Can you play harmonica if you tune yo...

Can you play harmonica if you tune your guitar down 1/2 step?

Posted in the Harmonic Forum



#1 Sep 14, 2010
This morning I was listening to a recording of Bob Dylan playing an old Hank Williams song: Lonesome Whistle Blues (done in 1962).

Long story short: I figured out that Dylan had tuned his guitar down 1/2 step......he was also playing some great harp. But I have no idea how he did it.

The song begins in C then to F then G......but when you tune down 1/2 step that changes.

If you don't tune down, you play a C harp. If you tune down 1 full step, you play a Bb hard. I have no idea what harp Dylan was playing tuned down 1/2 step.

I would like pointers about what harps to play when you tune down 1/2 step. Thanks.

Auckland, New Zealand

#2 Feb 12, 2013
Dylan generally plays Straight harp as I recall, which means the harp is in the same key of the song. If the song is in A, he plays an A harp (as opposed to cross harp for playing blues where the general position is 4 notes above the key of the song, so if the song is in A, you need a D harp)
A band play I play in is tuned down 1 step, and it is a pain because I need a full set of harps in different keys.
I have no idea what harp you would use if tuned down half a step.
The biggest thing I am trying to get to grips with is you say Dylan was playing GREAT HARP, and I find that very hard to imagine!(no disrespect intended to the great Mr Dylan)

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