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Video transcription

On behalf of expertvillage.com I'm Eric Williams and I'm here to talk to you about beginning harmonica. So let's take a look at what harmonicas are all about and again this is at the very beginning stages. If you take your harmonica, the first step is you got to make sure the numbers are facing up. You'll be surprised how many people played them for years the wrong way and don't understand why they don't sound right. So the numbers have to be facing up and what you do is blow air through. Just kind of test out the low end of the harp versus the high end and just kind of feel your way along, nothing fancy. As of most people would just do naturally when they pick up a harmonica anyway. You're going to find out that harmonica, because of the anatomy of it you're going to learn best by just playing with the harmonica and experimenting and doing what's called discovery learn. You'll also learn an awful lot by listening to other harmonica players and trying emulate it what you're hearing. It's very hard to show someone what you're doing with your lips and your tongue and blowing the air in and drawing the air back out. It's very difficult to ever portray that to someone else, but if you use your ear and use your heart you sometimes can get lucky enough, you make it work right. So first start off by blowing air through, then you do the draw which is where you suck the air back this way. All you're doing is getting the feel of the harmonica, hearing what it sounds like and it is definitely different from the other side. A lot of people say, doesn't it sound like an accordion? It actually does because the same kind of reeds that are in a harmonica are very similar to those in a accordion. So if you listen to someone doing a accordion, it's the same as one of these. Only this is a lot smaller! So that's how you start off by doing that. Now, let me show you what a different key of a harmonica would do. Same exact technique of blowing the air in, drawing the air back out. So the different key of a harmonica gives you a whole different pitch, so that's why it's important if you're ever going to play with another musician on a guitar or a piano with a band, you need to be aware of what key your harp is in and how that relates to what the rest of the musicians are playing and we'll talk more about that later.