Just got my first Lee Oscar and it appears to be the most mustache hungry harp in my collection. Does anyone make full sized covers or know if any other brands will fit?
I am a ‘newbie’, but I have 6 different harps. The Lee Oscar is the only one that I have had grab my mustache. 2 Inexpensive Hohner C’s, a Fender Blues C, a Hohner Spec 20 G, a Bushman Delta Frost G, and a Lee Oscar Low C. The Oscar has larger holes and is harder to blow “Clean” single notes. Also requires more breath, but then it is a LOW C.
I agree that it seems surprisingly hard to play clean notes, but I think that has to do with immediate thickness of the cheap-feeling pressed metal covers – it just wants a lot more of my mouth than I’m used to giving.
I am hardly an expert, but those are my observations. Holding up my Lee Oscar and my other harps, it seems obvious that the Oscar has larger holes, and it seems to me that the Oscar is harder to get clear single notes from. I seem to get more “overlap” on the Oscar. I only play for my own pleasure, and am pretty much only interested in playing single note melodies, not triads, fifths, or chords.
Interesting. I started a separate thread on hole size because I found the smaller holes on the Promaster and DaBell harder to play cleanly as opposed to the larger holes on the Special 20. I just got a Lee Oskar with the large holes and it doesn’t seem consistent with my previous observations.
Hello @bpcleary, hello @Poppo,
I am curious what others write. I picked up a harmonica for the first time in mid-September. I tried to play the tabs of different songs. I was very wrong because I didn’t hit the holes. Breathing was also a disaster. At the end of September I started the “Beginner to Boss Course”, which I will soon be finished with. I notice clear differences and new songs can also be played well with different harmonicas and thus hole spacings for a short time. Single notes work well with draws and bending. More techniques and subtleties are to come. Although, unfortunately for family reasons, I hardly have any time to practice or play, what I have learned is stable. However, while practicing, I keep repeating what I have learned to warm up. That should be about 30 times by now. As I have written before, relaxation, relaxation, relaxation. Just like @Luke keeps saying at the beginning of the lessons. Yes, there are bad days too! Then I have little time and put myself under pressure. That doesn’t do me any good. Better another day and then the progress will be good. Carry on and think about the many small muscles that you have when you play. They also have to be trained first. Some are older than I am in my late 50s. I have had physical disabilities and muscle weakness for decades. Here, too, the magic word is patience and investing more time. Astrid wishes you lots of fun and continued success
Hello Astrid and bpcleary. I purchased a couple of harps 8 or 10 years ago, my Bushman Delta Frost and a Hohner Sousa Band. I messed around with them for a short time and put them in a drawer. About August first of this year I decided to get serious about playing the Harmonica. I just turned 80, and am on opiods and 24/7 oxygen, so my breathing is not good. I do have an extensive musical background, however, and found that within a few weeks I could play some familiar tunes without the benefit of tabs, but for consistency and to help memory I wrote out some tabs and found a bunch on the internet. You hit the nail on the head when you emphasize relaxation. When I am relaxed I play much better than if I am not relaxed. I found that when I try to play for my wife I cannot play nearly as well as when she is in the other room. The other key to success is practice and more practice. My biggest problem is playing too long and getting my inner lips sore from sliding up and down the harp. It is good to ‘know’ you and others. Getting encouragement from others striving to reach the same goal is a positive experience! God Bless You! (and Luke and others also).
You know a sorrow shared is a sorrow halved. Unfortunately, I also know what opioids do with breathing. I was given very high doses of morphine for 12 years. They also make your mouth dry and your brain is also subdued. Difficult but enduring severe pain is no better either. circle. That you don’t play so well when your wife is IN the room sounds very familiar to me . Stage Fright! There is even a small exchange here in the forum. You might find it if you type it into the search engine at the top of the forum. I also write down all the tabs of the songs from Youtube and from @Luke’s course externally. In addition, I have my own system to recognize foreign songs immediately by the rhythm. So I can remember it well and find it quickly if I don’t have much time. All the best for you and nice that you are here. Kind regards from Astrid
I play Lee Oskars but I’ve never noticed the holes were bigger than other harmonicas, might have to check on my non-Lee Oskars also. I don’t have a moustace but I can imagine how annoying it would be
I tried a Melody Maker today and checked it against my DaBell: my new working theory is that it’s less about the hole size than the slope and thickness of the cover plates. The MM and LO are pretty blunt and thick, whereas the more playable (to me) DaBell is very curved and maybe thinner. I think it’s just messing with my lip shape. I’ll have to figure out a way to measure them since none of the brands appear to make engineering drawings available.
Yes, I think there is some stage fright, even though I have performed all my life, first on Accordion, then on Organ. Some professional, played Organ in church quite a few years. I have on but my back will not allow me to play it for last almost 20 years.
Yes Lee Oskars notoriously bad mustache rippers. The BIGGEST HOLES of any harmonica are the Hohner Rocket.
The more you play the less it (hole size) matters! I’ve got mainly Lee Oskars (14 keys), but have Hohners and Suzukis as well. And a set of 12 Easttops for Christmas. And a couple of 4 octave round hole and a 3 octave square hole chromatics too. And a bass. And a chord. And a couple of tremolos. AND a moustache!
The bass is particularly tricky – they’re all blow holes! But all the diatonics just get played without much thought (the low keys need a bit more air). Playing lots and with lots of different harps makes issues like holes size almost irrelevant.