[Harp-L] Minor Keyed Harps and the Blues

Rick Dempster rickdempster33@xxxxx
Fri Apr 20 21:09:19 EDT 2018

But is third position necessarily minor? The fundamental feature of the
ninety-odd percent of blues, is the flattened third
played over a chord with the major third in it.
If you are playing in third, and the accompanying instruments are playing
the root chord as a minor,
then yes, you are in a minor key. But if they are hitting a major chord,
then that draw 5 note is just a blue third.
You can choose a minor or major third in draw 2, of course.

On 21 April 2018 at 04:44, Dennis Michael Montgomery via Harp-L <
harp-l at xxxxx> wrote:

> It's true most blues on a harp are played in second position, but this
> doesn't necessarily mean the songs are in minor keys. As example: a
> harmonica in the key of C Major played in second position will in most
> cases will put you in the key of G Major. If my memory serves correctly
> playing in the key of D Minor on a C Major harmonica will put you in Third
> Position. As a rule most blues harmonica players prefer minor keys in third
> position. This doesn't mean you can't play blues on a minor tuned harp in
> first position, but it may not give you the sound you're looking for.
> Minor tuned harps can be fun and may give you more variety in songs to
> play, however if you want to play blues put your focus on the standard
> diatonic harmonica.
>     On Friday, April 20, 2018, 10:35:31 AM MST, Bob Marsolais <
> bob at xxxxx> wrote:
>  I read on a manufacturer's key chart that most minor key harps, for
> example
> a B flat minor harp , are played in the first position.  I like the blues
> and am just learning to play, but have read that the second position is
> preferred for the blues.
> Any thoughts?
> Bob M

More information about the Harp-L mailing list