In this new harmonica lesson, we’ll practise six licks that belong to reggae: a musical genre characterized by the impact of its strong rhythm. The licks and typical phrases, included in all the exercises I’ve devised for you, strongly recall Jamaican music.
With today’s explications, i.e. quick passes with alternating short sequences, interrupted by breaks; you are guarenteed to learn to play in a really fun-filled way.
You’ll practise along with me via the interactive videos and bear in mind that we’ll be using a C harp for playing in 5th position on an E minor backing track. I’ve made use of the notes from the E minor scale after combining them with those of the G pentatonic scale to create riffs.
Let’s get back to work now! Following is the exercise for today:
Lick 1 shall get started with a fast note sequence that is going to end on the minor 3rd note G whereas in measure 2, we’ll be playing a B octave on hole 3 and 7 draw – B, being the 5th degree of the E minor scale here.
In exercise 2, we’re going to introduce a strong rhythmic feeling in the first measure, wherein we’ll be playing a triplet that shall include two bent notes: the B flat on hole 3 draw with one-step bending and the A, on the same hole but with bent of a whole-tone. In measure 2, we’ll play a fast sixteen note combination.
A ‘dip’ shall be performed on the double note B and D in lick 3, followed by a fast four-note phrase, ending on the same combination. The ‘dip’ shall be repeated at the end of the lick, meanwhile, playing the same notes in eighth.
Exercise 4: we’ll play F sharp here, on hole 2 with a single-step bending and while repeating it in beat 2; we’ll introduce also the A, on hole 3 bent of a whole-tone.
In the 5th exercise, we’ll focus on playing more rhythmically, however, the lick shall conclude on the minor 3rd note G.
In the last exercise, we’ll execute an octave triplet on note D, E and G and thereafter a ‘dip’ on hole 6 draw. It must be noted that the mentioned note is the one that lasts til the end of the fast sequence which precedes the last note in measure 2.
In the following video, you can practise the whole harmonica licks sequence:
Those were the selected reggae licks for you. I hope you’ll be practising them by now and enjoying playing this cool style of music. See you soon!