With 74-Minute CD Jamming Ruddy

L e s s o r s , SOUGS,



t e c h n i q u e s




FOR KAREN Thanks for your love and patience through all kinds of weather Copyright ©2000 by Jon Gindick Anyone harp a good player? know .

Riffs. Stories. Songs. Techniques and Audio Index For A New Generation of Harp Players Rock n' Blues Harmonica Jon Gindick With illustrations by By Mark Zingarelli Cross Harp Press Visalia — Los Angeles . Lessons.Harp Knowledge.

To play with the CD.and how a total beginner can turn him or herself into a blues harmonica musician. riffs and exercises that let the skills and ideas of blues harp flow naturally to and from that subconscious boiler room in which creativity and music originate. man. there's nothing else like it. this music. It's the sound of rock and blues harmonica. In the audience. "One-twothree-four." shouts the drummer.Introduction The lights are low as you step onto the stage. Wow. you see faces. There's a stir in the audience. begin drawing. This means it's time to start. stories. you'll learn some basic concepts of blues music theory. as naturally as speaking. He bangs his sticks on the drumheads. This book is intended to be read harp in hand and mouth. and once again. In Chapter I. You place the hand-cupped microphone and harp to your lips and. creativity and fun. . It's the sound of emotion and skill. you are glad you are a harp player. bending. The guitarist strums his opening chord. In Chapter II. the boom of his instrument providing a low-toned support. This is the sound they've come to hear. blowing. this attitude. The music has started: a churning brew of of rhythm and sound that makes people move to their feet and out to the dance floor. It's the sound of your harp supporting and leading the guitar. songs. and the bass player dances across the stage. The lights brighten and dim. Rock n' Blues Harmonica is about this sound. drums and bass. your great harmonica lesson begins-information mixed with jokes. tongue-blocking the language of the blues. you need a ten-hole "C" diatonic harmonica. the faces of people who have come to hear the hottest band in town-with you on blues harp. And. Now it's your turn.

Most important. living it. play solo. buy some blues CDs. create a five year learning program that lets you get better. It is my belief that. speaking it. Play with this CD. How do you learn a language? By immersing yourself in it: hearing it. In this book: uncircled numbers mean blow that hole circled numbers mean draw a dot means to tongue (or otherwise articulate) * means bend half step ** means bend whole step *** means bend a step and a half . playing every day makes success inevitable. listen to other harp players. Have fun. and that is how it will sound: instant harmonica. Immerse yourself in the blues harmonica. Things take time-including the learning of a language. Once you have that part down. Quick. You can play instant harmonica. or the playing of an instrument. blues harmonica is a language unto itself. into your head. and better. and the anticipating of them. and better. meet other harp players and learn from them. Every beginning through intermediate harmonica technique is played and explained over a slow. easy harping is how everyone starts. painless. check out the local blues bands. more than any other instrument. whether you're a real rocker or a wanna-be. continuous blues band "loop" that drives the reality of chord changes.An essential part of this program is the 74-minute CD that accompanies this book. I invite you.

The trick is to accent the draw notes.Table of Contents I. Take a lesson around the harp from the Stone Age's best harp player. Cave Jam-How to Accompany 65 Let's bring in the band and see how simple blues harp fits in even when you don't know what the heck you're doing. Three Chords of the Blues-Playing Solo 103 Music is a wheel. Second Position Cross Harp-Style of the Blues 53 Now learn the ideas behind 2nd position. Stoney's Harmonica Lesson-Blues and Rock Riffs 75 A riff is a unit of music you use to build. This beginner's story brings theory to life. how and why it works. Notes of Resolution and Stepping Stone Notes are located. II. harmonizing notes. III. and octaves with sweet vibrato and precision articulation. VI. The Night Music Was Discovered 11 Here are the first six weeks of Music Theory 101 rolled into a 10-minute read. It will be helpful to have a basic understanding of how it all fits together. chords and chord progressions. Chapter VI shows where these notes are located on the harp and helps you use them to turn blues riffs into blues songs. and play your C harp in the key of G. and where the Wailing Notes. Music is built from notes. . Keep reading and playing. and you'll be playing chords. sustain. scales. single notes. and the spokes are chord progressions. First Sounds of the Harmonica 33 Start off like a cave man-just put the harp in your mouth and draw. and get some good blues riffs into your heart. IV. change and resolve musical tension. V.

playing chromatic blues. Included is a special chart on transposing 1st position notation to 2nd position. Third Position Slant Harp-A Big Time Harp Style 169 Now play your C harp in the key of D minor. X. mastering amplified harp.VII. and includes use of hands for compression and that talking sound. This easy chapter helps show you how good it can sound. melodic accompaniment. It's easy and sounds great. . Hubie's Blues-Intermediate and Advanced Harp or Everything I Almost Forgot to Put in the Book This is advanced stuff on many issues: tuning your harp. bends and improvisations. XI. the pitch of the note will lower. IX. Cross Harp Campfire Melodies 157 In 2nd position. 187 Resource Guide and Record Index 214 Here's the key of harmonica you need to jam with classic harmonica recordings plus a listing of essential harmonica resources and Jon's other harmonica products. tongue-blocking. VIII. Guitar chords are included for your play-along pleasure. This chapter is for beginners and intermediates. Learning these songs in the blues style teaches you melody. play some of the greatest songs ever sung. Straight Harp Accompaniment 137 The Cave Boys get a chick singer and learn the hard way that some situations call for soft. Learning to bend can add 12 additional notes and let you speak. playing harp in positions 1 through 6 plus 12. slur and slide your way into the blues. Falling In Love With Bending 115 If you curve the drawn air down just right in the harmonica's air chamber.

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It was the night music was born. The stars were twinkling and everything was new . 11 . and the chord progression. the chord.including music. This was the night Adam and Eve discovered the note.ONE The Night Music was Discovered (Theory for Beginners) It was a magical night.

Eight Little Sounds As everyone knows. music was discovered by Adam and Eve in the Garden of Rockin\ Here's how it happened.. What happened next was incredible. knew everything. of course. As he took it from her hand. a high-pitched ringing tone. the spoon accidentally struck the glass. And what he didn't know. It was a sound. he had no idea what that sound was. Adam. so he asked Eve to bring him a glass of iced tea. "A what?" demanded Eve. One morning." he began. She filled a glass with tea and ice and handed it to Adam. Eve's sensitive eardrums could feel this noise vibrating. )) "What's that?" Eve asked. He'd been running around the Garden discovering things and giving them names. he named. Now. He was hot and sweaty. Eve was a flaxen-haired beauty with great legs and a terrific sense of humor.. 12 . Still. She was also very intelligent. Adam was thirsty. "A.

.." Eve said. Being a little emptier than before. "You got it. She tapped on the glass with the spoon. "And I suppose that's a C. the spoon struck the glass once again. 13 . "And what's that?" Eve asked. The glass. and drank a little more of the tasty tea." he said.a. being emptier by one swallow. made a tone that was one swallow higher. "Do I have to tell you everything?" snapped Adam. the resulting tone was a little higher.ifs an A." Eve said. "Tingggg!" sang the glass as Eve struck it with the spoon. "It's a B!" He gave Eve a smarter-than-thou look and sipped again from the glass. As if by miracle.. But the lady was getting curious." muttered Adam. He took another swallow. "Typical male."A..

Again Adam sipped. Adam drank. He had now drunk half the iced tea that was originally in the glass. Eve clanged a one-beat boogie on an F. woman. Adam sipped once more. The new tone was dubbed G . But they both knew that what had occurred was a D. "Big deal." Adam growled. He took another swallow. 14 . And so it went."For crimany sakes." Adam said. Eve played an E. Eve struck the glass with the spoon.

" said Eve."Adam said. What we've done is play a ladder of sounds starting from A. that sounds familiar." And in his rich tenor voice Adam started to sing: "A B C D E F G A!" . "It's the same note we played in the beginning. but a higher A than we played when the glass was full. "It's an A. "Boy." The highly caffeinated iced tea was beginning to have an effect on him. "Of course.A sound occurred.

You may not believe this. "Now. eh?" "How come you have to name everything?" Eve asked. the vibrations it made were a little faster. What's it good for?" "Get me eight glasses of iced tea and well find out. it was right around 510 vibrations per second. the vibration into the air (and our eardrums) was faster.. and so forth." "Call it what you want. a C note. a B note. and that makes the sound twice as high. "The glass vibrated twice as fast. you have an A scale. That gives us an A note. "Each time you made the glass a little emptier. "Some strange psychological compulsion?" "And the distance between a high A and the low A." "I get it." Eve said with a giggle. I drank a little bit more and you banged the glass again.we'll call that an OCTAVE. That's the sound we called a B. when the glass was full. and the spoon hit it. but I counted 440 vibrations per second. it's a C scale." Adam said. vibrations came out of the glass into the air."You see." laughed Adam. That was the A sound. 16 . Not bad.. "Just answer me this. "Now let's assign some names to all this. "And each ladder of sounds that goes from A to A. But why is the high A the same as the low A?" "Don't you see?" Adam said. If you start on an A. "Of course. and the resulting tone was higher. Eve. In fact. or from B to B is a SCALE. If you start on a C." "I suppose you think that makes you twice as smart." Eve said." Eve said. We'll call each sound a NOTE. Since the glass was a bit emptier.

" Adam said. The two tones collaborated and faded into the night. "Listen to this!" She was holding a spoon in each hand. pleasantly blasted on bongo juice." Adam sang. Bong! Clang! Boing! It was Adam and Eve. There was laughter. 17 . "Do it again. "That was beautiful. Adam was beating his hands on his haunches and snapping his fingers. each filled with a different amount of iced tea. "Yeah." Once again.Sweet Harmony That evening. "Yeah. came a succession of highpitched. The vibrations intertwined to form something rich and sweet. "If I strike a C note at the same time that I strike an E. Then came a new way of talking that rose and fell in the craziest ways. sitting in the glow of the fire. Eve struck the C and E glasses at the same time. surrounded by glasses. ringing sounds. yeah. Eve clanged the spoons on the glass filled to C and on the glass filled to E at the same time." Firelight flickering on her face. strange sounds were heard in the Garden. giving Eve a rhythm in which to explore the tones of the glasses. And then. yeah. even weirder." "Hey!" cried Eve. dig it: the sounds combine.

" To prove her point. D is number 2. combined sound. "If you want a nice blending harmony using the C .." "Fair enough. Eve frowned. "But what happens if I strike the C and D glasses at the same time?" To answer her own question. C is number 1. and so on. " said Adam.. "The C and E notes are the first and third notes of the C scale. E is number 3. neither did they form the beautiful blend that came from the C and E. you strike the 1st and 3rd notes of the G scale. Although the C and D did not clash." said Eve. "And if you want this blend to use the G sound... Eve struck her spoons on the G and B glasses. a harmony is when two notes played at the same time blend together to form a new. "Yes. you strike the 1st and 3rd notes of the C scale at the same time. "Think HI call that a. What was going on here? "I get it!" she suddenly cried.a. The two sounds combined beautifully."What was that?" asked a delighted Eve. Eve banged her spoons on the two glasses.a H A R M O N Y . 18 .

Eve looked beautiful with firelight rippling across her long. I've got an idea. Let's call the 1st and 3rd notes H A R M O N I Z I N G NOTES!" Suddenly. She looked at him nervously. "Yeah. baby. ffh n n r © ywuuwk | £ 3 + 5 6 7 f "See?" cried Eve. "If I play the 1st and 3rd notes of this simple scale at the same time." Adam said. flowing hair. but he had to name. It was Adam's job to name things. Just like us. "The 1st and 3rd notes come together and harmonize when played at the same time. She could discover. a crazy grin on his face.N f ." 19 . Would he be angry? Adam only smiled. Eve realized her mistake. they merge together.

Even The Landlord stopped to cock His head and listen. Much bongo juice was consumed. The laughing. the couple in the Garden were making important discoveries about this thing called music.but that the 5th note of the scale also harmonized. the strange way of talking. the piercing sounds of glasses struck with spoons.. E . Then..it was all so new.the G note. Meanwhile. Adam would bang on the 5th note of the scale . B was the 3rd note and D was the 5th note. They learned that not only did the 1st and 3rd notes of each scale come together and harmonize when played at the same time . This produced the G chord. At exactly the same time. Eve would strike the glasses that produced a C note and an E note. Adam called this combination of three harmonizing notes played at the same time a C H O R D . 1 3 5 The C . G was the 1st note. 20 . 3rd and 5th notes of the G scale. and G notes flowed into each other and produced what A d a m called a C chord.The Incredible Chord And so the night went. Eve struck the 1st. To play a C chord. the 1st and 3rd notes of the C scale.

" he started to say. He had half a swallow in his mouth when Eve squealed. M . She banged her spoons on the 1st. Know what I mean? Now the glass is halfway between the 6th and 7th notes of the of the C scale. face red with embarrassment." he said imperiously. but stopped himself. "I know exactly what I'm doing. "Let's see what happens when you play the 1st. "What are you doing?" Coughing. he picked up the 6th glass of the C scale and started to drink. But Adam knew the best discoveries often occurred by mistake." "Whatever you say. 3rd and 5th glass while Adam played his 6 / 2 glass. "I think we're on to something!" Without thinking about what he was doing." "Real sharp." answered Eve.1 3 5 "Hey!" shouted Adam. half-choking. 3rd and 5th notes of the C scale at the same time that J bang on the 6 / 2 note. •In later days. It's a 6 1/2 glass. Adam put the glass back in its number 6 spot. the 6/2 scale degree would become known as "the flatted 7th". I wanted to see what would happen if I made the 6th note a little higher by making the glass a half-swallow emptier. "And what exactly is that?" demanded Eve. "I thought it was bongo juice. flathead!" shouted Eve.

speaking of the ironies of a life filled with passions and disappointments. new loves and sad goodbyes. E flat. C sharp. yet powerful. F. this combination of 1st. B flat.C 1-HtChonL (flat 7^1) What a sound! It was odd. pulling him closer. B. A. D. he must have had a sense of what was to come. E. n He looked triumphantly at Eve and wobbled a little. "This chord. 22 . Including sharps and flats (also known as halfsteps). All this was pretty heady stuff for Adam who had spent all his young life in the Garden of Eden. * The term B flat refers to the note halfway between the A and the B." she murmered. This note could also be called A sharp. Still. but rarely is. C." At that. Fsharp. the distinguishing characteristic of the type of music that will someday be called THE BLUES. there are 12 notes in a scale: A flat. Eve grabbed Adam and laughingly pulled him to the ground. G. covering him with kisses. 3rd. 5th and 6V2 notes of a scale shall henceforth be called a 7th C H O R D (in this case C7th). "And the 7th chord shall be the mainstay. "Ill give you the blues.

and are playing in the key of E. 5. Woman likes to boogie as much as man. When playing in the key of C . 1. you usually end the song on the E note . by striking the 1st. 4. 3rd and 5th glasses of the scale. You can get a blues sound by including the 6V2 note with the 1st. Adam called this a MINOR CHORD. All of it in the key of C . 2. Thus you're playing in the key of C . Clinking spoons on glasses of iced tea is a hell of a way to make music. you can play the basic chord. they learned a few things about music that would intrigue musicians for years to come. 3rd and 5th. z ' A (fuKj3ni) 23 . In the same vein. At any rate.Majors and Minors Well. of course. eerie sounding chord by playing the 1st. KEY? That's the word Adam used to identify the idea that in music. the major chord. You can get a mysterious. as Adam and Eve arranged and rearranged glasses and struck them with spoons. 2V2 and 5th glasses of a scale. when you start a song on an E note. 3. they played and played. if you start a song on a C note. you usually end the song on a C note.

playing the 1st. yeah. his girlfriend Eve was on the verge of a new discovery . gospel. reggae. Here's how it happened. folk. tex-mex. This discovery was the I-IV-V C H O R D P R O G R E S S I O N . She shook her head and her long hair swished back over her shoulder. There were no limits on the tones these notes could combine to form. it was easy to imagine her the precursor of today's electric guitarist. disco. She lifted her spoonholding hands and brought them down in a wide arc. This was called a M A J O R 6th. 24 .6." Adam sang. 3rd. i h L &tu c h o n t 1 5 In fact. schlock and rock and roll. 5th and 6th produces a jazzy sounding chord. rock a' billy. And. almost as though she were strumming the glasses. Although he didn't know it. As Eve went from one chord to the next. blues. the list of chords Adam and Eve discovered that evening was endless. "Yeah. punk.a discovery that would create the chord framework for the types of music that would one day be known as country western.

First. 25 . This was the birth of the TWO-CHORD JAM.The I-IV-V of Music Eve arranged the iced-tea glasses into rows of major chords. She played these two chords over and over and it sounded terrific. she bonged the C chord 4 times in a row. four beats on the IV chord. Then she clanged on the F chord. the chord 4 glasses up the scale from the C . Four beats on the I chord.

But there was much more to learn. and with an air of finality and resolution. It added a sense of transition. then the IV chord. a feeling of drama and tension. then back to the I chord. the chord 5 glasses up the scale from the C chord. Now was the time to play the V chord. This was when Eve discovered she could add to the two-chord feeling by bonging the G chord. It sounded great to pound out a beat on the I chord. slip down to the IV chord. return to the I chord. 26 . This V chord (the G chord when played in the key of C) took the music further away from the I chord.

Wow! This I-IV-V progression really made sense. the original man set out to make a new discovery. It put the sounds into a cycle. He had to jam. gave them a beginning and an end. 27 . But how? How does one musician accompany another? Spoon in hand. It created and resolved tension. Even Adam was amazed as Eve hunched over her rows of iced tea glasses and played these beautiful sequences of harmonizing notes. It organized sound to tell a story.

3rd or 5th note. bluesy. he started banging on his C glass. and using other notes in the C scale as stepping stones between one harmonizing note and another. Like the 1st. 28 . These were the harmonizing notes that made up the C chord. Somehow. Amazingly. But Eve. made it hard. all Adam had to do was play the 1st note of the scale. Soon he realized that certain iced tea glasses sounded great no matter where the music was in the I-IV-V progression. He banged the 2xh glass again. The glasses that always sounded so great were none other than the 1st. wanted more. It was a BLUES HARMONIZING NOTE. Adam created melodic patterns that swirled confidently through Eve's I-IV-V progression of chords. Each would work at any point in the chord progression. But this 2Vi note did more than simply accompany the I-IV-V chord progression.too. the glass which was left over from the minor chord. it didn't matter when Adam hit the 1st. By accenting these harmonizing notes (playing them longer and playing them louder). 3rd and 5th notes. It sounded pretty good! While Eve went from one chord to the next. Following a hunch. What a sound! Sexy. But he paid attention. swinging spoons like a maestro. sultry. Made it tense. and again. it changed the music. Made it bluesy. it worked through all of Eve's chord changes.Accompanying the I-IV-V Chord Progression Adam knew Eve was playing her I-IV-V chord progression in the key of C . 3rd and 5th notes of the C scale. Now Adam decided to get fancy. "C'mon!" she shouted over the loud clinking of iced tea glasses. He started banging on the 2l/z glass. "Get it on!" So get it on is exactly what Adam did.

and finally returned to the 1st note. at one time or another striking a spoon on every glass he could see. Some glasses sounded terrible. reggae. Adam discovered the BLUES SCALE. Finally. using minors. too. playing rock. Starting with the C note and going up the scale. and as long as she always returned to her C chord.z % (fiat5t-X) "Alright!" shouted Eve. through trial and error. Then he clanged the 5th note. was playing progressive jazz chords. Then he was off again. the blues scale went: 1 I V i 4 5 6V2 1/ 1 (nxr&nL) ( f l a t 7-^1) What a sound this blues scale created! What a feeling! Eve. . As the original blues lady bonged a steady beat on the I-IV-V progression. was swept away by the ringing tones of iced tea glasses. blues and country western. her I chord. and some sounded like they were born to make music. by now. yet never leaving the key of C . the 4th note. Adam. He banged the 1st note six or seven times (it didn't matter). Eve could play any chord she wanted. the 2*/2 note. Adam explored every nook and cranny of the C scale. Adam's wonderful new blues scale would not make a mistake. altering the chord progression in innumerable ways. major sixths.

The tight rhythms of Eve's chord progression and Adam's accompaniment took slack. (And in a way. Eve picked a piece of bark off a tree. musical world. She chewed on the sweet bark as she walked.This was the kind of music that could go on forever. Adam yawned. before she knew it. a tree Adam had previously named the boo boo tree. Mistakes were made. Eve yawned. she was holding the reed-like thing between her teeth and blowing and drawing. "What are those sounds?" Eve only smiled. Then. it has.) But even the original man and woman occasionally got tired. The Landlord took a deep breath as Adam and Eve crawled into the trees and fell asleep in each others arms. A few days later they were asked to leave the Garden for good. Finally. Wa! Wo! Wa\ Adam turned to Eve. "What's he asked. Adam and Eve awakened with hangovers the following afternoon. but neither musician cared. O n her way out of the Garden into the Wilderness. It seems Adam had hooked up iced tea glasses to amplifiers and had been playing them at outrageous volumes. the music stopped altogether. 30 . What a strange sound that piece of vibrating bark made! It sounded almost like a duck. As the sun rose in the eastern sky and the light of a new day shone on the young.

* This accompaniment can sound B L U E S Y by including the 2Vi note of the I chord's major scale. * The structure of most rock. * * 31 . these H A R M O N I Z I N G NOTES will not make a mistake. 3rd and 5th notes of a C scale play a C major chord." the "flatted 5th" and "flatted 7th. these numbers are called SCALE DEGREES and the blues notes are called the "flatted 3rd.Notes * The NOTE is the basic unit of music. Stay with me. 4 / 2 . Likewise for an A or a B scale. the 1st. * Notes form SCALES. and 6/2 notes of the 1 chord's major scale. * This accompaniment can sound bluesy by including the 2lA. If the first note of the scale is a C . 3rd and 5th notes of a scale HARMONIZE to form a M A J O R C H O R D . No matter what chord the music plays. In modern musical parlance. •There are many VARIATIONS to the above cycle. The I chord is the HOME BASE. The V chord moves it further still. the place where the music usually starts and ends. The 1st. it's a G scale. Returning home R E S O L V E S THE TENSION. When played at the same time. Being away from home creates MUSICAL TENSION. The IV chord moves the music further away from home base. but the I-IV-V progression is the foundation on which they're based. 3rd and 5th notes of the I chord's scale. Moving from one chord to the next forms a C Y C L E ." * It's natural to wonder how this fits in. this is a C scale. blues and country western music is built around the I-IV-V C H O R D P R O G R E S S I O N . If the first note is a G . * A simple way to A C C O M P A N Y another instrument playing the I-IV-V chord progression (or a variation) is to play musical patterns that emphasize the 1st.


what kind of harp to play. Stone. and you will learn the harmonica essentials . their harp player. you'll meet the world's first rock band.First Sounds of the Harmonica Now that you have an idea how music is organized. In Chapter II. how to make your first sounds. and how to play chords and single notes. 33 . The Cave Boys. it's time to pull out your harmonica and start making your own sounds.

but he knew how to play it. The legend also tells us of Umm. He started as a boy on a hillside with only the crickets and the coyotes for accompaniment. then melodic Straight Harp. the beautiful female vocalist who joined the Cave Boys and led them to stardom with such prehistoric hits as "Tango in the Tarpits" and "Funky Dinosaur. and finally exotic. What were Stone's secrets? How was he able to make that harmonica bend and warble with so much feeling . 34 .amplifying their instruments through valuable electric tree stumps for which they had scoured the countryside. He went on to make the sweetest blues and rock harmonica sounds the world has ever heard. Dig it. a pair of lips. minor key Slant Harp? Was he a human being or some bizarre musical god? This story now belongs to you.and always in perfect accompaniment to the band's pounding I-IV-V chord progression? How was he able to play bluesy sounding Cross Harp. Stone didn't know a lot about music. you can play it too. They played drums. As you're about to discover. the world's first rock band was a four person group called the Cave Boys.Legend of the Cave Boys From what little we know." The story that hasn't yet been told is that of Stone. and a sense of fun. bass. the band's harmonica player. guitar and harmonica . All you need is a harmonica.

Hohner Special 20-This wonderful little harmonica is shaped like an M.. the action is often more difficult. these are a few of my favorites. the Big River might be the easiest playing of all. If this is your first harmonica. provides the warmest tone and is the favorite of those tough-lipped Chicago Blues players. While it sounds pretty good. Lee Oskar. The Oskar also comes in alternate tunings that are worth checking out.What Model of Harmonica? To play blues. (See pages 206-208). The result is a sweet-toned. Hohner Golden Melody-This is a professional instrument that emphasizes technical clarity and precise tuning. These include Harmonic Minor. easily-cupped blues harp. the easy-playing and sweet-toned "Oskie" offers replacement reedplates (see page 210). Hohner Pocket Pal-This is a starter harmonica sold at one-fourth the price of the pro models listed above. I usually recommend an upgrade for beginners because anything that makes harping easier is worth it. Natural Minor and Melody Maker. Hohner Marine Band-Here's the most popular harmonica in the world." Many feel it is the easiest harp for overblows. Its basic design was created in 1896. rock or country western harmonica in the modern age. S o m e feel it lacks the warmth of the Marine Band. True. While there are over 30 models available. the favorite of millions. the key of C is recommended. The wood might swell. Hohner Big River-At a smaller price.B. the wooden mouthpiece is a bit harder to play. It's an excellent instrument gaining in popularity. you need a 10-hole DIATONIC* H A R M O N I C A . can be hard to slide across the lips-yet the old M. 'Diatonic: musical term referring to the do-re-mi-type scale. possibly because of "equal tuning. but uses a plastic comb instead of a wooden one. Lee Oskar-Designed and manufactured by one of our greatest players.B. .

From 1 through 10. An uncircled 4 means 4 blow. O n a D harp. In the charts and graphs. Four blow. wood or plastic air chambers. Here are some additional facts about your harmonica: The key of your harp is etched on its right end. it means suck on hole 4. or 4 blow. On holes 1 through 6. say. There are only a few of these harps in existence today. The situation reverses itself on holes 7 through 10. and well-directed shifts in air pressure and flow can alter the pitch of the tone. Up here draw notes are lower than blow notes. 1 blow is a D note. The rest of us play harmonicas with nickle plated covers. When this book refers to. 1 blow plays a C note. The reed on the floor of the chamber responds when air is sucked or D R A W N through the harp. Of course. If you own a C harp. 4 draw. and brass reeds.A Closer Look Stone's harmonicas were carefully carved from the tusk of wild boar with reeds fashioned from the hard bark of the boo boo tree. the number 4 with a circle around it means 4 draw. The reeds are sensitive. This is called BENDING. means to blow on hole 4. blow notes are lower than draw notes. 36 . The reed on the ceiling of the air chamber vibrates when air is B L O W N through the harmonica. Inside each air chamber are two reeds: thin strips of metal of different lengths. each air chamber (or hole) is numbered. they're priceless.

The only difference is that your G harp's blues scale will be very low in tone. The convenience is that you only have to learn a blues riff (pattern of notes) once to play it all different keys. If. 5 draw. the 12 different keyed harmonicas are organized exactly the same.* When playing." This setup allows you to play blow and draw chords on the low end of the harp and melodies on the top. 4 draw. The hassle is that you need to carry around a number of different key harmonicas. The Principle of Harmonica Relativity is both a convenience and a hassle. Holes 1 through 4. 37 . and you never seem to have the one you need. you can play a blues scale on your G harp. all harps have the same relationships of notes. For instance. this same pattern of blows and draws will play a blues scale on your F sharp harmonica. luxy O u t o f Uotcs on C Jjarp BLOW DRAW * Almost all the notes on your harp can be expressed in octaves. 4 blow. and the blues scale on your F sharp harmonica will be quite high. the key of your harmonica and the numbers identifying each hole should be facing up. and 7 through 10 have "missing notes. One blow is the same note as 4 blow and 7 blow. They are simply an octave apart. This is the PRINCIPLE OF HARMONICA RELATIVITY: although they play in different keys. you can coax the "missing" notes out of the reeds. Through bending. 1 draw is the same note as 4 draw and 8 draw. Three blow is the same note as 6 blow and 9 blow. * The only complete scale on the reeds of your harmonica goes from 4 blow through 7 blow. 3 draw. by playing 6 blow. * From G (your lowest harp) through F sharp (your highest harmonica). 3 blow. scales and chords.

blow gently into holes 1. Blow 38 . 3 and 4 at the same time. 5 and 6. And.Playing Chords Even Stone had to start somewhere. "You're going to attract dinosaurs!" Amazingly. Excellent! You've just played a major chord. slide the harp up one hole so you're playing 2. 4. 2. the combination of 1-3-5 harmonizing notes that were discovered by A d a m and Eve. 3. 2. 9 and 10 so you know where holes 1. changing the sounds by changing the shape of his lips and mouth . draw on holes 1. as Stone became more familiar with his h a r p .t h e feel of it in his mouth. 2. put your harmonica to your lips. Numbers facing up. Blow and draw and move the harp up another hole to 3. Keeping your mouth relaxed. 3 and 4 are. the sensation of sounds produced by blowing and drawing. no dinosaurs came. Now it's your turn. 3. 7. "Will you shut up?" his father would yell as the young harp player sat in the corner of the cave and practiced. 2. 2. The first sounds he made on his harmonica were rough and uncontrolled. 3 and 4. Listen as you play.his music became admired instead of scorned. By going back and forth between the draw chord and the blow chord. This draw chord is higher than the blow chord. 4 and 5. After you've explored the blows and draws of holes 1. Y o u may want to stretch a finger across holes 5. 3 and 4. you can play a simple two chord harmonica jam. 4. Make your mouth big enough to cover holes 1. To play another major chord. 6. 8.

Make your playing slow and lazy. not your head. your mouth is too tight on the harp. This will improve your tone. 3. Relax. Learn to relax when the harmonica is in your mouth. To make sure you're including hole number 1. Some tips on moving the harmonica and playing chords: 1. forced quality. Make your breathing gentle and controlled as you slide the harp from one end to the other. 4. this illustration conveys the idea of keeping your mouth loose Make your mouth loose. keep you from running out of breath. continue exploring the sounds of your harmonica. Along with its role as poster child for cosmetic dentistry. let air escape over the top of your harp.and draw. With these suggestions in mind. 2. and lighten the air pressure on the reeds. Move the harp. place the low end of your harp in the corners of your lips. When blowing. Listen to the sounds of your harmonica. If your chords have a bleating. 39 . Don't force the sounds. Clenching the harmonica between your teeth and blowing and drawing will give you an idea of how rich and full these chords can sound.

