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Moon Cat and Hohner
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ME.HarpDoc
401 posts
Mar 21, 2021
1:25 PM
I see Jason signed an endorsement with Hohner. Previously endorsed by Suzuki. How much do you think these endorsements affect sales?
Edit: apparently can’t change heading. Spell checker left out the “c” in Mooncat

Last Edited by ME.HarpDoc on Mar 21, 2021 1:28 PM
SuperBee
6922 posts
Mar 21, 2021
3:08 PM
i think they might work as a gateway. i cant imagine id play a harp just because someone endorsed it, but i might try one for that reason.
i bought a Seydel 1847 because i was intrigued by the sound of a particular person who was an endorsed player and i wondered how much was due to the harp. Discovered the answer was "some" but none of the important part, and i didn't like the harp enough to continue even playing the one i bought.
For me i think thats how it would always go. I might try something on the strength that someone i respect endorses it, but whether i got any more would come down to how i experience it. It took me about 15 years to accept i'm a Marine Band player, and another 5 to appreciate the Special 20. from time to time i think maybe i'm just stuck in a mindset and i should try a different product, and every time it just reminds me that i am happy with my choices.
Gnarly
2977 posts
Mar 21, 2021
11:22 PM
I remember when Jason began endorsing Suzuki harps—it was a big deal for us.
I am sure Hohner is treating him right, and wish him the best.
I know he and Tom Halchak have had a productive relationship, wonder how this affects that.
Reckon I could ask, but heck, let’s gossip . . .
Philosofy
950 posts
Mar 22, 2021
11:07 AM
(Totally humorous gossip mode is ON!) Hohner has been after Jason for years. He's been holding out until they could guarantee a 7 figure contract. Part of that contract is that now Tom Halchak has been appointed director of aesthetics at Hohner International.(Humorous mode OFF)

Last Edited by Philosofy on Mar 22, 2021 11:08 AM
florida-trader
1533 posts
Mar 23, 2021
8:29 AM
I can tell you from first-hand experience that having an endorsement from Jason has been very profitable for Blue Moon. I’m a small business and having celebrity endorsements probably means more to me personally than a gigantic corporation, but then again Hohner has a bunch of them, so maybe it adds up to the same thing. But more importantly, being in a position to offer some financial support to Jason gives me a sense of fulfilling a civic duty. In case you didn’t already know it, those of you who buy Blue Moon products are indirectly supporting not only Jason, but a lot of other artists as well. Not to be critical of the major harmonica manufacturers, but my observation soon after I became immersed in the harmonica industry was that they don’t do enough for the artists that endorse their products. I mean, how else could I have lured Jason away from Suzuki? Think about that. It is kind of pitiful that a tiny little company like mine is willing to compensate an artist more than one of the major manufacturers. So, from my perspective, this new endorsement deal that Jason has with Hohner is a great thing and a step in the right direction not just for him, but for the industry in general.

At this point, I am no more familiar with the details of their arrangement than any of you are, but I probably wouldn’t divulge anything even if I was. What I do know is that Hohner has a new Director of Artist Relationships named Derek Frank and he is aggressively recruiting new talent. Aside from the fact that Hohner makes great harps, Derek is helping the artists create a much-needed stream of income. I think one of the silver linings of the COVID pandemic is that people have had to reinvent themselves and be very creative in how they render service and generate income. I get the sense that Hohner and Derek have captured something that is harnessing the whole mindset that people have developed in the past year and of course, technology is a key to all of it.

As for Jason and Blue Moon. Jason will continue to use and endorse Blue Moon products. There is no conflict of interest. Hohner has been tremendously supportive of everything I have ever done since the day I started Blue Moon more than 11 years ago. One need look no further than the Rob Paparozzi Custom Big River that we collaborated on last year. Do you think Hohner minded the publicity we generated from that? Quite the opposite. Hohner has had its ups and downs but has some very good people working there now. Derek is one guy. Another one is the Product Manager Drew Lewis who has worked so hard to promote the brand.

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Tom Halchak
Blue Moon Harmonicas
Blue Moon Harmonicas

Last Edited by florida-trader on Mar 23, 2021 8:39 AM
nacoran
10347 posts
Mar 23, 2021
11:02 AM
I'm still holding out hope I get an endorsement deal...

