Dirty-South Blues Harp forum: wail on! > Easy Chrome Tunes?
Easy Chrome Tunes?
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Lonesome Harpman
218 posts
Nov 09, 2018
8:26 AM
I want to perform a chromatic tune with my band. I'll want to sing it as well. Any suggestions for tunes that will impress the band enough to want to play them, and of course, entertain the audience. I should say it should be an easy one, not a lot of button?
1700 posts
Nov 09, 2018
9:13 AM
If it's a C chrom,anything in Dmin would work.It's very much like playing 3rd position on a diatonic. It can sound very good-with no button push.
Lonesome Harpman
219 posts
Nov 09, 2018
9:24 AM
Thank you Tuckster, I want to perform a chromatic tune with my band. I'll want to sing it as well. Any suggestions for tunes that will impress the band enough to want to play them, and of course, entertain the audience.
1701 posts
Nov 09, 2018
10:25 AM
Can't think of any off the top of my head,but LW's chrom playing is fairly simple. (I can't believe I'm saying that about LW!)

P.S. If you want to get a little blusier,3B with the button in is the b5. A lot of players use that as their one button push.

Last Edited by Tuckster on Nov 09, 2018 10:29 AM
35 posts
Nov 09, 2018
12:15 PM
You can do a whole set with the chrom. If you wanna play and sing, I'd recommend "I'm Ready", "I Just Want to Make Love to You", "Crazy Mixed Up World", George Smith's "Walk On a Limb", Rod Piazza's "No More Pretty Presents", Kim Wilson Version of "5 Long Years", Jr. Wells' "In The Wee Wee Hours", Carey Bell's "That Spot Right There" and many, many others.
2734 posts
Nov 09, 2018
2:46 PM
St. James Infirmary ( we do it in Am and I use a G chrom), 23 hours too long, it's in Dm and I used a C chrom.
Carey Bell did some great stuff on chrom on his Tough Luck album.
I recently added a D low tuned chrom to my kit and it works well on songs in Em.

If you can play 3rd position on a diatonic you are really just an inch from doing some cool stuff with a chromatic.

We've been working on some more roots/rock stuff that a chrom in 1st works well. Comfortably Numb and Bowie's Seven come to mind as well as ELP's Father Christmas.

I don't use the slide at all, never have.
Music and travel destroy prejudice.



2735 posts
Nov 09, 2018
2:47 PM

Last Edited by jbone on Nov 10, 2018 4:08 AM
John M G
274 posts
Nov 10, 2018
3:44 AM
"I'm Ready" is a great song to do with some great lyrics and a good hook, no button required.
I've got a big thing going for George Harmonica Smiths "Roaming" but if you do it in his original key you'll need a Bb chromatic unless you change the pieces key from C to D so you can then use a C chromatic. They say George did this using a C chromatic (good luck with that! you'll need to be an advanced button pusher to carry that off) but very doable in 3rd position if you change the key to D.
I've also been putting a some work into Big Dave and the Ultrasonics "Letter From St. Louis" which does require a bit of button work, but not a lot. It's been my introduction piece that uses the button. It's a great track. Dave Morris is the harp player.

The final one, no button pushing, but you'll want the button held in if you want to follow it in the original key of Eb is Paul Oscher's "What Have I done". You'll see from the video there is no way he can use the Button. He's organised his mouth piece screws to clamp the slide so the harp is permanently in C#/Db. Probably because he uses a semi tone drop on his guitar tuning. I'd get the band to do it in D and just the C chromatic and there's no need to keep the button in and no need to use the button.
Hope that's of help.

Last Edited by John M G on Nov 10, 2018 3:45 AM
Lonesome Harpman
220 posts
Nov 12, 2018
7:41 AM
Thank you so much, this is great!

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