This will stop and start the sound of your harp.1 . rhythmic harp sound. This ta ta ta tonguing action will stop and start the air traveling through your harp.on the ridge behind your upper teeth. or the busy signal on a telephone. Making some sounds long and others short as in taaaaa ta or tata taaaaa taaaaaa is also very effective. The result is total control of a crisp.1 .3 . Make this beat slow and steady. Spend a few minutes using your tongue to put rhythm into your impromptu harp music. The important thing is to play to a beat.2 . make the harp sound as though you were playing fast enough to beat the devil. eight.As you blow and draw your way up and down your harmonica. begin stomping a beat on the floor.3 .2 " or " 1 . Count " 1 .4 .4 .as though you were saying ta ta ta .2 . Keep the air flow moving and let your tongue play the percussion. But fast is not the only form of rhythm. Y o u can also get a beat by listening to the mechanical hum of a washing machine. D O NOT stop your breath when you tongue. " Playing to a beat will give meaning and feeling to the sounds you make on your harp. or sixteen beats each. drum records and even real live drummers have been known to work. the dripping of a faucet. Tonguing Make a long blow or draw sound on your harp. and by tonguing quickly.2 . Now you can play your blows and draws for four. Now flick the tip of your tongue . 40 . the clicking and slurping of windshield wipers. Metronomes drum machines.

Train Jam Although Stone never saw a train. 1234 EHcw IV <4Z3*) DravO I I2M ENow IV (\zy*) Draw I Draw I Start slowly. Blow. Once your train is chugging down the track. Draw. 41 . slowly comes to a halt. chugalug on your 1234 draw and 1234 blow. return to your 1234 draw and blow pattern. And finally. Chugalug. Now. The harp sounds like a train when it huffs and puffs. goes faster and faster. like a train that knows the station is only a mile away. you may want to try making a whistle sound. Blow. This is a I to IV chord jam. Draw. You can play train music (sometimes called Freight Harp) by going back and forth between the 1234 draw chord and the 1234 blow chord. Slower still. playing the draw chord before you blow. and then. with the next station in view. V Without hesitating. like a train leaving the station. home at last. bring your train into the station. he played train music like nobody's business. chugalug. Draw holes 45 for eight beats. giving each chord 1 beat. builds up speed. letting air escape over the top of your harp on the blow chords. Gradually go faster. making these two notes cry out like the whistle of a train. begin slowing down.

v. 2. 3 and 4. the I-IV-V chord progression or blues cycle has served as the framework for popular music. Adam and Eve used it. Because the I chord is where the music usually starts and ends. When playing the style of harmonica known as Cross Harp (see the next chapter).• • • 1 • : vJ \: J 42 . The IV chord moves the music away from the Chord of Resolution. Stone used it. it's called the C H O R D O F RESOLUTION. Now it's your turn. I \l Cross tfurp Stifp\r\a S C h o r d s KT" J BLOW DRAW 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 AO v • v. I Croee H * r p Chord of J234. your I chord is played by drawing on holes 1.The I-IV-V of Harmonica Since the earliest times. 3 and 4. 2. It's called the STEPPING STONE C H O R D .DravO R^solu+fcm The IV chord can be played by blowing on holes 1.

slow or fast. the second is 2. Other ideas are to use a metronome or drum machine. Feel the rhythm of your heartbeat. a vibration from deep in your body that gives your breath and harmonica sound a pulse.The V chord can be played by drawing on holes 4. Think of this as a tremolo or vibrato—a soft vibrating pressure from your gut. begin stomping your foot 1-2-1-2. Complete your blues cycle by returning to the Chord of Resolution. At first. play the Cross Harp Chord of Resolution for two stomps. This vibrato can go soft or hard. 5 and 6. Play the Dominant Wailer Chord for two stomps. Flay the Stepping Stone Chord for two stomps. 43 . and you can think of it as the DOMINANT WAILER C H O R D . the third is 1 and so on. Want to Sound More Musical? Start a stomach tremble. Place your thumb on the big vein of your wrist. The V chord creates musical tension. * How fast should you stomp? Try pulse speed. Start stomping at the same speed. Crvse> Hary P o r v t i r u u f t vOaWlt Chord 456 DnW To play a simple I-IV-V chord progression. it's easier on the blow. The first beat is 1.* Once you've got a beat going. Then play the cycle again. but soon this tremolo will be a part of how you play.

44 .I-IV-V ¥><uynncr's UM- C y c l e <JZ3 Stepping IV vda\W>r\a V Kc You can add rhythm and meaning by tonguing every chord twice.

Not tonguing the final Chord of Resolution will add to the sense of completion. ( F o o t (£35) S t e m p e r ' s 1ZM" C y c l e KcaoTw+kM vvhilfna Stfcfplra r v ^ fv STAKT f^aSlwticn r IV 123+ After you've played the above chord cycle a few times without tonguing. The next chord cycle plays the Dominant Wailer V Chord BEFORE the Stepping Stone IV Chord. tongue every chord three times each time you bring your foot down (this is called a triplet). 45 .You can change the order of chords in a I-IV-V progression.

Stomp your foot 1-2-1-2-1-2. In other words. get it on! 46 . Get a rhythm going and play these chords over and over. VU*ikr V M £*tTLfp\vya IV STAKT V Resoluttort X A suggestion for putting rhythm in the above cycle is to tongue every chord twice.The next chord cycle starts on the Dominant Wailer and ends on the Chord of Resolution. Clap your hands as you clench your harp in your teeth. Do anything that will help you return to that ancient cave of your mind and that subterranean river where music and rhythm flow. JDaxxcin^ 1 1 2 R^doffot X T>oy C y c l c . Tonguing the final Chord of Resolution three times will add still more pzazzz. Play harp as you march around the house.

you add vibrato. It feels so good. or your throat is constricted. up and out fa"***amount of A proper single note feels gocxl to play physically. two important approaches for blues and rock harp. compression and resistance. Place the harmonica between your inner lips-as though you are r going to play a big chord. Overtones and sympathetic vibrations resonate in your ears and body. Begin on 4 draw. your tone will be lousy. Where? At the inner lips. you need to focus on where and how the harp and body connect. the better the tone put the harmonica far back in your inner lips V tilt the back of the harmonica up to get it back in lips Pucker Method J 47 . Take a look at the hole and resolve to play it for six or seven seconds. At first. tone color and pitch changes. lips pudncu npa pushed r/ y. this seems harder. your tone will be lousy. While learning. you want to play harp all the time. Using back pressure. through the tunnel your pushed-out lips form. Both puckering and tongue-blocking. (Guaranteed) Rule #3: If your lips are clamped tightly on the harp. How? Through the air that moves through the harp. It all starts here with how you put the harmonica in your mouth. into your body. I recommend the pucker or lip-blocking method. narrow the opening into the harp and draw in a controlled. Rule #2: If you hold the harp on the edge of your lips. Now. (Also guaranteed) If you are just starting out.Let's Learn to Play Single Notes The most important skill in harping is playing one note at a time-single notes.r'hZt pinch in pinch in the larger the hole. So ui uw u tiny draw a liny pressurized column of air. ii}dAa. the goal is to make your body and the harmonica one musical instrument. follow Rule #1: Put the harp as deeply as possible in your mouth. But remember. pushing your lips out.

Inner Compression
One of the greatest secrets of harmonica tone is inner compression. The trick is to pressurize a column of air as it enters and leaves and stays in your body. You do this by slightly resisting the airstream at your lips-and everywhere else. This resistance creates a back pressure, a sense that the tissues of your body are filled with air. This back pressure starts at the stomach and forms the air column all the way to your lips, both blow and draw. You know you have compression and back pressure if (without the harmonica) your airstream makes a loud and long hissing sound you can draw for 10 seconds.
Reverse, Control and Shape Airstream

Whether Blowing or Drawing,

Vibrato Against Compression
If you tremble against the compression at your stomach, you get a beautiful vibrato. If you move the focus of the trembling to your throat, you get a different vibrato of different intensity. The secret is to create back pressure by resisting the note, then tremble against this pressure. Trembling against the back pressure in your stomach produces a deep rumbly vibrato. Moving the trembling to the throat makes for a faster, lighter vibrato.

Vowel Sounds

u Play a 3 blow. If you take a moment to softly say "oo" as in cool while you push your trembling stomach against your body's own resistance, you'll feel the airstream round out, and so will your tone. If you say "ee," that airstream will seem to flatten out tonewise. That is because "ee" and "oo" utilize different throat muscles. The "oo" pushes your lips out in a natural pucker. All these factors affect the most important thing your harp has to offer-your tone.

^ E



Articulating t a ^ ka ^ ya
People who pucker for their single notes usually use the "ta ta" (or perhaps "to to") action described on page 40 to create notes of different lengths and intensity. Tonguing is effective for imitating the cadences of speech, locomotives, and also for playing clean musical passages. Try tonguing the syllables below as though the harp were a blues singer. ® ® ®

"My baby left me this morning! Now I'm as sad as I can be"
Q = Draw • = Articulate (ta, ka, or wa) Three blow and 2 draw are t h e same notes. Use 3 blow if 2 draw is a problem f o r you. If you use tongue-blocking for single notes, it is difficult to use the tongue to articulate because it is so busy blocking out air on the harmonica. In order to articulate notes, use the "Ka" sound. This dicking in your throat can create effective articulations. S o can an air-bursting "Ha" sound that's fueled by pushing from your stomach. You can also use the wa wa wa action of your hands to articulate notes. You can also use bending. ® • • • • • (D<2)

Notes of Different Lengths
When first practicing your single notes, you should play notes that last two or four beats. To get a feel for that, just snap your fingers a few times. Each time you snap-that's a quarter note. If you snap two times at each beat, you're snapping out 8th notes. If you jam in four quick snaps on each beat, you've got 16th notes. Going in the other direction, if you play a long unbroken harmonica note that covers four snaps or stomps, that's called a whole note, and a half note last two beats. „,

i •

There is another very important approach to playing the harmonica-a technique called tongue-blocking. The idea is to play chords-with a big open mouth-and use your tongue to block out every hole but the one you want to play. As shown below, play 1234 draw and use the tip of your tongue to cover holes 123 so only hole 4 plays.

Attach harp here

Tongue-blocking Method
Or, if you want to get fancy about it, • play octaves. For instance, make your mouth big enough to play holes 1234 draw. Block out holes 2 and 3 so holes 1 and 4 draw play. These are two D notes, an octave apart, playing at the same time. You can move this embouchure all over the harmonica and get this effect. Another technique is called the tongue-slap. If you are tongue-blocking a single note at 4 draw on holes 1234, and quickly lift and replace your tongue, you get a quick rhythmic burst, a shadow of a chord behind your single note 4 draw. You can use this as a form of rhythmic articulation, and also as a way of shadowing your single note, having the power of a full chord behind it.
The Octave

Many people argue about which is better, tongue-blocking or puckering. For the heavy Little Walter* sound, tongue-blocking is essential. It allows a complexity that simple puckering does not.
'Walter Jacobs, grandfather of modern electric blues harp.


Practicing Single Notes
This is the part of the book that involves Y O U . Pick a note-say 4 draw, as your practice note. Now wait-don't start yet. First, hear a clear, pure, rich harmonica tone in your mind. It's always important to try to hear what it is you want to play. As for these funky diagrams, to me they represent columns of air.

1. Practice your single notes for at least 4 beats so you have a chance to adjust your embouchure and airstream for the best results. 2. Whether tongue-blocking or puckering, play with the harp as connected to your body (deep in your mouth) as possible. 3. Whether puckering or tongue-blocking, play with a totally relaxed embouchure. 4. Include the vowel sounds "ee" and "oo" as you play clear round single notes, and actively listen for tonal changes. 5. Connect your body to the harp with back pressure-putting the air under a state of compression. 6. Think air control: make each pull and push smooth, strong and gentle. 7. Use as little air as possible. Instead use back pressure and muscular resistance to increase the amplitude of the air. 8. Think vibrato: push from your stomach whether blowing or drawing. 9. Think articulation: whole and half notes, quarter notes, eighths, sixteenths. Puckerers use ta. Tongue-blockers use ka.



THREE Second Position Cross HarpStyle of the Blues Cross Harp is the style of harmonica that plays blues. It involves accenting the draw notes instead of the blow notes and playing a *Charp in the key of G. Now learn how and why it works. 53 .

First Position* "Straight Harp" C Harp in the Key of C After about a year of tooting mindlessly on his boo boo reed harmonica. bottom. of course. 7 and 10 blow. Bible songs. •Why is it called 1st position? Because we're playing C harp in the key of C. C harp in the key of C. with its accent on the BLOW. you'll get a C chord. you play a C chord. See my book Harmonica Americana to learn great straight harp melodies. That's the simple answer. Straight tforp tfamt^KiizJ^ Notes BLOW DRAW Every blow note harmonizes. just about anywhere you blow three or more notes. This. wouldn't make a mistake when jamming. with its accent on the DRAW. 4. Stone realized that there were two basic harmonica styles: STRAIGHT HARP. Later this style became popular for playing Civil War songs. and it's bluesy cousin CROSS HARP. Your C notes are located at single notes 1. The complicated answer is on page 200. Harken back to the story of Adam and Eve and how each chord was made up of 1-3-5 harmonizing notes and that these harmonizing notes. cowboy songs. middle or top of the harmonica. Every draw note makes it interesting. is why you play Straight Harp with accent on the blow. In fact. Straight Harp works like this: If you blow on holes 1234 of your C harp. 54 . the kind his mother sang to him when he was a child. Straight Harp was the type of music that played old melodies. every blow note is a harmonizing note. When playing Straight Harp.

slowly. It's always a good idea to try to hear what you want to play before playing it.© do re 5 (5) 6 ( D ® mi fa so la ti 7 do While Straight Harp is not used that often in rock and blues harmonica styles. and because the old songs are relatively easy to play. Create a slow body rhythm that goes 1-2-3-1-2-3. That's because it's so easy and natural to play with a push/pull/push breath pattern. You can also play octaves on many of the notes. and articulate the syllables of the words by tonguing. hear the song in your mind. bending. Then seek out the notes. For they say you have taken the sunshine 3 • • ® 4. 55 . You can utilize the tongueblocking or single note embouchure.As you practice your single notes. Red River Valley 3 3 + + 5 5 • + 0 • C harp in key of C • 5 ® 5 ® + From this valley they say you are leaving 6 ( 5 ) 5 ® 4-0 5 6(5) = We will miss your bright eyes and sweet smile 6 ( 5 ) 5 . Give this post-primitive classic a try. Before playing it. use of hands. it is the first style most people usually learn. How to begin: first. and play the melody over it. 4. Make the articulation of the harp match the words of the song. or by other means such as "ka ka"or tongue-slapping.® 5 ® + • braw = Tongue or Articulate That has brightened our lives for awhile This is a great first song for anyone to learn. try singing it or hearing it in your mind. try the 1st position "do-re-mi" scale.

3 draw and 2 draw may present special problems. Eve lined up a musical instrument of waterglasses in the C scale and played music in the key of C. These are HARMONIZING NOTES. The draw notes are the blues notes. is the style you get when you play that same musical C instrument (in this case a harmonica) in the key of G. Played one at a time. the style of the blues. As mentioned. and glide over the blows. or Cross Harp. Think of this song as an example of Cross Harp. 3 draw and 4 draw-create the structure of your blues riffs. 2 draw. Check out "Swing Low. Sweet Chariot. At this point. they are also the notes you can bend. the notes you can really wail on and bend." Notice how you play mostly the low draw notes. 1 * 3 4 - 5 $ 7flat I The reason you play a C harp in the key of G is that if you draw on holes 1234 at the same time. Second position. you get the I chord. notes that won't make a mistake. This is a good example of how Cross Harp works. 56 .Cross Harp: Second Position C Harmonica in the Key of G To understand Cross Harp. these single notes-at 1 draw. and will get you through almost any chord progression in the key of G. when you play holes 1 through 4 draw at the same time. not a requirement for the first day's reading. go back to Adam and Eve. Croze H * r p Dr»*> C b o r t l ( J Z 3 ^ ) 5 1 3 5 7 flat Z 3 5 7flat Z As shown on page 42. you get a G chord.

G notes on 6 6 9 a C harp Bending is described on page 116. as stepping stones. As a general rule. 57 . harp-moving skills. sweet char i ot. the G notes on your C harp. me home O = Draw ©• Coming • for ® to " ® carry © ** = Bend Whole Step • = Tongue Creating and Resolving Tension Musical tension is the feeling the music is crying out for something. 2nd Position G Scales for the C Harp There are many different blues scales. 4 draw (above). 6 draw-against the beat. 5 ® me home Uncircled = Blow © • Coming for © to ® carry ® 5 ® ® ® ® • Swing low. scales make good practice as you develop your single note. Here are two that avoid bends.® ® 6 © ® 7 1®®® ± High End . a sense that the music has arrived home. SWEET CHARIOT-2nd position Swing ® low. mostly blow notes. create tension by fearlessly holding certain notes or chords-like the 3 draw (above). Use the notes between. That something is a feeling of resolution. Beginner's Blues Scale Cross Harp No Bend Scale ® Z @ ® 4 .SWING LOW. It is not necessary to accomplish now. Along with learning songs and working on techniques. 5 draw. sweet char i • © ® © • Ot. Resolve the tension on the 2 draw (above) or 3 blow or 6 blow.

Notes that create tension. 9 Wailing Notes create tension. ^ H a r p Nc7hu> of Resolution ZM . 9 Dra*>f K>pn* C r o s s ffarp Stepping Stone Notes will not always work with the music. 58 . You can use them as harmonizers. 6 Pro*/. they are G notes. the 1st note of the key you're playing in. And notes that you use as stepping stone notes-steps between the other two kinds of notes. it can also be effective. I n the V part. for the most part. During the I V part of the blues progression. As you play them. 7Vrwot & TWO. Notes of Resolution resolve tension. the most effective harping comes from working those Stepping Notes. 6 Pkne. making them drag on and on. rungs on ladder between the harmonizing notes in the scale. VstoliVv) t4oUs 1 P n W . Notes that resolve tension. notes that won't make a mistake. In fact. They are the root note. emphasizing them. 3 Dn**% + tfmvV. adjust. it sounds great. you create a sense of musical expectation. But played strongly in the I chord. the tonic. you'll learn to pass over them quickly. At first. big time. Wailing Notes will. 5 Uknv. it can be a dead-end clunker that changes the direction of the song and can mess you up. Later you'll be able to work them in. There are times when they might clash. 5 Pr»*>. Four Blow Warning!!! This Stepping Stone trips up beginners. Plus. On your C harp. as the music continues from one chord to the next.The Search for Musical Tension A simple way of looking at the harmonica is to say it has three kinds of notes.

You can bend the notes at 1 draw. Stepping Stone Notes. tend to change the direction of the song-unless you play them at exactly the right moment.Map of Cross Harp 10 Stepping Stone WA/LJfSJO R E S O L u n OfVJ WAILlfSJO Stepping S t o n e wAii_irsjO WAlLirsJO WAILING K£SOU£nON waiuiisiO stepping. Notes of Resolution resolve the tension. 3 draw. When the band returns to the 1 chord. 4 draw and 6 draw. (page 116) Wailing Notes at 5 draw. Stone WA J LI S t e p p i n g St"one W A11— I (VJ G> KwESOLuriorg K*£SO!_L>TlOfsJ W A I L J (VJG Stepping Stone. Wailing Notes create musical tension. Notes of Resolution resolve musical tension when playing solo. . This is why you usually tread lightly on these notes. 8 draw. 9 draw and 10 draw don't bend and are not as versatile their bending brothers. they temporarily become Wailing Notes during the IV and V. 7 draw. When used to accompany a blues band playing a I-IV-V (or other) progression. when emphasized. increasing the tension.

Create a little tension. Slide up to 5 draw. That's right. Resolve tension. WA/LING \ m RESOLUTION Stepping WAILING Stone Oh yeah! Establish home base. Feel the tension you've created. resolution Now move that harp a tiny bit and draw on hole 4. Do it again. Hold that note as you stomp 1-2-1-2- Now pause. Get down... Now. Dig the silence.First Boogie Tap out a 3 blow on your harp. back to 4 draw. 3 blow. Create tension.. 60 . Stomp your foot. Tongue that baby. Whew! Play a long 4 draw to the 1-2-1-2 beat. and only now. [3 1-2. play your Note of Resolution. Stomp your foot and loosen up.

61 . blow on hole 4. Create tension on 3 draw. ta ta ta.SOLUTION > Oh yeah! Get down and loosen up! You've got the blues in your shoes. wail on the 3 draw.. Glide over those Stepping Stones. Ta ta ta. t* KESOLuTlON Play a long.. and resolve on the 3 blow.From your wailing 4 draw. creating tension. Resolve on 3 blow. holding that note out. ta ta ta.E. rr U. Tongue that 3 blow. TA m u u u WAIUN6 TA to.. wailing 6 draw. Keep your rhythm going. (4) 4 (3) 3 ~ X wailino ^ ^ ^ WAIL1NO StcppinJ Stone RESOLUTION ? What a sound! Stress those harmonizing notes. Play 'em. y Resolve your tension on 6 blow. w 6 WAILING K.

Ask the guitarist what key the song is in. S A B C 1 Z 3 4. If the answer is G..The Cross Harp Formula The Cross Harp formula is a simple way to choose the correct key harmonica when playing Cross Harp to accompany a guitarist or piano player. count up four steps (including the G).. count back four steps from the C.and play your C harp in the key of G ... (It's okay to use your fingers!) e a e> c Z 1 4. .3 Here is a chart that tells you which harmonica you need to play Cross Harp in each of music's twelve different keys. and want to tell the guitarist what key to play in. Mi/iekttl A f M Kcm of -HArp-fcr- A D C PfUt O EfUt- F Fsharp (b 62 H W TO FG R T>£ O UE CROSS HARP IFORMULA. if you have a C harp. Likewise.

and play a D harp. 9 . Use nonharmonizing Stepping Stone Notes as links between these Wailers and Resolvers..Notes ' There are two basic styles of harmonica playing: STRAIGHT HARP and CROSS HARP. * To play bluesy patterns of notes (also known as riffs. and licks).. find out what key the music is in. Notes of Resolution establish home base and resolve tension. A & O D I Z 3 4 . emphasize Wailing Notes and Notes of Resolution. Wailing Notes move the music away from home base and create tension. If the music you're accompanying is in. There are two kinds of notes on your harmonica: HARMONIZING NOTES and STEPPING STONES. the key of A count up four steps. * To figure out which key of harmonica to use when playing Cross Harp. runs. * Cross Harp emphasizes the harmonica's draw notes. Straight Harp accents the blow notes.no matter where in the progression they are played.. harmonizing notes will never make a mistake . say. When you play your C harmonica in the key of C . Accompanying a I-IV-V chord progression.. Straight Harp works best for melodic harmonica. This blues harmonica style lets you play your C harmonica in the key of G . * There are two kinds of harmonizing notes: WAILING NOTES and NOTES OF RESOLUTION. you are playing Straight Harp.


Hey.000 years to that musty cave where The Cave Boys are laying down some good tunes. Bring your harmonica and play some simple accompaniment. you play pretty good! 65 .FOUR Cave Jam: How to Accompany Travel back 10.

"Okay. Krok swung his guitar low across his body and changed his G chord to a C chord. "One-two-three-four!" Whang bam thump thump! The I-IV-V chord progression started with 16 beats (1-2-3-4 played 4 times) in the key of G.Cave Jam It was a large. The sounds of their instruments would echo loudly off the cave walls. the band's lead guitar player and singer. the bass player. This was a new song. "Yeah!" shouted Smash. comfortable cave high in the hills above a broad valley. Gref. G (1) A (2) B (3) C (4). "You guys ready?" he asked. It was Sunday afternoon. As the sixteenth beat came down. But because the cave was far away from the homes of other cave men.* Counting up four steps. and the Cave Boys were getting ready to play. This was the IV chord and the music stayed here for 8 beats. The song was in the key of G. 66 . This was where the Cave Boys practiced. "Yeah. written by Krok. This was the I chord. this time for 8 beats. big arms flailing as he pounded his cymbals and snare drums. there were few complaints about noise. Stone was prepared to boogie on his C harp. Whamma bam bam! slammea the drums as the music returned to the G. Stone softly tapped his C harp in the palm of his hand. Smash. Krok's fingers formed a G chord on his guitar." said Krok. and established G as the home base for the tune." said the big drummer. nodded.

and a change is what it got. jumped lightly from the dirt cave floor and played a D chord. O h .. Krok returned to to his Dominant Wailer. the chord progression seemed be asking for a change. This D chord gave the music a new feeling of movement. Then chord cycle swung down to the C chord for 4 tense beats. yeah! Krok slammed down out the G chord as the blues cycle came home to the I chord. The Cave Boy guitarist nodded to his bass player. 67 . The D lasted 4 beats. the D chord. of going somewhere. Four incredible beats passed and the cycle was almost complete. the Dominant Wailer V chord of the I-IV-V chord progression.Here in the G. But what's this? With only 4 beats left in the blues cycle.

it nevei made a mistake. the feisty harp player went to the Note of Resolution. each chord change gave the 4 draw new meaning and feeling-almost as though he were changing notes. a special I-IV-V chord progression that even today is almost always heard when a band plays the slow blues. H e wanted to hear his harp player. as the cycle neared resolution (and Stone's lungs were about to explode). But Krok didn't care about that. But because this wailing 4 draw was a harmonizing note. and at exactly the right moment. Stoney Boy!" he shouted. the music dove home to the G chord for a dramatic resolution of the old cycle and the start of a new one.: Stone began by playing Wailing Note 4 draw. The tension wailed for 1-2-3-4 beats. "Come on!. Then. As the I-IV-V chord progression moved through its cycle. 3 68 ."Turn it around!" shouted Smash. This was the TWELVE B A R B L U E S B L U E S C Y C L E . " C o m e on.

He might not have had the best voice in the world. Stone began playing other Cross Harp harmonizing notes. and wouldn't it be fine?" G (Stone tongued his 3 blow for 8 beats) Tve got the Cave Boy blues. no one did it better. He took a run up to the 9 blow Note of Resolution and played his harp down. "Alright!" shouted Stone as the cycle came to a close. resolved on 6 blow) 69 . The guitarist opened his mouth wide and started to sing. The 3 blow and the I Chord of Resolution hit at exactly the same time. or looked cooler." (Stone tongued 3 blow. he never made a mistake. groaning. Stone tongued his 3 blow Note of Resolution. moaning and screaming. G (guitar chords) Tve got the Cave Boy Blues. phrasing his sounds the way a singer phrases words. beating a rhythm. As the cycle started up once more. Wow! Now. Stone tongued this 3 blow through the entire cycle. slid up to 6 draw. but when it came to grunting. Because he accented the Notes of Resolution and Wailing Notes and played the Stepping Stone Notes lightly. like rungs on a ladder between the harmonizers. moved to 4 draw and wailed for 8 beats) D G C D G G "If you'd pay a little visit to Krokie boy's cave sometime. curling over the notes to Note of Resolution 3 blow.blow. He played the 6 draw Wailer. as the cycle started around again. and wouldn't it be fine?" G (Stone played 3 blow. wailed on 4 draw.

clutched his guitar to his chest. He blew on hole two and sucked a clear single note on Note of Resolution 2 draw. Stone jumped up to holes 4 and 5 draw. and blew home with a wild flurry of notes that somehow landed on the 3 blow at exactly the same moment that Krok dropped to his knees. He played 6 draw as the cycle turned around with the Dominant Wailer V Chord. Stone swivelled his harmonica back and forth between 4 and 5 draw without stopping his breath. as the cycle came home. By changing the shape of his mouth and throat. He continued this 4 and 5 single note draw slide through the IV chord. It was a small subtle move. and started to sing: G "I've got the Cave Boy blues. It sounded soooo good. but what a sound it made! Then. the single note expressions of the V Dominant Wailer Chord. slipping the harp back and forth like a typewriter carriage between moist Cave Boy lips. sounding a little like a man with his leg caught in a meat grinder. Now Stone played a solo of low notes. His 2 draw slipped up to 3 draw. Stone sucked that note deep into his gut."Alright!" shouted Krok. The 3 draw dipped down to a "bent" 3 draw.* This was the 2Vi blues harmonizing note discovered by Adam. Stone came home to the 6 blow Note of Resolution. The blues cycle was coming around to the Dominant Wailer. He drew and tongued hole number one. and wouldn't it be great?" G (Stone drew a long 3 draw bent down for 7 beats and played 3 blow on the 8th beat) C "I've got the Cave Boy blues and wouldn't it be great?" * More about bending in Chapter VII 70 . These were the tension creating Wailing Notes.

3 draw. Smash double thumped his drums and Grefs low bass notes drove home a deep blues feeling. howled like a coyote. Stone even played the Six Blow Down. Five draw was the 6V2 note. Four blow was the 4th note. another Note of Resolution. It was incredible. Four draw served as the wailing 5th note.G (Stone played 1 draw. Note of Resolution 6 blow was the 1st note. Three draw bent down was the 2V2 blues harmonizing note. 4 blow. Scale Vcn*m 6 +® 3 (5) 5 (4) 4 (3) 3 € - RESOLUTION \ \ WAlLlfsJO \ stern "5 WAILINC* Srtxrr'mB WAILIN& RESOLUTION 71 . was the 1st note of the scale. this twelve bar blues cycle. 2 blow. 4 blow. moaned like a lover who wanted more." G D G (Stone played 4 draw. 2 draw and made that 2 draw talk until the 8th beat) D C G "If you'd consent to be this cave boy's date. 3 draw. a harp riff using Adam's Blues Scale-only in reverse. Stone's harmonica growled like a wildcat. 2 draw) Stone caressed home his 2 draw Note of Resolution and took off on a new solo. Round and round went the I-IV-V chord progression. and 3 blow.

how did you do that?" Stone smiled." he gasped. plump clams.. Krok could stand it no longer. He put his guitar down... How could he do all that on a tiny harmonica? Finally. unplugged it from his electric tree stump. Finally.. the other band members just looked at each other. Stone agreed to teach the Cave Boys how to play Cross Harp for 20 clams a person. Stone's music sounded so good it was hard to concentrate. And he'd even let them use his harps. Fresh. 72 . "What key is the next song in?" Then he turned away and acted busy. "Tell me. "Tell me. A harp player never reveals his or her secretsunless there's cash involved.As the music swelled and reverberated off the musty walls.

