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Harmonica Tips and Links


Here is the lesson we did in class


The harmonica is a fun instrument to play, especially because it can be taken anywhere in your pocket.  Learning to play the harmonica is a good exercise in playing by ear.  The harmonica that you have is a diatonic harmonica with 10 holes.  This means that it plays notes only from a major scale.  Your harmonica is in the key of C, which means that it plays the notes of the C major scale.  With diatonic harmonicas, you have to get different harmonicas to play in different keys.  There are also chromatic harmonicas, which let you play any note, but these are harder to play.


When you are getting started, the first thing you want to work on is being able to form your lips so that you can blow through only one hole.  It will take some experimenting and practice: it sounds easier than it is. 


You can learn songs by figuring them out by ear, or by reading the harmonica tablature that is available on the web.  The tablature tells you which holes to blow into. 


Once you have spent about 10 hours of serious practice on your harmonica and learned several songs, you will find that you are able to learn new songs very quickly.


The following web sites have helpful information for your harmonica learning.  If you come across others, please email them to me.


Harmonica Tips


MyQuill's Harmonica pages


A Harmonica Club's website


Some Easy Blues Harmonica licks (YouTube lesson)