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Dirty-South Blues Harp forum: wail on! > 2 & 3 Hole Overblows
2 & 3 Hole Overblows
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amitu
3 posts
Apr 17, 2022
1:12 PM
Until about ten minutes ago it had never really occured to me that overblows exist on holes two and three of a Richter tuned harp...I know, I'm stupid—of course they do. But why doesn't anyone ever talk about them?
I know, I know, you can get the same notes on -3''' and +4, respectively, but I feel that we're past just using overbends as a way to "fill in the gaps." I've heard Todd Parrott talk about using the eight hole overdraw to replicate the sound of a country tuned five hole draw (https://m.modernbluesharmonica.com/board/board_topic/5560960/5489392.htm?page=1), and I know Jason Ricci bends the six hole overbend up to a major third in second position (whereas you can only bend down from it by playing it on draw seven): overbends are equally useful as methods of creating different glissando effects as they are chromatic fillers. So what about holes three and four?
Okay, now the time to answer my own question...you can already bend up to the two hole overbend note on draw three, can't you? And I'd imagine, with all the bent notes available between blow and draw three, it might be difficult to strike a balance between easy bending and easy overbending? Or maybe I'm stupid in that regard too?
Anyway really I just wanted to know if any of you ever use the these overbends, and if so when, and if not, why not?
LFLISBOA
137 posts
Apr 19, 2022
6:34 AM
I don't OB at all, but my GUESS is that it's way more difficult to achieve.
I heard it also requires more reed adjustment to get OB in these holes, while most of harmonicas you can OB 6 right out the box.
amitu
5 posts
Apr 20, 2022
11:44 AM
Yeah that's true, I find the lower the hole the more dire the need for reed shaping...maybe it'd be a fun project to experiment with those obs though
Thanks for you input <3
Todd Parrott
1528 posts
Apr 20, 2022
10:33 PM
Yes, there are times that these overblows are used, often in positions besides 2nd. It's kinda like how 2 draw and 3 blow are the same note but there are times when you may choose to use one over the other. The same is true with these overbends, even though they are available elsewhere as normal bends. Pat Bergeson told me at SPAH a few years ago that he uses them often and demonstrated them in jazz licks. I think if you need the Ab note quickly, it's sometimes easier and quicker to use 2 overblow versus 3 draw step and a half bend. Hope this helps!
WinslowYerxa
1753 posts
Apr 22, 2022
10:04 AM
I remember Allen Holmes using them to play, for instance, An Ab major chord arpeggio in Holes 1 thru 4. Play 1-2-3-4 Draw, get a G chord arpeggio. Now do the same thing with overblows, get an Ab chord areggio instead.
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amitu
7 posts
Apr 23, 2022
12:09 PM
Yeah that makes a lot of sense, getting hard to reach notes faster. thank you so much for the info! Ill definitely have to use them more especially as i get more comfortable in multiple positions
amitu
9 posts
Apr 27, 2022
2:12 PM
For anyone reading this post in the future, here's a link to a Howard Levy video briefly discussing the 2 hole overblow:
https://youtu.be/yZ1nlv0EFc8
I'll add more videos on the subject as i find them!


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