If the music is in the key of G. Most chord progressions are built around the 1-IV-V pattern. play an A harp. . guitarist. or a record. count up 4 steps from the key the music is in. • Select the CORRECT KEY HARMONICA. If the music is in the key of E. The circle almost always plays the same chord pattern again and again. • GO SLOW AND HAVE A G O O D TIME. Let the rhythm flow through your body. Hear how each chord change gives new meaning and feeling to this harmonizing note. ' Get a FEEL for the music before you start your accompaniment.Notes • Music moves in circles. • A good way to START YOUR ACCOMPANIMENT is to play a long 4 draw. • To jam with a band. This is the KEY you're playing in. Get a sense of the chord progression's circular motion. find out where the music begins and ends. This is a C H O R D PROGRESSION. play a C harp. To play Cross Harp.

mmmm i mm mmmmm .

Wailing Notes and Stepping Stone Notes to help you make music as you blow and draw your way around the harmonica. They connect Notes of Resolution. Don't let this stop you from tooting along and having a good time. 75 .Stone's Harmonica Lesson: Blues and Rock Riffs Riffs are patterns of notes that always sound bluesy and musical. Some of the riffs in Chapter V are too difficult to play immediately.

"Let's take Wailing Note 4 draw and Note of Resolution 3 blow. "Pe^iHAWS T>\W<LS Rf-ff 3 ® 3 4 / (3) / 3 ' u p eift \ \ \ — = > "If playing 3 blow and 4 draw always works." said Stone. using 3 draw and 4 blow as Stepping Stones? Like this:" (4) . He told them how Stepping Stone Notes were used as links.The Lesson Begins Stone told the Cave Boys how Wailing Notes create musical tension and Notes of Resolution resolve tension. or rungs on a ladder." growled Smash. 4 / 3 I 3—' 76 3 Steffi Stone RESOLUTION . between Wailing Notes and Notes of Resolution. What are we supposed to do? Play them al! at the same time?" "Take it easy." He picked up his harmonica and played the Beginner's Blues Riff. "Now we know which notes create tension and which notes resolve it. Still.and they'll always work when you accompany a I-IV-V chord progression. the band was impatient. why not build a ladder. We know you can play either one . "Okay.

But instead of the smooth. bleats. whose face was set in a determined grimace. You gotta get a good soft mouth." Each of the Cave Boys tried to play the Up Riff. and honks. "Now you guys try it. you put the harmonica well inside your inner lips. "Smash!" he shouted.but don't spit too much in the harps. "C'mon.. It clogs them up.bent by the pressure of the big drummer's clenched lips." He pushed his lips out so the the hole they formed a large." He looked at Smash. all the Cave Boys could produce was a cacophony of hisses. vertical oval.. But it was too late." said Stone. like this. Push the harp up a little bit. rich tone Stone got from his harmonica. "And see. 77 . toward your nose. so the upper lip doesn't have to stretch so much and can cover half the upper plate of the harp. "You gotta get a good single note before you can play a lick. It was crushed to smithereens . Smash removed the harmonica from his mouth. It sounded like an invasion of geese. you guys.He handed each of the Cave Boys a small diatonic harmonica.

they could hear the blues in this simple pattern of notes. This time it sounded a lot better. blow and draw on hole 4. 3 draw and 4 blow quickly and smoothly. "That's a little better." Once again the Cave Boys played the Up Riff. so play the 3 blow. Sure enough. You blow and draw on 3." he finally sighed. "You gotta mellow out with those big lips of yours!" He looked sadly at the crushed harmonica. Remember. stretch it out. Then. a few of the times they tried it. "But I don't see what's so hard about it. he didn't tell them. You blow and draw on 4. Those crazy dudes might think they already know how to play harp." said Stone." The Cave Boys went at it again. even Stone was impressed. Waaaaaiiiilllllllllll. They might decide to forget about the lesson. In fact."You gotta relax!" shouted Stone. though there were still many missed notes and strange honking sounds. and you hold the 4 draw a long time to create tension. Of course. 78 . when you get to the 4 draw. "Let's try again. 4 draw is your Wailing Note. "Okay. Blow and draw on hole 3. And Stone could taste those clams.

" "And the Down Riff is like the Up Riff? It will always sound good when accompanying a I-IV-V chord progression?" asked Krok. Try to create a sense of anticipation for the 3 blow." said Krok. And dig it. Then. so hold it out. "That's not a I-IV-V chord progression.The Down Riff "Now that you're playing a riff that takes you up your harmonica." said Stone. "All you've got to do is play the Up Riff in reverse. and lastly. eh? The 4 blow is a Stepping Stone Note so play it quickly and move to the 3 draw." Stone said as the Cave Boys played their own versions of the Down Riff. a D chord. The 3 draw is a Wailer. First he played a G chord. "Now. His fingers leapt from chord to chord. I'm gonna show you one that takes you down. "Hey!" said Smash. after 2 or 3 beats (depending on how it feels best to you)." 79 ." Dctwk> R i f f ® +® 3 (4-V 4 (3) 3 WAILER\ WAILED PL£SOLLrnOfM \ Stepping Stone "That's it. "As long as it accents the Wailing Notes and Notes of Resolution. so play it a long time. play 3 blow. then a C chord. He picked up his guitar and began playing." "Prove it. then an A minor chord. 4 draw is a Wailing Note." said Stone. Maybe two beats. u 0f course. You can really create tension with this little bugger. you've got a hot blues lick.

the A minor chord. it sounded great with guitar music. Then he went to the E minor chord. over and over." As Krok strummed the chords. He stayed in the key of G . these riffs will always work no matter how the song goes. But Stone kept right on playing the Down Riff. Again. and what feels best to you. Just incorporate the 5 draw into the music. say. Stone played the Down Riff so the 4 draw lasted 12 beats."Doesn't have to be a I-IV-V. You catch on to the flow and feeling of the music and trust yourself. As he played the Cave Boys gradually realized that what Stone said was true. and finally back to the G chord. "Whew!" said Smash. you'd probably get tongue-tied. Now Krok changed his chord progression. Stone played the Down Riff as fast as he could. the 4 blow and 3 draw occurred in 1 beat and the resolving 3 blow was played for 3 beats. "these riffs aren't exact. "You see. It fit perfectly with the music. You don't know what you're going to say next. Any riff that puts the accent on a Wailing Note or Note of Resolution will sound terrific when accompanying a blues or rock n' roll chord progression. But how you make the move depends on the music you're accompanying." "But how do you know what riff to play next?" asked Smash. don't worry about it. "Playing harp is like being in a good conversation. "And if you make a mistake. Then you let what comes out of your mouth be a complete surprise." said Stone. boys. "You'll learn the language. playing 5 draw instead of 4 draw. Then he played it very slowly." the harp player finally said. "Dig it. and if you tried to plan it. They're basic moves you can make on your harp. back to the G ." Stone replied. to the D chord. putting a big accent on the 3 draw Wailing Note. back to the G . to the F. but his fingers jumped to the F chord. "As long as the music stays in the same key. Next. 80 . All you have to do is mold them to the music.

" said Smash. "Hey." "How?" asked Krok. lots of ways." "Not when you make them on purpose. But the most obvious is by sliding back to the 4 draw and wailing. WI guess mistakes aren't really so bad after all.Invent your own blues lick. 81 . thafs pretty good. The result would be: H v ^ p r a w MtetaK^ 3 3 ) 4- (5) 5 i / / ' Stepping \ Stepping WAIUN6 ^ (4) / f> Stepping Stone WAItINO RESOLUTION Stone played the 5 Draw Mistake." winked Stone.

Four draw. End of the Up Riff. "Now you guys try it. where the music starts and ends." said Stone. in a couple of hours." Up a n d D c t a m ^ l u e a Kiff 3 ® * (D ^ "The Up and Down Blues Riff starts out on Note of Resolution 3 blow. Enter the Down Riff.. all the Cave Boys (even Smash. 4 blow. 82 . There are so many patterns to play here that 1 couldn't begin to count them all. Thus. who paid an extra 5 clams for a new harp) were sounding pretty good on the Up and Down Riff.More Music on Holes Three and Four "In case you haven't noticed. you pause. "holes 3 and 4 are a veritable orchestra. now a long moan of a 3 draw that creates tension." It was hard work teaching these Neanderthals to play Cross Harp. "Then (and this is important). you can join the Up Riff and the Down Riff so they form one lick: the Up and Down Blues Riff. But one thing about cave men.. Then you take the Up Riff to the 4 draw Wailing Note.and FINALLY your Note of Resolution 3 blow. "For instance. The 3 blow lets you know where home base is. they were willing to work hard. Play this 4 draw a long time to create tension.

throbbing tone. finish your pattern with a 3 blow. 4 draw. 3 draw." He squatted on the dirt floor of the cave and used a twig to draw some primitive diagrams.d>® 4 (3) 3 \ X \ ~ / / Stcppins VvAILEfC ? ? ? T RESOLUTION "You can play the 4 Draw Surprise over and over. "I'm going to show you new licks and patterns on holes 3 and 4. 3 draw. "Okay. 4 blow.. "For instance. "And it sounds real good to alternate the 4 Draw Surprise with the Up Riff and the Down Riff. and began to play in a clear. Instead of resolving tension.Gref threw another piece of wood on the fire. Then. slide back to the 4 draw Wailer-and create tension." Four Draw Swrprte^ ® 4. 4 blow. © © 4. instead of playing 4 draw. Smoke billowed through the cave and Stone gave him a dirty look. puckered. when you're tired of creating tension.. 3 blow. Like this.( D 3 4 (Down (4Draw? ( Dp Kiff) Surprise) K'tfp 3 <D 4 © Cr>cnon K i f f ) "Hey!" shouted Krok." Stone put his harp to his mouth. "That sounds just like a little blues song!" 83 . and it will always fit in with the I-IV-V chord progression. That's right." he finally coughed. play 4 draw.

I find I use 2 draw when I'm playing a riff that comes from the bottom of the harp (such as the Good Morning Riff). It uses 2 draw as a Note of Resolution. and that I use the 3 blow Note of Resolution when I play a riff in the midrange of the harp (such as the Down Riff). "Careful." said Stone. "There's only one harp player in this band. Two draw is the same note as 3 blow." Oood Morning © f f (2) 2 i' " r RESOLUTION Stepping S t o n e WAILINO 1 Stone played the Good Morning Riff a few times. "I call it the Good Morning Riff because it sounds snappy and bright. The 84 . the next two riffs created tension. the riff sounded like it hadn't had a good night's sleep in weeks. Sure enough. "Maybe I've been playing the wrong instrument."Of course." said Smash." laughed Stone. "That is because the first riff established home base." "And you did all that on two harmonica holes. and the final riff returned to home base. Thinking of the ton load of drums he had to carry around just to make a little music." said Stone. But when the Cave Boys tried. he shook his head slowly." he said. it did sound snappy and bright." Two Draw "Here's one of the best licks I know.

forcing the air into your throat. Hah! "Put your harp back into your mouth." Armed with this new advice. "What the heck's wrong with my 2 draw?" Smash asked. Coax that note out." said Stone. the tendency is to suck even harder. try this. rub your lips. "Like any riff I show you. if you placed a straw up to that 2 draw and gently sucked. Or bounce back and forth between the 2 draw and 2 blow.probably because he was a more relaxed type of guy. push it up towards your nose. Now. Keep the feeling light and airy. all the Cave Boys were playing the 2 draw.trouble was with the 2 draw. "But if you want to play 2 draw right. you can't even get a sound. give it three syllables as in t a t a ta. and the Good Morning Riff. None of the beginning harp players could get a sound out of the rebellious note. the Cave Boys went to work on the 2 draw. Take your harp out of your mouth. gentlemen. That note will come. very gently. He peered angrily into the little square hole. "The low draw notes give everyone trouble/' Stone said.. but you gotta persuade it. the note would play perfectly. Fucker up. Good way to break your harp.. draw a controlled stream of air to the roof of your mouth. But before long. When you reach that Note of Resolution. Gently. But the way you go about playing the 2 draw Note of Resolution. "Consider. 0 z © z (z) 85 . "The tendency is to tighten up when you suck on them. "the Good Morning Riff can be played with many variations. Now relax. Pinch them. Try tonguing the 2 draw in triplets. Gref got it first . When they don't respond.

"Or. the Good Morning Riff ending on 2 draw: 1 draw.M You also can use the Good Morning Riff as a starting place for a pattern that takes you up to 3 draw. Play it over and over." OcoA Morning © Three praw ^ © ( D (3) 3 2 (i)- WAILER j/ / —> R££>OLL/riO(>J RESOLUTION / ^ Stepping Stone WAILER. 2 drawwith a little tonguing action thrown in on the 2 draw is the safest way to go. changing the timing and feeling to fit the music." Ocod M c r v i i r a F o u r Drz*vv> © Z 4. It will never make a mistake. "But for simple accompaniment to a song you don't know that well. you can continue the riff up to 4 draw.© 4 Stepping (3) 3 (2) 2 / WAILER WAILER / R so LLrnors/ E R£SOLL»TIOIV Stepping Stone / WAJLER. 2 blow." 86 .

It starts as though you were playing the Down Riff: 4 draw. "you've probably noticed that most of the Cross Harp riffs I've shown you are built around Notes of Resolution 3 blow or 2 draw.. 4 blow. but it sounds good anyway. "The first riff we should try is the Surprise Resolution.. What else can you do with the 6 blow?" 87 .Surprise Resolution "If you've been paying attention. Six blow is the same note as 3 blow and 2 draw. (See page 16) You can toot along on 6 blow through an entire song and never make a mistake. but instead of resolving on 3 blow." said Krok after he'd played the Surprise Resolution a few times. "In fact. "Can't we use the other notes?" asked Smash? "Of course you can. slide the harp up to Note of Resolution 6 blow." Stone said. "It doesn't do what you'd expect. I want to show you a couple of patterns that resolve on the 6 blow Note of Resolution. Stone WAILED P E O U l OW L S L T P ? ? f ? "Not bad. 3 draw. "said Stone patiently. but it's up an octave. Surprise Resolution © j 6 (5) 5 KfctOLUTlON ^ WAJLIfSJG / / Stepping WAILED (3) 3 \ / Stepping.

it's still hanging there in the air. very gently. Keeping one long draw. isn't it?" 88 . "Boy. a feeling of being able to breathe again. There was a tremendous sense of release. I mean. he tongued ta ta taaaaaaa. Then. "If you don't play that 6 blow. he brought it home to the Note of Resolution." said Gref." Smash said. "Hey. Somebody's got to resolve it. Tongue the 6 draw to create even more tension." said Krok. "But here's an idea." Gref played a long cry on the 6 draw. "C'mon." "I can't stand it.. Maybe I can create tension on the 6 draw and resolve it on the 6 blow. that 6 draw sure created tension. Krok looked at his harmonica in amazement. He played the 6 blow. and drew on hole 6. of resolution. I will. puckered to get a clear single note."Why not go into the 6 draw?" suggested Gref. Then. he stopped and looked at the rest of the Cave Boys with a sly smile. "I see here on your Cross Harp Map that it's a Wailing Note. this is a powerful little thing.. Stone threw his head back and laughed." complained Smash." The shaggy-haired guitarist put the harp in his mouth. Draw and © IMow e> Kcsol utuw "That's really sweet. 6 blow.

And heck. the riff will sound clumsy." said Stone. it's one of those little details that can make a huge difference.Good Old Six Blow "Here's a nice little lick that will take you from Note of Resolution 6 Wow down to Note of Resolution 3 blow or 2 draw. and starting your draw again. If you do it by drawing on hole 5. Vou SLIDE the harp. it's not hard to keep drawing as you move the harp. Sure improves your music.2 . "It's kind of like a scale." "See what you mean.2 Stone played the 6 Blow Down a few times. moving the harp to hole 4. "Now." 89 . "What do you call that?" "A DRAW SLIDE." said Gref after he slowly played the 6 Blow Down. though." said Stone." Six 6 o > pown v \ ® ® 4 ( 3 ) 3 Tapping his foot 1 . continuing to draw. one of the tricks in playing this lick is the way you move the harp from 5 draw to 4 draw. stopping the draw.1 .

stomping out a 1 — 2—1 — 2 rhythm and putting the riff into this rhythmic framework. over and over. 'Now I'm gonna play the Surprise Resolution. the Surprise Resolution or any other sequence of notes that ends on the 2 draw. "Now another thing you can do is stop the riff on 4 draw and create tension. or 9 blow. do you think to yourself. warble and wail. "when you play. And even if it isn't perfect. MIt would petrify me to play harp and think at the same time. or fast. You just blow and draw. and it comes out the way it's supposed to.2 . you still have a good time. finally resolving the tension on a Note of Resolution using the Good Morning Riff. "And isn't that the whole point of playing music ." "So tell me. "Why not just pick the oP harmonica up and play it?" "I think you should. After everyone had the hang of it.to have a good time?" "Then whafs the purpose of learning all these riffs?" asked Smash. the Down Riff." asked Gref." Plow p a w n 6 © Wtailer © Riff "You can play this pattern slowly. "When you practice. Now I'm gonna create tension on 6 draw?' Do you follow some kind of map?" M I never do that. playing harp is like dancing. you should get your 1 .1 ." said Stone." replied Stone. Stone said. No. try a few of the licks you've learned 90 . 6 blow.The Cave Boys played with the 6 Blow Down for several minutes. 3 blow.2 beat going.

it's been hours. you'll be teaching yourself and having a good time. using microphones and amps. Haven't I earned my clams yet?" "Is there more to the harmonica?" asked Krok. Know what I mean?" Stone looked at his watch. "Well. using your hands. "But it would take hours to cover everything: bending notes. the high notes aren't nearly as difficult to play. playing these riffs to a 1 I . "Okay. always keeping your two stomp beat. "By going back and forth between memorizing and being spontaneous. it's a good idea to practice on your lower harps: G . After a few days of working this way. They'll be natural. The fire reflected dual images on his aviator glasses. "Well. try the riffs again. "you'll tell us." "If you want your clams. I'll tell you. but if you want to know about them. A flat or A ." Nine Blow Stone squatted in the dirt of the cave.f from me." said Stone." 91 . Since these harps are pitched a little lower.cycle. "Listen fellows. After a few minutes of not using the stuff you've memorized. "When learning these high notes. "Holes 1 through 6 are the nuts and bolts of simple Cross Harp." he began. a small Timex strapped to his wrist with dinosaur sinew. of course." said Smash. Still. then leave those behind and play your own. the licks you've memorized will have become part of the way you pick the harp up and play it. the holes above 6 will add drama to your harp playing. they're a little more difficult than the notes on holes 1 through 6. Don't you think you've -V V heard enough? What about my clams?" "What about the notes above 6 draw?" Krok persisted.

" said Stone. "Remember. difficult 9 blow. but is up an octave. but up two octaves. "But it's worth it. smooth lick starting on the 9 blow. "on holes 7 through 10." Nine blows (and pieces of 10 blows and 8 blows) screeched through the cave's musty air. There are some good licks up here." Stone said. "I change the shape of my lips and throat for this one. "Such as the 9 Blow Down." "Such as?" asked Krok. creating tension on the Wailing Note 6 draw and finally resolving on the 6 blow Note of Resolution. the 8 draw (creating a tiny bit of tension on this Wailing Note). "Takes a while to get the hang of this end of your harp." Stone gave A harps to Smash." he said." said Stone. Ni ncVAovo R£SOLin"lON "Nine blow. "Nine blow feels different than your lower notes. 9 Blow Down is the same riff as 6 Blow Down. Practicing 9 Blow Down will help you get a feeling for this. the 8 blow. "is your Note of Resolution. Gref and Krok and let them work on the high. It's the same note as 2 draw and 3 blow." said Stone. blow notes are higher than draw notes.* Stone cupped his hands around his harp and played a high. only up an octave. and comes from my head rather than my throat or body as it does for the lower notes. It's the same note as 6 blow. sliding to the 7 draw. By the way. "It takes you from the 9 blow Note of Resolution down to the 6 blow Note of Resolution. 92 . The airstream feels finely focused. lightly touching the 9 draw.Stone took an A harp from his harmonica bag and played a 9 blow.

Nine^ 9 ® £®(z)® e \ \ "Plow P o w n (9) (8) 7 8 WAILING Stepping \ Stepping. This is a Cross Harp lick that takes you from 6 blow to 9 blow. let me show you the 6 Blow Up. S i S 151 OW U p 6 ©(g) & 9 9 M 8 7 RE50LLTTI0N / / WAILING Stepping S t o n e / / / • i^ WAILING WAIL. \ \ WAILING \ ^ (7) (6) G wAiLirvjO WAIUN& resolxttion "Now.IN© WAIUN6 resolution* W G / (7) / / / / / Steppirq^ S t o n e 93 .

" said Krok. 1 drawand back up through the 2 blow. 4 draw. Stone was a pretty sensitive guy. and finally resolving on 2 draw. the 7 draw. or I'll try to play it and only get half the note. Stone gave the lead guitarist a long. then performing a draw slide through the 5 draw. A long cry of a 9 blow rang out. 3 draw. I'm still learning. it was a lot easier for him to criticize himself than to hear it from others." 94 . And. shrieking. bending. Through his aviator glasses. 2 draw.Each of the Cave Boys attempted to play the 6 Blow Up. as a matter of fact). Then the harp slid down over the notes. Sounds awful. especially getting a clean sound on the 9 blow and the 8 draw. "How long did it take you to learn to play these high notes?" asked Gref.. 2 draw. "Lots of times that 9 blow will just take off on me." answered Stone. yeah?" he finally said. "That. my friends.. 3 draw. twisting. hard and dirty look. to the 6 blow. descending over the 9 draw. the 8 draw. the 8 blow. He put his A harp to his lips. the 6 draw. like most musicians. is the Complete Blues Scale Down. Even if he was a funky." "I've heard. "Oh. harp-playing Cave Boy. "Man. but the riff was difficult and demanding (still is.

WAILIfSJO WAILING WAILING WAILING WAILING WAILING "And here. and difficult-to-play Complete Blues Scale Up. amazing.Complete Sc^le^T 9 <D & ® @ © e ® @ ( D ® ® 2@(D® §txrrms u^Kcn" Fcrit" WAILIfSJG WAII_lfSJG stepping Stoic WAILING Stepping." 95 ." he said. "is the popular.

Krok ol' boy. Gref and Smash eyed each other.Complete Up As Stone started on his 1 draw and moved swiftly and smoothly up the notes to 9 blow. What was this guy trying to prove? "Okay. Let's hear you play that lick." said Stone when the last echoes of the shrieking 9 blow had died." 96 . "It's your turn. Krok.

eh?" M Man.." "Don't have what it takes.. could he play the Complete Blues Scale Up? Just once? Could he get lucky? H m m m m m m 60 clams. Til bet you 60 clams you can't play this lick." Stone said. A timid tone came from the harp. He asked himself.." Krok looked at the little harmonica resting in his hand. "I'm just starting out on harp. Its wooden edges and engraved hole numbers glistened in the firelight. Before Krok even had time to reply." said Krok. HI bet you 20 clams you can't play this lick. he cupped the boo boo reed beauty and put it to his puckered lips." Gref said. Here he had spent hours showing these guys the secrets of Cross Harp. "Okay." But Stone would not listen to Krok's excuses. man. His face was streaked with sweat. Then. Stone. Very softly. So far so good. His legs felt weak."If you want to to chicken out. He was deep inside himself.tt C'mon.. and Krok insults his playing.. "Not as difficult an instrument as harp. "You got a bet. One draw. hands trembling.. gathering his powers of concentration." Krok hardly heard his worried bass player. he played the 1 draw." Stone laughed. I guess. I'm sure Stone will." The Bet Krok stood in the center of the cave." he finally said. You know I can't play a lick like that. 97 . I play guitar. "Look. Stone said." "Listen.

Krok. He opened his eyes and looked across the firelit cave where Stone watched through flame-licked aviator glasses. Perfect! He was playing the 4 draw. What Krok would give to read his mind now. For now. He moved the harmonica to hole 2. he'd have to go to 3 draw. wailing on the 4 draw. Okay. From the 2 draw. theoretically. He blew and then he sucked. This would be Note of Resolution 2 draw.Knowing 1 draw was a Wailing Note. As he drew on Note of Resolution 2 draw. Krok gently drew air through the reed inside the harp. Yeah. Then draw. He mentally rehearsed this small move of his harmonica and the draw-blow-draw transition required to get to the Note of Resolution. 98 . Another safe spot that would always work. you might want to play your 1 draw as you read. No one thought he'd make it to 2 draw and here he was. he finally said to himself. and immediately draw .) Now. With a gentle pull he moved the harp to hole 4 as he blew and sucked. from 1 draw. Yeah. blow. the voice in his head told him.ending up. Two draw rang through. lefs do it. Krok would have to hop lightly to Stepping Stone 2 blow before he could find another safe spot. Okay. He made it. He was going for it. Carefully. continue on to hole 4. the 3 draw gave him time to think. he slid the harp from the 2 draw to the 3 draw. that he could play it as long as he wanted. He was safe. Being a Wailing Note (usually used as a Stepping Stone in this lick). on Wailing Note 4 draw. It would give the story a nice musical backdrop. he planned his next move. move the harp to hole 4 at the same time that you blow. you can do it. (Since you know this same vital secret of Cross Harp.

he slid the harmonica to hole 6. And there he'd be . Continue sliding the harp to 8 draw. From now on. Might as well create a little tension while I'm here. Nice touch. He flicked his tongue on the fleshy ridge behind his teeth as he drew the 4 draw reed. Eight draw wasn't the most effective Wailing Note on the harp. he thought. this next move would not be as difficult. Without breaking stride. Ta ta tatty ta taaaaah! What now? Okay.) Now. (And if thinking is tough for 21st Century Man. First off. he said to himself. He had to think. Ta ta ta. 99 . but it would do for now. consider what it must have been like for a Cave Boy. Ta ta ta. This is it. All he would have to do is move the harp to hole 5 and blow. slide the harp to hole 7 and draw.playing the 6 blow Note of Resolution. he thought. It would have to. Bonzai. And there he was on 6 blow. His tongue tapped triumphantly on the moist ridge of his mouth just above his upper teeth. remember that the order of notes above 6 draw is reversed. it really didn't look that difficult. Ta ta ta. he'd continue moving the harp to hole 6. Still blowing. Gently he moved the harp to hole 5 and blew. but this was no time for messing around. As for the move itself.Ta ta ta. From the 6 blow Note of Resolution. Cave Boy. blows are going to be higher than draws.

Made it. He blew on the 8 and slid the harp to the 9. was looking excitedly at his harmonica. But he was almost home. the sound of this Note of Resolution was a thing of great beauty. Eight draw just didn't sound that good as a Wailing Note. he sucked arid moved the harp to hole 7 and to hole 8. the wirey harp player was smiling broadly. Ta ta tatty ta taaaaah! The triumphant 9 blow bounced and echoed off the cave walls. Ta ta ta! cried Krok's 9 blow. too. 100 . Poor guy hadn't taken a decent breath in what seemed like hours. wail like a fire engine. bark like a dog. a tribute to his ability to learn new skills. Almost 60 clams richer. He had done it. All he'd have to do now was blow on hole 8 and blow on 9. Then he collapsed to the cave floor. The trick was to go real slow and to rest on the Wailing Note and Notes of Resolution. so could he. maybe Stone isn't such a bad guy after all. He looked down at the tiny harmonica almost lost in his huge hand. man!" shouted Smash. Krok looked across the cave at Stone. Yeah. Krok lowered the harp from his lips and smiled. "Right on." said Gref. even Stone. thought Krok. He. To all the Cave Boys. There he was-playing the 9 blow Note of Resolution. He had actually played the Complete Blues Scale Up! Still playing the 9 blow (wanting to savor the moment). To his surprise. He made the note crow like a rooster. H m m m m m . "Yeah. If Krok could do it. But there was no time for congratulations.From the 6 blow. G o for it! So he did. a symbol of man's conquest over the unknown.

Use TONGUING to add rhythm and tension to Wailing Notes and Notes of Resolution.Notes * There is no one way to play any of these riffs.4 beat going with your foot.3 . fake it. When in doubt. When practicing these blues riffs.2 . * Feel free to use the patterns in this chapter as inspiration for •naking up your own blues patterns. to your mood. the Good Morning Riff played again and again will usually sound better than the Complete Blues Scale Down or Complete Blues Scale Up.2 . • When you make a mistake. For instance. The idea is to MOLD them to the music.2 or 1 . keep a steady 1 . • SIMPLICITY and REPETITION are important features of good harp music. 9 9 9 Some of the riffs in this chapter are quite difficult. Don't feel you leed to be able to play them before reading on. DONT STOP PLAYING. . to the beat. Simply continue blowing and drawing until you get to a Note of Resolution or a Wailing Note.1 .


SIX Three Chords of the Blues: Playing Solo Say good bye to that ancient cave where you learned your first blues riffs and pucker up to modern day harmonica music. Quite possibly this is the most important chapter in the book. Enjoy. 103 . Chapter VI gets you playing solo harp in I-IV-V blues cycles.

playing your harmonica all by yourself. You can play riffs to create and resolve tension. the I Chord of Resolution establishes home base. pausing. You can play to create a rhythmic effect. say 3 blow. 104 . It's so short and easy you could call it a mini-cycle. using the Up Riff to wail on 4 draw. You play the Up Riff. That's because these instruments play the chords and chord cycles. Give each chord two beats. You can do this by tonguing one note.specifically I-IV-V cycles. When you play your solo music in a I-IV-V cycle. and playing the Down Riff (resolving the tension on 3 blow). Imagine these sounds as a musical wheel and make that wheel roll. play this cycle over and over. The Dominant Wailer V Chord moves the music further still. You can also play your blues riffs in cycles . to a staccato train rhythm. Stomping out a 1 . The question you ask yourself is: which riff do I play now? There are many approaches to playing solo harp music.2 beat. You play the Blues Scale Down. it's more difficult. Returning to the I Chord of Resolution provides a sense of completion of the cycle and can also signify the start of a new cycle. An example of this is playing the Up Riff (ending on Wailing Note 4 draw).Solo Harp There you are. All the harp does is accompany. The IV Stepping Stone Chord moves the music away from home. Here's a simple I-IV-V chord cycle for Cross Harp. but how do you link them together into one cohesive jam? When you're playing with a guitar or a piano. there doesn't seem to be any problem. playing solo.1 . But when you're playing by yourself. You play the Good Morning Riff. Add tonguing to give special feeling. and returning to the rhythmic 3 blow.2 . The riffs you've been practicing sound great. You play the Down Riff.

