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Hi, I recorded few songs with guitar and harmonica, can you tell me what are you thinking about it, or what I can improve?

 

Bryan Adams - Heaven 

 

Bob Dylan - Blowin in The Wind 

 

The Beatles - Let It Be 

 

 

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Very cool. I really enjoyed. As far as suggestions/opinions- your strumming is pretty straight forward and drowns out the harp in the recordings. I would suggest toning it down some and not do big, full strums on every note. Other than that I thought it was great. Couch is beautiful btw.

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I think you did fine.  A little lacking in emotion, but that usually just takes time.  You look young to my old eyes, so time is on your side.

 

A possible issue is you are trying to play the melody on a diatonic harmonica.  Bob Dylan sure didn't play the melody.  Not even close.  Some of the melody notes won't be there.  For that you need a chromatic harmonica.  I play a lot of diatonic harp and I have one for every major key.  I have used my chromatic harmonica on a number of recordings where I really needed sharps and flats and it works well, but you can't play chromatic in a harp holder. 

 

Your harp holder looks just like the one right here in my studio.  Mine is more than 35 years old and it still works fine.  It was not my first harp holder.  I think I had 2 less durable ones before my current holder.

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I thought it was great too.  It takes skill to play guitar and play harmonica at the same time and you did well.  I also echo the comments above about fine tuning the performance.  One thing about playing all the notes of the tune is not what Dylan does: I can see that singing the melody while playing both instruments  could be a challenge! Also did Bob sing every note perfectly? I don't think so, but it still worked.  

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On 4/27/2017 at 6:33 AM, Rockerbob said:

 'time is on your side".

 

Hi Keith, that sounds like a song title to me. Has it been done already? Second line suggestion: It sure ain't on mine no more....:D

 

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My understanding of US copyright law is that the title is not copyrighted.  I can write a song and call it, "Blue Moon," even though there is a well known song of the same title.

 

The next line was, "Yes it is."

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Thx for your answers and advices!

 

Quote

As far as suggestions/opinions- your strumming is pretty straight forward and drowns out the harp in the recordings. I would suggest toning it down some and not do big, full strums on every note.

Good advice! I need to practise it.

 

 

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Couch is beautiful btw.

My dad loves this kind of furniture :D.

 

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A possible issue is you are trying to play the melody on a diatonic harmonica.  Bob Dylan sure didn't play the melody.  Not even close.  Some of the melody notes won't be there.  For that you need a chromatic harmonica.  I play a lot of diatonic harp and I have one for every major key.  I have used my chromatic harmonica on a number of recordings where I really needed sharps and flats and it works well, but you can't play chromatic in a harp holder. 

So then, I need to think about new chromatic harmonica, If I'll have money :D.

 

Quote

One thing about playing all the notes of the tune is not what Dylan does: I can see that singing the melody while playing both instruments  could be a challenge! Also did Bob sing every note perfectly? I don't think so, but it still work

 

i regret that my voice is terrible, so I can't sing well. In that case I decided to buy diatonic harmonica.

 

I recorded new cover, but still  "A little lacking in emotion". Maybe if I'll play it for hundreds of times, I still need practice

 

 

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Hi Karol [with a K :)] I liked this performance as well as the first one above.  Your addition of variety into the guitar playing does add interest to the song overall.  I'm always impressed by anyone who can play the guitar and the harmonica at the same time. I do sympathies with you thinking you don't have a good singing voice, because I feel I have a similar problem, so substituting a blues harp is a good idea to get around that but....is your voice really that bad, or do you only think it is and you lack confidence/practice in singing? 

 

I understand that you don't want to expose what you think will detract from your overall performance, but there are plenty of successful singer-songwriters with dodgy voices (no, not Dylan) but the key to their success is in their delivery of a song, both the vocal and the overall performance - you can feel their commitment to it, and they give a passionate delivery (whether rock or ballad, anthem or intimate).

 

Compare 'Nothing Compares to You' Sinnaed O'Connor with any number of Punk singers (e.g. The Sex Pistols) who basically shout and yell angrily over a raucous band at the top of their voices, and don't seem to care at all about being in tune or making the words understandable :D, and yet have millions of fans.  Singer songwriters who are successful all give passionate, emotional, and/or convincing performances.

 

In other words, no matter what the song or the genre, the listeners feel that the singer really is feeling and really does believe in what they are singing - plus the use of vocal phrasing, timing variations (slightly on or off the beat or slightly pausing before a word in the lyric to add emphasis and to 'catch the ear' of the listener.  All of that is what Dylan was so brilliant at doing when younger - and I reject totally the line that he can't sing - he was brilliant in every department of singer songwriting, including having a good singing voice.  So there!

 

Don't worry, I can't do a good delivery (or vocal) either - because a successful and convincing delivery is different to just 'trying hard' and doesn't necessarily depend on the big advantage of having a good singing voice or being able to sing in tune (Queen). 

 

So, the take home message is: it would be a shame if you banish singing as a possibility - try to practice playing and singing in private to songs that you like and suit the range of your voice.  Also, because you are able to play blues harp, you don't have to have vocals for the whole song necessarily.  If you can become used to singing around the house, even if it is only when no one else is there, it is good for the soul, and improves with practice.

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Don't worry about my comment on emotion.  Yes, playing it lots of times can make playing it so easy that you have time to think about emotion, but playing any songs, over time, will improve all songs you play.

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This is what a chromatic harmonica looks like.  This model sells for under $150.  Hohner makes chromatic harmonicas that sell for almost $2000.  On the right side is the button for the slide, which changes which way the air flows to another set of reeds.  Each hole can have 4 possible notes; slide out draw and blow, slide in draw and blow.  In the video clip my right index finger moves back and forth, but the slide is being pushed in by the bottom of my finger, but you can't see it in the video because it is blocked by my hand.

 

Sorry about the audio sync.  Its a little off.  I just chopped off a piece of a longer video.  Sometimes sync get weird.  I could fix it, but that would take more work.  :-)

 

 

DSCN0088.JPG

HarmonicaDemo_1.mp4

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Hello Karol, You redid Bryan Adam's song Heaven very well. The collaboration of the guitar and harmonica sounds beautiful together...both of those instruments make good melodies when combined. And you are very talented to play both instruments at the same time, and keep your timing. Way to go Karol! I'm going to check out your other tunes...Keep up the good work!

 

Kudos,

Tonya

 

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