not new but my question

Since placement of the tongue is so important to playing ho w do you do this to get the notes you need?
I’m serious about this. I am having a hard time getting from 4/5 5/6 this may seem easy to some but getting it right is my only objective.


Good question, Bear!

In his lessons, JP starts out playing by puckering the holes…

Later, in his Gypsy DVD, he dedicates several lessons to learn about tonguing…

I believe the methods to each are the same. So try this:

Tape the holes on either side of the hole you want to teach yourself to play.

Meaning, if it’s the 4 hole – you tape the 3 and 5 hole on either side accordingly.

As your mouth, embouchure, etc. become accustomed to the ‘feel’ and placement and sound of the 4 hole –

When you’re ready, remove the tape and play the same 4 hole.

How does this help with tonguing?

Well, with the tape on, instead of puckering your lips, place the tip and/or side of your tongue on the 3 hole. You may even cover the 2 hole as well.

In any event, once your mouth, embouchure etc. become accustomed to the ‘feel’ and placement as you play the 4 hole clearly –

When you remove the tape, and can get your tongue placed the same way and play the same 4 hole –

Well believe it or not, you’ll have it all licked!! <<<Pun intended!! Hehehehehe!>>>

Meaning, you should be able to use the tip/side of your tongue to easily glide along, up and down, back and forth on the harp blocking out the holes/notes you don’t want to play/hear!

Hope this helps!

Keep us posted!

Welcome aboard!!

“Have Harp, Will Travel!” 8)

THANKS I will give this a try i have come to find out it’s not as easy as one would think.


If you do a search on “tongue block” on the forum, you will find many different posts/threads from our great members here.

Of course, since there is so much to know about in the vast and mighty Harmonica Universe, it’s always good for us to refresh and recall what we know and/or don’t know. A little bit of knowledge is a big bit of knowledge!! Hehehee!!

Myself, I started out playing with tongue blocking. Years later, ‘they’ - those instructors - talked about lip blocking and puckering techniques. Now again, ‘they’ are talking about going back to tongue blocking!

Like WTF?! Make up your minds already, eh?! Mwuahahahaha!!

Thing is, everything takes some time to learn.

So don’t stress out too much as you go along, as it will come eventually.

All we can then say is:

Just keep having fun!


Keep us posted!

Rock on, yo!

getting it right is my only objective.

In regards to that –

Along with using the tip of the tongue alongside the holes, there is also something called the “U” block too!

Meaning, if you can curl your tongue into a U-shape, you can use the curled tip to ‘zone in and underneath’ the hole you want to play. Once you get the single hole note – Then you can play a two-note like trill, as it were.

Meaning, you can sound the 4/5 or 5/6 separately and cleanly.

However, this is always easy enough to explain, and yet takes time to understand and put into practice for sure!!

So herein again though: Is there a right or wrong way to play the harmonica?

Well, there are proper techniques we all must learn if we wish to continue along with this great instrument. But as to whether you use a lip block, U block, lip and/or pucker block – Well only you will ever know which one you use at any given time!

And whichever way YOU get there and how YOU get there is all up to YOU!!

So again don’t sweat it! As YOU will get there!!

Just have fun, fun, fun as you do!!

Keep On Harpin’!