Wednesday, August 1, 2018

What Did You Miss This Week? (Week 537 #581)

Joe's time away at Augusta has him thinking about fundamentals and he shared two lists this week.

Remember to focus on his Four Foundational Pillars:

  • Blues breathing
  • Embouchure
  • Repertoire
  • Body (holding the harp correctly and good posture)

Secondly Joe stressed that "making music" is the higher purpose; as opposed to "jamming". Yes, Little Walter and Big Walter played all the time in songs, but that is hard to do well. Ask yourself, "What can I do to make this musical situation better?" Be a team player, an accompanist. Have the discipline to be a repetitive part of the rhythm section with these options:

  • Organ sustaining - follow the chord changes
  • Train whistle sustaining - play softly and with bluesy effect
  • Shuffle chording - see Walter Horton for great examples of this and note that you "force" this over all the chord changes
  • Chord bombs - these are stacatto and rhythmic; check out Horton on Feznecky
  • Sequenced riff - the most advanced accompaniment technique

Class Notes

  • Joe's Harlem Avenue Lounge Harmonica Party is back next week, August 7. 

Destination Unknown
The Roots Duo of Joe Filisko & Eric Noden have released their new CD, Destination Unknown. Read more and get your copy here.

And h/t to B1 friend and harp player Andy Willis on the terrific cover art!

- Grant Kessler, B1 Blues Crew