Welcome to my new lesson! This time you'll be learning 10 cool harmonica licks in third position. It would provide beginner harmonica players a righteous opportunity to take advantage of my teaching methodology; i.e. to practise via interactive videos so as to improve the way they used to play harp before
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We are quite familiar with the fact that the third position is widely used for playing minor songs, including the minor blues. However, use of third position proves to be equally suitable for playing major tracks as well. 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 on harmonica, if the song is minor; we make effective use of the notes of the minor scale which are collectively named as ‘Dorian’ that comprises of notes D, E, F, G, A, B and C. Whereas, if the song is in major – to play purposefully – the notes found to be productive are D, E, F#, G, A, B and C#. Notice that in major mode, the notes F and C become sharp.
If you clearly understand where to find the notes on a harmonica, you ll immediately realize that It s easier to play on a minor track in third position as compared with playing on a major one. As a matter of fact, though notes F sharp and C sharp aren’t usually made available to us by the blues harp, but they need to be performed utilizing the bending technique. Quite contrary to this, we may avail the other notes present in major third position; furthermore, if we play on a blues track, we can play natural C note instead of playing the sharp C note, and the natural F note too which represents the ‘blue note’, owing to the fact that it is known as the third minor of the scale.
Let’s discover the licks in third position now that I plan 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 the same page. You may categorize top five as the minor licks whereas the last five enteries may be recognized as the major licks. In this lesson, you ll use a C harmonica to play in 3rd position; wherein the first backing track lies in D minor and the second one is made available in D major blues.
Exercises with minor licks:
In lick 1 we play the root note D. This is the most important note of the key, and we can call it ‘home note’. In measure 2 we introduce the second most important note in this minor key: F. This note is the minor third, the one that decides the key minor mode.
In lick 2, we introduce the 7th of the key, the note C natural. This note is the one that connotes the 7th mode of the tune. The D minor 7th chord is formed of the notes D, F, A and C.
In exercise 3 a new note is played: G. This is the 4th degree of the D minor scale. This degree should be used as passing tone if the chord played at that moment is not a G chord. In that case, this note would be the root note of the chord and it would sound very nice.
In the fourth lick we play also the note A, 5th degree of the minor scale and of the D minor chord. This is another important note in this key. The note A, adds also a bit of higher pitch to the musical phrase.
In the last minor lick, we play a high D on hole 8 draw. Notice that this lick starts and ends on the ‘home note’.
Let’s practise now the major licks:
In exercise 6, we play the root D, the 3rd degree F, as well as the 4th degree G. In the D major key, we would have to play an F sharp and not a natural F, but since we are playing on a blues chord progression, we can still play an F natural, being it the ‘blue note’, which is the one that characterizes the blues.
In the second major lick, we play also the C note, 7th degree of the scale.
In exercise 8, the B note, hole 3 draw, is played. This is the sixth scale degree. In measure two we go up to hole 6 draw to play a nice A.
In exercise 9 we play more rhythmically.
Here is the last lick: Starting from the note G and ending on the root note D.
Following, the whole licks sequence practising routine:
I hope that I’ve taught you well and I also believe that you must have enjoyed learning these harmonica licks with me. I hope to see you in a new lesson, totally free of cost for you, which you may find here on harmonicalearning.com pages.
Keep harpin !