3 ffcsolu+fort I (J) WtoihVuA v ^ 4 SfafpirvA iv Resolution I 3 Try tonguing every note in this mini-cycle twice. play this I-IV-V single note mini-cycle. The single notes expressing the V Dominant Wailer Chord are Wailing Notes 1 draw. Three draw bent down and 6 draw will also work. No matter what 105 . Try tonguing in triplets. 4 draw and 8 draw. 4 blow. Tongue as though the harp were having a conversation with itself. The notes that express the IV Stepping Stone Chord are Stepping Stone Notes 1 blow.Single Note Cycles Flaying Cross Harp. Giving each note two beats. 7 blow and 10 blow. 3 blow. making some sounds long and others short. 3 Resolution I * S+tppina IV ® WtoiliflA v 5 fcesolutto* I Here's a mini-cycle that has you play the Wailing Note before you play the Stepping Stone Note. the single notes that express the I Chord of Resolution are the Notes of Resolution 2 draw. 6 blow and 9 blow.

Tonguing each note will help make it more bluesy. Keep that foot. NOT tonguing the final 2 draw will produce a stronger feeling of resolution. Note Of of RJLSO\lAiT0V\ 3 43 + 4 3 (+ (+ OVxaih) &CA+5) Veate.1 . ®u t i o n Resol I Stepping iv 1 YOCUWwa (J) v ZMJSO\UMVV\ I Tonguing every note of the above progression will get your rhythm going. slow progression with a steady 4 stomp beat.4 . but an octave lower.3 . Two draw is the same note as 3 blow. One blow is the same note as 4 blow. mouth and breath going as you play progression over and over. Note I Note of &l30\kaUc>v\ Z Note of Resolution v pcwinAKt-Waller Note IV Stepping stone. XwcWc Vxxrs for beginner* Cyclc I Note of ftzsolutrort IV Stepping StZMC Note r Resolution IV Stepping Stone. each consisting of 4 beats.2 .2 .wtoiler cycle ^ ^ a i n ) I Nets.your tonguing pattern. play this single note blues cycle again and again.3 . Note I Note of Resolution v Dominant. The term "12 bars" refers to 12 sections. 1 draw is the same note as 4 draw. Twelve Bars That Sound So Good Anyone who listens to the blues has heard the 12 bar blues cycle. 3 © 3 ® 4- 3 (4 C4 C4£eivhO C4 14 (4 &<u\t*) C+Pedte} 106 . Make that harp go! Single note progressions can also be played on the low end of your harp. give each note two steady stomps of your foot. It's a long. Also one octave down. Playing clear single notes and stomping 1 .4 . Note iv Stepping Stcme.

3. the Down Riff ends on 3 blow. To play a Dominant Wailer V Riff. To express the IV chord. 8 draw or 3 draw bent down to express the V chord. giving the home base 3 blow a feeling of finality and completion. play a riff that ends on a Stepping Stone Note. 6 draw.Riff Cycles The next stage in playing dynamite solo Cross Harp to the I-IV-V progression is to use riffs that: 1. Use it as a Riff of Resolution. 2. End on a Note of Resolution to express the I chord. use Wailing Note 4 draw in the Up Riff. say. D o w r t fciff ®4~(3)3 107 . End on Stepping Stone Note 1 blow. 4 draw. 7 blow or 10 blow to express the IV chord. 4 blow. * Tongue the 4 draw three times. End on Wailing Note 1 draw. 4 blow. then play 4 blow. Resolve your blues cycle with the Down Riff. For instance.

thinner'* Cycic I IV V I Rifl: o f Resolution Stzppinq Stone Riff Dominant" Wdiler Riff Riff of Resofufon ® 4 © 3 @®®43® 4 ® ® 4® 3 You can play the Wailing V Riff BEFORE you play the Stepping Stone IV Riff and get another simple blues progression. jt7T famirttL Cyclc I IV V I 108 Riff o f Resolution Stfcppln^ Stone Riff pomirunt" wtoiler-0ff ® @ 6 ® Riff of Resolution . Gcod ttlomiruj 0lue$ Cycle X Riff of R ^ t H t o n ® z (2)® IV Stuff1*3 6?tvr###BOT_TEXT###amp; Riff z 3 z \ v Dominant" wfciler Riff ® 4 ® @ I Riff o f Resolution ® 4© 3 Another way to play the I-IV-V cycle is to use 6 blow to end your Riff of Resolution and 6 draw to create the Dominant Wailer Riff.waiter Riff Strpping Stone Riff Riff o f R<fc5olu+ton (?) 4 (§) 3 3 (3) 4 ® ®®®4 ® 4 (|) 3 On the low end of your harp.Try playing these riffs so they create a blues cycle. 1 blow as a Stepping Stone Riff ending. and 4 draw to put the wail in your Wailing Riff. Stxrnip TV Tongue ftues Ojcle I v IV I Riff of Resolution txwiirMrrf. use 2 draw to end your Riff of Resolution.

Pause between riffs if you want. 109 .More Solo Cycles Here are some blues cycles that use more than four riffs. it can be continued by playing the Riff of Resolution once and then playing a Wailing Riff. use the turn-around. The turn-around ends the blues cycle in a state of tension on the V chord. or 4 draw and 6 draw. and makes you want to play it again. JtfW M M M * ^ when you're able to bend the 2 draw. resolve on the Riff of Resolution. 3 draw. VrcSfcrtty ucs Cyde> I R i f f of Resolutfo* 5 f Z i f f Resolution tziff of 3 ® f (?) IV Stepping I V PomJuanf Waller IV Sf-eppin^ Riff I Kiff of Resolution V PomiM^UAf. but keep the beat going. be sure to work them into these riffs. The first two times you play the above cycle. The third time you play it. Playing this Wailing Riff at the end of the blues cycle is called a TURN-AROUND. Or.Wai/er or I Riff of Resolution 3©+® This blues cycle can be concluded by playing the Riff of Resolution twice.

Up here.This next blues cycle uses another combination of Wailing Notes and Notes of Resolution. Jamaica Vines Cycle I V (V I V IV I V I Riff of f&sctuttc*} Dominant" w)a i I er Stepping Stone Riff Riff of Resolution Dominant" Wai I er 5tepplng Stvne Rift: Riff of (Ztsolufto* or Riff of Resolution Dom/nant~ Wfcii ler~ @(D 4 ® 3 (5XS)3 This example of a blues cycle uses the high end of your harp. Eight draw is a Wailing Note. 9 blow is often used as a Note of Resolution. and 7 blow is a Stepping Stone Note. Xfo's blues C i j d c I V Riff o f Resolution D o m i n a n t " w f a i I er- IV Stepping Stme Riff I TUff of Resolution v I ponitriant v\to»lcr Riff of fcesolutfcn iv Stepping StwieRiff v X Dominant" Wai ler or Riff of Resolution 6® 7 6®®© 6 110 .

This can really improve your tone. 4 4. Rythm is important here.® "Scratch your back! "I love it! tt tt i want it! "You got it!" 0 "Come on. breathe or grunt on the 3-4. shout. I I I I IV 5 43 5 3 4 + ® @ + 4Z ) ( 5 ) 444 O h . Play each riff on the 1-2 and pause.Muddy's Blues Cycle You will recognize this classic blues cycle as soon as you play the first riff. now! V © ft Tilting the back of the harp up puts it back further in your lips. I l l . Count 1-2-3-4.© 4 ® © ® 4. yeah!" That's it!" You got it! 44 tf "Alright!" "That's it! 44 ft tt tt IV Z) I I V IV I 3 3 Can't help it! 44 Scratch my back! 3 ® @ © 5) (+) ( 5 ) (4-.

I I I I IV IV I I V ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® * ® 6 © 6 ® 6 ® * 6 6 6 7 7 6 * "That's good!" That's bad!" "You're so cool!" "Don't get cocky! "Got milk?" "Kiss me!" -Don't kiss me!" "So good!" "So fine!" "I need you!" "Blow. If you're not familiar with Muddy Waters. low end of your harp on page 130. You will find this blues cycle played on the.Hootchie Kootchie Blues Cycle Here's a famous riff typically played by harp masters doing the Muddy Waters thing. baby!" "Do it again!" ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® ® @ ® @ ® ^ 6 IV ® ® @ ® I V ® ® ® ® 6 6 ® ® ® . you have a pleasurable education ahead.

• When playing solo. reggae. while you use harmonizing notes to fill in and take leads. one Wailing Note can be exchanged for another. let the bass and guitar express the I-IV and V. $ 113 . ' The basic idea is to play riffs that end on a Note of Resolution to express the I chord. riffs that end on a Wailing Note to express the V chord. he or she can use 3 blow as a Note of Resolution one time. their overall feeling is up to you. country western. is the I-IV-V progression. but the way they sound. one Stepping Stone for another. blues. and riffs that end on Stepping Stone Note 1 blow. Learning the progressions in this chapter will enhance your harp playing. rock. 7 blow or 10 blow to express the IV chord. 6 blow or 9 blow the next time. etc. the tempo at which they're played. The order of riffs can be changed and one riff can be substituted for another. 4 blow. ' As the harp player plays the cycle. 'When playing with a band. • The only set rule is that the harp player establishes a home base. the harp player can play riffs that completely express the progression. • The I-IV-V blues cycle is NOT CARVED IN CONCRETE. Similarly.Notes 'The framework of folk.

V . W W .v: lX wS-Xv: .v ffi'A'ir-i I?1 mmmm SMMttS m m m mmmm ' . mm . V . V Iv. ' . W . v. V . ' . ' .w.

but how else can you best describe the feeling you have the very first time you bend a note? This chapter takes you from beginning to advanced on a variety of bending and other tone-altering techniques. It's a sappy illustration. Be patient with the hard stuff and keep reading because the book gets easier 115 .A SEVEN V Falling in Love With Bending Ofcay. Okay.

He also withheld the secret arts of bending. To bend. down. this is going from D to D flat. 116 . BE Suck that column down. For instance. For instance. But. draw in a compressed column of pressurized air.Let's Learn to Bend blow bends draw bends ** *** * 1/2 step bend ~ 1 step bend 1-1/2 step bend Notes Available Through But old Stoney didn't tell Krok and the boys everything that day in the jam cave. So here they are. down and hopefully. The chart above shows the most commonly used bends. O n your C harp. He didn't tell them about the chick singer he had fallen in love with. Bending is the art of lowering and raising the pitch of a harmonica note by changing the direction of the air column as it enters or leaves your lips for draw or blow bends. he didn't tell them that he was going to make them a big clam dinner that very night. please beware: no one who reads these pages will ever play harmonica the same again. the note will follow. 4 draw can be sucked down to 4 draw bent.

This was only discovered recently. o Unbent notes. The plate on top responds to blows. and tongue. the 4 blow will begin to vibrate sympathetically. so the 4 draw reed vibration moves across the reed in just the right way. This might feel a little like wrinkling your nose. T Stone. Closing your nose helps you bend them. what he really meant was his whole sinus system. Slowing down the vibration lowers the pitch of the note. The h harmonica has two reed-plates. To bend. keep nostrils open. Let's not forget Stone's honker. This nasal-closing changes the back pressure in such a way that a bend is almost inevitable.) T dose your nose off. sniff as you draw 4 and o let the natural suction close off your nostrils. each with ten reeds. it was more of a magical." T e longer the reed. Opening the nose helps you play notes unbent. the lower the tone." set inside a "reed-plate. lips. T e reed-plate on the bottom responds to draws. The sound ae is created by your wind vibrating a thin strip of metal called a "reed. spiritual thing that he did o with his mind. T bring the pitch up.How Bending Works T k a closer look at your harmonica. close them off so only the mouth draws air. 117 . And his nose. and this vibration will slow down the 4 draw. mystical. h plow draw What happens when you bend 4 draw? If you curve the air in your mouth just right. (And both bent and unbent notes are important. breath and body and deeply involved his throat. open the nostrils. Close Nose to Bend When Stoney thought about his nose.

[ ) suck that back pressure down the \ /Cf* shaft of your throat and hold it. To release the bend. Unbent notes are as important as bent notes. Give this a try by thinking "wee" on your 4 draw. T H l 8CNT N c m . discovered the magic vowel sound that opens up the back of the throat in just the right way to receive the airstream. Learn both. master harp player and session man Stanley Behrens of Venice. Maintaining back pressure. and move it from the top of your throat to the bottom of your throat. pause eeee 4 draw unbent 4 draw bent 4 draw bent 4 draw unbent Displacement of Back Pressure Another way of thinking about bending: Take that compression. return to "ee" and suck the note back up. ( \ You have to actively.Use Vowel Sounds to Bend Eeeeerrrrrrrrr A few thousand years after Stone and the boys made history." But saying "er" by itself won't do it. that cold airball of pressured airstream. This may involve opening up the bottom of your throat in the same way as when you say "er. bring the back pressure up to the top of your throat into your head. Use your trembling stomach to hold the bend. 118 . change your throat to an "rr" (as in her) position and suck the airstream to that position. California. As you close your nose. from your guts.

First Bend
Bending ain't easy. You knock your head against the wall for three weeks, a month, three months, three years...with no results, and then suddenly, somewhere, when you least expect it, that bend pops out. Congratulations! Now what? Doit again. Do it again and again. Try to isolate what XC it is that you're doing so you remember it. Is it that ^ ^ n w way you're relaxing your jaw? Is it because you e suddenly understand what it means to suck the airstream down? Is it because you finally ignored these instructions? Whatever it is, as you bend again and again, try to identify something you can remember and use later. Let's assume it's a 4 draw you're working on. Start at the top of the bend (4 draw unbent). Then bend your note (4 draw bent).

Pause. Stomp your foot. Grunt. You can even take the harp out of your mouth if you're in a particularly casual mood. Now, start where you left off-with the 4 draw bent down, and unbend it. This down-to-up, bent-to-unbent is an essential bending maneuver.

Using your tapping tongue, try these bends as well.

Tprvjue wtaiier P m I



What Happens to a Riff or a Song When I Bend 4 Draw?
h, ^
v u D note) is the all-important ^ ' IUI 5th note of the G scale. It's a Wailing Note that creates tension and can be adapted to play through an entire I-IV-V chord progression without making a mistake. (However unless you bend it just a little, your harping won't sound bluesy.)

D Flat

If you continue bending the 4 draw down, you will come to the D flat note, the flatted 5th. The flatted 5th is an essential note of the blues scale. Simply bending from from bent to unbent, bent to unbent is a blues solo unto itself. Try this:

Add the 4 draw bent to the U p Riff to feel this bend's power.

There are times in blues and jazz when the 4 draw bent is a target note. But most of the time, the 4 draw bent will clash unless connected to a 4 draw unbent. Add the 4 draw bent to the Cross Harp Scale.

G o back to finger snapping, or some other form of setting a beat. Recall how snapping your fingers twice on each beat gave you 8th notes. Instead of snapping those digits twice, play two notes: 4 draw bent to unbent on each beat.


Four Notes in 3 Draw
Is he bending yet?

No, we need more practice.

Behold the miracle! The 3 draw reed contains u p o n its tiny metal surface what a p i a n o requires four p i a n o keys to achieve. Yet as Stone and every other h a r p m a n after h i m discovered, it is not always easy to harness the power. T h e pathway to h a r m o n i c a excellence is strewn with misplayed 3 draw bends. For some beginners the first challenge might be just m a k i n g the note sound out. If the nose is closed, if air compression is pointed t o o far down in the body, if the lips are too tight, or if your jaw, throat, sinus or cheeks are clamped u p , the only result you might achieve is a forlorn squeaky f o g h o r n , a p h e n o m e n o n called the prebend. The most important things to k n o w about bending can be found in instruction on single notes. The h a r p must be deep in your m o u t h . There must be strong, steady compression. Your face must be relaxed. You can't be out of breath. Instead, your entire m o u t h is sculpted for power. Your actual breath is small but powerful because of the way it's resisted at your lips a n d compressed throughout your body. Your embouchure, the cavity that accepts the harp, must be large a n d yet create a narrow airstream. The 3 draw unbent starts with the nose o p e n , the air pressure at the top of the throat, the m o u t h and throat cavities in a n "ee" position. The 3 draw bends as the nose closes, the air pressure goes d o w n the shaft, and the throat o p e n s in a way similar to m a k e the k'rr."
pause ,-, eeee rrrr

The Prebend Problem on 2 Draw and 3 Draw
As I mentioned, a prebend is 2 and 3 draw's half bent, uncontrolled fog horn that threatens to turn into a duck's squeal at any moment. There's a strong resistance, as though that reed doesn't want to be played. This phenomenon is called a prebend because in a sense, you are bending the reed, just a little bit incorrectly. The trick now is to learn to play the reed unbent. Then, you can start bending. This time, correctly. One exercise that can quickly help you get over the prebend requires a very meditative frame of mind. The idea is to pretend that the only way you can breathe is through the 3 draw chamber of your harmonica. Start with a single note on 3 draw or 2 draw that you softly draw and blow, and make each breath last about 10 seconds. Remember, you are not trying to bend, rather unbend. You will find yourself getting very focused, minimizing your breathing needs and shaping your mouth for optimum breath control. As you struggle to survive, there are steps you can take to unbend your prebend.

T I P S O N U N B E N D I N G 3d 1. Open up your nostrils so a teeny bit of air comes through. 2. Push the harp up toward your nose. Tilt the harp up toward your nose. 3. Relax your entire single note embouchure. 4. Move back pressure to the top of your throat and into your head and nasal passages. 5. Cut your volume of air in half.


The A note is the 9th scale degree-an important note in blues and jazz. The 3 Draw Half Step Bend* Die tiniest 3 draw bend is the 3 draw*. 123 . Y u may think that in order to hit the deepest of the bends.Using the 3 Draw Bends Bending to the right note is like singing. Another gauge is to listen closely for bad notes. the unbent 3 draw is important in making major key music. In 2nd position. The 3 Draw Step and a Half Bend*** T e full-on 3 draw bend is the A flat. the 3 draw*" goes with major and minor key music. you need to hear and adjust. it's a B flat. Often harp players play the A flat and the A when they should be on the B flat. at least by me. If. On your C harp. Use it in the blues scale. es The 3 Draw Unbent h 2nd position. you must play this note instead of 3 draw unbent. Let's start with no bend. in the course of riffing. The 3 draw" A note also enjoys a special relationship with the C chord and is where we often go to get through the IV section of the I-IV-V chord progression. The 3 Draw Whole Step Bend** If you bend a little bit more. or in the Up Riff as you pass from one note to the next. This small bend occurs naturally just from drawing. When playing minor keys. not used very much in 2nd h position. your 3 draw bent is always unpleasant. so use the 3 draw*. it may be because you are bending the 3 draw into A flat range. you play an A note. The opposite is true: what you do is bend l s and less. When playing minor key music. the flatted 3rd. the 3 draw unbent will almost always dash. then move progressively deeper. 1 call this the middle bend. GUITAR TUNER TIPS A guitar tuner is a useful tool to see how accurately you're bending. you need o to bend deeper and deeper. Learn to play it as high as possible in your head and nose.

Bending Two Draw As a rule of thumb (or lip). O n the other hand. Relax your lips. As you draw. but keep a deep. if you are able to get a clear single note on the 2 draw of your C harp. Then. It's the same note as 3 blow. 1st degree Resolution G F_Sharjg 7th Flat 7th F Start by getting a clear single note on 2 draw. Pull that note UP. the flatted 7th. hold it there. ~ v x Stop ¥>t»d T###BOT_TEXT###gt; m When you are able to bend 2 draw down and back up. The unbent 2 draw is a Note of Resolution. if your 2 draw won't respond. you are playing single notes correctly. In fact. suck the note down. direct that airstream to the roof of your mouth. with a little sniff. Try moving the harp U P toward your nose. Your 2 draw may distort. try starting th* bend with the bent 2 draw and slowly bring it up. a distorted bent 2 draw is one of the hallmark sounds of blues harp. 124 . m When the note pulls down. The advantage of 2 draw is that you can get there quickly from 1 draw and 2 blow-and you can bend 2 draw down an entire step to the important blues note. your single note technique needs help. deep into your voice box. Then gradually. sensuous pucker. opening youi nose. but that's okay as long as the note is actually lowering. allow the bent 2 draw to return to its unbent position.

D o w n Riff ® * (D*®®** ® + (D*(D pla Vtwice Blues Scale D o w n 6 ® ® 4 @ J ® (2f 6 ® © 4 ( 3 j ® Play twice This wild riff uses flatted 7ths and flatted 3rds to take you into jazz. the 2 draw** is an F. Since the blues is usually played in chords that use the flatted 7th note. In fact. a warbling 2 draw** can make a perfect slow blues accompaniment. in a crazy.t a Another way to use the 2 draw bent is to substitute it for the 2 draw jnbent. it can substitute for the Note of Resolution. First time resolve on the 2 draw**. Two Step lawful m . an essential blues note. The flatted 7th leads naturally to the Note of Resolution. off-kilter blues way. Second time on 2 draw. Articulate the bent 2 draw with a ta ta tonguing action as you slowly bring the note up. 7th-Based U p a n d D o w n Riff ( I f ® ( U (pause) ® ® (2J* 125 . Play the same riff twice. the flatted 7th of the G scale.2 Draw Bent to 2 Draw Unbent On the C harp.

use 5 blow as a stepping stone. it does so in a slightly off-kilter way. To sound bluesy. Rockin' R o b i n " Type Riff ® • 5 • ® 5 (5) 5 ® Over-playing the 5 draw in a blues improvisation. When it does harmonize. 5 draw is what I call a blues steppingstone. trying to bend it t e h way you would wail on a 4 draw. To sound more melodic. usually sounds amateurish. the same note as 2 draw". "Love Me D o " Type Riff ( 5 ) 5 0 3 • (repeat) A popular song about a red-bellied bird that rocks can be played starting off on the 5 draw. or so it's part of a headshake makes a fine sound. This famous J o h n Lennon riff uses the 5 draw to great effect.Funky Five Draw Flatted 7th When you play 2nd position. Bluesy songs and chord progressions that use flatted 7th chords are more likely to find a home for the 5 draw than more melodic songs. Although it's 2nd position. using it so it fits into a blues melody. add the 5 draw. Just sliding from 4 draw to 5 draw back to 4 draw gives you an idea of what this blues note can do. only up an octave. Give it a try: ( 5 ) 5 ® 5 ® + ® 3 The 5 draw is an F note on your C harp. means slide back 4 forth The 5 Draw Descender is a useful riff. it's a melodic line. 126 . On the other hand. This h e a d s h a k e is very effectiveparticularly if you bend and unbend the 4 draw as you slide the harp.

Bent 6 Draw Down . You c a n t o n g u e a n d b e n d it t h r o u g h a n e n t i r e b l u e s c y c l e . You can easily r e s o l v e t h e t e n s i o n c r e a t e d b y 6 d r a w b y p l a y i n g N o t e of Resolution 6 b l o w . T h e b e n t 6 d r a w s e t s u p t h e u n b e n t 6 d r a w t o c r e a t e a f u n k y and c o m p e l l i n g b e g i n n i n g t o t h i s f a m i l i a r riff. SJyc Draw/ vslail And S J * EHow fZasdvdton Some effective b e n d s o n t h e 6 d r a w a r e : A riff that d e m o n s t r a t e s t h e p o w e r o f t h i s e a s y b e n d is t h e B e n t 6 D r a w Down. e x c e p t it is a n o c t a v e higher.Six Draw Unbent and Bent Six draw is t h e s a m e n o t e a s t h e b e n t 3 d r a w .

even though you're not using that much air. ol' harpoon's like a different boy. it's a Note of Resolution-on your C harp a G. To cross over and back from the high end to the low end. O n e of the great things about mastering 9 blow is that you can bend it down almost to an F. You might achieve this kind of ending by substituting the 9 blow for a 2 draw. let the focus of air pressure in the harmonica and your sinus' rise. 9 blow is the most important of the high notes. Practicing scales like the ones below will help you adjust automatically. It is essential to have the support of your diaphragm. This flexibility of pitch helps you create tension and lets you use the Note of Resolution almost as a Wailing Note. To bring the bend up. the draw notes are L O W E R than the blows. For beginners and their loved ones. and then bringing it back up. or 6 blow. Then push the focused and compressed airstream forward and down into the harmonica. Starting at 7 draw. 6 ©(7) 7 @ © S ® ( 7 ) ® 6 9 Bending 9 Blow In most 2nd position playing. Closing your nose helps the bend. Like 2 draw and 6 blow. A great place to finish a 2nd position solo is on the high 9 blow.The High End-Cross Over at 6d & 7d Above 6 draw. 128 . and open your nostrils. RESOLUTION The first step in bending 9 blow is getting a clear single note. bending it down to create tension. this is easiest on lower pitched harps such as G or A. play two draw notes in a row as you move from the sixth hole to the seventh.

it requires that you bend the 2 draw and 3 draw to their perfect pitches. 6 @ ® 6 9 The only 2 n d p o s i t i o n do-re-mi scale o n t h e h a r p g o e s f r o m 6 b l o w t o 9blow. Cross H a r p D i a t o n i c S c a l e 6 ® @ do 7 ® so 6 la ti 9 do re mi fa Jimmy Reed w a s a g r e a t b l u e s p l a y e r w h o s p e c i a l i z e d i n s o n g w r i t i n g .w h e r e t h e high Note of R e s o l u t i o n is t h e 7 b l o w a n d 9 b l o w is a W a i l i n g N o t e . singing and h i g h n o t e h a r p s o l o s . you can hear the notes you are bending to before you've actually played them. You might also g e t u p t o t h e 9 b l o w b y t a k i n g a riff f r o m t h e 6 b l o w . ® z ©**©(?r® • do re mi f a so la ti do 129 . Check out t h e S t r a i g h t H a r p U p a n d D o w n B l u e s Riff. Because it's such an elementary part of music. However. Straight H a r p U p a n d D o w n Blues Riff 7 6 ® 9* 9 pause 9* 9 @ & 7 Perfecting 2 and 3 Draw Bends The best practice scale that I know is actually for playing Straight Harp.9 Blow Surprise © It is here a h a r p p l a y e r m i g h t e m b e l l i s h t h e N o t e o f R e s o l u t i o n w i t h along curve o f s o u n d d o w n w a r d a n d b a c k u p . he played m a n y o f t h e s e s o l o s i n 1st p o s i t i o n S t r a i g h t H a r p . This is n o t a b l u e s s c a l e . The scale is: . r a t h e r a m e l o d i c o n e . D e f y i n g c o n v e n t i o n a l b l u e s w i s d o m .

b r e a k t h e m out of the Hues ^ cycle p r e s e n t a t i o n .( 5 ) ( z ) ( z ) ( 4 ) ( 4 ) ( 5 ) ( 4 ) (5. ©**4. Y o u c a n r e p e a t t h e riffs. T h e y a r e also important riffs in their o w n right.Blues Riffs.( ? ) © Good Morning Up Riff Good Morning Turn A r o u n d V to II V to IV Vtol VII to V © Z 4 ©©** © * © © 4 (2) © © * ® .© © T h e riffs b e l o w a r e a r r a n g e d in a blues cycle.Z © 4 © ©**© Hootchie Kootchie Cycle 1 ® ©**© ©**© 4 ( p >ay 4 times) (Play twice) (Play twice) (P>av once) (Flay once) (PlaV once IV I V (2) © ( 2 ) © (7) © t D ( t ) ( § ) (±) ( 5 ) (±) © © * © © © 4- IV 1 © " © ©**© © © © © > ^ (Play once and start cycle again) 130 . ( ? ) ( ? ) 4. build t h e m i n t o s o m e t h i n g original. Cycles and Scales Using Bends Up Riff I chord to V chord D o w n Riff Wailing Riff Up a n d D o w n V to VII chord V chord I to IV to I © © © 4.

Change the m e a n i n g a n d direction o f the scale by starting o n different notes.. Where you start the scale d e t e r m i n e s the riff's m e l o d i c direction.then repeat first line STOP AND START SCALES ON DIFFERENT NOTES Bluesify the second position no-bend scale by a d d i n g b e n t notes. 6 6 +A+A+A 'tiK'fik'hA ~HA *fi%tk 3 ® * ® * • ® • © + ®* ® • ® • ® # ^ ® pla Y twice. start the scale o n 3 d r a w . ©ID®"® • ®*©® ^ dJ© 7 ® s ® 9 131 . Even t h o u g h it e n d s o n the 2 d r a w b e n d .. ® * ® ® " @ BROOM D U S T E R R I F F ( ? J ® ( I f (repeat r i f f ) this famous blues riff begins with a 6 b l o w o r 3-6 b l o w tongue-block played in three g r o u p s of triplets. o r even 2 blow. Your music will get jazzier a n d jazzier. again a n d a g a i n . It expresses the I c h o r d . W h e r e you end determines the chord y o u end u p expressing. For instance. o r 3 draw**.LITTLE WALTER R I F F Itook this from a n old Little Walter version o f "Rollin' a n d a T u m b l i n V ' Pa it fast. the flatted 7 t h . Start it o n 2 draw** (as I did above). ly SUPER VII RHYTHM RIFF This is the kind of riff that creates its o w n h o o k a n d c a n set the basis of a song.

Handcup Compression for Enriched. Releasing the compressed tone within the cup by swinging open a finger or loosening a hand opens the tone. Swelling Tone Think of your sound as subtle water in a stream and cup your hands around the harp airtight to hold the water. when you play a single note. { h s T oe of you with sore lips have the same malady!) Cupping your hands around the harmonica with an airtight seal darkens and mellows the sound. Those of you with sore hands are gripping too tightly. too. It is impossible to get an airtight seal if your hands are not relaxed 132 . Doing this a couple of times gives you a wa wa effect. the inside of your palms will tickle from the compression of your breath. Now. Curve out your hands and make your fingers flaccid so they join together. The pictures on these pages show different approaches to cupping y u or harp. probably thinner. makes the tone louder and brasher.

