CHROMATIC HARMONICA v DIATONIC INSTRUMENT
A short comparison by Gary Murray
Many people assume that the Chromatic Harmonica (because it looks more complex) is harder to play than a standard Blues or 'Diatonic' Harmonica. This is not so. For a start the Chromatic has all the musical notes of the various scales, which allows the player to perform any piece of music in any key. It takes time, but it is reasonably easy to learn and make good progress.
Diatonic Harmonicas are totally different; best described as being similar to a Piano without the black notes! There are various types suitable for different styles of music, and different keys available, which can create confusion. However, the beginner would start off using a Diatonic in the key of C and a Blues Harp is a popular option.
Skilful Blues players have the ability of 'bending' the reeds on their Diatonic Harps to obtain the 'missing' notes. These advanced techniques (like 'Bending' 'Over blows' 'Vibrato' etc) are for the more advanced player and can be initially frustrating for the novice.
Chromatic Harmonicas are more expensive (and larger) than most Diatonics. However, it's not uncommon to see renowned players facilitate their performance using different keys on stage, which can be costly and inconvenient!
My point is, why not play the Chromatic Harmonica and have all the required keys in one instrument!
My tutorial books are designed to be easy to follow and can get you started without any conventional understanding of music!
Good luck with what could be an exciting first step!
BESPOKE TERMS FOR SCHOOLS AND EDUCATIONAL ESTABLISHMENTS
Facility to pay monthly on invoice
Email GaryM Harmonica for full details
More information about Gary's tuition: Garym's website (external Link)
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