[Harp-L] Looking for Guidance
Thu Jun 14 10:08:35 EDT 2018
Mick Zaklans advice below is good stuff:
I first sat down and moved my cross harp licks over to 1st.
Very useful. I think most guys would tell you to listen to Jimmy Reed
records. I think Kim Fields once told me a great starting point would be
Big Walter Horton's "Hard Hearted Woman". Not bad advice, especially for
the high end bends. Most 1st position players tend to spend a lot of time
on the last 3 or 4 holes of the harmonica, then swing down to the first 4
holes for dramatic effect. I make a point of trying to incorporate the
middle holes. If I learn something, I always attempt to duplicate it up
and down the harp. Helps me play my way out of jams if I get stuck for
I mean, if you're looking for hip phrases, try listening to trumpet
players and replicating their stuff on the high end. Or highly
sophisticated first position players like Rhythm Willie, Joe Filisko and
I will only add that I transcribed and notated in arrow style Don Les's
terrific first position solo on the Harmonicats' "Harmonica Boogie" for my
book "Jazz Harp." That solo is a great example of how to use 1st position
in a swing style, with lots of great high and middle register work.
AND I must add that my own introduction to 1st position was the J. Geils
Band's first release on Atlantic records (1970), with Magic Dick's
brilliant solo on "Cruisin' For A Love." I practiced that solo hundreds of
times in my youth, and stole from it hundreds more.
Regards, Richard Hunter
Help fund Richard Hunter's "Blue Future" killer blues record!
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Author, "Jazz Harp" (Oak Publications, NYC)
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