What's Your Biggest Harp Challenge Currently?

If you’re really into Irish music, you should consider buying two paddy richter harmonicas in D and G. It has the wholestep bend on the three blow. Even Brendan Power uses this, because bending the three hole just isn’t in the question when playing fast. You could also tune yourself of course.

While browsing this site last night someone mentioned a turning program and I decided to try it out. Thanks to the program I’ve found out some of my bends were a bit off. I’m currently working on bending holes 2 and 3. I have trouble maintaining isolating both bends on hole 2. As for hole 3 I can’t get the A note to stick and for some reason I keep hitting a g#. Does hole 3 have more notes? I am also working on throat vibrato. I can flutter my throat muscles well, but It still doesn’t sound half as soothing as some of the guys on Youtube.

Harmonica Harold! <<<what a cool name; why didn’t you think of that one Joe Feeney?! hehehehhehe!!>>>

I’m definitely going to have to try those tuning programs.

Right now, I’m doing it the JP Allen way. He uses two tuners; one to sound the note and hear it - the other to play the note and see if it matches what it should be.

But I only just received the second tuner yesterday from Amazon, so I haven’t tried it yet.

I also got a book by Jon Gindick, the guy who scares me. :o

Only thing is, I like the book but the CD is corrupted and I have to send it back for a replacement. :-[

I’ve been working on throat vibrato too. I read, study, listen to others. But don’t ever compete with them. Only because I know it’s not a race, it’s not a tournament or even a pool hall match-up - So I’m always going to sound different, like me anyways! :slight_smile:

Welcome aboard Harmoica Harold! <<<if you ever decide to “sell” your handle, i just might have a “buyer” for you in mind! hehehehehehhe!!>>>


Keep on Harpin’!

The draws are pretty cool. I learned 1-3. By learned I mean that I get what’s going on and can actually get sound but have no idea if I’m hitting the right tone. Hardest part at this time is unbending the 2 hole, my tongue feels flat but evidently not enough.

Thanks for the tip :wink: whiskat. I was considerin’ gittin’ some P. Richter tuned harps, lookin’ at the seydel


Well if I am playing a song and I know where and when the bend is due and not forgetting I am a relatively new player I am able to get the bend most times BUT say I am just tooting some tunes and I decide I want to slip a bend in here or there thats when the problem starts because then I loose track of the song which I am playing from memory but I suppose it will come with practise ;D harp on

For now it’s single notes. Once i get the basics down and practice a lot, i should have another challenge coming up.

Oh Boy your on your way Ace,

For now it’s single notes. Once i get the basics down and practice a lot, i should have another challenge coming up.

Yup the single notes they’ll come to you fairly quickly I think if you give it your best effort with practice every day.

And always carry a harp in your pocket. You never know when you get a chance. Practice this scale

4B 4D 5B 5D 6B 6D 7D 7B, careful and slowly when you get to the tricky part 6D > 7D.

When you get that down that will open up 100’s of songs you will be able to play :wink:

Practice it with a metronome that you can get on line for free. Pick up your speed little bit at a time. Good luck :smiley:

Keep us posted on your progress ;D

Harp on!!

Yo Ace [classified] don’t forget to check out this dude as there’s so much to learn from him and grow with day by day! Good luck to you. Keep us posted. Keep on Harpin’! :slight_smile:


How To Play Harmonica for Beginners

The time it takes from you can do this, until when you are able to bend with decent control without giving it too much thought, is surprisingly short! You have much to look forward to in the closest future :wink:

The hardest part about bending is understanding just what you’re supposed to do with your mouth, once this is achieved it’s just a matter of time and practice.

Right on! Right on! Right on, Whiskat (formerly known as God)! Right on!! :wink:

I’ve been using that scale. The 6D > 7D has been getting me. If you haven’t read it yet, i posted something in my thread: “i have a few questions”.

Yeh Whiskat some of the time to be honest I can not say most of the time but some of the time my mouth remembers what I tell it to do [via brain] and i get a GENUINE beaut bend then other times it just crashes and its a NO I wont do it so there! but I know Whiskat its all down to yours truly after all what am i xpecting at 63 yrs young but I can tell you I wont be beaten just when you get to my age just takes little longer to sink in.

Well, single notes are a piece of cake! BUT, now bending is getting in my way! :’( :’( :’(

Hi Ace, bends will take you some time I can do them but my challenge is playing them in
a tune or a riff in time ::slight_smile:

Don’t give up put it in your daily practice routine and use this software it helps a lot 8)

Check out these helpful exercises for bending that I got from JP’S CD, DVD bundle ;D

Some push-ups 4D 4D’ 4D 5D

More Push-ups 4D 4D’ 3D

More Push-ups 3D 3D’ 2D

Even more Push-ups 2D 2D’ 1D

Don’t get frustrated with bending it may take a few months :-
But while you practice them practice other stuff too ;D

Harp on!!

But while you practice them practice other stuff too ;D

Truer words, JF, truer words!


Well, bending is a bit easier now.

Now new problems:
I can’t bend or draw hole 2 and 3.
I can’t bend hole 10.
I can’t advance because of the problems above.

I’m using Harmonica for Dummies which is really going well. The only problem is the more i advance, the more holes 2 and 3 are needed.

Yo Ace!

I can't advance because of the problems above.
Who's time schedule are you on and who's holding a gun to your head, anyways?!

Dude, it takes a while. Be it days, weeks, a month or longer. Everyone who puts effort into it will do it eventually. So just have a little patience with yourself, okay?

And please don’t confuse draw bends with blow bends. Two completely different but similar things, eh?

JP Allen devotes a whole dvd to bending in his home harmonica course. Plus other examples and songs as well.

Yet too, here’s something to help you out along the way for the lower registers on 2 and 3 draws. Others found it helpful, so here’s hoping the same for you too!



In addition, you can try Night Train James way and some others too:

Learn harmonica by ear, BEND NOTES NOW!

Harmonica Lesson - How to Bend Notes

Watch, learn, listen, and play!

Or as harp teacher Tom Hall says: “Practice bending until your lips bleed!”

Well, you get the idea by now, I’m sure!


Keep us posted!

Keep on harpin’!


Who's time schedule are you on and who's holding a gun to your head, anyways?!

Ya you know SPD I thought he was rushing way to fast.

Ace: How long have you been playing. ??? I’ve been playing 2 1/2 years and it took me 6 months before
I even thought I was bending notes :-\

Then it took me 6 more months till I was confident to just make the bend 8)

Then after that depending on what style your playing. You have to play them bends in time with the beat. (that takes time)
I was playing mostly 1st position tunes staying mostly between the 3 and 7 holes bending wasn’t critical at the time.

So take the bends slow, and my opinion is just put practice time into other things, and add bending to your
practice, mostly 1 2 4 6 bends. Learn a bunch of simple tunes. That’s a lot of fun ;D. Practice this scale, this helped
me a lot. Get going as fast as you can use a metronome. It’s monotonous and boring but it will help you in the long run. :wink:

C scale plus one note up and down use your c harp, try it back and forth till muscle memory starts kicking in and
you can do it without thinking about it. Work it hard :wink:

play this first:
4B 4D 5B 5D 6B 6D 7D 7B 8D 7B 7D 6D 6B 5D 5B 4D 4B

then this:
4B 4D 5B 4D 4B 4D 5B 4D 4B 4D 5B 5D 6B 5D 5B 4D (this phrase here helped me to catch my breath.) :slight_smile:

go back and forth with it see how long you can keep it going

This is me practicing in my garage it took me a few weeks to get it to this speed maybe more than a
few weeks I can’t remember.

hans scale dorian mode.wmv

Just trying to help take it slow and have fun :stuck_out_tongue:

Harp on!!

Ya, i didn’t realize how much i was rushing.

So i’m cutting my problems down to:
I can’t draw the 2 hole!!! Why is this a problem with Special 20s???
I can’t draw hole 10…
Why are there so many positions? How do you memorize them? Can you explain them in a simple way?

Any advice for them? For the hole 2, i noticed that it starts out bent. I also noticed that when i open my nasal passages, it draws well.

Does the Golden Melody have problems? Is it better than the Special 20? Is it worth its price?
What song is good to learn that plays in the middle register?