re: channeling the rage and playing in tune with some old blues guys stuff as well

You have to play in tune and to be able to do that you have to work at it. You 
can get away with having your bend notes off a little but when your regular 
draw notes (especially that damn 5 hole) are off it sounds awful.The best way 
to learn is to play with other people and record it. Then you can hear when 
you're off. I find I need to get my mouth and tongue lined up right and my 
intonation is better. Hard to explain.

As far as being "in the zone" or "chanelling the rage" that's all fun but wait 
until you listen back to it. Some days when I feel totally uninspired and 
playing from rote, the music is actually damn good. I listen back to the real 
inspired stuff and I'm blowing sour notes, playing too much, my rhythm is off 

After 30 years of playing I can tell you that any harp player that can really 
play, be it Sonny Terry or John Popper,put a lot of time, effort, and thought 
into playing. James Cotton didn't get to be Muddy's harp player because Cotton 
played whatever he felt like. The best music comes when you have a top notch 
band that's having fun.

Listen, pay attention, practice, play with other people, and have fun.

Rainbow Jimmy

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