Welcome to this new harmonica lesson! This week you’ll be learning some new cool blues harp licks in 5th position. Intermediate level harmonica players will get a worthy chance to check our teaching method and practising with our interactive methodology.

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Harmonica lesson: 6 riffs in 5th position

Every harmonica student is quite familiar with the fact that the 5th position is very effective for playing minor songs, as well minor blues. However, the use of this position is less suitable for playing major tracks.

Therefore, we mustn’t forget – for the purpose described before – as which notes should be treated as an essential part of the musical scale of reference with the perspective of key of the song.

To play 5th position on harmonica, if the song is minor; we make effective use of the notes of the minor scale that comprises the notes E, F#, G, A, B, C# and D. For convenience, we will use the natural C note in place of C sharp. It will sound great with less efforts.

When playing in fifth position on minor tunes, we can also make use of the G pentatonic scale, composed of the notes G, A, B, D and E. All these notes are present on the diatonic harmonica.

If you know already where to find each note on the harp, you ll immediately realize that In 5th position is easier to play on a minor track, as compared with playing on a major one. As a matter of fact, though notes G sharp and D sharp aren’t usually made available to us by the instrument. The first can be played with a bending, the second is available only on hole 8 blow, with a half-tone bending.

Let’s discover now the licks in fifth position I’m going to teach you today. It s recommended that you carry out practice along side me through the interactive videos; the link to these has been shared below on this page. We are going to use a C harmonica, to play on the E minor backing track.

Lick1, I commenced on the root note ‘G’ and continued to play it till I reached one triplet, then another triplet which occured on measure 1 beat 3, introducing the B note on hole 7 blow, measure 2.

Blues harmonica riff in fifth position 1

For the second lick, I hope to find a triplet starting on hole 6 blow and another like it – with a little variation – to be played on measure 2. Please note that in this exercise, we’ll begin and end playing on the same note, i.e. the root note ‘G’.

Blues harmonica riff in fifth position 2
New harmonica course

For the 3rd lick, in measure 1, we have the passage between holes 5 blow and 4 draw quick. The value for the lenght of these notes is sixteenth.

Blues harmonica riff in fifth position 3

In exercise 4, we’ll play 4 sixtheenth notes in measure 1; where hole 3 is bent of one whole-tone to play the note A.

Blues harmonica riff in fifth position 4

Lick 5 would be started with 2 double note combination B and D. Then a C octave and another B and C combined. In measure 2 we play a fast note sequence, ending the lick with a 'dip' on hole 6 draw.

Blues harmonica riff in fifth position 5

In the last exercise, we’ll execute a fast note sequences, playing the higher harmonica holes.

Blues harmonica riff in fifth position 6

I’m quite confident to have taught you well and I’m sure you must have enjoyed learning these harmonica licks along side me. I hope to see you in my upcoming lesson which is absolutely free and can be found on this webstie.

Keep harpin’ to enjoy music to its fullest!