14

Actually it's the last 4 holes that produce the opposite effect you describe. I will explain why the original harmonica engineer set it up this way. First thing to note, is the harmonica was not originally intended to be an instrument used to play single notes. Had that been the case, the holes would be farther apart. Instead they are so close as to make ...


10

All flat notes are sharp or natural notes. Ab = G# Bb = A# (Cb = B) Db = C# Eb = D# (Fb = E) Gb = F# Or, to put it another way, any flat note you might want is covered by the four "settings" of a chromatic harmonica: no-side-key or with-side-key, each used with "blow" or "draw" (i.e. breathe-out or breathe-in). See this for a list of pitches when using ...


8

There are lots of ways to modify a 12-bar blues progression. I will narrow it down quite a bit because from your references to Led Zeppelin and Muddy Waters I gather that you're not so much interested in a jazz blues progression. Check out that site though, you'll find some inspiring variations on the 12-bar blues form. Some of the variations I'll mention ...


7

It is indeed in Bb. Which means to play in a bluesy way, you have to suck more than blow. Go up a fourth and there's your answer. An Eb harp, which, when sucked, will give notes akin to Bb9. To play an ordinary melody, you'll use Bb, the key it's in. To play blues, you need to be a perfect fifth above/ perfect fourth below your existing harp key. So, blues ...


7

In my opinion half an hour sounds perfectly normal. I suppose that is half an hour of constant playing? Most blues featuring harmonica do not call for it to be played continously but rather in a "call and response" fashion with the singer, or to take solos of limited lenght. I would say, after practicing any instrument constantly and vigorously for half ...


7

What key? A minor, see Richard's answer (and my comment) Which Harmonica to use Harmonica is a diatonic instrument designed to play simple major folk tunes, however that's often not the way it's used in the modern day. "minor harmonicas" do have some interesting applications, but they are a read herring to this question, for these applications what you ...


7

Both of the odd aspects of the tuning you've noted are caused by the same thing: Harmonicas are originally designed to play chords! It was basically built by 19'th century Germans to play polkas. And not necessarily just two or three notes at the time as you guessed, but possibly more! A harmonica in the key of C, as the one in your chart, was designed so ...


6

Although it seems straight forward and simple, this is actually a tricky question. The tuning you describe is simply standard tuning - except one whole step flat. Everything Bob Broadley said in his answer is theoretically correct with one minor glitch (for G to F) created by the harmonica makers. In the example you used for your guitar tuning, if you ...


6

For a guide to the 4 hole harmonica, I'd recommend you check out The Ultimate Miniature Harmonica Tunebook by Pat Missin. I haven't read it, but the author is very respected in the harmonica world. To answer your question: Yes! You can play all the 13 chromatic notes from your low C to your high C. (This might even be possible without overblows!) If you ...


5

YES. The easy way is on a C/T harmonica with a valve on the 5 hole. This will allow you to play chromatically in the mid range of the diatonic harp. The 5 hole will require a blow bend , giving you a full chromatic scale. If you valve the 2 hole for an additional blow bend you can play whatever you want. Works for me as I am a full time teacher, studio ...


5

All of the below assumes whatever you do will involve daily practice (at least half an hour but an hour is better) and study (of resources on how to play). You don't need a teacher to learn harmonica but if guitar is your first instrument then a teacher is highly recommended, and for violin almost everyone needs a good teacher to succeed. A diatonic ...


5

I went a bit down the rabbit hole with this one, I had some idea but in the end I ended up reading quite a lot about early chromatic harmonicas and diatonic harmonicas, so see if my ideas were in fact justified. I hope you'll excuse the long answer, but in my opinion it's all relevant to why the instrument is the way it is today, and imho it's pretty ...


5

You can open up a melodica. There are screws holding the back on. Once you're inside the cure may be obvious. But they're still for sale, and cheap. So don't waste too much time on it. http://www.melodicashack.com/melodica-care-and-maintenance


5

Let's take a standard diatonic harmonica in C. By blowing, 3 notes are produced. C E and G. That gives us the C chord. Drawing will produce the other notes in that key - namely D F A and B. By blocking one note,(B), a Dm chord can be produced, drawing on all will make a kind of G9, albeit with no root. That's about it for one harmonica. To a great extent why ...


5

Playing blues on a harp, drawing is the way to go. Blowing on, say, a C harp will give you the notes of that chord - C. So the blues notes, mainly, give the chord a fourth away - G. So, for a song in G, you'd need a C harp. To calculate what you need, know the guitar key, and count backwards 5, or more simply, forwards 4. As in, song's in A, use D. Song's ...


