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Dirty-South Blues Harp forum: wail on! > What harmonica lesson changed the way you played?
What harmonica lesson changed the way you played?
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asilve3
171 posts
Aug 24, 2020
7:29 PM
I'm looking for some inspiration!

What was a something that was taught to you by someone, informally or formally, that changed the way you played? Maybe it was a tip someone gave you at a jam or something you teacher went over. Maybe it was a YouTube video you watched that changed the way you thought about harmonica. What was it? Share your tip or post the video you watched.

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AJ Silverberg
www.hearaj.com
the_happy_honker
328 posts
Aug 25, 2020
5:17 AM
This one on throwing a change-up in the beat has been good for me. Sankey talks about it in the context of trasitioning from V to IV, but you can do similar things elsewhere.

jbone
3247 posts
Aug 25, 2020
9:02 AM
AJ, I think my first inspiration that took me the direction I wanted to go was very early on. A guitar player friend explained bent draw notes to me. Big a-HA moment.
Another huge one was when a band mate who played both guitar and harp worked on my hard head about 3rd position. I was a mostly 2nd position player then, and when the lights went on re 3rd, whole new vistas opened up for me.
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StalwartJohnson
65 posts
Aug 26, 2020
8:28 AM
No particular lesson but fully committing to tongue blocking was a true game changer. I lip purse as needed but tongue blocking connected me with the harp in a way that full time lipping did not. Everyone's different of course and that's why I love the instrument.

Oh! And learning songs note for note to the best of my ability was and still is huge. So many lessons within that process.
snowman
607 posts
Aug 27, 2020
9:10 AM
1] Jerry portnoire 3 cd instructional--covered about everything--bought over 20 years ago---Boogie Basslines in 3 pos—changeover scale, to smoothly go into upper register, tongue blocking—SYNCOPATING CHORDS AND BASSLINES, WITH BACK RYTHM, octave splits, Mics amps, breathing, tongue flutters on n on

2] David Barrets “levels of achievement” Tongue blocking
snowman
608 posts
Aug 27, 2020
9:13 AM
happy honker----That is a great video thanks
nacoran
10288 posts
Aug 27, 2020
12:24 PM
Test. Sorry... the site email server was down and I had to make sure nothing else was having problems. Carry on. :)

(Nice video)

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Nate
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First Post- May 8, 2009

Last Edited by nacoran on Aug 27, 2020 12:27 PM
nacoran
10289 posts
Aug 27, 2020
12:33 PM
As for the topic of the video... try to learn another position or to learn another mode in a position you already play. Turn your second position mixelodian into major and minor. Play some 5th position if you usually use 3rd for minor. Try some 12th.

I've personally been working on my bend accuracy. I was watching a video by Rachelle Plas where she was absolutely nailing her bends quickly on these short staccato notes. (She's been posting her live streams over on the MBH FB page. They are about 20 minutes each, I think, and I think it was about 3 videos ago. If I can find it I'll share a link.)

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Nate
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First Post- May 8, 2009
SuperBee
6793 posts
Aug 27, 2020
6:16 PM
There is one of Adam Gussow's "tradebit" lessons (i think, maybe its on James Cotton's "How Long Can A Fool Go Wrong?") in which he mentions how the 9 blow is the 5th in 1st position, so that when JC plays it with a dipped inflection its the equivalent of a 2nd position dip on the 4 draw. That was like when you solve a cube or such; things started to click into place and suddenly i saw the 7 8 9 blow relationships in 1st position in relation to the 2nd position 2 3 4 draw and from there it didn't take a lot to add the notes around those.

Related to that 'mental model' is Lee Sankey's "Brainstrument" project, which i believe i was aware of at that time.

Later when i started playing 3rd position i think i found it rather quicker to conceptualise in that mental modelling way. It really helps me to be able to 'picture' the map.

Last Edited by SuperBee on Aug 27, 2020 11:56 PM
nacoran
10290 posts
Aug 27, 2020
8:34 PM
I looked for the Rachelle Plas video but apparently she's posting one a day during the pandemic!

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Nate
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First Post- May 8, 2009
mr_so&so
1093 posts
Aug 28, 2020
5:11 PM
Gussow's original "giving it all away" series on YT turned me from an occasional noodler into a dedicated woodshedder and, eventually, a player. It took time, and it was a winding road, but was an enjoyable ride all the way. I took plenty of side roads too, riding with Mooncat and Ronnie Shellist and Richard Sleigh and Brendan Power and Lee Sankey and others. I couldn't point to any one lesson though.


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