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Beginner harmonica song to learn: Call and Response lesson

In this free beginner harmonica lesson I’m going to teach you another easy solo song, in which you’ll practise what is known as ‘call and response’ technique. This kind of songs is characterized by musical sentences that act as a call, and others phrases that answers to them. Below on this page you’ll find the interactive video with tabs, on which you can listen to me performing the various song sections and to repeat them trying to sound like me. This lesson is a great moment to improve your self-accompaniment playing on harmonica.

Don't you own a harmonica yet? You can find a good instrument here.

This song requires a C harmonica, if you don't own a C harp yet, you can find one here:


In order to play the chords, you may begin by articulating 'T', by touching the upper palate of your mouth with your tongue, or the surface of harmonica holes in case you want to play by integrating the tongue blocking technique. An alternative could be 'TA-KA', when playing double draw chords like 123, or you may go for 'TU-KU' when playing double blow chords such as l23+. There is no predefined rule for this, do it the way you feel comfortable with.

In this study song, the ‘call’ sentences are expressed by a melody (lick), while the responses come from some chords: the chords that will be played are always the same, the G major chord and the C major one, representing the 1st degree and the 4th degree of the key.

We are going to use today a C harp and we’ll play in second position, the song key is then G major. If you don’t have a C harmonica, you can use a different key instrument, just follow the lesson and read the tabs. I’m playing a Hohner Special 20 in the provided video.

Song analysis:

Playing difficulty level: Beginner harmonica players.

Note bending skills: No bending required for this lesson.

Lesson focus: Playing chords and melodies together, alternating rhythm and phrasing in second position.

How to read the video lesson tab:

How to read the video lesson tabs:

One plus symbol means to blow the harmonica hole.

An apostrophe means to bend the note of a half-tone.

A double apostrophe means to bend the note of a whole-tone.

A triple apostrophe means to bend the note of three steps.

A dot before the notes means to use tongue blocking articulations.

^ means playing the note with a ‘dip’ bending.

R before a note means reaching that note with a glissando effect.

Sh means ‘Shake playing’ or ‘Warble’.

Ft means ’Flutter tongue’ techinque.

P means ‘Pull technique’.

V means ‘Vibrato effect’

Tr means ‘Tremolo effect’.

Following the song tabs:

4 4 5+ 4

123 234+x2 123

4 4 5+ 3

123 234+x2 123

2 3 4 5+ 4

123 234+x2 123

2 3 4 5+ 3

123 234+x2 123

2 3 4 5+ 6

123 234+x2 123

1 2+ 3 2

123 234+x2 123 

1 1 2 3

123 234+x2 123

2 2 2 2

123 234+x2 123

2 3 4+ 4

123 234+x2 123

2 3 4+ 3

123 234+x2 123

3 3 2 1

123 234+x2 123

2+ 2 2 2

123 234+x2 123

I hope you enjoyed learning this ‘Call and Response’ harmonica song, If you want to improve your playing skills, enroll for free in my online school and have a look at the harmonica courses here.

Keep Harpin’ and I’ll see you soon in a new lesson!

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