133 . g o i n g f r o m closed t o o p e n . you'll create effect after e f f e c t . T h e entire body-lips. a n d y o u c a n easily m o v e y o u r t h u m b out of t h e w a y w h e n you play the high n o t e s . S o a l l o w y o u r best cupping effect to b e located o n t h e l o w e r e n d of t h e h a r p . stomach-is sculpted t o intensify t h e p o w e r of y o u r b r e a t h . or just k e e p i n g t h e m i d d l e g r o u n d of almost-airtight. The hand effects w o r k best o n holes 1 t h r o u g h 6 . throat. y o u s h o u l d b e able t o feel a n d further manipulate this c o m p r e s s i o n with y o u r h a n d s . H o l d i n g y o u r t h u m b in this p l a c e h e l p s m a k e y o u r c u p airtight. Notice how the t h u m b covers t h e h i g h e r h o l e s o n t h e illustration o n page 134.Depending o n h o w y o u c h a n g e y o u r c u p . Earlier I talked a b o u t t h e c o n c e p t of c o m p r e s s i o n . If you play with c o m p r e s s i o n . T h e n just make adjustments w h e n y o u m o v e t o t h e t o p e n d . or opened to closed.a n o t h e r d i m e n s i o n t o how your h a r p s p e a k s t h e blues.

and the mic compresses the sound into a wire plugged into an amp. channeled. The effect of this airtight system is that you are practically putting the mic inside your mouth. I mean controlled. I say "potentially" because it is not an easy mic to use-and the difficulty is indeed in cupping it and getting that airtight seal. Your cupped hands compress the harp's sound into the mic. Remember. or whether all about TONE. Bring your hands together as though you were cupping water out of a stream. Your hands must be relaxed in the same way that they are when there is no microphone. which compresses it further.Playing with a microphone is a little different because now the hands are connecting the body and the harp to the mic. yet potentially warm tone. The Astatic microphone shown here is a favorite for harp because of raunchy. Allow your palms to relax into a concave bowl and make the microphone the deepest part of the bowl. narrowed into an electronic richness. By compressed. you amplify. it's 134 . no matter how you amplify.

bend 8 draw. 135 . * Bending is very difficult if you don't have a good single note with a n up and out pucker of your lips. * To keep from running out of breath when playing harp. 4 draw and 6 draw. 2 draw. learn the trick of the SLOW INHALE.Notes ' The most important skill in harp playing is being able to get a clear. * Bending can be combined with TONGUING. * Use the instructions on hands to find the way of cupping the harp that feels best to you. rich SINGLE note. bend 1 draw. pulling it DOWN into the lungs. * CUPPING your hands around the harp mellows tone and makes the harp say oooooooo. Opening your hands makes the harp say ahhhhhhhh. ' Bending helps the harp player create tension. Below hole 6. It's not difficult when your single note technique is correct. 3 draw. Everybody's hands are different. and each harp player's cup is a little different. * BENDING is a technique in which the harp player lowers the note by manipulating the airstream. 9 blow and 10 blow. Above hole 6.



Straight Harp Accompaniment
Straight Harp, or 1st Position, is the style of harmonica that often sounds best with ballads and folk-based rock. More melodic than Cross Harp, it's also easier to play. In Chapter Eight, Stone plays Straight Harp, brings a woman vocalist to practice, and the band tunes up.


The Mysterious Visitor
O n e Sunday afternoon Stone showed up for practice in a suit and tie. "Hey!" demanded Smash. "Whafs going on here?" Before Stone could answer, a woman stepped into the entrance of the cave. She was tall, slender, and most important to the chauvinist Cave Boys, good-looking. "Guys," said Stone, "I'd like you to meet a friend of mine. This is Umm." Six Cave Boy eyes went from Stone to U m m and back to Stone. True, U m m was a dish. But what was this "friend" stuff? If you wanted a woman, you grabbed her by the hair and dragged her back to the cave. Y o u didn't call her "friend." A n d you sure didn't start wearing a suit and tie. "Well, d o come in," said Krok, nervously fingering his guitar. "Would you like something to drink?" stammered Smash. "Iced tea maybe?" Behind her rose-tinted monogrammed "U" glasses, Umm's eyes smiled. The way her hair frizzed out, it looked as though grabbing this lady for a one-night cave encounter would only produce a handful of hairspray. U m m observed the handsome harp man's three hairy friends. It was not a pretty sight. "Sure," she smiled and hoped they could play. "Umm came to hear us play," said Stone. "I can dig that," said Smash, "but what's with the suit and tie?" "Listen, man," said Stone, "it takes more than grime and sweat to make good music. Let's add a little class to the act. Besides, Umm here' has got us a gig."


"A gig?" said Krok. "Where?" Not exactly a gig - an audition," said Umm. "Whafs an addition?" asked Smash. "Ifs a gig..." offered Stone. "But you don't get paid," added Gref. If they like you, they ask you to come back." said Krok. "Then they pay you," chimed Stone. Smash frowned and rubbed his stubby chin. His drumsticks looked like twigs in his huge hands. "Where is this audition?" asked Krok. "At The Club. " said Umm. "I know the guy who runs the place." "Let's practice," Stone said. He loosened his necktie. "I gotta new harp style I want to try. If we're gonna audition, we want to be ready. And look..." he turned to Krok, "this time let's tune up before we play." "Tune up again?" asked Krok with a shudder. He usually tuned the deer sinew guitar strings about every six months. "What the devil for?" "So it sounds like we're playing in the same key!" shouted Stone. So an E note on your guitar and Gref's bass is the same as an E note on my harmonica. So the music doesn't sound like a bunch of Neanderthals banging on pots and pans!" Krok looked carefully at Stone standing there with his hands on his hips; his suit, loosened tie and "friend" giving him a new air of authority. Tune up? It had never made any difference before. It was obvious Stone was just trying to impress this frizz-haired Umm. As leader, songwriter and guitarist for the Cave Boys. Krok considered telling Stone to start walking. But he stopped himself. Good harp players were hard to find. Besides, if he got rid of Stone, he might lose his audition. "Okay," he finally said to Stone, "give me a note."


Tuning Guitars to Harmonicas
On those rare occasions when they did tune, the band always matched notes with Stone's harmonica. It was the only instrument around that didn't change pitch. Bass and guitar strings (especially guitar) got out of tune just sitting around. Hot weather made the strings stretch and get lower. Cold weather made them tighten and get higher. Even Stones harps got out of tune, though they were certainly more reliable than the string instruments. (See page 209 for harp tuning) Now, being in tune meant that a certain note on one instrument was the same note on another instrument. The procedure was for Stone to play a note on his harp and for Gref and Krok to tune their instruments to that note. The guitar strings were set up like this. The first string was tuned to an E note. The second one to a B, the third to a G , the fourth to a D , the fifth to an A, and the sixth string to an E. Here's how the guitar looked:

And the bass, a four-stringed instrument, was set up like Krok's guitar. The only difference was that the strings were much thicker and were set down an octave from the guitar.


bass and guitar strings twanged. Stone played a 6 draw. gimme an A . Stone now played a 4 draw on his C harp. careful not to bend it so Krok and Gref would not be tuning to a flattened note. the lowest string needed to be tuned to an E note. he guessed. 141 . Stone pulled out his C harp. Stone played a 2 blow on his C harp. The layout of notes looked like this: :Biow DRAW "Gimme an E . once his E string was in tune. Again. Smash sighed impatiently. But it took so long! Why couldn't the band just play and pretend they were in tune? "How 'bout a D ? " asked Gref once the E and A strings on the guitar and bass were the same pitch as the E and A notes on the harp. Again careful not to bend the note or cup the harp in his hands. a low E .So. " said Krok. on both bass and guitar. "Okay. Bass and guitar strings varoomed as the E strings were tightened to play the same note as an E on Stone's harmonica. " said Gref. This was his D note. Tuning was necessary.

if you ask me. Finally." "Why don't you guys play something?" she quietly asked. His bass had only four strings. Even though he didn't need to tune. Gref played a riff on the 1-3-5 harmonizing notes of the C scale. "Guess we're there. 142 . smiling sweetly from her cloud of smoke. Sure enough. the two sounds were the same." said U m m . " he said to Umm. But Krok needed a B note." Krok strummed each string on his C chord. "Go ahead. " M m m m m m m m m m ..." said Smash. Krok strummed a C chord." said U m m . You'll hear it. Stone played a C note." said Krok. "Yeah. Stone played a 3 blow. Krok carefully tightened the tuning peg. Smash banged his drums. "My what?" Krok could not believe he was hearing this. He tightened the tuning peg. Stone played an unbent 3 draw. Stone played a higher E on his harp: the 5 blow. "Not only pretty but pretti darn smart. and his high E string slid up toward the same pitch as the harp's E note. another E. "Your B string. "Your B string is a little flat. the 4 blow on his C harp. strum your C chord again. "Varooom!" went the B string as it sought out the pitch that would match Stone's B. Gref was now tuned. And for the final note. the B did sound slightly out of whack.For the G strings. He brought his sticks down on his snare drums with a tremendous bang.

four. a C chord. "One. no less. Guess you'll count four steps from the C and play an F harmonica. who was bristling that Krok. Here goes." "Romantic." he finally said." said Umm. gave the music a more melodic feeling than did the simple I-IV-V progression.." he said to Stone.Stone Jams Straight Harp "Okay. was telling him. the chord 6 steps up from the I chord. the progression went 1-VI-IV-V.. and returned to the C. I'm gonna do something different on this song. Key of C.. "Yeah. of course. Romantic? What had this woman done to him? "Okay. and Smash played a soft steady rhythm." Krok squinted at his harp player. three. It sounds more." This was. Straight Harp. the relative minor of the C chord. Then Krok played an A minor chord. From here the music went into an F chord. the I Chord of Resolution. "No. the V chord. 143 . the IV chord of the progression. Stone. then it moved to a G . a lowly guitarist. Slow tempo. Gref added supporting notes on his bass.. two.more.. You know. Stone smiled quietly.' It'll go over good at The Club. Krok's music sounded remarkably like one of those slow-dance pop ballads that were so popular in the late 1950s and early 60s." Krok strummed the I chord of "Cave Angel... romantic. I'm gonna play my C harp in the key of C . Using the relative minor chord." said Krok. "let's try that slow love song. Now. how to play in front of his new lady. 'Cave Angel. the harp man.. Although this occurred thousands of years ago.

but they weren't half bad. 144 .IV F Krok began to sing: C Am F G "Cave angel. he used this harp style for playing melodies around a campfire. He held his C harp to his puckered lips. on this slow moving. S o Straight Harp it was. He couldn't get that bluesy. what can I do? C Am F G To earn your love so true? C Am F G C Cave angel. Stone was preparing to enter the music. Normally. He hadn't played Straight Harp with the band before. bluesy Cross Harp would be out of place. Meanwhile. tension-creating feeling. will you be mine?" U m m leaned forward. These guys might look rowdy. Still. He couldn't get down and boogie playing Straight Harp. pretty love song. The blood began to flow more quickly through her heart.

Take your C harmonica and blow on holes 1234. ALL your blow notes are harmonizing notes. TCT 1 BLOW DRAW. 7PI<hv. use the draw notes as Stepping Stones (almost the exact opposite of Cross Harp) and to resolve on 1 blow. This is your Straight Harp Blow Chord. 7 blow and 10 blow. BBBB BBBSflB 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 3 Ml The basic approach. Straight tjarp &tcw Cford 1134. 4 blow. then.0lov» You can also play the Straight Harp Blow Chord by playing holes 4567 blow or 789 and 10 blow. 145 . + Plow. The Notes of Resolution are 1 blow. to playing improvisational Straight Harp is to accent the blow notes. StmlyM~ Htfrp Nobis of Rcsolu+ron w&ow 1 f H c n v . 7 blow or 10 blow.Straight Harp Revisited This is the way Straight Harp works (from a Cave Boy's point of view). 4 blow.

3 blow. 9 draw and 2 draw bent down. THE IV STEPPING STONE CHORD is expressed with single notes 5 draw. 7 blow and 10 blow. THE DOMINANT WAILER V CHORD is expressed with single notes 2 draw. 6 blow and 9 blow.Map of Straight Harp 10 (iCj) 9 resolution g t c p p n g St*?ne w a i l i n g (9) Stepping S t o n e WAILING Stepping Stcme RESOLUTION Stepping Stepping WAILING Stepping WAIL I N G Stone Stone Stone stepping s t o n e KE^OLUTION stepping St c u e WAILIfSiG (Z) WAILING W A I L I rNiG "FwE SOLUTION THE STRAIGHT HARP I CHORD OF RESOLUTION is expressed with single notes 1 blow. 4 blow. 146 .

Here's a simple Straight Harp Riff that will always harmonize if you are in tune with the guitarist and are playing the right key of harmonica. as long as a Note of Resolution follows them. you'll discover that the draw n o t e s although they're called Stepping Stone Notes -almost harmonize. Uf? <KV\A Vovw\ adow Lark Melody S(?)4 5(4)4 5 pown Meadow 0 ® Lark Melody e>®7 fZua 7 e> 147 . single notes. Meadow Lark 5 ® Melody 4(Sun You can also play the Meadow Lark Melody R u n on the high and low end of your harmonica. f-tfgh Meadow Lark Melody fcun e> ® 7 You can play an Up and D o w n Meadow Lark Melody R u n by returning to the Straight Harp Wailing Note 5 blow immediately after playing the 4 blow. 4 draw and 6 draw can be drawn out. So. it's pretty hard to make a mistake playing Straight Harp. or as long as the song isn't on the I chord of the I-IV-V progression. Stepping Stone Notes like 1 draw. if you're getting clear. accented.As you play Straight Harp.

As mentioned earlier, Straight Harp does not create a bluesy wailing tension in the manner of Cross Harp. And, beneath 7 blow, the blow notes can't be bent. However, on hole 7 and above, the blow notes can be bent. By pushing the airstream forward and down, you can make your 7 blow, 8 blow, 9 blow and 10 blow swoop down. And, by releasing the air you've directed down into your harmonica, you can bring these Straight Harp Harmonizing Notes back to the top of their bending potentials. For instance, you can create tension on the High Meadow Lark Melody Run by bending the 8 blow Wailing Note.

And, you can resolve the tension with the Straight Harp Descender, a pattern that takes you from Straight Harp Wailing Note 8 blow down to Straight Harp Note of Resolution 4 blow. Straight* H a r p e>@ 7 © 6 5 Premier 4

8--V (8) \
7 \

WAILING* Stepping Stone
RESOLUTION \ \ \ Stepping Stone Stepping


6 (5) 5 4


VvAiUNCb Stepping \



\ Stepping
^ >




From the 4 blow, you can wind your way to the Wailing Note 8 blow. Siraiakh


ftorp 5 6



nm 7 mm

wAlLtNO / / S-tCfpirrg R^SOLUTlOfsJ


/ Stepping / /


Stopping, WAI LIN& Stepping WAILINe Stepping Stone


5 FT

7s 1


K.eSOLi»TiOrsJ These patterns should give you a few ideas for Straight Harp improvisational accompaniment. You can use them as "fillers" - musical phrases that keep a song interesting, or you can use them to create solos. Built on a framework of Straight Harp Harmonizing Notes, the mood and timing of these riffs can be modified to fit the song you're accompanying. In addition, you can figure out almost all melodies that use a major scale and play them in the Straight Harp Style. The only major scale on your diatonic harp starts on 4 blow and goes:

4 Ac

© re

® © i fa.

* © SO U

© M

7 Ap


S o if your band were going to release a new version of "Old MacDonald H a d A Farm/' you, the harp player, could toot around on this major scale until you discovered the melody. 7 Old 7 7 6 (g)(6) WkA a ® ® 6 farm




7 7

But say the record producer didn't like the way the harp sounded. " C ' m o n , " he says, "You're making this MacDonald guy sound like a pansy. H o w 'bout some lower, more throaty notes?" Then you might go searching for the melody on your lower notes and to your dismay, you'd discover there isn't a complete scale from 1 blow to 4 blow. You'd find that the fa was missing as well as the la. Y o u would N O T be able to play the note for the word "had" in those poignant lines, "Old MacDonald had a farm." 4 C\d 4 Mac 3 VovmU



3 a farm

Panic sets in! Here you are on the verge of a big recording contract - and you can't find the note for "had." W h a t you need is a major scale from 1 blow to 4 blow. Okay. Here's what you do. There are notes missing between 2 blow a n d 2 draw and between 3 blow and 3 draw. The only way to play a major scale is to bend to 2 draw down before playing the unbent 2 draw, and to bend the 3 draw d o w n before playing the unbent 3 draw.

The note y o u d need for playing the "had" in "Old MacDonald" would be the 3 draw bent down. 4-4" 3 0\A MacVow*\d 5 5 Ecectyyyy (5)** A it&CAjyyyy 5 farm





"Perfect!" cries the producer. "You're going to go a long ways with this little tune!" So, to enhance your ability in playing Straight Harp melodies,, practice this major scale starting from 1 blow. ' ® * ( 2 T © ( 3 f ( 3 ) 4w i fa so U t i do

do rc

And also learn to play the major scale going from 4 blow to 1 blow,

+ (5) do -H




Z © w[i m

» do

This may be the most difficult technique in the entire book. Still, when "Old MacDonald" strikes it big and your group has started a whole new musical genre, "Punk Nursery Rhymes," don't forget where you learned it.

But lefs get back to Stone, standing there in the musty cave, sweating like Niagara in his suit and loosened tie, C harp to his lips as the Cave Boys enter another cycle of this old be bop chord progression. Stone tongues his 4 blow. He slides the harp to 5 blow and plays the Meadow Lark Melody Run: 5 blow, 4 draw, 4 blow. He wails on the 8 blow, slips up to the 9 blow and wails there. Back to the 8 blow, bending the note and releasing it. Then the 8 Blow Descender - 8 blow, 8 draw, 7 blow, 6 draw, 6 blow, 5 blow, 4 blow - hitting that


" 152 . "I'd take a bath. "Cave angel. Krok closes his eyes and begins to sing.. "It would seem funny. Umm's voice is like a musical instrument.." says Smash. This girl can sing! Smash is the first to speak. underscores the emotion. guys?" Stone asks. gul wrenching melody. The harp punctuates the music. expressive..Straight Harp Note of Resolution at exactly the moment the chord progression has gone full cycle and resolves on the I chord. His monkey suited harpist has created a spell with his sensitive Straight Harp. the song ends." A soft 8 blow reverberates off the cave walls.. I'd comb my hair." Only this time the voice doesn't belong to Krok. It sounds so good." "Well. Smash keeps a steady beat. No. but amazed. "Wow! A chick singer!" Umm glares... mouth open. The musicians are exhausted. Grefs bass is supportive. She's standing up. will you be mine?" The harmonica echoes the voice with the Meadow Lark Melody run.. It belongs to Umm. Finally. "Cave angel. Wa wa wa! the 4 blow actually cries.. This voice is rich.." Wa wa wa "Cave angel." Wa wa wa "Cave angel. "To show you how much I care.. will you be mine?" The entire cave seems to be swinging back and forth to this sad. Krok almost drops his guitar. sensitive. "A woman vocalist." Wa wa wa "Cave angel. hands clenched to her bosom. Krok's voice is halfway between a belch and a grunt. eyes closed.. "Yeah. "Can she join our band?" "We couldn't call ourselves the Cave Boys. "Cave angel.." says Gref." The 8 blow curves down and seems to fall through space as Stone plays the 8 Draw Descender.

Umm looks at the four musicians. a n d maybe. Firelight flickers in her hair. But in Krok's mind. U m m . the possibilities are spinning like peaches and cherries on a slot machine. These guys weren't bad. "How are you at singing rock and blues?" With that U m m opens her mouth and shouts-sings-laughs-cries. w o m e n . But at least they got into the music. He eyes the frizzy-haired phenomenon standing across the cave. tell me this. booze. Money. Then they move on. Cosmic tours. Las Vegas. they get the job at The Club. World tours. "What do you think. 153 . just maybe. "Your voice needs work. why not? "I've got an idea. and then maybe to the big time. Krok?" All eyes turn to guitarist. First. sparkles in her "U" monogrammed glasses. playing Dinosaur Breath a couple of nights a week (it's a nice little dive near the tar pits). Royalties. "Well. Should she? Well. New York. songwriter and lead singer of the band. delicate cheekbones. . "Well. A n d they were nice enough. Dumb. "How "bout U m m and the Cave Boys?" "Sounds good to me. A n d all because of U m m ." he finally says. Umm." he says. "Well. "Baby. Records. Los Angeles. this sweet little chick singer. ." says Gref. true. too. throws shadows on her high." grins Stone. Revenge on all the people who said he'd never make it." "Whoooppppppeeeeeee!" shouts Smash. why you treat me like you do? Whyyyy? Whyyyy? Whyyyy?" "Oh yeah!" grunts the voice in Krok's head. "I like it. but I'll spend some extra time working with you. what do you think?" No answer. "Oh yeah!" He can see it now." she says.

" said U m m . "I think your B string is still a little flat." CLUB DINOSAUR BREATH FEATURING U M J M AND * THE.And that is how Stone's Straight Harp added diversity and class to a ragged old band that never would have made it out of the cave. "Incidentally. CAVE BOYS 154 .

* To play the Straight Harp style of harmonica.Notes * Two instruments that aren't tuned to each other sound lousy when played at the same time. * On your C harmonica. a G harp in the key of G . B or any other note. 2 blow and 5 blow are E notes. 1 blow is a G. 7 blow and 10 blow. On an E harp. play a C harp in the key of C . Accent the blow notes. the Notes of Resolution are 1 blow. O n a G harp. Use draw notes as Stepping Stones. 1 blow is a D . 0 155 . The harp player gives the guitarist a note and tells him or her what note it is. * The guitar tunes to the harmonica. Playing Straight Harp. 1 blow is an E . D . Ditto for A . G . 4 blow. Use the major scale chart on page 141 to figure out where other important guitar tuning notes are located. a D harp in the key of D . On a D harp. * Being IN TUNE means that an E note on the guitar is the same as an E note on a harp.


A NINE Campfire Melodies Played Cross Harp Umm. and so will y o u . Stone. Gref and Smash vacation in the mountains. Krok. Stone goes nuts turning some old songs into tasty blues melodies. The band loves it. .

The laughter and talk drifted into a contented silence. The descent of the sun had turned the horizon from blue to purple. drawing all eyes into a kaleidoscope of blue and orange warmth. snapping and crackling.A Circle of Friends The vacationing band sat around the campfire. Umm told a joke about smoke keeping away the mosquitos. and the first stars of the evening were taking a bow in a theatre of clear skies. Krok threw a log on the fire and a shower of sparks made everyone move. 158 . hand to mouth. The harp man took his harmonica from his pocket and started to softly play. Stone and his friends leaned closer to the glowing logs. A jug of wine made its way around the fire. As the sky darkened. passed hand to hand. Only the fire seemed lively. "Wa wa wa waaaaaar His simple Cross Harp riffs kept beat to the crackling of flame and wood.

"Play u h .Krok placed s o m e d r y w o o d o n t h e fire a n d S t o n e ' s h a r m o n i c a e n e r g y rose with t h e f l a m e . " t h e s e o l d s o n g s s o u n d g o o d w h e n y o u p l a y ' e m Hues style!" . "Hey!" h e s h o u t e d . ' R e d R i v e r V a l l e y . t h i s w o u l d b l o w t h e i r m i n d s ! Shyly at first. ' " g i g g l e d U m m . ' Y o u k n o w . T h e fire d a n c e d t o t h e s i n g i n g h a r m o n i c a . "Play s o m e m o r e . " P l a y s o m e t h i n g w e c a n all s i n g . a n d G r e f c o u l d n ' t s t o p h i m s e l f f r o m d a n c i n g . ' " "Play ' F r a n k i e a n d J o h n n i e . he'd b e a b l e t o i m p r o v i s e b y s t i c k i n g riffs b e t w e e n t h e p a u s e s of the songs. G r e f a n d S m a s h s t a r t e d t o s i n g a l o n g . S m a s h grunted after a p a r t i c u l a r l y s o u l f u l p h r a s e o u t o f S t o n e ' s b o o b o o r e e d harmonica. D i d t h e y r e a l l y w a n t h i m to play such h o k e y o l d S t r a i g h t H a r p s o n g s ? H e ' d g r a d u a t e d f r o m t h a t long ago! T h e n h e h a d a n i d e a ! H e ' d p l a y t h e t u n e s b l u e s style. c a s t a n e t s o n f i n g e r s o f flame. T h e w i n e m a d e its s l o s h i n g w a y a r o u n d t h e fire o n c e m o r e . O n c e t h e y g o t t h e h a n g o f Stone's bluesy a p p r o a c h . " "Yeah!" said S m a s h . matched by U m m ' s w a i l i n g c a v e girl h o w l s . Stone l o o k e d at h i s f r i e n d s t h r o u g h h i s h a n d s . The party h a d s t a r t e d . 2 n d position. w h o w a s o f t e n embarrassed b y i n n o c e n c e a n d f u n b e g a n s i n g i n g a l o n g i n h i s r o u g h hewn voice. ' " s a i d G r e f . Everybody k n o w s i t . M a n . T h e h a r d p a r t w o u l d b e b e n d i n g t h e 2 d r a w a n d 3 d r a w t o h i t the notes at 2 d r a w * * a n d 3 d r a w * * . Stone b r o u g h t h i s m u s i c t o a c l o s e . It w a s U m m . "Don't s t o p " s a i d a s h a d o w y f a c e a c r o s s t h e fire. T h e n h e g r a b b e d h i s b a c k p a c k i n g g u i t a r a n d b e g a n strumming t h e c h o r d s . " s h e u r g e d . S o d i d t h e e n e r g y o f h i s circle o f f r i e n d s . B u t w h a t t h e h e c k . E v e n K r o k . S t o n e s t a r t e d t o p l a y . crackling a n d p o p p i n g its feisty p e r c u s s i o n . t h a t o l d c o w b o y s o n g . it w o u l d b e good practice! H e ' d r e a l l y start t o u n d e r s t a n d m e l o d y ! Plus. "Play ' S h o r t n i n ' B r e a d . c a r r i e d a w a y b y t h e b e a u t y o f t h e m o m e n t .

" The second time through on both songs. Stone first caressed a bluesy version of "Red River" followed by "Sunshine. The basic idea is that instead of playing the melody in the underlined spots. he improvised by jumping to the high end and integrating blues riffs with pieces of the established melodies. you play a blues riff that ends on the same note that the melody ends on. The second time. Reason? It turned this old cowboy song into a cowboy blues song. 160 . R E D R I V E R VALLEY BLUES 2 n d p o s i t i o n F r o m this ® © ® • • • ®~® ®"@ val ley they say y o u a r e g o ing D7 ® ® m®s y@r ®g h©y e s a+d s®e t s m i l e W e will i s ou bri t e n we For they s a y y o u a r e t a k i n g t h e s u n shine W h i c h has brightened our path for a while Improvisation you 5 Ideas are * © oo 0 and oo 5 ® ® oo <§r® go © " o r • Ing © 5 © or sweet smile © • 6 © © For they say you are © 5 © • ened our path for • tak • Ing © • • the sun shine © " © a while While Krok strummed guitar in a basic blues progression (chords included). He played it through the first time as written.Cross Harp Camp Fire Music Stoney started with this old favorite played in 2nd position. he decided to improvise on the melody.

YOU ARE M Y S U N S H I N E B L U E S 2 n d p o s i t i o n No Chord You © ©©®® • ®®®© • a r e m y sun shine.) 161 . M y a •* ® 45 S _ G7 G7 on ly + sun shine 6 7 ® © ® You m a k e m e h a p p y w h e n skies are grey © ® * * ® "I 5 5 ® 4. M y © © 7 on ® ly 7 sun shine ® grey ® 6 3 • You m a k e m e h a p p y w h e n 6 You'll 6 ® @ 7 3 6 skies are ® 7 I 6 way n e verknow dear h o w m u c h © ® 7 © • ® a love y o u Please d o n ' t t a k e m y s u n s h i n e Improvisations for the high end ^ my ® on 6 ® 4 ® ly ® 5 6 © 4® sun shine © © " © S You make m c h a p © © © py w h e n skies are grey (Insert this quick riff between "love" a n d "you".® © You'll n e v e r k n o w d e a r h o w m u c h I love y o u Please d o n ' t t a k e m y s u n s h i n e a way YOU ARE M Y S U N S H I N E B L U E S 2 n d p o s i t i o n ( h i g h e n d ) You 6 a r e m y sun shine.

Somehow. not to mention his incredulous band mates. 162 . (Z) (5 Jer Jos © And i cho. Jer i 6 (6) ® c n® o of Jer i cho. And t h e walls c a m e turn bling d o w n JOSHUA FOUGHT THE BATTLE 5th position-C harp in E minor z . © And t h e walls c a m e turn bling d o w n JOSHUA FOUGHT THE BATTLE 4th position-C harp in A minor Jos © @r • ® • • • 0 5 + 5 hua fought the b a t tie ® © 5 45 of Jer i cho. hua fought the b a t tie ® ~ ® ® " @ * t h e walls c a m e turn bling d o w n Now Stone did something that blew his own mind. did it sound good. he wandered into position-playing (see page 199) and played "Jericho" in three different minor keys. <2J' • © . but m a n . Jer Jos © ® .Jer ® • i + cho • ® 5 + 5 h u a fought the b a t tie © 5 © 4 ® of Jer i cho. ® . ® ~ ® © ® J o s h u a fought the b a t tie of J e r i cho. He had n o idea what he was doing. Jer Jos • i cho. s . 5 • ® • 6 ® ® ® Jos 6 hua fought the b a t tie 5 of Jer i cho. * ® ® ® h u a fought the b a t tie 5 ® 6 ® 5 i cho.JOSHUA FOUGHT THE BATTLE 3rd position-C harp in D minor © .Jer i cho of Jer i cho.

" played 12th position. h o w sweet the sound B C That saved a w r e t c h like m e I • once was © ® © lost. Stone hoped that somehow he'd remember what he had just played. C harp in the key F. 163 .SHORTNIN' BREAD 2nd position Fast G7 Strum 5 M a m m y ' s lit- © • • tie • tie © ba- 5 © 5 (?) 5 b y l o v e s s h o r t nin'." sighed Umm as she came closer. including this amazingly easy and expressive version of "Amazing Grace. © but n o w a m found 6 ® Was blind. s h o r t n i n ' 5 ® ® " © by loves short nin' b r e a d 6 • 5 M a m m y ' s lit- © • © • ba5 let. Everything he played was golden. W A Stone could do no wrong. "That's the best version yet. b u t n o w I see Arranged by J o h n McLaughlin. Seattle. (repeat) 6 Put • on 5 the © skil • na 5 6 • 5 Mam m y gon 6 5 © © put • on 5 lit- 5 ® the lid • ® t i e short-nin' b r e a d • bake a 5 na • a That ain't all she's g o n 5 Mam m y gon 6 • © © do 6 lit • ® tie c o f fee t o o • na make AMAZING GRACE 12th position-C harp in key of F • A F ® © © 6 ® © + m a z ing grace.

N o s e closed. W h e n h e arrived at the treacherous 3 draw** for the w o r d " l o n g .BILL BAILEY 2nd position G7 W o n ' t y o u c o m e h o m e B i l l B a i -ley? Won't you come home? D7 © • ® ® 5 ®* S h e cried the w h o l e night long. o p e n . D7 I'll + • ®* + ® • ® • do t h e dish es ba G7 I know I done you wrong. h e c o m p r e s s e d his airstream t o get m o r e power from less effort. u s i n g the d r a w n " t a " t o give e a c h b e n d a s h a r p attack and yet play u n d e r e x t r e m e control. W e l l . closed. ain't t h a t a s h a m e . I ' l l p a y t h e rent. 164 . Instead of huffing a n d p u f f i n g . " h e w e n t right t o t h e b e n d . played it s p o t o n . D7 G G7 B a i l e y w o n ' t y o u please c o m e h o m e ? T h i s w a s S t o n e ' s c h a n c e t o really exercise the 3 d r a w tongue bends a n d u n b e n d s . C7 I d r o v e you out 6 • • • with noth i n g b u t C7 6 I A7 ® 6 5 fine t o o t h c o m b G7 E7 • • know I'm ® • ®~® ®~® ® ® Bill 5 6 5 ® • 5 © t o b l a m e . n o s e o p e n . a n d got off before it could waver. • ® * ® • • ®**® ®~® ® ® • ® ® M Remember that rai • a n y even-ing. b y .

{chorus) "Frankie looked over the transom much to her surprise There was her Johnny boy Loving up Alice Bly" He was... love © lov 5 © • 6 © • the 6 be © 6 true to 5 They swore to 5 ® S each oth er True as man 6 But © <D © © stars a. lov ers G7 © love • • to each 0 6 oth er © ® ® 5 ® 5 Frank ie a n d J o h n n i e w e r e G7 C7 © ® ® 5 ® 5 O h L o r d -y h o w t h e y c o u l d C7 6 • 0 5 (?) 6 They s w o r e t o be true 6 . In his surprisingly squeaky voice.. b7 But • * he was do • Improvisational ideas (D • ers A blues murder ballad! Smash even knew I he words. It's murder in the second degree He was her man. C7 0 G7 3 0 * ® ing her wrong. ® t h e stars D7 5 ® 5 ® a -bove He w a s her m a n .' said Frankie girl Don't my Johnny Boy look cute!" I Ie was her man. It's plain as plain can be That woman shot poor Johnny. oh my.. " Frankie drew back her kimono pulled out her little . but he was doing her wrong. he sang the lines and Stone's harp repeated them.44 Rat ta tat! three times she shot Right through that hardwood floor!" He was.FRANKIE AND J O H N N I E BLUES 2 n d position G7 C7 G7 © ." 165 .bove (D he 5 was © do 3 Ing • © her wrong "The judge said to the jury. True a s ® © .. "Frankie and Johnny went walking John in his brand new suit My..

a n d finally played the 2 draw lead t o t h e s a m e s o n g . n o w C r o s s H a r p . 166 . S t o n e started off w i t h a s i m p l e Straight Harp v e r s i o n o f " S a i n t s .5 ® g o march ing in 5 be 6 in C • 6 F ® that n u m ber 5 ® 6 5 4. a n d t h e n slid d o w n t o t h e 1 2 3 4 d r a w chord where h e d r o v e t h e r h y t h m t o a train-like frenzy.® + W h e n the Saints g o march ing in WHEN THE SAINTS G O MARCHING IN 2 n d position G7 ® ® © © • © O h when the Saints © go march ing in © +© D7 O h w h e n the Saints G O h Lord I want G7 to go m a r c h ing i n • in G7 * V ® be D7 * • © • that n u m ber W h e n the Saints g o m a r c h ing in ® +® ® ® F o r his e v e n i n g ' s finale. creating u n b e a r a b l e t e n s i o n . O n l y p r o b l e m w a s . h e w e n t right i n t o a l o n g wailing 4 d r a w tata tata tata t h a t h e r e n e w e d t h r e e t i m e s . n o o n e b u t S t o n e h e a r d it. reveling i n t h e j o y o f c h a n g i n g keys t o m a k e a song u n f o r g e t t a b l e . The rest of t h e b a n d h a d fallen a s l e e p h o u r s earlier. H e filled t h e pauses with riffs of l i g h t n i n g . " A f t e r t h e verse.5 ® 6 g o march ing in G7 5 4 .WHEN THE SAINTS G O MARCHING IN 1st position C • 5 ® 6 O h w h e n the Saints + 5 ® 6 O h w h e n the Saints 5 Oh • Lord ® I C C + want • to G 4.

167 . The reason is t h a t 1st p o s i t i o n is easier. t h e n t h e C r o s s H a r p v e r s i o n will m o v e f r o m a 3 blow to 3 d r a w u n b e n t .Transposing 1st Position Songs to 2nd Position Most h a r m o n i c a n o t a t i o n for traditional a n d p o p s o n g s is i n 1st p o s i t i o n . i n 2 n d p o s i t i o n it will b e g i n on 2 draw o r 3 b l o w . m o s t p l a y e r s f i n d it far less soulful. * If a song starts o n 4 b l o w i n 1st p o s i t i o n . If it m o v e s f r o m t h e 4 b l o w t o a 5 b l o w i n t h e Straight H a r p v e r s i o n . H o w e v e r . one would use a countiy-tuned harmonica. I f a 1st position song uses this note ® 1 Z Use one of these notes to play it in 2nd position 3 + 5 6 7 & 9 ® ©© © © ©© 1 Z + 5 7 6 5 6 9 ®© ©©® C Harp Key of C 10 C Harp Key of G To play Cross Harp melodies in the Nashville style of Charlie McCoy. T h i s c h a r t will h e l p y o u t r a n s p o s e trite 1st p o s i t i o n songs into 2 n d p o s i t i o n blues a n d c o u n t r y m a s t e r p i e c e s . This special tuning has the 5 draw filed to play a half step up.


Most appropriate for blues and rock. Stone makes a television appearance. and finally understands the purpose of musical artistry.TEN W Third Position Slant Harp A Big Time Harp Style Slant Harp is the style of harmonica many harpists use to accompany songs in Minor Keys. discovers the secrets of Slant Harp. In Chapter X. 169 . Slant Harp uses 4 draw as a Note of Resolution.

c'mon. "It doesn't sound that bad" Doesn't sound that bad." was giving him trouble.Stone Looks for a New Harp Style "There has to be a way." Krok had put his arm protectively around Umm's shoulder. There has to be." Umm had said." he had said to Stone.." Stone was walking down the mountainside. This had never happened to Stone before. "If you can't figure out what to play. "I'll figure out something. "Besides. His feet slipped on the trailside rocks. would you?" M Oh. "Hey!" he had sputtered. muttering to himself. The purpose of his playing was to sound great. No harmonica sounds better than lousy harmonica. The song was in the key of A minor. He had A L W A Y S been able to provide great accompaniment to any song Umm and the Cave Boys played. "Listen. 01' Harp Boy Stone can play anything. and for some reason.. The Cave Boys were scheduled to play on the Dinah Sledgehammer Show. you wouldn't want to do anything to harm Umm's career. But Krok's new tune. today was the day of the television appearance. but the harp-playing Cave Boy barely noticed his own clumsiness. then don't. and once he even ran into a tree. Stone had repeated to himself. wriggling away from Krok. and Krok wanted to introduce "Volcano Mouth" to the fans." His nervous laugh had been cut off by Krok's abrupt remark. a reggae-flavored ditty called "Volcano Mouth. Doesn't sound that bad. Making matters worse. He was bummed. No one had ever said doesn't sound that bad about his harp-playing before. neither Cross nor Straight Harp sounded very good. "Why not just bang a tambourine? We've got harmonica on too many songs already." 170 .

Now. A 0 C D 1 2." Stone would count four steps up the scale from A (including the A). Instead of playing the 1st. what Krok did was strum the 1st. If Krok answered "A minor. Flaying songs in minor keys had never troubled him before. To accompany. The one rule he had to follow to play Cross Harp in a minor key: he had to play the 3 draw slightly bent. flatted 3rd and 5th notes. walking down the mountain trail to the theatre where the show was to be held. The unbent 3 draw clashed. 3rd and 5th notes of a major scale to form a major chord. Stone brooded over his problem. 171 . A minor chord was only a slight variation of a major chord. This resulted in a minor chord. 3 4He'd play Cross Harp on a D harmonica. Stone would ask what key the song was in.

just maybe. the Cave Boy harmonicist played and learned as much as possible about his new harp style. 172 . and back to 4 draw. holes 1234 drawn at the same time. 6 blow. 3 blow. They didn't follow the tune. It sounded as though he were trying to wedge riffs into spots where they didn't belong. Maybe. For the next hour.. He would then play Straight Harp on a C harmonica. he'd count up 3 steps and play an F harmonica in the Straight Harp style.. If the song were in the key of A minor.. playing Cross Harp. would it become known as 3rd position (aka double-crossed). "That's it! USE 4 DRAW AS A NOTE OF RESOLUTION. Hmmm. D E F 1 Z 3 But on "Volcano Mouth" neither Straight nor Cross Harp were worth beans. 9 blow. All the styles he had learned so far were based on the locations of the Notes of Resolution. he would count up 3 steps to figure out that A minor was the relative minor of the C chord. he thought. 10 blow and holes 1234 blown at the same time. Then he played 5 blow..Another approach was to play Straight Harp. For instance. A 1 £ 2 C 3 If the song were in D minor. the Notes of Resolution were 1 blow. What was he going to do? Now. 5 draw. Stone walked around the back of the theatre and sat himself down near some garbage cans. in the 20th century. with the rock facade of the theatre clearly in sight. the style he would call SLANT HARP. What he needed was a new harp style. of course. Stone placed his G harp to his puckered lips and played a 4 draw. the Notes of Resolution were 2 draw." His heart beating to the joyous rhythm of making a new discovery. 4 blow. 7 blow. Blowing Straight Harp. and. Stone's mind started working with desperate energy. Only later. "That's it!" he said aloud. the Cross Harp Draw Chord.

holds true for any minor key the guitarist chooses to play in. £ Draw P^z5ctatfon 173 . and play a G harp. The Slant Harp Formula is to play a harp in the key that is two steps down the scale from the key the guitarist is playing in. Once playing the correct key of harmonica. Slant 1 PtaW. of course. 4 draw and 8 draw as Notes of Resolution. partly melodic. all the Slant Harpist has to do is play riffs and patterns that use 1 draw. Harp Notes of Prntv. For instance. D E F E A & c Z 1 This formula. A £ C z 1 D E FG And if the song is in the key of A minor. count back two steps (including the E). count back two steps from the A. and play a D harp. It creates a sound that is partly bluesy.The Slant Harp Approach Slant Harp is a rock and blues style that gives riffs and solos a slightly different feeling than Cross or Straight Harp. If the guitarist is playing in the key of E minor. It creates a MINOR KEY FEELING.

These notes to avoid are 2 draw. SAMPLE SONG: HOUSE OF THE RISING SUN T h e r e is ® • T h e y call t h e ®• ® • ® • 5 (5) © 6 ® • a h o u s e i n N e wO r l e a n s • ris 7 ing sun © © of m a 6 ny © • . lo Drw###BOT_TEXT###gt; Usually. and turn them into Wailing Notes.The Slant Harp Wailing Notes are harmonizing notes that will not make a mistake at any point in the minor key variation of the I-IV-V chord progression. However. 9 Praw. Because Slant Harp is played on the high end of the harp. But playing Slant Harp. 3 blow and 3 draw. SUnf Harp Wailiw) NcHs 5 Draw. Stepping Stone Notes can be used as rungs on ladders between one harmonizing note and another. . 6 Draw. it's good to start out on the lower-keyed harmonicas such as G . The advanced Slant Harpist can bend 2 draw and 3 draw. B or C . 7 A n d it's b e e n t h e r u i n ® 6 ® A n d Lord I © 4know I'm one © a boy ® 174 . there are three Stepping Stone Notes that will clash with the music no matter how brief a time they are played. A . as mentioned earlier the beginner should stick to holes 4 draw and above.

S t o n e Stepping. S t o n e Stepping RESOLUTION Stepping. Then. unless it's played bent. S t o n e Three draw will clash. 175 . 4 blow is a flatted 7th. Playing 3rd Position. S t o n e WAILING 9 Stepping Stone WAILING 7 RESOLUTION Stepping Stone Stepping Stone WAILING Stepping WAILING stepping Stone Stone RESOLUTION Stepping.Map of Slant Harp 10 S t e p p i rig. a powerful Stepping Stone note you should try. Stone Stone z Stepping. it's very cool.

As the children looked on. From here he played the 6 blow and wailed on the Wailing Note 6 draw. "it's Stone. 51 (mY D o w n fZiff ® 176 .Slant Harp Riffs As Stone sat near the garbage cans furiously trying to discover the secrets of Slant Harp. a group of children approached." He started with the Note of Resolution. 4 draw. the harp player. It's Stone!" Then the girls and boys crowded aroung the hurried harp player. get down and boogie!" Stone played the Slant Down Riff.. "Play some more!" To the sounds of clapping hands and shouts of "That's it. Stone. "Whafs it like to play harmonica?" one of the boys asked." Finding no words to express the joy. the easy run he had decided to use as the basis for the harp work on "Volcano Mouth. "Whafs it like to be a star?" Stone glanced up at the little ragamuffins in their tattered sheepskin tunics and their dirty faces. it's. "Well. Stone placed his G harp to his puckered lips. "That sounds great!" the children cried.. "Hey!" one of them cried. without stopping his breath. it's. Stone played the Basic Slant Up Riff." The single voice soon turned into a chorus. the pressures and the privileges of being a star. the disappointment. "It's Stone. to Wailing Note 5 draw." he said." he said. and slid the harp. "Ifs like this...

e>a$\c SlAvtfL Hl<)k © OptmA Vowv\ fZifr Octave) © ^ 9 -^WAILIKJG \ ^ \ v (10) 9 (9) 8 / (8)/ / J stepping W A 1 L1NG S t e p p i n g Stone eesoLLmoN ^ 177 . To start out. Stone!" As Stone continued exploring the possibilities of Slant Harp. They are presented in diagrams so that. started dancing. This run used the same idea as the Basic Slant. Stone played the Ultra Slant Up and D o w n Riff. you will play them. hopefully. but enhanced the minor key sound even more. a little boy. "Get it o n . 9 and 10. Here are some of the Slant Harp Riffs Stone played. Ul+ra and Vo\rtv\ Slmt'Oy fZ'ifi WAlLINie • W A I L IMG Stepping Then Stone moved u p an octave and played the Basic Slant U p and Down Riff on holes 8. too."Yeah!" the kids shouted. n o longer able to contain himself. The other children formed a circle and clapped their hands.

The show would be starting soon. W A I L INC* Stxfpin^ WAILI \ J V RESOLUTION Amidst the handclapping. 9 and 10. / 5tcrn"5 \ / WAIUIN<=> 1 / Stepping \ € / y Stepping WAIHN6 I I I Stepping f5L£SOLL»Tl ON V / "That's great!" the kids shouted. But he couldn't tear himself 178 .Now he switched to the Ultra Slant Up and Down Riff on holes 8. dancing and laughing. C f c f a t f e 6 1 av\i~fZiAv\ (7) 7 REfiOLUTiorJy^—• (6) (5) 5 (4). OHra e>lant~ Op and C ttfqh Ociavc ) fZiff <8)y (10) 9 (9) 8 / * $ J * Stepping. "Play some more. He would play a riff that went from Note of Resolution 4 draw up to Note of Resolution 8 draw." and he knew it was time to get inside the studio. Stone decided to try an even more complex run." Stone looked at his watch. He felt pretty confident that Slant Harp would do the trick on "Volcano Mouth.

Stone played the ultimate Slant Harp riff: the Slant Harp Scale." Inspired by this realization. not to become famous and make lots of money. warbling. "This is why I wanted to be a good harmonica player. "This is it.away from the crowd of girls and boys who now were dancing with their hands in the air. tonguing.wailing. Starting from the 4 draw. 179 ." Stone thought. he played a long bending Note of Resolution. the 6 blow.. I learned to play harp so I could bring joy and happiness into the world. slipped to the 5 draw. So I could help people forget their problems. No. Slant Harp Scale Op and Down Now Stone wanted to really get down and play. their faces beaming. the 6 draw . bending. Not to become a star. So I could make them feel good..

Shame on you for making these kids misbehave." .." M But that's Stone!" a little girl shouted breathlessly." "Well.. "Excuse me. "And you. "I guess they can sit in the empty seats in the balcony. Everyone's looking for you. c'mon in. the back door to the theatre suddenly opened. Stone played a riff so good it surprised even him. the theatre manager turned more colors than a smoggy sunset.you'd better come in right away.I thought. "And what about them?" he asked. Please. It was the 3rd Position Low End Scale." he said. "Hey! You kids!" he shouted. you old bum!" he spat at the greatest harp player who ever lived. Stone. "What about them?" the manager asked..Then." said the manager. and the gruff face of the theatre manager appeared from the darkness. "they can sit at the edge of the stage. M I want to play for them.." "Whoopee!" the children shouted. gruff voice now reduced to a whimpering falsetto. "y° u get out of here. The show's about to start. Mr. Please. obviously moved.." Then he spied Stone sitting beside the garbage cans. "I thought.." The theatre manager moved closer.oh well... © • 0 180 * ® 4 ® * "What the heck. Catching a clearer glimpse of Stone's famous face. I want to know I'm doing some good with all of this superstar hoopla." Stone rose from his place behind the smelly cans. pointing at the kids... too." the theatre manager said. "That's the harp player for Umm and the Cave Boys. "you get out of here or 1 1 call the police! 1 You're making so much noise they can hear you inside. He looked at his boo boo reed beauty in amazement. And at that moment.

" Stone looked at her in surprise. filled with the smells of sweat and makeup. too. "And don't you forget it." Suddenly." added a familiar voice." "Thafs the way I feel too." said the manager." Umm said. Behind him stood Gref and Smash. I don't sing. Listen. O . "I'm sorry I got so uptight. the group you've been waiting for.000 whistling.whether you want to or not. It was Krok. cheering people. You're an important member of the Cave Boys. the curtains rolled back and Stone suddenly realized that he was standing in front of 5. "Me. This band wasn't any good 'til you joined it." "You can say that again. If you don't play. Dinah Sledgehammer was saying. Umm rushed up out of the darkness. "I thought nothing was more important to you than your career. I don't care how your harp sounds. "enough of this emotion stuff." said the theatre manager as he led the harp player past a line of scantily-dressed chorus girls. You're playing harp with us . holding his guitar. "Right this way. She threw her arms around the harp man's neck. As the cameras moved in. The air was hot and stale." 181 ." said Krok. Umm and the Cave Boys." "You're just as important. "Okay. "Oh Stone. B . "Right this way. "Hey." added Smash. Mr. I was afraid you weren't going to show up.The Show The theatre's back stage was not as nice as the alley. and cologne." said Gref. "Stone!" she cried. What's that have to do with rock and roll? You guys are ON!" As the manager stepped to the side. Stone. "And now.

Wearing a black and gold tiger fur mini dress. It was one thing to tell the Cave Boy harp player that he was more important to them than fame and success . He bent the 4 draw down. she grabbed the microphone and started to sing. and the harp man started to put what he had learned about Slant Harp into practice. cascaded down to 4 draw in a minor key swirl of sound." U m m . But now they did believe it. The rhythm had a jungle pulse. slipped easily to 8 draw. thighs. The bass and drums kicked in. volcano mouth Your mouth is exploding! exploding! exploding! Yeahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!" The people in the audience / / / looked at one another. "Volcano mouth. / / What was this music? What / / did it mean? Some folks stood up and waved their arms. shoulders and hands to the infectious rhythm. back to 4 draw. Stone and his harmonica were incredible! 182 ."' The Cave Boy guitarist rose his hand in a wide arc and brought it down on the A minor chord. brought it back up.Krok approached the microphone. "We wanna play a new song for you. Krok. Hair swirling through the air. Umm danced across the stage. Krok nodded at Stone. He wailed on 4 draw.quite another to believe it. Gref and Smash looked at Stone with relief and amazement. This is Volcano Mouth. sucked on 8. blew on 7. His music was perfect for "Volcano Mouth. Others actually moved their hips. slid to 6 draw. a primeval beat that made the bones shiver.

that they fought and got angry with another. And if not gods. Then. and undefined yearnings for love and acceptance. the rich texture of Umm's voice. then Umm and the Cave Boys were stars. 183 . Krok dipped to one knee and strummed his chords with robot-like precision. What a show! As the audience watched this spectacle of sound and movement. the throbbing cry of Stone's harmonica. that Umm and the Cave were like anyone else. But who cared? All anyone heard was the pounding rhythm. what-have-you. a capacity for joy and a need for selfexpression. frustrations. Gods with the power to turn noise into music. stars as bright and beautiful as any in the heavens. Band members hugged and shook hands. the music was far too hot and the show too good for this kind of philosophizing. goddesses. And almost no one was aware that the people themselves also were gods. stars. many found themselves thinking that Umm and the Cave Boys were like gods. The song was over. that they were haunted by fears. boredom into excitement. Gref and Smash grinned at one another and Stone wailed like a cave boy possessed. Umm danced across the stage. Few members of the audience realized they were watching of a long and often tedious labor. Fewer still realized that this vulnerability. stampeding the music into the second verse. Applause washed over them like tumultuous waves of love. combined with a love for music. the fruits Boys one deep. Stone finished his solo to a standing ovation. This was the kind of music they'd always wanted to hear. The lyrics of the second verse were no more profound than those of the first. was the source of the magic that now filled the stage and seeped out into their lives. No. heroines. heroes. this humanity. the razor-sharp slashes of Krok's guitar. silence into joy. Smash's drums rolled and thumped. as quickly as the magic had begun. whipping the mike cord behind her. it stopped."Oh yeah!" the people in the audience shouted.

"How do you do it? How?" "Talent." The two musicians stood on the stage." he said. the glow of their mutual success cutting through the rivalries." 184 . "Tell me. for years. "that was the most incredible harp solo I ever heard you play." Krok said. "Umm and the Cave Boys!" Krok grasped Stone's hand and looked him in the eye." Stone said. kept them from realizing how much they meant to each other. the ego trips that had." Then the Cave Boy winked. man. "Hey. "And a little help from my friends. the arguments. "Sheer talent."Umm and the Cave Boys!" Dinah Sledgehammer was shouting.

or Slant Harp. 185 . * The Slant Harp Formlula is to count back two steps from the key the music is in. the Notes of Resolution are 1 draw. 4 draw and 8 draw.Notes Third position. $ A 2 e> 1 C V S F 6 * When playing Slant Harp. * Since Slant Harp is usually played on holes 4 draw and above. is the style of harmonica playing that sometimes sounds better than Cross Harp when accompanying songs in minor keys. it works best on the lower-keyed harps such as G and A . C O U N T B A C K TWO STEPS (including the B) and play an A harp. If the song is in the key of B minor.


187 . Gref and Smash. learn some additional information on harp playing. Umm.ELEVEN Hubie's Blues or Everything I Almost Forgot to Put in the Book S o ends the saga of Stone. and perhaps come to believe in a strange theory of musical reincarnation. Krok. In Chapter XI. y o u and the author will meet an unforgettable character.

Everybody's got it. It just comes out of some folks easier than others. Country and Blues Harmonica for the Musically Hopeless." I said. "Recognized you by your picture.Hubie's Blues D o you believe in reincarnation? I didn't used to. so I moved closer. there was something special about this guy's playing. A guy or gal can know everything there is to know about the harp. you can't teach feeling. no book is going to do it all." he said. 'Course. but you can encourage people to use feeling. with a grin. The tone was familiar." "Unfortunately. He looked at me through his dark glasses and said. He was playing a Cross Harp style." "Look." "What did you think?" I asked him. Gindick?" 44 Hey. It's called Rock n' Blues Harmonica. Then I met Hubie." I replied. Still. flattered a player this good would know who I am. "Read your book." he said. and still not play it with any feeling." I said. softly playing the harmonica. "Good book for beginners. He was down at the bus station. are you "All depends. I recognized some of the riffs." "Sure. "I'm writing a new book on harp playing. too. 188 . sitting on his suitcase. I couldn't hear him too well. I wonder if you'll take a look. "Yeah. that cat. It had those extra touches of feeling and grace that distinguish a good harpist from a pro.

"I c a n see it n o w . " "Like w h a t ? " I a s k e d . stuff like u s i n g m i c r o p h o n e s a n d a m p s ." I a n n o u n c e d . T h e n it m o v e s into t h e h a r m o n i c a . " L o o k s pretty g o o d . g o o d h a r p players t o listen t o . I w o n d e r e d if m y n e w b o o k h a d " f e e l i n g . h o w t o b e n d n o t e s . " h e said. " h e said. "let s start w i t h m i c r o p h o n e s . h o w t o use y o u r h a n d s . N o n e t h e l e s s . . " h e c h u c k l e d . "It starts o u t telling p e o p l e a b o u t t h e structure of m u s i c . t o n g u e b l o c k i n g . " "Guess I could add another chapter. N a m e ' s H u b i e . " T h i s is it. C r o s s H a r p a n d S l a n t H a r p . I summarized the b o o k for h i m . " As he t h u m b e d through the pages. " H e held o u t his h a n d a n d w e s h o o k . " O k a y . h o w t o p l a y riffs in t h e I-IV-V progression. T h e n it s h o w s a b u n c h o f riffs. position p l a y i n g ." I a g r e e d . . H u b i e l o o k e d at his w a t c h . write a n o t h e r c h a p t e r a n d n a m e it after m e . f i g h t i n g t h e defensiveness t h a t w a s c r e e p i n g into m y voice. but I t h i n k y o u ' r e l e a v i n g out s o m e stuff p e o p l e m i g h t w a n t t o k n o w .I got i n t o m y suitcase a n d pulled o u t t h e tattered m a n u s c r i p t I'd b e e n w o r k i n g o n for m o n t h s . H u b i e b e g a n e x p l a i n i n g m i c r o p h o n e s t o m e . " I said. " E v e r y t h i n g I F o r g o t t o P u t in t h e Book. a n d h a d s o m e difficulty r e a d i n g m y writing later. " Y e a h . a n d h a n d e d it t o h i m . " O h . tell m e w h a t t o w r i t e . " D o n ' t h a v e m u c h t i m e . p u l l i n g o u t a p e n a n d p a d . " " H m m m m . " b o o m e d a voice over the loud speaker. " H u b i e said. "Well. e x p l a i n i n g S t r a i g h t H a r p ." " G r e a t title. or Hubie's Blues. I t h i n k I g o t t h e gist o f it. " B U S 8 2 7 L E A V I N G IN 2 0 M I N U T E S F O R B A K E R S F K L D . I w r o t e a s fast as I c o u l d . " Sitting t h e r e o n his suitcase." I muttered. 189 . t h e difference b e t w e e n using h a r p a s a lead i n s t r u m e n t a n d a s a filler.

heck . Little Walter played in the '40s and '50s. Study this music with your ears. They're built to pick up the sounds of a variety of musical instruments— 190 . But I also love rock and blues. w w "Make this a rule: Every person who wants to play electric harmonica has to get the C D . the start of real rock n' blues harp is the handheld microphone. . "There are two basic kinds of mics that harp players use. and let's face it. Little Walter Jacobs. "and in most cases. See. most blues and rock harmonica is electric harmonica. that's about as good as it gets. which pretty accurately reproduces the sounds that come into it. hand-held mic plugged into a pair of pounding 10-inch speakers. and he pretty much set the standard for every blues player who has followed. Blowing your blues into a raspy-voiced. . plays on every cut. The first is the DYNAMIC. country western blues harp. blasting it out like an electric guitar or sax onto some crowded. Get his music into your bones by listening. Why? Because that's your education. folk blues. say you're coming along. The granddaddy of electric harp." Hubie said. and learn a few techniques. beer-smellin' dance floor while the band cooks . You cup the mic right into the harp and you play in the handcupped position. A lot of great harp players—from Paul Butterfield to James Cotton to John Popper—have used dynamic mics. The Best of Muddy Waters.The Art of Electric Haro "I like to play country blues. I play these styles by playing into a vocal mic sitting in a mic stand. Listen to the nuances. Little Walter 101. You've bought a few other keys of harps and you'd like to get that big electric sound. . "Now. . Well. Listen to Little Walter's tone and the way he plays the riffs. you're gonna have to get yourself a mic and an amp.

G e t a d a p t e r s f r o m R a d i o S h a c k a n d you'll b e able t o m a k e all t h e c o n n e c t i o n s . T h e s e d a y s crystal m i c s a r e m a d e expressly for h a r p players. crystal o r d y n a m i c . " T h e s e c o n d t y p e is s h a p e d m o r e like a bullet. H a r d c o r e blues g u y s get t h e F E N D E R T W I N R E V E R B B A S S M A N o r a n o t h e r t u b e d r i v e n a m p o f t h e s a m e ilk. w h i c h is t h e size o f a W a l k m a n r a d i o a n d p l a y s t h r o u g h h e a d p h o n e s . T h e best o n e s — a n d m o s t difficult t o u s e — a r e t h e Astatic. y o u c a n p l u g y o u r m i c . Y o u c a n tell w h i c h h a r p player is u s i n g t h e d y n a m i c b e c a u s e these m i c s a r e usually ball-ended. F r a n k l y . ' R E V E R B E R A T I O N ' for a e c h o . a n d a line-out s o y o u c a n p l u g y o u r a m p i n t o t h e P. get y o u r yourself a R O C K M A N . It's called a C R Y S T A L o r B U L L E T m i c . B u t . easier-to-use m i c w i t h a built-in v o l u m e c o n t r o l a n d a s o u n d a s d e e p a n d rich as S o u t h e r n m o l a s s e s . a n d m a y b e b u y it for a s o n g . I m p o r t a n t features are ' G A I N ' a n d ' V O L U M E ' so y o u c a n g e t distortion. c r o w d n o i s e etc. T h i s cat m a k e s t h e S H A K E R — a s m a l l e r . T h i s is a n old-fashioned m i c originally used in b r o a d c a s t i n g in t h e ' 3 0 s a n d ' 4 0 s . w a r m s o u n d w i t h t h e h a n d h e l d m i c . y o u h a v e t o t u r n t h e s e b e h e m o t h t u b e a m p s u p really l o u d t o get their benefits. " B e g i n n e r s will d o fine w i t h a smaller. " Y o u c a n a l s o s c o u r g a r a g e sales for a truly old m i c . 191 . P r o b l e m is. A . T h a t $ 5 d i c t a p h o n e m i c y o u b o u g h t f r o m y o u r next-door n e i g h b o r m i g h t b e t h e best blues m i c yet (or worst). b e it o l d . like S h a k y J o e Harless o u t o f A r i z o n a . O r . T h e s e a n t i q u e guitar a m p s a r e w h a t h a r p players u s e d in t h e ' 5 0 s . w h e n perf o r m i n g w i t h a b a n d . t h e BluesBlaster. into lots of w e i r d places. T h e y get incredible d e e p . t h e G r e e n Bullet. M o s t h a r p p l a y e r s a g r e e electric h a r p s o u n d s best p l a y e d t h r o u g h a t u b e a m p l i f i e r . Y o u c a n get real p o r t a b l e w i t h t h e batteryo p e r a t e d P I G N O S E A M P . rich. as t h e g r e a t blues players f r o m t h e ' 4 0 s a n d ' 5 0 s d i s c o v e r e d . Y o u c a n get s o m e really w i c k e d o l d stuff. n e w . t h e y m a k e a well-played blues h a r p s o u n d great.everything f r o m violin t o guitar t o t r o m b o n e t o t h e h u m a n v o i c e singing. less e x p e n s i v e P R A C T I C E A M P (usually solid state). t h e y h a v e pretty lousy fidelity. " N o w . T h e s e m i c s ( w h i c h b r e a k if y o u d r o p t h e m ) w e r e d e s i g n e d t o cut t h r o u g h static. " B u t t h e r e a r e also g u y s w h o a r e i n v e n t i n g n e w m i c s .

The higher you turn t h e 'gain' u p a n d the volume' d o w n . Bring this gourd o f flesh and metal to your face. e m p h a s i z e the bass a n d midrange. At first. Turn the high frequency or treble sounds d o w n . a n d lay the sides of your t h u m b s o n your cheekbones to m a k e a complete enclosure. " A b o u t plugging in . that sweet spot that makes it so rich." H e tapped his ear. " Y o u have t o listen. first. slightly distorted tone. D I S T O R T I O N (with a hint of reverb) is the essence of that electric sound. everyone uses as m u c h distortion as they c a n get. " N o w let's talk R E V E R B E R A T I O N a n d the part it plays in great electric harp. T h e main rule is this: never use so m u c h effect that w h a t your listeners hear is the effect. your h a r p tone gets tinny a n d nonsubstantial. G o for the m e a t of the note. Reverberation gives the h a r p a n e c h o — a n d what could be better t h a n that? S o use it! Problem is: if you use too m u c h reverb. gain a n d volume. T o get started.Getting Great Amplified Tone " S o let's assume you have a n amplifier a n d a mic. "I also think your readers should k n o w about special effects such as D I G I T A L D E L A Y — w h i c h produces incredible e c h o effects o n d e m a n d a n d O V E R D R I V E — w h i c h allows you a m a z i n g distortion 192 . That's h o w you hold the mic a n d harp. for harmonica. Really listen a n d experiment. " A l m o s t all a m p s have separate 'gain' a n d volume' controls. . . T h e idea is to get as m u c h " b o d y " as you possibly can. Think of it as the g o n a d s of electric h a r p (can you say that in a h a r p book?). but eventually they back off into a clearer m o r e pleasing. treble. rather t h a n the harp. As a prelude t o w h a t I'm going t o say: rule of t h u m b . It's gritty and m o d e r n a n d makes the h a r p as powerful as any other instrument o n the stage. slowly turn the v o l u m e u p until you can hear yourself through the speaker. " N o w let's set the levels of the bass. try t o f o r m a airtight c u p with your h a n d s that includes the mic and the harp. the more distortion is produced. turn the v o l u m e all the w a y down! As you softly play a 2 d r a w or 6 blow.

and play a long. 2. "Think that bus is late. These electronic boxes are staples for electric guitar players and can be equally important in good electric harp. Bend that note down and bring it up. Don't be afraid of your sound. Try it on a wailing 4 draw. well-puckered 3 blow or 2 draw. Prettier. High distortion at medium volume.Two Sample Level Settings for Harp Players lO Q Q Q ^Gain Volume Bass f Gain Volume Bass Treble Reverb Q Typical raunch blues tone." Suddenly a harp appeared in his hand and he began to play a lonesome waiting-for-the-bus blues. back away from the amplifier (maybe turn it up a little bit first!) and assume that fully handcupped position with harp and mic. softer tone with less distortion and more reverb. and if your volume's sufficient. Getting feedback or warnings of it? Get rid of it by doing any of these things: 1. Instead. "Now that the levels are set.that note no longer sounds like a harmonica. these may be the answer. without having to tweak your amp. especially if your a m p isn't the best. Move mic away from speaker's direction. rather. milk it! Remember: GRITTY IS G O O D . Turn treble or higher frequencies down. "Concentrate. or sounds like a fuzzed-out electric guitar. Hubie got up off his suitcase. it's more horn-like. and looked down the road. If your hands form an airtight seal between mic and harp. Turn down the volume. If you're in search of greater variety in your sound. lO Q Q Q Treble Reverb Q 193 . 3.

For instance.Waiter ( I I S ) wean* dntw a* a chord / mcai\* -tongue-block "Because it plays out Wailing Notes 1 and 4 at the same time. . he kept coming back to this one technique — a sound like a bluesy accordian. Subtle changes in the placement of your tongue easily change this sound.Tongue-Blocking for Octaves. separate notes warbling at the same time. This the old-fashioned way of playing harp. 1234 draw. On your C harp. "What are you doing?" "Tongue-blocking octaves. . It expresses the V chord. as soon as I lift my tongue so 23 draw are also playing. It was uncanny. but it's coming back into style— especially among amplified blues players. and is a very interesting sound. and use your tongue to cover holes 23. It creates tension . Owe h> Tbur Octave. "Draw 1234. the 1 to 4 Octave Wailer is exactly that. 194 . I finally stopped him. The result is 1 and 4 draw playing at the same time: octaves." said Hubie. Along with his riveting single notes. it's a funky D chord. Sophisticated Chords and That Deep Blues Pulse This guy was good. I've got the Cross Harp Chord of Resolution.

It is fairly e a s y t o g o f r o m single n o t e s t o o c t a v e s t o chords a n d b a c k .b l o c k i n g o c t a v e s is t h a t y o u c a n m o v e your e m b o u c h u r e all o v e r t h e h a r m o n i c a a n d get t o n e s w i t h i m p o r t a n t musical values.Tongue-Blocking Combinations and Cycles for Second Position "The great t h i n g a b o u t t o n g u e . " I V Chord: 1 & 4b /\ V Chord: 1 & 4d I Chord: 2 A 5d I Chord: 3 & 6b I V Chord: 4 & 7b V Chord: 4 & 8d V I Chord: 2 & 5b /\ I Chord: 6 & 9b /\ I I I Flat Minor: 3 & 6d I I I Chord: 3 & 7d 195 .

"That's the headshake. * 9- < > "When I say 'move the harp back and forth. you can headshake as you get tongueblocked-octaves and chromatic harp harmonies. It's an easy way to sound as though you've been playing for years. even when you've only been playing for days. €><§> © © "In addition to bending. some of the best ideas are 4 and 5 draw. but playing Cross Harp diatonic. 2 and 3 draw. So tell your readers to use it!" 196 . rock and country. others slant it. Amplify this with lots of reverb and you've got another Little Walter specialty. It's like using the same airstream on two different notes. "You can do the headshake all over the harp. The point is the single note headshake is one of the easiest of all the techniques I'm describing. others side to side.And Don't Forget the Headshake! Wailing on the 4 draw. It's also versatile— working for blues. Hubie started moving his harp back and forth across his lips. and 5 and 6 blow." Hubie said. and 3 and 4 draw. It's relatively easy and it sure sounds good—especially when you bend the note down and bring it back up. Some guys move it up and down very quickly. and will get any audience applauding almost immediately. "All you have to do is slide the harp (or move your lips) between 4 and 5 draw very quickly as you get a single note. The result was a startling two-note cavalcade of hipness that made the hairs on the back of my neck stand at attention and dance.' I don't mean to limit you.

emphasizing the draw chords and the draw notes. not knowing when to press it in or let it out. even jazzy. the slide. But now. "This is a real shame because the chromatic harmonica is a monster." This made me laugh. to play the blues. stop fiddlin' around with the damned thing. all you have to do with the slide is: I G N O R E IT. I always thought I'd have to master Instead. big chords. That's right. It felt big and intimidating in my hand as Hubie quit playing and started to teach. Hubie was making his chromatic sound bluesy. ^^^fKt^Q I had fooled around with a chromatic. and because they can't figure out the slide. "What we do is play this instrument 3rd Position Slant Harp style. I could forget about it." Hubie shook his head. avoid 4 draw like the plague. as a lot of great bluesmen prove. with big tone. had learned a few songs. Or. Either way. By emphasizing the draw notes. I pulled my '64 Chro' from my harp bag. no bends—that Little Walter sound. and. you can press the slide in.D Blues on the C Chromatic Suddenly Hubie was playing a large silver chromatic harmonica and. I also couldn't bend notes on the crazy thing—which has always seemed like a prerequisite for the blues. Notes of Resolution are 1 draw (both bass and midrange). Now the instrument is a lot simpler. because it's a Clash Note! 197 . you get an automatic blues/jazz scale in the key of D . and play in the key of E flat. and keep it in. And. "Now the chro' is usually overlooked by people who already play the 10-hole diatonic because it's bigger. man. but when it came to jamming I always got lost with the slide. 5 draw and 9 draw. did it sound good.

Some chromatic riffs are . 5 draw. A Quick Look at the Blues Chromatic 1 2 3 o—o»—>) 1 draw. the first four holes are bass notes. The basic idea is to take draw/blow patterns up and down your harp. always skipping over 4 draw and 8 draw because they're not part of the scale resolving on 1 draw or 5 draw or 9 draw. 9 draw 2 draw. 3 draw. . 10 draw. " And he began to play a sweet chromatic harp blues."On the chro' 64 (my favorite). Skip over them for now and go to the fifth hole where the numbers start again and go up to 12. 6 draw. These are exactly the same as holes 5 through 8. 7 draw. . 11 draw 4 draw. Midrange Chro'&fue* Q ) Z ® 3 ( § > 4 < D Upper Qange Chro' Bluee Sca\e~ (3)9 ®7 ®(D The Up R«ff The © 3 T>ovs>*\ 12iff © 7 ® © ©CD 198 . 8 draw 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 0 @ Notes of Resolution: Wailing Notes: O Clash Notes: S t e p p i n g Stone Notes: all blow notes "The midrange 1 draw (the D note) is a good place to start. only an octave lower.

4 blow. First position sounds as though the song was written by Stephen Foster. you can play in different keys by choosing a different Note of Resolution.Positions 1 Through 6 Plus 12 Playing Harp in Seven Different Keys Hubie was on a roll. Second position sounds as though the song was written by Little Walter. 7 blow and 10 blow for my Notes of Resolution. I'm playing 1st position Straight Harp. Define 'position. Because the harmonica has missing notes. 2nd position Cross Harp. "Although the C harp was originally intended to be played in the key of C ." Hubie thought for a moment. modes and musical feelings. using 1 blow. "When I play C harp to music in the key of C . S a m e song.'" I said. 5th. "You've talked about 1st position Straight Harp. I'm going to show you 4th. Here we play the C harmonica in the key of G. They're not that hard. "Folks get confused. Exploring the difference between the 1st position "Red River Valley" on page 5 5 and the 2nd position version on page 160 as well as the two versions of "Saints" on page 167 gives you a good idea of how positions work." "Do me a favor. but what a difference. 3rd position Slant Harp." 199 . same harp. 6th and 12th positions. you get different scales. 1st Position Notes of Resolution (C harp key of C) 1st Position Up and Down Riff + 5 ( 5 ) 6 6 ( 5 ) 5 + "The next position folks learn is 2nd or Cross Harp.

The 3rd position version of 'Joshua' on page 162 and 'House of the Rising Sun' gets you playing in minor keys. 2-5 draw and 3-6 blow tongue-blocks and the 1234 draw chord as your Notes of Resolution.' Traveling monks in old Greece used to carry diatonic keyboards with only white keys-much like a harmonica. © © • © © • ©© 2nd Position Up and Down Riff 3 4/5 6 \ 8 3rd Position Notes of Resolution (C harp in D minor) l|BLOW. resolve your riffs and songs on the C harp's D notes. Second position is the Mixolydian Mode. Translated to harp. Third position is the D o r i a n Mode. 8 draw and the tongue blocks at 1-4 draw and 4-8 draw. Knowing this won't necessarily help you play. 2nd position gives a blues twinge to your music. 6 blow and 9 blow. Just as G is the 5th note of the C scale. "Each time you change positions you count 5 steps up the musical scale. using 1 draw. D is the 5th note of the G scale. 3 blow. What's the 5th note of the D scale? A . 1st position is the Ionic Mode. As noted. By starting and ending their songs on keys other than the C note they derived different styles of music. The term 'mode' refers to 'Church Mode. you play your C harp in the key of G-using 2 draw. 2nd and 3rd positions are three distinctly different modes on one harp. especially when you talk to those conservatory cats."As I just mentioned. but it sure sounds impressive. "For 3rd position or Slant Harp. playing 2nd Position Cross Harp. which is 4th position." 200 .gM£l R51 [cf HEf[IT[ctfgT®• B u D Led LEJ^ EJ* Ml 3rd Position Up and Down Riff © ® 6 © © 6 © © "First. And that's why 9 0 % of contemporary harping is in 2nd. 4 draw.

" 4th Position Notes of Resolution (C harp. or at least appreciate the challenge. You also get the opportunity to distinguish between the 3 draw bent and the 3 draw unbent.Fourth Position Minor Key Music In 4th position. but playing the 4th position 'Joshua' on page 162 will help you learn. you play C harp in the key of A minor. 6 draw and 10 draw. and this is called the Aeolian Mode. you need those low notes. key of A minor) 4th Position Up and Down Riff 4th Position Octave Scale Up d T ( D + © 5 ® 6 © © ® 4th Position Octave Scale Down 6 ® 5 © + ® <sr 7 ® e ® 9 ® 4th Position High Octave Scale Up ® 4th Position 6 Draw Wailing Resolver © 6 5 © 201 . The feeling is Eastern European. The A notes are at 3 draw**. or Gypsy. it's easier to use riffs that resolve on the 6 draw. Beginning and ending songs on 3 draw** can be awkward. but m a n . Truth be told.

" Hubie said.Fifth Position Minor Key Music "Let's go on to 5th position. The E notes on your C harp are at 2 blow. key of E minor) 5th Position Up and Down Riff 5th Position Octave Scale Up 5th Position Octave Scale Down 5th Position High Octave Scale Up 5 © ® or® * 5 6 © © ® place in 6 Silly 5th Position Sample Song There's a France Where the lad ies wear no pants 202 . The music you get up here is minor key jazz blues. It has a Middle Eastern flavor-particularly if you use the 2 draw bent as well as the 2 draw unbent. Louis Prima or even Cab Calloway. and you can tongue-block octaves at the 2-5 blow and the 5-8 blow. "Here you play your C harp in the key of E minor. 5th Position Notes of Resolution (C harp. reminiscent of Tom Waits. The classical Greek name is the Phrygian Mode. Ray Charles. A great thing about this position is that bending isn't necessary. It just adds. 5 blow and 8 blow.

It's your C harp in B minor." Hubie gave m e a wide-eyed-blow-your-mind type of look and started playing. Out came a totally new harmonica sound. like a wild hornblast from the trumpet of Harry James.Sixth Position Minor Key Music "Sixth is the most esoteric of the positions 1 play. The 3 draw bent is the flatted 7th and adds a nice touch. To me. "I love whipping out my C harp when a guy is playing in the key of B minor or B minor 7th. And I mean that in the good sense." he said. 6th Position Notes of Resolution (C harp." 6th Position Octave Scale Up ® ® 5 ® © © 6th Position High Up and Down ® ® ® » ® © * "Feel free to bend the 3 draw before playing the 3 draw unbent." ® " ® © 5 © ® 203 . Your guitarist won't believe what he's hearing. The Notes of Resolution are at 3 draw unbent. it's like big band blues. key of B minor) 6th Position Up and Down Riff "It's that 5 draw Wailing Note that gives it such a big band feeling. but what a weird B minor. Here's a cool riff. 7 draw and 3-7 draw tongue-blocked octave.

I don't know who Lydia was. 12th Position Up and Down Scale 204 .' This is kind of like your Good Morning Riff. you'll be playing in the key of F. fun and pretty darn easy to be around. but judging by the music. Most folks get to these keys by pulling out a harp that's in a flatted key. 8th position is in D flat. she was smart. 11th position is in B flat. key of F) "'Amazing Grace' on page 163 is an excellent example of how 12th position works. start the scale on the 4 blow." 12th Position Notes of Resolution (C harp. as though you were playing 1st position. 7th position is in F sharp. using 5 draw. and remember your Note of Resolution is actually 5 draw. the song starts on 4 blow. and playing positions out of that. 2 draw bent and 9 draw as Notes of Resolution. Instead of 5 draw. like 'Amazing Grace. 12th position works best on songs that start on the 5th note of the scale. 10th position is in E flat. Twelfth Position Major Key Music "Now we're talking about playing C harp in the key of F. Below. only more melodic. Usually. adding a new musical style to your repertoire. 9th position is in A flat. If you leave out the 5 blow.Positions 7 through 11 "Positions 7 through 11 might be more theoretical than actual because they have to be played almost entirely on bent notes (though there are guys who do it). The musicologists call it the L y d i a n Mode. It's a bluesy way to play a melodic scale.

T h e r e is a h u g e d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n 1 2 t h .Practical Position Playing "Many h a r p p l a y e r s w h o a r e a c c o m p l i s h e d a t 1st a n d 2 n d p o s i t i o n s a r e intimidated b y 3 r d . ' If y o u k n o w a s o n g is m o v i n g f r o m a G c h o r d i n t o . 5 t h . " L e a r n i n g n e w p o s i t i o n s h e l p s i n m a n y w a y s . " W h a t t h e y may n o t realize is t h a t l e a r n i n g 2 n d p o s i t i o n gives t h e m all t h e skills they n e e d . P l a y i n g ' c h o r d a l l y ' is a n a l t e r n a t i v e w a y o f t h i n k i n g a b o u t t h e h a r p . "And lastly. 2 n d a n d 1st p o s i t i o n s . That's w h e r e l e a r n i n g s o n g s like ' J o s h u a ' a n d ' A m a z i n g G r a c e ' c o m e in. say. a n E m i n o r c h o r d . " A n o t h e r b i g a d v a n t a g e is t h a t y o u c a n o f t e n adjust t o key c h a n g e s within a s o n g w i t h o u t h a v i n g t o p i c k u p a different key o f h a r p . " This I c o u l d believe. To Play in Key of C D E F G A B Notes of Resolution Use These Harps for These Positions 1st C D E F G A B 1 blow 4 blow 7 blow 10 blow 2nd F G A B^ C D E 3rd B> C D F G A 4th I* F G A^ Bt» C D 5th At B> t C I> 6th ci 12th G A B C D E F# & F G F F# Al> & & C 2 draw 1 draw 3 draw 2 blow 3 draw 2 draw 3 blow 4 draw bent 5 blow 7 draw bent 5 draw 6 blow 8 draw 6 draw 8 blow 9 draw 9 blow 10 draw Work best when music is in a minor key . 6 t h a n d 1 2 t h . 4 t h . p l a y i n g p o s i t i o n s m a k e s it all m o r e f u n . O n e is t h a t y o u r p l a y i n g can n o w b e b e t t e r suited t o t h e m u s i c y o u a r e a c c o m p a n y i n g . " H u b i e said. T h e y direct t h e e a r a s t h e p l a y e r tries t o f a t h o m h o w this u n f a m i l i a r sequence o f n o t e s c a n lead t o m u s i c . T h e p r o b l e m is o f t e n i n hearing t h e m u s i c i n t h e p o s i t i o n . Y o u can p l a y ' c h o r d a l l y . N o t e v e r y t h i n g s h o u l d . yet t h e y c a n all play t h e s a m e m a t e r i a l . U s u a l l y w e just fashion scales t o m e e t t h e s o n g ' s c h o r d p r o g r e s s i o n . N o t e v e r y t h i n g h a s t o s o u n d like blues. a n d you. y o u c a n quickly switch f r o m 2 n d t o 5 t h p o s i t i o n s then b a c k t o 2 n d w h e n t h e s o n g r e t u r n s t o a G c h o r d . for H u b i e l o o k e d t o m e like a h a p p y m a n . C h o o s e t h e v o i c e t h a t best suits t h e s o n g .

and finally." I muttered. "Potentially. you have to think chromatically for this to happen and keep exploring that harp past the limitations." Hubie suddenly said. You're playing chromatic harmonica on a diatonic instrument. When you reach that point.Playing the Diatonic Harp as a Chromatic Instrument "If you can hear it in your mind." His eyes took on that special Hubie gleam. Howard is a jazz pianist who decided he wanted to play chromatic jazz on the diatonic harp. This was made famous by a very fine gentleman and musical genius called Howard Levy. "Now that's a worthy goal in my estimation. Getting to be a harp player is an inner thing. and then play riffs or scales that resolve out of each of these twelve tones. 206 . He discovered a way of bending those blow notes up. and guys with chromatic minds have turned the harp into a chromatic instrument. "Nowadays. though some people say they change the tone. "Some guys get a chromatic scale out of a diatonic harp by putting windsavers over the reeds. 2nd position is a jumping off place for learning to play fluently in as many different positions as possible. "Thing is. The 5 blow overblow gives you a tone halfway between the 5 draw and 6 blow. you can play your little diatonic harp in all twelve keys. "Other guys use a technique called the overblow. These little pieces of plastic make bending a lot easier. You'd bend your way into a chromatic scale instead of the eight toned scale that the diatonic harp was made for." "Sounds impossible. you're no longer playing positions. and revolutionized the way advanced harp players think about their instruments. sharps and flats. and the 6 blow overblow gives you a tone between the 6 draw and the 7 draw. you can do it on the harp. being able to play the diatonic harmonica as though it were a chromatic instrument that has all 12 tones.

. I u s e d m y f i n g e r n a i l t o t o u c h t h e t o p r e e d n e a r its b a s e ." h e said. n o t t h e n u m b e r o f positions you c a n play. b u t u p a n o c a t a v e . " T h e t r i c k is t o g e t t h e r e e d n e x t d o o r t o t h e o n e y o u ' r e p l a y i n g g o i n g i n t h e o p p o s i t e d i r e c t i o n . a B flat o n y o u r C h a r p . you're g o o d . " I protested. T h e n o t e s w u n g u p w a r d a n d H u b i e w a s suddenly p l a y i n g a m u c h h i g h e r n o t e . o r the n u m b e r o f b e n d s y o u c a n a c h i e v e . " L i s t e n . " 207 . old beater h a r p a n d quickly unscrewed t h e t o p p l a t e . O v e r b l o w i n g 5 b l o w . a n d . " T h a t ' s it. . "Whoa!" " T h e i d e a n o w . " H u b i e s a i d . party horns." I said. s a m e n o t e a s 3 d r a w half-step b e n d . a s I blew. . . A s a g u y I k n o w s a i d . " " C o m e o n . s u r e e n o u g h . ' " " S u r e . Overdrawing— Over the Top H u b i e pulled o u t a dented. A s u c c e s s f u l result is t h e 6 b l o w o v e r b l o w . t h e 5 d r a w starts p l a y i n g a h a l f s t e p u p . 'If y o u c a n p l a y t h r e e a n d a h a l f positions. " Overblowing. sure. " N o . " H e h a n d e d t h e reed plate t o m e . g e t t h i s . S o m e g u y s a c c o m p l i s h it by b e n d i n g 6 d r a w a s far d o w n a s t h e y c a n a n d t h e n b l o w i n g . that's exactly w h a t h a p p e n s . "is t o f i g u r e o u t a w a y t o g e t t h i s effect w i t h o u t t o u c h i n g t h e r e e d w i t h y o u r f i n g e r . " S h o w m e this o v e r b l o w . w h a t ' s i m p o r t a n t h e r e is m a k i n g m u s i c . " T h a t ' s t h e o v e r b l o w . I slightly blockoff t h e a i r g o i n g i n t o t h e h o l e i n s u c h a w a y t h a t ." O n t h e o t h e r h a n d . that note squealed u p w a r d with a t o n e not unlike o n e o f those confetti-dangling. a s t e p a n d a h a l f h i g h e r t h a n t h e five. k e e p i n g t h e m o u t h i n t h e s a m e p o s i t i o n . " h e s a i d a n d b l e w i n t o h o l e five a s h e c r i m p e d the reed with his finger.

"It's nice to have something to look forward to." he said."Other guys describe that overblow motion as being a little bit like coughing on a blow bend. This takes lots of experimentation and the proper tools. tongue and air pressure to get it. "Try to stop the normal flow of air so the overblow can happen." THe OncoiwMc'GcaSc C i C Pb Db V <J) Eb i* e F on a VH*\i>t\c~*C" r ^ <r A M 0b f W p E> z ®**®*© E F < 3 H D * * d > A 8b & O Eb F*" Qr A b 4 4* 5 <D 6 & Q 6. Let me give you an idea of how a complete chromatic scale goes. "Don't try to overblow. when you're closing in on an overblow. That blocked feeling is what makes the opposite reed vibrate." He looked at his harp happily. screeches and blats from this instrument I thought (before today) I had mastered. This is a project that'll take a guy years. Hubie took pity on me. Finally." I kept trying it with small result— only a series of blurps. You need a blocked feeling—and you use your mouth." 208 . ® 6 £ Db to**io*ioio„ C P b D Eb £ F F * O A b A 3 b 7 <2)„<D 6* 8 (Q) 9* 9 (§). a little open harp surgery can be just what the doctor ordered. "Another technique is you open up your harp. wholps.<§> * ** *** o 1/2 step bend 1 step bend 1-1/2 step bend overblow or overdraw I was trying my overblow on the 6 blow and it just wasn't coming. but man. and carefully measure and close the gap on the reeds. throat. "Don't get too frustrated.

If you let it go too long. "If the problem is a blow reed. Take the covers off and use the feeler gauge or even a razor blade to slightly push the draw reed away from the reed-plate. O n e of these is adjusting the g a p to fix a sticky harp " "Say. you can widen the gap by pushing the upper reed down into the harp. The problem may be in your technique." . but Lee puts it all together with an instruction booklet." "What we have here are some jewelers' files. "One of the first things to remember about repairing your harp is that the draw reeds are on the bottom of your harp and on the outside of your reed-plate. you go for a note. and a wide gap makes the harp play too airily. Courtesy Treat 'em right. Both Hohner and Lee Oskar sell these. You can get these tools at any hardware store. or it may be the space between the reed and the reed-plate. Still. and they make a lot of sense. you can use new reed-plates. but not incredibly so. Lee Oskar Harmonicas That's why it's a good idea for every serious harp player to carry one of these. an automotive feeler gauge and Phillips-head screwdriver. inside the harp. "The main thing is to maintain the natural upward curve of the reed. he produced a small guitar tuner and black-cased tool kit embossed with the words "Lee Oskar Harmonica Tuning System. or to push it slightly back in. "They require maintenance and tune-ups. in the course of playing. and also don't want to buy a new harp." He plucked it to make his point. you'll need to take the reed-plate off and then narrow the gap." Hubie said. "A real tight gap or space makes the harp stick. "If you don't want to deal with repairing reeds. might be gunk in the reeds. maybe a 4 draw and it just won't play. If you need to close the gap.Open Harp SurgeryFixing the Sticky Harp "The reeds on these little harps are like little girlfriends. you might as well throw'm away. and they'll treat you right. there are repairs that will keep you from having to buy new reed-plates. The reed is fragile." From his worn gig bag. The blow reeds are on the top.

file the base of the reed. "No. or you can keep putting your harp back together (without the screws) and blowing or drawing. but every time he crossed that note. needles on these gauges jump all over the place." "The entire harp?" I asked. just throw the clunkers away and break out a new harp. File fixed end to lower pitch File free end to raise pitch "Use the tuner to reference your tuning. and I'm talking about fine players. so you can file and listen. Count on ruining t h e f i r s t few harps you experiment on. Even with the tuner. even new reed-plates. "Because of the harp's natural vibrato. as high as I possibly can. file and listen until the needle on the guitar tuner behaves. and only a little. I have the unpleasant task of telling him that on several songs. his harp was out of tune." He held the reed-plate to the pallid light that filtered through the filthy bus station windows. Some pros tune every harp they play. "Now. Be delicate! 210 . This makes it vibrate slower. Tuning kit and booklet highly recommended." He played a 3 blow at the tuner's built-in mic and I watched the needle dance across the meter. If you want to tune downward. and you sound as though you're in tune. even new ones out of the box." Hubie said. it just seemed to clang. Other guys. check the pitch of your harp's reeds played unbent and make sure you're not wildly out of tune on one reed.Retuning the Harp "I went to hear a buddy play. I try to play each reed unbent. file. scrape or shave the free end of the reed (with a shim underneath to give support). you're doing it somewhat by ear. lowering the pitch. You can either pluck the reed with the feeler gauge. Particularly dangerous are blow reeds that might be sharp. "If you want to tune the reed so it produces a higher pitch. and especially if you're recording. Do not skimp on quality of guitar tuner. just one reed. If you are playing professionally. Expect to ruin a few harps while you learn.

w o u l d r e q u i r e a d o c t o r a t e i n m u s i c (or a t last a very s m a r t guy). " said H u b i e . "If y o u w a n t t o g e t better a s a h a r p player. r e a d i n g s t a n d a r d n o t a t i o n .Using Music Notation "Now c o m e s t h e d r e a d e d t o p i c . ' is w h a t m o s t g u y s t h i n k . E n t i r e w o r l d s o f m u s i c will o p e n u p t o y o u . "Like g u i t a r m u s i c . o r F. To rely o n m u s i c r e a d i n g .V 1 5d F O — • • ——— 1 1 • • ' 4d D 6b 6 6d A 7d B 7b C 8d D 8b E 9d F 9b 6 211 . "I realize a lot o f h a r p players a r e sensitive b e c a u s e t h e y d o n ' t r e a d m u s i c . " A n d s o h e d i d . A n y t h i n g t h a t r e m i n d s m e o f m y 6 t h g r a d e t r o m b o n e t e a c h e r is e n o u g h t o s e n d m e p a c k i n g . W e l l . T h e r e isn't m u c h blues h a r p n o t a t i o n . will b e a g r e a t h e l p . u p one o c t a v e f r o m w h e r e it actually s o u n d s o u t . "It's n o t w h a t t h e h a r p ' s all a b o u t . He l o o k e d a t m e w i t h t h o s e crinkly eyes. h a r p o r n o h a r p . Following a l o n g w i t h h o w s o m e g u y w r o t e a c o n c e r t o 2 0 0 y e a r s a g o will give y o u a w h o l e n e w w a y t o c o n n e c t t h e d o t s . h a r p m u s i c is usually w r i t t e n o n t h e treble clef. e v e n if o n l y for t h e key o f C . A n d it's n o t really t h a t h a r d . a n d h a v e t o pick u p a n o t h e r h a r p . I kind o f a g r e e w i t h t h a t . L e t m e write o u t a b a s i c staff f o r t h e C h a r p . " "You p l a y e d t r o m b o n e .l o c a t i o n changes every t i m e y o u p l a y a s o n g written f o r D. t o o ? " 1 a s k e d i n a m a z e m e n t . a n d h a v e t o calculate h o w t h e n o t e . M y problem is t h a t I c a n ' t k e e p m y s e l f f r o m i m p r o v i s i n g e a c h t i m e I start t o read. T h a t ' s just t h e w a y t h e h a r p is. O n e r e a s o n is t h a t it s e e m s n o t directly a p p l i c a b l e t o t h e h a r p i n a n y key o t h e r t h a n C . b u t t h e r e is s o m e . -O Id t> w— 2b E ipct 2d** P O 2d G U 3d** A po 3d* 8f tjo 3d B XJC 4b C A * SI a o 5b E ° .

"I also think a harp player needs to know some basic guitar chords." He then walked me through some chords in the I-IV-V progression. y i m i liMlHj m IV B Second position: use A harp si mm 212 Second position: use C harp . Because the harp is tucked away inside your mouth and is so different from other mainstream instruments. Tying the harp to a piano in your mind isn't a bad idea. I t helps to recognize chords and chord changes! He opened his battered guitar case and pulled out a beat-up old guitar. we harp players get no visual feedback.m [jijuu mm SB BflM J LUH B7 d . Hubie suggested it might be cooler in the bar.Pick Up Some Basic Guitar and Piano Knowledge After awhile. just so he can recognize the progressions from watching the guitar player's hands. "Anyone interested in the musical theory part of the harp would do well to take a few piano lessons. It also helps not having to ask what key the music is in. We sat next to an old upright.

This was what I wanted." "Play something first. saying their goodbyes. Somehow." he said. I gotta go. Really terrific! I wanted to be the best. "Just a lick. "Well." 213 .c I IV f M *m S7 V Hill! Ill & IV Second position: use F harp A7 MIJ MUM MI 11 Second position: use G harp fill! Watching Hubie comfortably expressing himself in the world of music filled m e with exhilaration. Hubie gave m e a grin.. You could smell the exhaust and the grime of the road. Waaaaa! Taa Waa Wa! Lord." I said. Waaaaa! the harp moaned. I wanted music! More music! I resolved right then and there to become a terrific harp player. The Magic Harmonica Suddenly a silver bus turned u p the street and came noisily into the terminal. the harmonica fit this scene perfectly. "is Hubie's Blues.. it was sweet! "And that." Hubie looked at the bus's open door. People were scurrying around the bus station. pulled out his harp and cupped it in his hands. I'd like to hear you once more. lugging suitcases.

I played the Up and Down Blues Riff. 1 played a 3 blow. It dripped like molasses. I played the Six Blow Down. I played the Good Morning Riff up to 3 draw. I watched him make his way down the crowded aisle and sit next to a fetching blonde who seemed mighty glad to see him. Then three other guys appeared in the window and they all had a good laugh. then 3 draw bent down. playing positions. It was carefully carved from the tusk of a wild boar. I was walking. Goodbye. It was a small. Yes. People were looking at me as my harp playing peaked on the bending 10 blow and tumbled through space.He grabbed his suitcase and took a step toward the door. He placed something hard and small in it. Then he stopped. overdraws. looking for the snack bar when I realized that my hand was clenched around something Hubie had given me. it sang like a Streisand. Others had disapproval on their faces. Some folks were smiling. 214 . From the sidewalk. I couldn't stop playing! Then I started bending. a 4 draw. Finally. this was it. it soared like a rocket. over the notes to the 2 draw. and I felt sure that the reeds were from the hard bark of the boo boo tree. a 6 draw and a 9 blow. turned around and shook my hand. The next thing I knew he was climbing on the bus. tapping their feet. Overblows. Thanks for your help. I said to myself. throaty. it honked like a horn. I looked at the harmonica more closely. Low. growling bends. I'd never seen anything like it. playing chromatic! The tone of this harmonica was incredible. This was the harmonica I'd been looking for all my life. High soaring bends. Exhaust shot from the rear of the bus and they were off. I managed to wrestle the harmonica away from my lips. Hubie. I played a Good Morning Riff. strange harmonica.

. How does it work? Put a CD in the player. Start with your Wailing Notes.Harp-Player's Resource & Music Index The next few pages tell you what key harmonica you need to jam Cross Harp on each song with some wonderful CDs. find the right key of harp for the song you want to play and begin molding harmonica sounds to the sounds of recorded music. Create tension until the music demands resolution.

James plays C chromatic In key of D.Cross Harp Blues Brothers Briefcase Full of Blues Harp: Dan Can't Turn Bartender Messin' Almost Biscuit Shot Gun Groove Me Don't Know Soul Man B Movie Flip Flop Turn You Ackroyd F F E A B flat E flat D C B flat A E flat F Jimmy Buffett Changes in Latitudes Harp:uFingers" Changes Wonder Banana Tampico Lovely Margaritaville Shelter Miss You Biloxi Landfall G C C D F G A F D C Taylor James Cotton High Compression Harp: James Potato Yin 23 Hours Doggin' Cuttin' Doin' Bad Sunny Super Harp EZ Compression Cotton E F G• C C A D F C C Blues Traveler Four Harp: John Popper Runaround C Stand A flat/D Look Around C Fallible B Mountains Win C/D Freedom G Crash Burn D Price to Pay A Hook D Good. Ugly A / D / E Just Wait F Brother John A/C Harp: Paul Butterfield Walking Blues D Get Out F Gotta Mind F All These Blues D Work Blues B flat Mary Mary D Two Trains B flat Never Say No B flat East West G Paul Butterfield East Meets West * Although listing Is for cross harp. Bob Dylan Blonde on Blonde Harp: Bob Dylan Rainy Day A Pledging D Visions D Sooner or Later B flat Your Way C Achilles C Sweet Marie G I Want You B flat Memphis Blues A Pillbox Hat D Like a Woman A Fourth Time A 5 Believers D Sad Eyed G Eric Clapton From the Cradle Harp: Jerry Blues Before 3rd Degree Reconsider Hoochie Five Long Tore Down How Long Going Away Blues Leave Sinners Motherless Hurts Me Someday Standing Driftin' Groanin' Harp: Norton Lovin' One Kiss Ghetto Nobody Puerto Hangin' Another Rosalie Jig's Up Eighteen Sea Norton Buffalo Lovin' in the Valley of the Moon Buffalo C C D flat A A G B flat B flat D A F Portnoy F sharp G C D D F A D A A E F sharp G B flat A D Bob Dylan Highway 61 Revisited Harp: Bob Dylan Rolling Stone F Tombstone F Train D flat Buick 6 F Thin Man G Queen Jane F Highway 61 E flat Tom Thumb C Desolation Row A 216 . Bad.

Willie Nelson Stardust Harp: Mickey Raphael Bob Marley Natty Dread Lively U p No Woman Belly Full Rebel So Jah Natty Bend D o w n Talkin' Revolution G F F D G D F D F Stardust C Georgia F sharp Blue Skies F All of Me C Unchained C September S o n g D flat Sunny Side C Moonlight Get Around D Someone D Lee Oskar Before the Rain Harp: Lee Oskar Rain Steppin' S F Bay Feelin' Words Sing S o n g Haunted House F sharp D F sharp A flat F F sharp F 217 . Geils Band Best of the J . The "G" listing Is for regular cross harp. Geils Band Harp: Magic Dick Southside Give It Where Did House Party Detroit Whammer I Do Must Got Looking C C D A F A C F F Walter Jacobs Little Walter Harp: Little Walter My Babe Hours S o Fine Last Night Blues Feel Can't Hold Back T o o Late Feeling Teenage Fool Saucer Juke Old World Wall Watch Yourself Blue Lights Tell M a m a Gotta G o Shade T o o Late Thunderbird Baby Boom B flat B flat A G G C B flat B flat D G D G A B flat C A G* C D A C G* C A J o h n Mayall Turning Point Harp: John Mayall Laws C h a n g e Saw Mill G o n n a Fight Hard Share California Roxanne R o o m to Move F A E C G F F sharp Charlie McCoy The Real McCoy Harp: Charlie McCoy Today I Started Orange Blossom Only Daddy Jackson Hangin' O n Real McCoy Lovin' Her Easy Lovin' How Can I Help Me Country Road B F A F A E D E flat F A F Slim Harpo The Best of Slim Harpo Harp: Slim Harpo Mohair Slim Keep W h a t I Got Scratch My Back Buzz Me Baby King Bee Rainin' Shake Ten-ni-nee Breadmaker Tip O n In B B B flat A B flat C D D A A Walter Horton Big Walter Horton Harp: Big Walter G o o d Time Christine Lovin' Boy Blue Can't Hold Sun Tell M e Mercy That Ain't Temptation Trouble C C A B flat A C A G A A D * Walter played chromatic "C"harp in the keyofDfl and 4 draw notes of resolution) on these numbers.Cross Harp The J .

In Help Me.Cross Harp Rod Piazza Harpburn Harp: Rod Piazza Rockin' Robin D Bad Boy C California Boogie A Upsetter A Tribute E* Harpburn G* Feelin' Good E flat Honey Bee P Cold Chill A Dangerous G* * Although the key listed is for cross harp. Madcat Ruth Gone Solo Harp: Madcat Ruth Sweet Chicago A Changed C Bad Luck E flat Catfish A Fishin' F Shortnin' F/G/A Boom Jake A Too Late St.O. Bruce Springsteen Darkness on the Edge of Town Harp: Bruce Springsteen Badlands Adam Something Candy Racing Promised Land Factory Streets Prove It Darkness A A C F B flat C F D D C c c Bonnie Raitt Sweet Forgiveness Harp: Norton Buffalo Leave Home Runaway Two Lives Louise Gamblin' Forgive Farewell Three Time Home G F Bflat D G E flat E flat E E A Bruce Springsteen Greetings from Asbury Park Harp: Bruce Springsteen Blinded Growing U p Arkansas Bus Stop Hood Angel For You Spirit Saint A F G George Smith Oopin' Doopin' Doopin' Harp: George Smith Phone Blues Blues in the Dark Blues Away Rockin' California Blues Oopin' Doopin' Suzie Cross Love Me Down in N. he plays D harp in 3rd position (slant harp. 4 draw note of resolution). Found Love Ball E A flat E E c c C Bflat A D Jimmy Reed Upside Your Head Harp: Jimmy Reed Shame Shame Baby Ain't Got Ain't Lovin' Road Bright Lights Too Much Big Boss Man Upside Good Lover Honest Virginia Hush Found Love Baby What Goin' NY A A A Bflat A D A A D Bflat D D Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes This Time It's for 1 This Time Without Love Popeye First Night She's Got Some Things Little Girl Fever Love Dance c c G Dflat E Aflat D F D Bflat F F D A A D c c c D A D 218 . On Nobody. Madcat plays F sharp in 5th position (2 blow note of resolution). James. James P Help Me D* Hurts Me Nobody G* Sonny Terry D Rollin' D *On St. Rod plays chromatic on these numbers. he plays G harp In 12th position (5 draw note of resolution).

Sonny Boy Williamson and the Yardbirds Harp: Rice Miller aka Sonny Boy Williamson II Bye Bye Cool Blue Stop Eyesight Memphis Cross Heart Crazy 9 below Long Time The Dead Stop Baby Down Child Pontiac Close C F F F D F C F C F C C F C Sonny Terry Whoopin' Harp: Sonny Eyes Whoopin' Burnt Whoee Crow Tough Whoee Got Blues Ya Ya Roll Baby Terry B A C C B B C A A B Neil Young Hawks and Doves Harp: Neil Young Little Wing Homestead In Space Kennedy Staying Coastline Man Coming Jawks E flat G F B flat C F C C C 219 . Listing Is for regular cross harp. ** Walter played C chromatic in pressed position D flat. m tr Muddy Waters Hard Again Harp: James Cotton Mannish Boy D Bus Driver A W a n n a Be Loved P Jealous D Satisfied D Blues Baby D Florida C Cross Cut C Little Girl D *The listing Is for Cross Harp. Play Cross Harp diatonic on your A flat harp. Sonny Boy Williamson Bummer Road Harp: Rice Miller aka Sonny Boy Williamson II Next to Me Santa Claus Little Village Lonesome Road Can't D o Temperature Unseen Eye Hand Out O p e n Road This Old Life B flat D F F D F C B flat E E Sonny Terry Blind Sonny Terry Harp: Sonny Terry A Cornbread Ham A Lost J o h n A Chain Gang BluesA It Takes a Chain A Betty Dupree A A Stickhole Rock Me A Chain G a n g Special G Long J o h n A Pick a Bale A Red River A Muddy Waters The Best of Muddy Waters Harp: Little Walter Just Make Love G* Long Distance B flat Louisiana Blues D Honey Bee B flat Rolling Stone A I'm Ready A flat" Hoochie Coochie D She Moves Me B flat I Want Y o u C Standing B flat Still a Fool B flat Can't Be SatisfiedC *Little Walter plays chromatic Third Position.Cross Harp Bill Tarsha Rocket 88's Let's Rumble Harp: Bill Tarsha Cookin' D Rumble A Y o u Don't G* Walk In E flat Don't Know B flat A Tongue Breakout D Love F Elmo A Road G' That's All E *We believe Bill plays a U C" chromatic In key of D. on the diatonic. play your G harp Cross Harp. but James plays a "C" chromatic In the key of C on this number.

aol. I recommend teachers Joe Filisko.harmonicamasterclass. David Barrett.com with message "subscribe harp-1" Harp-Talk: www.members. Masterclass Workshop www. Easy R e e d i n g s FO 15035.com Summer workshop lets you meet with some of the best players in the world. Harp-L: send e-mail to majordomo@garply. O n l i n e C h a t r o o m s o n harp. teachers. Howard Levy. for a plethora of web sites. Battle Creek. Augusta Heritage Festival Davis and Elkins College. Richmond. Bellevue. SPAH.com/group/harptalk/ S e a r c h Engines: do a search on harmonica. Richmond. Glenn Weiser and many others. vintage tube amps and other harp equipment. Society for the Preservation of the Harmonica P O 865 Troy. this is the place to run and read ads and comments from other players and equipment manufacturers. with a great summer bash and regional harp clubs. 220 . WA 98015 425-747-6867/425-747-7059 For advanced studies. blues harp.com/harmonica/ SPAH is an instant and inexpensive membership into the harp community. Online Retailers Kevin's Harps: www. 877-427-7552. VA 23227 Hohner newsletter about harps and people who play them. etc. Elkins. W V 26241 304-637-1209 fax 1317 Every summer many great musicians gather to teach and perform. MI 48906 Fun and funky.egroups. See your local music store for harps.com 1-800-274-2776 H a r p Depot: www. MI 48099 www. Territorial Road. Find out just how full the harp world is.Kharps. VA 23227 Lee O s k a r H a r m o n i c a s PO 50225.com 1-800-783-7996 Send for catalogs: H o h n e r H a r m o n i c a s P O 15035.Resources for Harp Players American Harmonica Newsletter 2362 W.harpdepot.

The two richly mastered CDs are each more than an hour long. Book with two CDs $ 2 4 . bending. lyrics. It s a 176 page book and double CD kit created by the fictional "Doc" who travels the Old West selling harmonicas at a nickel each and teaching folks to play 'em. history of harmonica. 0 0 221 .95 for two CDs or tapes only Harmonica Americana video $ 1 2 . The 40 minute video lets you see the techniques-single notes. voice and harp for your play-along and listening pleasure. Do you need something a tad easier? Pull up a chair 4cause "Doc" Gindick is going to teach you to beautifully play the American classics.LEARN TO PLAY AMERICA'S 30 GREATEST SONGS by Jon Gindick 176 page book. moving the harmonica-and provides some great jams on these famous tunes. 2 CDs (or tapes) 40 minute video For C harp Harmonica Americana HARMONICA *MSUU* JON GINDICK The songs you'll learn and play: America Star Spangled Banner Auld Lang Syne Down in the Valley Yankee Doodle Home on the Range Shenandoah Danny Boy Beautiful Dreamer Old Grey Mare Oh Susanna Battle Hymn of the Republic Turkey in the Straw When Irish Eyes Are Smiling On Top of Old Smokey Down in the Valley Frankie and Johnnie Dixie Old Folks at Home Camptown Races Bill Bailey Brahms Lullaby and many more. 9 5 $14. guitar chords. 9 5 Book only $ 1 1 . or get it directly from us. easy-play harp notation-plus a section on blues and train music. song notation. Volume I gives you a slow and easy lesson on the techniques and walks you very slowly through each song. Volume II plays each song on guitar. Ask your local music store to order this wonderful book and C D entertainment/harp teaching combo. The book includes illustrated instruction on techniques. 9 5 Shipping $ 4 .

folk and blues styles." "Come into My Kitchen" and more.50 The Robert Johnson Lesson Teaches seven Robert Johnson Blues Classics. or each lesson at listed price. Includes "Rollin' and a Tumblin'. Easy guitar music to jam with. 3rd and 5th positions.. For C harp." and many others.. For C and G harps. rock. Information sheets include notation. Includes easy guitar music to jam with.. has provided the breakthrough for many beginners.$9." "Sweet Home Chicago." "Just a Closer Walk.$24. jazz.. For C harp... This program. For C harp. Includes easy guitar music to jam with.$9. The Movie Blues guitar legend BB King teamed with Jon and made this superb instructional video to let you see and hear detailed instruction on the basics of the blues harp. lyrics and essential lesson information. For A harp.. rock jams and tips on bending. Includes easy guitar music to jam with. 60-Minute VHS video BB King and Jon Gindick Blues Harp. covering single notes.50 Four Positions of Blues.50 More Jamming for Harp Players Harp and Guitar J a m Volume D-Exclusively Cross Harp Features blues. Includes country." "What a Friend We Have in Jesus. tongue-blocking and riff making.50 Gospel Plow This two-volume set teaches the Cross Harp way to play gospel standards "Kum Ba Yah. bending and basic riffs. Get the set for $39.95.. boogie.60-Minute Cassette Lessons With Information Sheets Harp and Guitar J a m Volume I Jam with Jon to seven different guitar chord progressions.$9. 60 minutes." "Love in Vain.95 222 . 2nd... Rock and Jazz Harp Take a step into more advanced harmonica by learning to play songs and riffs in 1st.$9.95 for two tapes. $14.

brass. 9 5 In this collection of songs about life. 2nd position Mystery of My Love G harp 2nd position and C harp.00 shipping on cassette or CD only orders. International orders. All I Ever Needed A harp. contact us at: Cross Harp Press. 2nd position Lover C harp in 1st and 2nd position Make Your Heart My Home C harp. Let us know what kind of products you would like. piano. songwriter. And we want to know you.00 shipping on all book/CD or tape orders (our books are heavy!) $4. Let us help you in any way we can. threads it all together. arranger and harp player. and the harp. 3rd position H a r b o r l i g h t s A harp. drums.netcom. 2nd position "A harp-driven experience where midi programming and midnight meet. CA 93291 800-646-9245 www.gindick." poetry We Want Your Feedback! We Want Your Music! Did you enjoy this book? Is the CD helpful? We want to know. 3rd position When We Die We All Come Back As Music C harp. love. fiddle.com Email jfgindic@ix. Playing harp is fun. The songs: Jealous Kind of Guy G harp in 3rd position and 12th position. relationships and paying the rent. played in styles developed over a lifetime of joyful music. guitar. Other instruments include bass.com We accept personal check or Visa/MasterCard.Banished Moon J o n Gindick and the Cross Harp Conspiracy 10 Original Songs-CD with 12-page booklet $ 1 1 . 530 Ranch Road. J o n shines as singer. please send enough for shipping. $5. To place an order or send feedback. 2nd position W i s h i n g Well A harp. 12th position M a x i n e G harp. 3rd position B a n i s h e d M o o n A harp. 223 . Visalia.

jazz and rock and roll. forged the music that has grown into modern blues. brought to me the wisdom and experience of many of our finest players. but not limited to. guitar players and singers who.Major Key Diatonic Note Location ^mmfaimmrsimmmtioTN /'mmiiimmiiimiiiFiiaft BLOW • B ' H O H F H B ' OR AW | C | F J | | A | C w 1 1I 1 11 1 1 B J I 1 1 1 t ^ ^ m m m m m m n n n fT^TN B i i S i i i S I l j M m I I V 1 i 1 i 1 1 1 1 7 A (G ' Y misirsirnminmisiiiiRfN 1 1 1 m m i s i s s 1 1 0 1 1 a i 7 7 7 i ras C K F l f ^ I R R [«l f7) f i f»i f p ^ d*{C'ymmr^mfsimfTirFi » w\ i i B i i s i i s v ESKI H S R P S Q S S P B E2sa H D a H n a a a D S [tTn^ n V s i i i i i i g s 7 •ebi •tsaa B a n a a n H i a c s a a a s a a i g B g a s v r 7 7 A n [ 2 I M M N N N N I 7 I M M I » f N BLOW I F I A I C I F I A I C V F IAVCVT^IH : g c e g Bc D DRAW I B B B B I H E | G |e |o ^ ^ ^ H ^ m m m rn r? m m r»i a B D a H a n S B S Many thanks to the folks who helped with the 2000 revision including. Blues Harmonica has a great tradition extending back beyond the turn of the century. Harp-L. John Starkweather of Advanced Design Concepts. Karen Gindick. At the root of this tradition are the harp players. 224 . musical passion and feedback has inspired the information on many of the pages in this book. The online harmonica talk service. my wife. advice. encouragement. out of the most difficult human circumstances. who mixed and mastered the CD. Boris Menart. editor and friend. and the many harp players and students whose playing.

Index of 2nd Position Riffs The purpose of this list is to help you practice solo and with the CD. resolve on 3b or 2d) 4 Draw Surprise 4d 4b 3d 4d Surprise Resolution 4d 4b 3d 6b 6 Blow Wailer 6b 5d 4d 6 Blow Down 6b 5d 4d 4b 3d 3b 5 Draw Mistake 2d 3d 4b 4d 5d 4d Good Morning Riff Id 2b 2d Good Morning 3d Id 2b 2d 3d Good Morning 4d Id 2b 3d 4b 4d 9 Blow Down 9b 9d 8b 8d 7d 6d 6b 6 Blow Up 6b 7d 8d 8b 9b Blues Scale Down 9b 9d 8b 8d 7d 6d 6b 5d 4d 3d 2d Id 2b 3d 2d Blues Scale Up Id 2b 2d 3d 4b 4d 5d 6b 7d 8d 8b 9b 7ths Based Up and Down 2d** 2d 3d* Rockin* Robin Riff 5d 5b 4d 5b 5d 5b 4d Bent 6 Draw Down 6d* 6d 6b 5d 4d 4b 3d* 2d Bent Up Riff 2d" 2d 3d* 4b 4d* 4d Bent Down Riff 4d* 4d 4b 3d* 2d 2d** Bent Wailing Riff 4d* 4d 5d 4d 5d 4d* 4d Little Walter Riff 2d 3d 2d 2d** 2d 3d** 2d Super VII Riff 3d* 2d 2d** 2d 3d* 2d 2d** b means blow d means draw * means bend 1 step ** means bend I/2 steps Substitute 2d for 3b as you improve. In the real world. They change depending on how they are being used. these riffs are jumping off places for riffs of your own. third time. I chord 1234d IV chord 1234b V chord 456d Beginner s Blues Riff 3b 4d 2d Up Riff 3b 3d 4b 4d Down Riff 4d 4b 3d* 3b Incomplete D o w n 4d 4b 3d (play 3x. 3d 2d 2 d " 9 Blow Surprise 4d 4b 3d* 9b Tongue Blocks 3-6b l-4d 2-5d 6-9b 225 .

65. Second position 3d bend Easier Riffs Red River Valley Vocal Tongue-blocking Minor key play-along Conclusion To hear band only. Band with no harp 7. 28. 58. Embouchures (47-50) 16. Amped harp (190. Some Riffs on page 130 47. 33. Swing Low with riffs 42. I-IV-V Harp Chords (42) 12. 1. Headshake (196) 37. 4 draw bending (119-120) 44. 4. V chord. 64. 2 draw bending (124-125) 46. 32. 26. Soft Loud Soft Cry Section II 56. 5. Single Note 4 draw (47) 17. Compressed air column (49) 18. drums and guitar) is in the key of G7. Minor Key Jam (Music in G minor) 63. Attack and Decay 2 1 . 61. Draw Blow Draw breath patterns 14. Tongueslap (194) 53. 66. Broom Duster Riff (130) Shortnin' Bread (163) Frankie and Johnnie (165) 5d Rockin' Riff (126) Broom Duster (130) 23. 2-5b (195) 54. C harp. Fast Jam Shuffle and easier riffs 57. 25. Pucker 55. 59. 133. 60. 3 blow. 9 blow 2 draw to 3 draw Swing Low. Bending (116-119) 43. 194) 52. 35. 3 draw single note 2 draw single note 5 draw. Sweet Chariot (57) Pentatonic Scale (57) Beginner's Blues Riff (76) Up Riff. 2. l-4d. 67. Octaves 3-6b. Hand Effects (132-134) 51. Acoustic Jam Electric Jam Ground Rules Type Harmonica (35) Acoustic harp explanation (132. Tone Techniques (38) 11. Vibrato (49) 19. Articulation (49) 20. 3 blow single note 22. Word to beginners 8. Play 2nd position. IV chord (42) 13. Cross Harp Draw Chord (42) 10. 3. 9 blow Down (128) 49. First day's lesson ends 24.79) Don't Accent 4 blow 4 and 5 draw riffs (81) Section III 62. 4 draw Surprise (83) 38.Stereo CD/Book Index Section I Slow Jam The band (bass. Down Riff (76. 4 draw slide Moving harmonica 6 blow. Good luck! 226 . 31. 9 blow Riffs (92-99) 41. To hear harp and instruction only. 27. T-B vs. 68. 30. Band's I-IV-V progression (27) 9. adjust to left. 6 draw Bend Down (127) 48. Listening and playing along all three ways should be a big help in your learning. Good Morning Riffs (84) 39. adjust stereo balance to right. Connecting Harp to Body (47) 15. Tongue Block Single Note (50. 34. 6 blow Riffs (87-90) 40. 3 draw bending (121-123) 45. 190) 6. 134) 36. 29. Stop and Start scales (130) 50.

first sounds. I-IV-V progressions. tongue-blocking. eyes-closed. basic blues riffs. playing single notes. The Stereo CD: Jon teaches and plays every major harp technique over an easy-jamming blues band background for your C harmonica Turn off the instruction to hear only the band. This is a book to live with while you learn the harp.Let's Play Some Harp! Here's a rich world of blues harmonica instruction and music for beginning through intermediate players. famous cross harp melodies and more. ISBN 0-930948-10-6 . positions 1 through 6 plus 12. Inspired by the idea that most music instruction literature is boring and irrelevant to most people most of the time. octaves. Turn off the band to hear only the instruction. Harmonica Americana and many other harmonica instruction books. playing chords. "Jon Gindick is one of the world's foremost teachers of blues harmonica " -BB Kinq Country <S Blues Harmonica for the Absolute Beginner Video Jon is also the author of Country <S Blues Harmonica for the Musically Hopeless. getting sweet tone. "leave-me-alone-Im-jamming" harp player. CDs and videos. Rock n Blues Harmonica teaches improvisational music harmony 101 and every important harmonica technique in a way that communicates to even the most instruction-hating. mics and amps. This fully indexed 74-minute CD will be a constant jamming companion as you develop your tone and techniques. itapes. reed tuning. The Book Includes: Choosing your harmonica. vibrato. The audio index tells you the key of harmonica you need to jam with the great bkies recordings. bending. theory-phobic. headshakes.