I think I have to get good first, then get famous...

:p


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Nate
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First Post- May 8, 2009
Gnarly
2979 posts
Mar 24, 2021
7:58 AM
“ I mean, how else could I have lured Jason away from Suzuki? Think about that. It is kind of pitiful that a tiny little company like mine is willing to compensate an artist more than one of the major manufacturers.”
Ouch man—evidently, the truth hurts.
jbone
3334 posts
Mar 24, 2021
1:31 PM
I'm with Nate here. I'm very interested in having a great time and spreading good feeling wherever we are at a given time.
I do appreciate the businesses, large and small, who support musicians in some way. I have no doubt every little bit helps. In my case I have always had a day job and now I'm retired I rely on government money and a bit of barter for expenses. The way we worked out getting to "tour" is that I work at RV parks in exchange for a site with utilities. So we pick and choose places that we want to see and also where it looks like there is opportunity music-wise. We've been mostly full time living in our medium sized travel trailer for 4 years aside from a couple of disasters. Currently in an apartment in this small Texas city and when the lease is up we expect to move back to the RV park. Life does come at ya as I've said for years. My wife and partner is recovering from a major surgery and we're waiting to find out what the future holds for her and by association, me. Our mission, no matter what, is to play music as long as we can in as many places as we can. The goal is some part financial but mainly we want to pass on some joy for the blessings we've been given in the past several months. Let me tell you, angels are truly among us when we need them the most.
I know Jason has seen some angels too, and many of us have, and do. I'm not afraid to point at a guy like you, Tom Halchak, and call you an angel. You are one of many we meet.

I didn't intend to hijack the thread!
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Last Edited by jbone on Mar 24, 2021 1:31 PM
mpharpsax
46 posts
Mar 29, 2021
8:18 AM
Congratulations to a Lunar Feline - I doubt that there is player at Jason's level of artistry and name recognition that is a better ambassador for our humble instrument. A few points on endorsement from where I sit:
1.) He is the ENDORSER, Hohner is the ENDORSEE. Jason is endorsing Hohner products.
---------- (endorse: transitive verb: 1.1Recommend (a product) in an advertisement. e.g:
‘Jason earns more money endorsing Red Bull than playing the harmonica’
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2.) Jason's harmonica case will probably still contain numerous types of harmonicas (ssshhhh…)
3.) Hohner probably still holds the largest market share in the US and many parts of the world. Their name has been synonymous with harmonica for over a century.
4.) Around 8 years ago when Jason told me that he was playing Suzuki Manjis, I was surprised. IMHO: Hohner reeds are by far more suited to Jason's style of playing (overblows especially) than harmonicas from any other manufacturer.
5.) Jason Ricci's internet presence will definitely benefit Hohner in this endorsement arrangement way more than it does Jason.
6.) I am a former endorser of Hohner and Suzuki harmonicas, friend of a Mooncat and I approve this message…

Congratulations to a very deserving artist—•

Michael
http://harpsax.com
jbone
3335 posts
Mar 29, 2021
7:47 PM
@mpharpsax, Interesting point about the Manji vs. Hohner reeds. Just recently out live on the street I got my Manjis back out and have done some side by side comparisons. My freshest impression, the Manji does put out slightly more volume but the MB Deluxe and Crossover lead by quite a bit tone wise, at least in my battered ears.
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Music and travel destroy prejudice.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1109912442677135/?ref=bookmarks



Reverbnation

Facebook

https://www.youtube.com/feed/my_videos
florida-trader
1534 posts
Mar 30, 2021
9:20 AM
Michael: regarding your comment –

“4.) Around 8 years ago when Jason told me that he was playing Suzuki Manjis, I was surprised. IMHO: Hohner reeds are by far more suited to Jason's style of playing (overblows especially) than harmonicas from any other manufacturer.”

