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20 awesomely different ways to play a tune on your harmonica

This course shows you more than 20 different ways to play a melody to give your playing variety, interest and dynamics
(8 reviews)
103 students
Created by


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Platform: Udemy
Video: 1h 16m
Language: English
Next start: On Demand

Table of contents


Have you ever played a tune a couple of times and thought – hmm, what next? How can I make this interesting?
Me too. Let me imagine you have to play a tune 20 times – can you make it different every time? And I’m not talking about improvising – that would also make it different.
No, just the melody without embellishments.
So here’s how we will do it.
•Chordal playing
•Single notes puckered in the middle octave using second position
•Single notes puckered in the low octave using second position
•Single notes puckered in the top octave using second position
•Playing in first position in the middle octave
•Playing in first position in the low octave
•Playing in first position in the top octave
•Playing in fourth position in the middle octave
•Playing in fourth position in the other octaves
•Playing in twelfth position in the low octave
•Using tongue block (TB) single notes in different octaves
•Using TB with rhythm and TB to the left in different octaves
•Using TB with rhythm and TB to the right in different octaves
•Sonnyboy Williamson ‘pull slap’ style in different octaves
•Yikes – how many’s that?
•Using the ‘mandolin flutter’ in different octaves
•Using a ‘bagpipe drone’ – playing one note constantly whilst playing the tune
•Playing octaves
•Playing split 3s in different octaves
•Playing it with a bluesey, gospel style
•You could add other positions but let’s stop there!

You will learn

✓ Playing a tune using these different methods: Chordal playing
✓ Single notes puckered in all octaves using second position
✓ Playing in first position in all octaves
✓ Playing in fourth and twelfth positions
✓ Using tongue block single notes in different octaves – tongue right and left
✓ Playing in intervals like octaves – split 3,4,5
✓ Using techniques like the bagpipe drone, the mandolin, and the Sonnyboy Williamson ‘pull slap’
✓ Playing it with a bluesey, gospel style
✓ You could also learn to play this (or any) tune in the same key but on ALL 12 harmonicas.


• No, just that you need a 10-hole C diatonic harmonica

This course is for

• This is designed for intermediate players who would like to stretch their playing. Total beginners will struggle to get through this, advanced players will breeze through.
Let me turbocharge your harmonica playing to the next level
Wow, I can’t quite believe this – over 48,000 students, and 67,000 courses purchased – come and join us…they can’t all be wrong!
I am your HARMONICA SPECIALIST. I make one brand new short course every month.
Please see my copyright policy at the bottom of this page.
If you are new to harmonica please take the ’30-day challenge’ or the big ‘Learn Harmonica – the easiest instrument to pick up’ course to get you started.
If you are into Blues look for any course with the word ‘Blues’ in the title.
I also have three percussion courses for you on Bodhran and Washboard. 

