of his illness. Special thanks to Steve Cole for his enduring friendship over the years.

A celebration service will be held on June 23rd at Brookside Funeral Home Cypress Creek, 9149 Hwy 6 N, Houston, TX 77095.

In lieu of flowers the family asks that memorial contributions be made to the John Gill Memorial Harp Scholarship Fund  https://www.gulfcoastharpers.com/donation-page/

or to Golden Beginnings Golden Retriever Rescue https://gbgrr.org/donate/

Downloadable Product Information

Here at Melody’s we offer a wide array of music books and accessories.  In the music book category, you may have a choice between PDFs (or MP3s) and paper books. If there is a choice, you are required to click either the paper version or PDF version before you can put an item into your cart. There should be no shipping charge for download music.  If there are physical products in your cart at the same time, your total will reflect shipping for those physical items.

Products that are download only will have a narrow blue banner toward the top of the description.   Products that are only available as physical/paper will not have a choice for you to make in order to add to your cart, nor will they have the narrow blue banner signifying download only.

After you check out, you are directed back to your receipt where you can download your music. Also, you will receive an email thanking you for your order with links that will take you to your downloads. Please add melodytradmusic@gmail.com to your approved e-mail list. If you do not receive an e-mail within a few minutes after you place your order, check your spam folder.

If you created an account with us, you can also find your downloads by going to “My Account” and clicking on the “Downloads” link.  We highly recommend that you create an account so that you can refer to your order history whenever you want.

Depending on your computer settings, when you click on your download link, 1 –  it may open automatically, 2 – it may go into your “downloads” folder, or 3 – your computer may prompt you to “save as”. 

If you have a problem with your downloads, please contact us at MelodyTradMusic@gmail.com  for assistance. Because our website contains so many titles, on occasion we have overlooked uploading a PDF here or there.  When you notify us of this, we make the correction immediately.  Please note that downloads are not “returnable.”

PDF DOWNLOADS

Depending on your computer settings, when you click on your download link, 1 –  it may open automatically, 2 – it may go into your “downloads” folder, or 3 – your computer may prompt you to “save as”.  If you can’t find your PDF, look in your “downloads” folder first.  The title of the PDF may not match the title of the book, so you may want to change the title to what you will remember. After you have located your download, please either remember that it is in your “downloads” folder, or better yet, move it to another folder on your computer with a name that you will remember.

Your respect of the copyright laws will help support the musicians and arrangers who created this music, and will encourage more harp music to be produced in the future. Please do not make multiple copies to pass on to others. You can help keep downloadable harp music viable and available by encouraging your students, friends, and relatives to purchase their own copies. Thank you for your assistance in this endeavor.

mp3 DOWNLOADS

On our website, folkharp.com, we offer a wide selection of paper and download music. We were always in a quandary about publications having several parts, or that include sound files. After realizing that we can place multiple files into one folder and “zip” it up, we are now able to offer book + cd options.

What we do: sound files and the PDF book are placed into a folder and zipped. The zipped folder is inserted into the product on the back end of the web site.

What you receive: after you purchase, you receive a zipped folder. This is a folder that literally has a picture of a zipper on it, indicating there is more than one document in the folder.

What you do with it: Generally by double clicking on the folder, it automatically opens up. The challenge lies in whether or not you have a program that unzips these folders. If you do, it is as simple as double clicking and the contents are revealed. Alternately, you can right click on the folder, which brings up choices, one of which is “open with” – you then click on your unzip program.

If you don’t have a program to unzip your files you’ll have a challenge! Recently I bought a small laptop for my zoom lessons. This laptop did not come with winzip, or any other kind of program that unzips these folders. The computer kept wanting me to purchase winzip for $29.  I found another program that does a great job, and it is free. 7-zip unzips all my compressed (zipped) folders! It is open source and you can find out more here:https://www.7-zip.org/

We hope all this information is helpful to you.

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