top forty harmonica

Is there a bias against harmonica players on the top forty? Maybe harmonica 
players just aren't playing popular music. Still, I could be wrong.
I propose an experiment. Let's take a top forty album, let's say Carlos 
Santana's Shaman album, especially the single with Michelle Branch singing.. 
First, practice until you can play all of Carlos's riffs on the harmonica. 
Then get a band as tight as Carlos's with a keyboardist and musical director 
as good as Chester Thompson.Find some top notch song writers and convince 
some young talented singers of Michelle Branch and Macy Gray's caliber to 
sing on your album.Then record this in a professional studio with some of 
the best producers and engineers in the business. If after all that, you 
still can't break into the top forty, it might be due to bias against the 
harmonica-but probably not.
Is this even possible? Of course it is. If you've got the showmanship and 
the chops as good as Carlos's, you can find the band, the singers, and the 
recording studios. In fact harp has been on the top 40 just about every 
decade, and during the 70s 80s and 90s we've had extrodinary harp players on 
the radio-Huey Lewis, Stevie Wonder, Magic Dick, John Popper...In fact in 
this decade, the lovely and talented Latin pop star Shakira plays some very 
credible harp on her Laundry Service album-check out track 8 Te Dejo Madrid. 

So if you're not on the top forty, that's not surprising, because not many 
people are. Also, if you're not on the top forty, don't blame it on your 
instrument. The competition is fierce. You really need to know pop music and 
have the chops to back it up. If you do, then the instrument you play 
doesn't matter. 

Rainbow Jimmy 



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