Lee Oskar Harmonic Minor Harmonica - Key of A
Series: Harmonic Minor
The Harmonic Minor has been in use for a long time, as the traditional tuning for playing a wide array of international music. The Harmonic Minor tuning has a very soulful, Eastern European sound and was used for one entire side of Lee Oskar’s highly acclaimed first solo album.
This harmonica is intended to play traditional ethnic music that is important to the heritage of many cultures, such as: Minor Eastern European, Gypsy, Yiddish, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, Asian and European/American Folk music, as well as various selections of Jazz and Classic Show Tunes.
Available in 12 Keys (Listed low to high):
Gm, Abm, Am, Bbm, Bm, Cm, Dbm, Dm, Ebm, Em, Fm, F#m
Understanding 1st / 2nd Position: Two Basic Styles of Playing
Understanding 1st / 2nd Position
Although it is possible to play in many keys of music on any one harmonica by using various positions, most players use only the first two positions, 1st Position also known as Straight Harp, (starting from Blow) and 2nd Position also known as Cross Harp (starting from Draw). For more information got to manufacturer website
About Keys and Positions:
Although it is possible to play in many keys of music on any one harmonica by using various positions and techniques, most players use only the first two positions; 1st Position (also known as Straight Harp) and 2nd Position (also known as Cross Harp).
NOTE: It is important to know that 1st Position (starting from BLOW / EXHALE) plays in a different key from 2nd Position (starting from DRAW / INHALE).
It is necessary to determine which style of playing will be used to know which key of harp to select. To determine the correct key of harp to use, refer to our Notation chart samples below and review the section of the manufacturer website. https://leeoskar.com/harmonic-minor-harmonica/
For each harmonica tuning (the Standard tuning and our three Altered tunings), essential points are explained below, using specific keys as examples; however, the same patterns shown below can be used regardless of the key chosen within each tuning.
NOTE: With different techniques, you can obtain additional notes by using bending or overblows/overdraws. Some reeds can be bent to achieve multiple notes.
We recommend you review the Notation Charts which includes bending to become familiar with bending patterns.
Harmonic Minor Key Charts: https://leeoskar.com/harmonic-minor-key-chart/
Harmonic Minor Note Chart: https://leeoskar.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/HarmonicMinor-Notation-Chart.pdf
- Major Diatonics are key-labeled in 1st Position.
- The Major Diatonic lacks the flatted notes which are needed to play the Minor scales and chords used in the traditional folk songs of many cultures.
- Harmonic Minors are key-labeled in 1st Position.
- The chart below shows the notes that have been altered from a Major Diatonic (shown in yellow), providing the flatted notes that make it easy to play the Minor scales and chords commonly found in various types of ethnic music. Harmonic Minors provide five flatted notes for playing Minor music.
- Natural Minors are designed to be played in 2nd Position (Cross Harp), not 1st Position (Straight Harp).
- In 2nd Position, many of the draw notes can be bent and this allows for a much more expressive, fluid style of playing. 2nd Position is a very popular style used by most players for today’s music.