5

Ahh the Neil Young classic "Heart of Gold". That is the song that inspired me to learn to play harmonica and guitar at the same time. It's just not the same without the harp solo. Many folk songs are played in what's known as "first position" on the harmonica which is they key the song is in. Most blues are played in 2nd position which a 4th higher ...


4

http://www.bluesharmonica.com/blog_tags/taxonomy/term/1100 On any wind instrument spit is a fact of life. You will notice that larger wind instruments have a spit valve, and regularly empty it (sometimes on your shoes!) There really isn't a good way to keep your body from making more spit, and you want to shape your embouchure for good sound rather than ...


4

Standard tuning on the guitar is E A D G B E, from the lowest/thickest string (6) to the highest/thinnest (1). Therefore, tuning the guitar strings down to D G C F A D, from lowest to highest, will make them each exactly a whole-tone lower (the same as two semitones, or two frets, if you like). Therefore, playing the music on your detuned guitar, in the ...


4

There are a couple of problems. The harp is most likely diatonic, and has a major scale playable, with an octave - 8 notes- range. The song has a range of 10 notes, so the highest two COULD be played an octave lower, but it will sound strange. Another problem is that since it's diatonic, but the song is in a minor key, the bottom two notes in the song will ...


4

I think the confusion comes from the naming of the notes. In C major, the notes will be C,D,E,F,G,A,B and the next C. This gives all the notes you need diatonically to play in key C.With the button pressed in, you'll get the notes from C#. These are C#,D#,E#,F#,G#,A#,B#, and the next C#. This gives all the diatonic notes to play in C# (or Db , with different ...


4

It's going to depend a lot on what key you play the piece in. It's Cm in the original, which will not be too bad for you, as it modulates to C maj. When you blow 4 or 5 notes simultaneously, button out, you're playing C, E and G. Don't bother counting holes, just listen to the notes, and get them down to only 3 playing. These need to sound like the 1st 3 ...


4

I can't speak for what blues harp or penny whistle to use, but I can address the question of key: Pieces with progressions like Am--Dm--Am--E are unequivocally in the key of A minor. If you've ever heard the joke that "there are only three chords" in popular music, these are the exact three chords you're playing! In music theory parlance, we call this a i--...


4

Is there perhaps a technique I can use to lower the pitch of the E to Eb while blowing a C triad? No there isn't. For minor key chord stuff people tend to play chromatic harmonicas in D minor or Eb minor (and in that sense they become partially diatonic instruments). I saw a video the other day that I now can't find, of Jason Ricci playing a chromatic live ...


4

Diatonic harmonicas are capable of playing in multiple keys. This is done a few of different ways. The most common type of blues playing is called "cross harp," which involves using a harmonica in one key to play in a different key (usually a major fifth away). For example, it is common to use a C harmonica when playing blues in the key of G. You can also ...


4

If it's for a bluesy sound, the harp is usually a fourth above the played key. So, he plays a song in G, the harp needed will be a C harp. However, since he tunes down a semitone, the harp needs to go the same way. It needs to be in B. When he uses the open G tuned guitar, the far more common C harp is the choice. If it's a German made harmonica, you'll be ...


4

Generally, for blues, if guitar plays in C you would use an F harp. This is to get the Bb ("blue 7th"), otherwise known as Mixolydian mode. In general, you want the harp whose key is a perfect 4th above the key of the blues. So: For a E blues, an A harp For a D blues, a G harp and so on.


4

caveat: I'm not an expert, but I've learned a little bit from my grandfather. You can get the effect you want by puckering up to produce a really small hole, but you'll probably be better off in the long run doing either tongue-blocking or vertical slot. I was taught to play a single note using tongue-blocking, where you cover other holes using your tongue ...


3

A harmonica is set up, well, "harmonically". That would be rather tricky to reconcile when changing blow/draw orientation (man, it's worth having a bellows instrument just in order to be able to talk about push/pull instead) across octave changes. Now an octave has seven notes. If you are not going to change blow/draw when switching octaves, you have ...


3

If the harmonica had a plastic comb, you could simply soak the whole thing in lemon juice overnight. Old harmonicas which have pins or rivets typically have pear-wood combs however, and soaking them is not advisable. Rivets and pins are essentially the same thing. Rivets are hollow-tube pins. A two-part hollow tube would definitely be called a rivet, but ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible