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karl's picture

Howdy folks! My first attempt at writing something in third postion. I used the Rollin' Rumba track from third postion study #1. The first and last chorus were played cross harp on a D Hohner Golden Melody. Chorus's two thru six were played third position on a G Bushman Delta Frost. I recorded the acoustic harp with the onboard mic on my laptop computer and used Audacity to mix the tracks.

1st chorus - ABAC chorus form
2nd chorus - ABAC chorus form
3rd chorus - ABAC chorus form
4th chorus - ABAC chorus form
5th chorus - AAB chorus form
6th chorus - ABAC chorus form
7th chorus - ABAC chorus form



David Barrett's picture

CH1 - Nice rhythm and use of Chorus Forms... cool V-IV-I in contrast to "A" / same note here as Steve... the chords are rough against this smooth backing track. By changing models of harmonica and playing with a live band (where they could change what they play to match you), I can see how what you played will work just fine

CH2 - Nice flowing parts here... nice choice... killer V-IV-I!

CH3 - Nice octave use with 1 draw... cool IV lick... nice V-IV-I again

CH4 - Nice ascending idea... I would have stopped using it after 8 bars (not using the sequential idea on the V)... I could have used some contrasting idea here

CH5 - Shake was a good idea... again, a little bit too much for my taste to use it for the entire 12 bar

CH6 - Nice use of octaves for variation

CH7 - Head returns

Well done! Your next step is Improvising Study 5... using methods 3 and 4 (using the turnaround area to build up to the next chorus and starting the next chorus early) will benefit your writing greatly.


karl's picture

Thanks for the advice. I'll get started on Improv study 5


jodanchudan's picture

Those ascending and descending licks are great and I imagine pretty tough to play in time - very cool! Great to hear some acoustic harp too.

Hi there, This made me

Lee Sankey's picture

Hi there,

This made me smile. Job done. It has plenty of character and it comes across as though you were having fun during the take. I hope that was the case, certainly sounds like it. The acoustic tone adds to the charm as well.

Although you have a riff based approach through each segment of the tune, it doesn't come across as 'going through the motions' or 'executing a plan' or 'lifeless'. You still manage to incorporate some attitude in the piece. This is ultimately what moves people.

The head has an interesting push pull timing which is unusual but still fits .The highlight for me is the reverse lick at 1:27. Love it and will have to nick that one myself.

In terms of things to work on. Your note focus is front orientated i.e. pushed towards the lips e.g. 0:40. This thins out the tone. Try to think of the lips as purely a seal and nozzle not a resonating chamber. At the moment you have these elements on top of each other or in the same place. You need to separate them and de-couple resonance from the idea of creating a seal. Move your note focus backwards to the mouth then the throat. Try dropping your jaw without changing the seal created by the lips. This will help your tone.

Check the tuning of your draw 2 or how you are attacking it. The note seems a little off. Might be your technique, might be the harp, I'm not sure.

If you are playing a loser acoustic style some chords might work well in the solo e.g. the 2,3 4 draw.

Use your hands. The hands are part of the instrument. Playing acoustic is an opportunity to utilise that aspect of the instrument.

As with the other entries, don't be afraid of throwing in some long notes.

Overall, lot's of energy and attitude, great stuff, keep going.



karl's picture

Thanks for the encouragement Lee, and the suggestions.

Steve's comments

Steve Baker's picture

I like the 3rd position parts, some cool inventive phrasing, nice tongue switching. You obviously thought about this. It would help your sound if you were to work on your intonation and tone shaping, the sound is a little harsh. Next time I'd also suggest putting some more reverb or delay on the harp, that should help here. I feel you need to tighten up the timing, as this will improve your groove. This is most apparent on the head choruses in 2nd position at beginning and end. Otherwise a well thought out and original entry.


karl's picture

Thanks for the suggestions and the critique!


marcos's picture

You really seem to know your way around the whole harp!
Nice use of chorus forms and varying techniques.


robfraser's picture

Good stuff here Karl- are you rumbalicious and rumbunctious? This would be my pick of the two- great inventive choruses and you move around fluently in 3rd. Well played!


karl's picture

Yes they're both mine. Thanks for the compliment.


hank stefaniak's picture

I think you did very well for a 'first try' - chorus forms are very evident and appropriate application of techniques in the right spots. To me it just better and better as it went on. Good for you!!


karl's picture

Thanks a lot!