RE: [Harp-L] positions you can use on diatonic

Ok. After all those emails, it seems that many of us will at least agree on
this : if positions are related to modes, then the whole system doesn't
Or let's say more precisely, it works more or less in a limited number of
situations, as far as one doesn't care about using a logical concept.

But if positions are not related to modes, and only give the root compared
to the harp used, then, what is their utility ? 
I've often been told by Americans that French people were too conceptual and
not enough in the reality of life.
Let's be pragmatic : what are positions for, if they only indicate the root
What is the interesting information in the sentence : "I'm playing in 3rd
pos on a C harp" ? Is it that the tune is in D, which is not clearly said,
or that I use a C harp, which informs only harp players and doesn?t indicate
anything about the tune ?
Why not just say "I'm playing in D" ? or even more precise : "I'm playing in
D major". Like all other musicians do...
Or "I'm playing in D on a C harp" if you really want everybody to know in
what key is your harp ?

The funny point is that for those playing in bands, it is more important to
be able to say "this tune is in D" than "I play this tune in 3rd position on
a C harp".

Now, after being pragmatic, let's be absurd for a minute : it would be much
more useful to name the third of the scale instead of the root. Because the
third, in most situations, is either minor or major, which makes a huge
difference. And once I've got the third & I know if it is major or minor, I
know the root anyway.
So my proposal is : apply positions to thirds instead of roots. Give a
position name to each third. 
1st Pos would be : Eb as a third when the tune is in the same key as the
harp, meaning C minor. Much more precise than "The tune is in C".
Not that absurd finally :-)

Or just use the system that all musicians use for centuries.


-----Message d'origine-----
De : harp-l-bounces@xxxxxxxxxx [mailto:harp-l-bounces@xxxxxxxxxx] De la part
de Arthur Jennings
Envoyé : samedi 31 mars 2012 16:27
À : michael rubin
Cc : harp-l@xxxxxxxxxx; philharpn@xxxxxxx
Objet : Re: [Harp-L] positions you can use on diatonic

That's the way I use the word, too.

If position equaled mode, there wouldn't be positions 7 through 11.

On Sat, Mar 31, 2012 at 6:38 AM, michael rubin <
michaelrubinharmonica@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> Larry and everyone,
> Although many people equate positions with modes or scales, they do 
> not understand what a position is.
> If I play in the key of G on a C harp, I am in second position.  It 
> does not matter if I am playing the G Mixolydian scale or the G 
> harmonic minor scale or any scale or mode.  The thing that makes it 
> second position is that in the Circle of Fifths, the name of the harp 
> is the starting point and therefore is first position, move clockwise 
> from there to G and that makes it second position.
> Michael Rubin
> On Sat, Mar 31, 2012 at 8:05 AM, Jim Rumbaugh 
> <jrumbaug@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> > Originally asked "But still, most people cannot play 12 positions or 
> > can they?"
> >
> > As diatonic player of 10 years, 6 enough for my needs, 3 for major, 
> > 3 for minor.
> >
> > I am impressed by:
> > 1) the number of people that play more than 6 positions
> > 2) the number of people that wont play more than 1 or 2
> >
> > I see both ends.
> >
> > For now, and my needs, 6 is enough
> >

Arthur Jennings

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