Far out effects

As someone who’s coming to harmonica from many years of guitar playing,I have a few effects pedals and I was wondering what people’s experiences are using guitar pedals with harp playing?
Whilst I can see reverb and overdrive having obvious uses, does anyone use things like modulation effects (chorus, phaser, flangers etc) and delays I think could sound really nice.
In time I’ll give it all a try and post some thoughts but I don’t feel the need to get a mic yet as I’m still practicing getting single notes cleanly (I’ll get there, practice).


I briefly experimented with running my harp playing through guitar effects pedals. This was about 25-30 years ago. The results were OK, but not quite as interesting as I hoped. It was a bit like the audio equivalent of experimenting with adding lots of different herbs and spices in your cooking, only to find it might have been better to have just left the extras out when you actually tasted it.

My style of playing was (and still is) more country blues though, a more precise and controlled technique than my own might have produced better results - single chords only could be interesting too. I experimented with playing two diatonics simultaneously recently and they could sound good with additional effects.

Reverb and echo always seem to work well. (as you suggest). I’ve played harp to some reggae/ska backing before (as well as melodica) and the echo is great with that style.


That’s cool @ralphwindsor I was sure I wouldn’t be the first to have the thought.
I like playing clean or low gain overdrive with a guitar anyway so I’m probs not going to be the experimental harmonica player, but I’ll give em a go at some point I’m sure.


Although another thought just did strike me, has anyone ever made an electro-harmonica with a piezo pickup in the comb? or even a coil pickup (unlikely I’d have thought)?
If you did put a piezo pickup in the comb though, you’ve still got the question of how to get the jack to fit without it getting in the way of playing (1/8" inch probably easier than 1/4").


I use Cube Baby pedals with amped harp, about $40, they may have a different name or color. Although they have delay, phase, flanger etc. (which I use for electric ukulele), I set them like shown in the picture for harp, everything is turned off except volume and reverb controls. I want most of the tone to come from one of my killer old harp microphones, not the pedal or amp. I use these with my Pignose Hog20 amp as it has no reverb. I use the stand alone volume control (with the necessary 1/4" female to 1/4" female coupler) with my Stage Right tube amp as it has reverb. As for a pickup in the harmonica, that sounds complicated and expensive as opposed to an easy to hold harp mike (I see some easy to cup, powerful old Japanese harp mikes for about $20 + tax + shipping on eBay right now). It also removes your ability to cup and uncup the mike to change the sound.


I just edited my last comment, you might want to read it again


I recently purchased a Little Fatty pedal , it definitely improved the sound of my fender 20 with my harp. A lot less feedback too


Octave pedals and auto-wah! A compressor before both of those pedals can improve tracking.

Yes, chorus can be cool as well. But octave an auto-wah are big bang for the buck on harmonica in my opinion.