[Harp-L] Fender steel reed harmonicas? Not the Popper model.

Burke Trieschmann burket@xxxxx
Mon Jan 29 16:14:37 EST 2018

 Hi Ronnie:

I recently had one of these come in to me via a trade.  The model is the Fender "Midnight Special" and (if you can find them) retail between $66 or more likely $99 as you mentioned.
https://www.amazon.com/Fender-Midnight-Special-Harmonica-Key/dp/B00SKTGO2Q or

Comments:  When I played it, it was pretty leaky and uninspiring for a new harmonica out of the box, and did not play as well as a new Seydel 1847 I had in the same key.  So I decided to fully customize it and let a Pro Player I do custom and repair work for take it for a test drive.
To my surprise, when I opened it up, its built on Seydel Stainless 1847 Reed plates and has the same cover plate profile as the Seydel Solist Pro (but Black in color- says "Fender" on it).  The Solist Pro front cover is slightly smaller than the 1847 or the Noble so its pretty comfortable to play.

The comb is some sort of seal wood or wood composite.  This was the biggest weakness IMO.  I replaced the comb with a Black Noble comb, did my bag o' tricks for customizing Seydel reed plates and reeds, kept the covers and...
Man- its really a nice sounding harp.  My Player friend borrowed it for a gig and has been a longtime supporter of old School Hohner Customs by all the famous dudes we know and love!  I've repaired a bunch of these for her and they are classic old school customs.

Well, she liked this Hybrid Fender/ Seydel 1847 so much that we are now hunting them down and building her a full keyed set either with the Fender harps as the starting point, or combining 1847 reed plates, Aluminum Noble combs, and Solist pro cover plates.
Feel free to contact me for additional info.  I have a feeling Fender may be bailing on this line of harps too once they build out the last of the parts.  If you can find them for a good price, they are a surprise contenders esp. with some optimizations.  

 Burke Trieschmann- Audio Producer/ Harp Tech
Open Door Productions/ Open Door Harmonicas


 Message: 7
Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2018 04:08:54 -0500

Subject: [Harp-L] Fender steel reed harmonicas? Not the Popper model.

I was watching a video from the 2015 NAMM show, when they introduced 
their $99 John Popper signature harmonica (a rebranded Seydel Session 
Steel with different coverplates) and the Fender rep was hyping another 
steel reed harmonica with a $99 price that had steel reeds but a sealed 
wooden comb and traditional style coverplates.

Fender doesn't list the Popper harp on their website anymore, though 
it's still available from some distributors, so I think that endorsement 
deal is done, but I don't recall ever seeing those other Fender 
harmonicas with steel reeds offered for sale?

Were they just vaporware that were never actually sold?

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