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learn to play the harmonica
A question about this goal: I know one has to be patient and practice for a long time, but I'm losing steam. Any tips on bending? June 21st, 2006 16:30


Wow…Bending. It’s hard to describe. It’s more like in the back of the throat. Practice hitting just one note with pursing your lips together. Forget the tongue. Remember that the number two hole on a blues harp is the easiest to bend.

A couple of good links:


The easiest note to bend is the first hole: 1 draw.
STEP 1: practice singling out the note until you have zero problems playing just that hole/note. When NOT bending, your relaxed neutral playing mouth/jaw position will resemble what you do when you say the vowels sounds in the word ‘above’ – you know: uh..
STEP 2: To achieve a bend (and you will get lots of different pitches – use your tuner and you’ll see), let your air out, and the on the inhale: sound the single note and articulate the vowels eeyaoowee like ‘yowie’ while you are drawing air in. The higher the back of your tongue goes for the ‘y’ the better, the more your jaw (and tongue) drops for the ‘ow’ the better. exxagerate these vowels and you’ll get really bent notes. HINT: Associate the sound you get with the vowel you’re making (which is really a combo of jaw and tongue position). I do a fast ‘yao-yao-yao’ on the 4 draw during the ‘V’ of the ‘I-IV-V’ blues progression..try it!

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