I am surprised to hear this coming from a saxophone player. I grew up playing the clarinet. I played all through college and after, but not so much anymore. Like the saxophone, clarinet reeds are available in various “strengths”. For those of you have never played a woodwind instrument, the strength of the reed is a measure of stiffness. The range goes from the softest reeds – 1 – to the stiffest reeds – 5 with half steps in between. (Some charts go up to 5.25 with quarter steps in between.) A beginner will, by necessity, play a softer reed because they lack the embouchure to compress a stiffer reed. In the vernacular of harmonica players, we call it “Chops”. As they become more accomplished and the strength of their embouchure increases, they will climb the ladder, so to speak, and use progressively stiffer reeds. The reason is because a stronger player will over-compress a soft reed which forces them to back off their attack. So, as they get stronger, they have to move to stiffer reeds that are more consistent with the strength of the muscles which control the embouchure.

I agree that the phosphor bronze reeds of Suzuki harmonicas are stiffer than the brass reeds of Hohner harmonicas. To me, it is completely analogous to clarinet reeds. Some harmonica players may not like the Manji for this reason. But someone like Jason would have no problem what-so-ever compressing a phosphor bronze reed and playing overblows, overdraws, etc.

So, Michael, I am not disagreeing with you per se because you are just stating your opinion, and you are perfectly entitled to it. Nor am I defending Suzuki vs. Hohner or attempting to advocate that one brand is better than the other. Both companies make great harps. I’m just saying that I am surprised to see these comments coming from a sax player who surely understands reed stiffness.

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Tom Halchak
Blue Moon Harmonicas
Blue Moon Harmonicas

Last Edited by florida-trader on Mar 30, 2021 9:21 AM
waltertore
3082 posts
Mar 30, 2021
11:24 AM
I am glad to hear Hohner is treating endorsees well. I was an endorsee in the mid 80's and all you got was a subscription to their easy reeding mag and such a small discount that I could get it matched locally. Once when talking to Junior Wells I asked him why he was playing LO harps? He replied - they give them to me for free. I don't think hohner ever gave a harp away during my time no matter how big you were. They owned the market back then.
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mpharpsax
49 posts
Mar 30, 2021
12:51 PM
Tom,
First, let me say how much I admire your dedication to the harmonica and all the support you have had for our mutual friend, JR.
I guess I just don't like the feel of Suzuki reeds for OBs. I have told customizers of my harmonicas for years that I don't want/need a wimpy setup for easy OBs—I don't feel that the trade off of OB response vs harder attack playing issues was worth it. Plus I can be a little frugal sometimes.

—I play 2.5 - 3 on tenor & alto and 1.5-2 on baritone BTW.
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Michael
http://www.harpsax.com
mpharpsax
50 posts
Mar 30, 2021
12:53 PM
Walter,
I doubt much has changed in their support of EndorseRS.
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Michael
http://www.harpsax.com
waltertore
3083 posts
Mar 30, 2021
1:34 PM
Michael: Too bad on that. I see you are a bay area player and quite accomplished at that. That is no small feat in todays music scene. I was active there in the late70's-early 80's with a lot of the old blues guys and also had a band in Sonoma County. Do you know the Pulsators? Doug the guitarist was with me back then as was his older brother Fast Floyd who played with Mink Deville as well as his own band. Small world :-)
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" life is a daring adventure or nothing at all" - helen keller

Smiling With Hope Pizza-pizza with a social cause

my videos
Todd Parrott
1525 posts
Mar 31, 2021
7:02 AM
mpharpsax, aka Michael Peloquin, is one of the best harp players in the world in my opinion. Nice to see you post here, Michael! Congrats also to Jason on his endorsement deal!
florida-trader
1535 posts
Mar 31, 2021
7:29 AM
Michael – thanks for your kind words. I used to play 4.0 Vandoren Clarinet reeds but my chops are nowhere near that strong anymore. 1.5 to 2.0 is about all can handle now.

Jason has really stepped up his game in the past year. Call it a silver lining to the COVID lockdown. He, like I guess all gigging musicians, has had to re-invent himself and figure out how to earn a living. He already has so much information on YouTube but his latest series of instructional videos are so well done. His depth of knowledge of theory and his obvious passion for helping other harmonica players become better is impressive. Add that to the countless videos of his live performances and he has built one hell of a body of work. And he is still only in his 40’s. Hohner is smart to develop a symbiotic relationship with Jason that will enable both to prosper in the years to come. I say, it is about time.

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Tom Halchak
Blue Moon Harmonicas
Blue Moon Harmonicas


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