Im assuming this is where I introduce myself.
Im Woodrow and i picked up a harmonica in 2019 when the, Covid virus was getting started. I would have stated, to anyone that asked that i was not musicly inclined, as far as playing an instrument.
I have really impressed myself with how much ive accomplished, to this point.
Ive gone from, hunt & blow, to being able to play by ear, with what i assume is, basic harmonica.
Ive never played in front of anyone and i dont think my nerves would allow me to play my best. Even though i feel good about my progress, im stuck at a point that im not sure how to move forward. I hope to chat with folks to gain some understanding on how i might impress myself more but dont know a thing about how to proceed. I may be wrong, but i consider myself to be, either a very good beginner, or a bottom of intermediate, harmonica player and would really like to advace. Im from Oregon, im retired, and i could use any advice available from anyone that can help me play better. Im looking forward to being part of this community.
Im assuming this is where I introduce myself.
You aren’t alone my friend!
I have had a similar experience and also believe I am an advanced beginner or low-intermediate player.
There are days when I feel like I am playing like a rock star and others where I’m sure those around me are plugging their ears and running for cover when 5hey hear me.
I remember a comment @Luke made somewhere in the forum that went something like this:
“The harmonica is one of the easiest musical instruments to play and at the same time one of the most difficult to master.”
I suppose it’s a matter of practice, but I too welcome any and all advice from more experienced players on how to push the envelope and get better.
Welcome to the club @Woodrow_stout
Hi Woodrow, my story is similar to yours. I’m retired, although only very recently. I bought my first harmonica a few months ago and like you, have always considered myself to be not musically inclined. Only difference is, I still think that, so I apologise that I can’t help you directly. However, I have found everyone on this forum to be very kind and polite and helpful when they can. So, I think you will enjoy the interaction and will gain from it. Even if you just trawl through previous comments, questions and replies, I’m sure you will learn and improve.
first of all, welcome to us! Nice that you found us.
Here you will find many answers to your questions. Enter a keyword next to the magnifying glass at the top and, especially since many harmonica players often have the same questions, there are answers for them.
Of course, you can also ask your own questions and 99% of the time you will find someone who has a solution.
I have been learning my harps for almost two years and am also an advanced beginner. There are times where I’m making good progress and others where there are problems. The song selection has a big influence! The faster the beat, the harder it becomes. But here it’s probably because I’ve only been playing for too short a time, the form I’m in on the day and my age.
I play by ear or find the right notes of a song on the keyboard. But I admit that I’m busier in fall/winter than in spring/summer. I then take advantage of the good weather outside to do some exercise, which I need for my health.
Playing the harp is and remains a hobby for me, it’s a lot of fun.
Best Regards from Germany from Astrid
Hello mate , harmonica is a great hobby to learn and when hitting a certain level you need to share your talent !! I’ve only been playing since march and have played a couple of gigs in pubs with a pal of mine on ukulele and him singing !! Nervous, yeah !! But amazingly rewarding with all the feedback after !! I also take my harp out with me and play requests by ear off karaoke tracks from my phone !! To varying standards , but this is great fun and you will be amazed how some songs you never thought of playing you can play easy !!
Keep at it up pal and take the next step and try playing to a few mates .
Tank Essex England
Hi and welcome,I’m a novice at harmonica but have many years of being in a similar place with my guitars.
1 tip I’ve seen that is really good is record yourself and give it a listen back - it really helps with perspective and picking up things you didn’t notice while you were playing.
Another is that there’s no substitute for playing with other musicians - it’s not always easy to find people to jam with and the COVID hasn’t exactly helped - but as long as it’s not in the context of giving a performance, most musicians are surprisingly forgiving and accepting. I bet you’d be a lot better than you think you are.
Practice every day you can. Mistakes are the the second best teacher. First is playing . I am in the same boat but get a little better the more I play.
Enjoy the journey my friend and recognize that we all learn in different ways and have different destinations in mind. My most important piece of advice - HAVE FUN. .
@Woodrow_stout welcome to the forum mate. I agree with everyone’s comments here. The next step is to put yourself out there. Play for someone, record yourself, play with someone - those are the ways to get to the next level. Do it afraid! But DO IT!
Not sure where you are in Oregon, but there’s a harp player in Albany, Mike Lowry, who has great tone & chops and could possibly connect you with a good teacher, or guitarist, Kenny Blue Ray in Bend who knows everybody. Good luck with your pursuits!
Nice @BnT great stuff! Thanks for sharing this.
I have those days as well. I am a believer in practicing several different songs with many single notes. Mistakes are easy to spot but I have to move all over the harp. If you ever figure out a way to quickly or steadily improve rapidly please advise me. Till then its going to be practice.