*Ben is the Vice-President of HarmonicaUK – formerly known as NHL – The National Harmonica League in the UK  
        *Professional Harmonica Instructor since 1996 
             *Ben qualified as CTABRSM in 2002 (Certificate of Teaching – Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music) 
             *Certificate of Music Workshop Skills (Goldsmiths University of London) in 1995 
             *Accredited Diatonic Harmonica Teacher 1993 – HTAB (Harmonica Teachers Accreditation Board, supported by Lee Oskar Harmonicas, the National Harmonica League of UK and the International Harmonica Organisation). 
        *Ben’s teaching business ‘HarpsCool’ is proud to be
  ‘Ben Hewlett is one of the UK’s most respected harmonica teachers and the UK’s most prolific author on harmonica tuition. He will lead you through the ins and outs of harmonica playing through a series of short video lessons. His teaching style is confident, practiced, humorous, skilful, knowledgeable and packed with information in bite sized chunks. Ben is used to teaching all over the world at prestigious harmonica festivals and is delighted to offer his services to you.’ 
  ‘You’ll know Ben better as a harmonica teacher but he also studied Irish Drum – Bodhran – and tin whistle in the 1990’s with the now very famous Steafan Hannigan and Marc Moggy from Renegade Rhythms. He got so into Bodhran playing he bought an expensive tuneable drum from Marc and it works better than ever to this day. Ben has played Bodhran in bands and sessions for years and even has a Senheiser bass drum microphone embedded into his drum. Check out his Bodhran teaching on Udemy’
I would recommend using ‘Transcribe!’ for slowing down and changing the key on my backing tracks – it’s free as a trial and well worth a look in my opinion. I also heard Capo is worth a look.
I have been teaching people to play the harmonica since 1996 as a full-time job. I have started tens of thousands on their way to play the harmonica and I can tell you – it sure beats working 
I believe I was the first person to be a full-time harmonica teacher in the UK, there are still very few of us – so there’s plenty of room if you want to come and join me. 
For the last few years, I have been the Chairman of HarmonicaUK – formerly known as the National Harmonica League (NHL) which supports the UK harmonica players community. 
                                                                                    Much of my time is spent writing books with Paul Lennon on how to play the harmonica, there are 20 or so with loads more in the pipeline – we have so many ideas it never stops. 
 I teach children near home, and with my team at HarpsCool where the team and I give 300 children weekly harmonica lessons. 
My YT videos, and their success and feedback, are the reason I am teaching on Udemy; there are millions of hits on the youtube sites and thousands of subscribers. People are kind enough to say how clear the teaching is, and how it’s helped them to understand aspects of harmonica playing – at last
I run workshops at major harmonica festivals including SPAH in the US, the Bristol International Harmonica Festival in the UK, the World Harmonica Festival in Trossingen, Germany – home of Hohner, and the Harmonica Masters Workshops also in Germany. 
I even use the harmonica in team building events for many international companies. 
Cruise Ships have been part of my teaching life since 2002 and the combination of teaching, performing and travelling is quite a blast. Who knew teaching the harmonica would take me to the Caribbean three times, Africa, Russia, Scandinavia, and Atlantic Europe. 
You will often find me performing in various venues and going to jam sessions, and I love playing with interesting groups or sitting on a number when the opportunity arises – that’s one of the wonderful things about the harmonica, you can have it in your back pocket and join in with people wherever you are. 
So you are in extremely competent and safe hands, so do yourself a favour and try one of my courses – in fact, have a free lecture or two to suck it and see – that’s a harmonica joke by the way. 
Firstly I need to make it clear I’m not doing this commercially – I’m not selling widgets; I’m a professional teacher trying to make a living teaching harmonica. This is not something you would do if you wanted to make a lot of money but I love doing it so I’ll carry on.
If you think any copyright has been infringed please contact me immediately and I will take action.
Respect and thanks to all the artists for writing and performing these amazing songs that you want to learn.
The Copyright and Rights in Performances (Research, Education, Libraries and Archives) Regulations 2014 (extracts)
I quote:
 “Not more than 5% of a work may be copied under this section by or on behalf of an educational establishment in any period of 12 months, and for these purposes a work, which incorporates another work is to be treated as a single work. 
Fair dealing with a work for the purposes of private study does not infringe any copyright in the work.”
Any recordings used in my courses represent less than 5% of the entire work and are already in the public domain on YouTube.
Any written transcriptions are written by me or my team to promote the work and the artist and to facilitate students who want to learn more about their music.
Any audio backing tracks are written and recorded by me or my team to promote the work and the artist and to facilitate students who want to learn more about their music.
If there was a fee for pointing students to an artist’s original music (e.g. on Youtube) I would not bother teaching that music so it would not get taught and promoted by me.
If you are a copyright holder and feel I have used too much of your work please contact me and I will remove whatever you feel is inappropriate without question.
You will find my contact details of most of my websites or just google if you want to talk to me.
Ben Hewlett

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Platform: Udemy
Video: 1h 16m
Language: English
Next start: On Demand

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