About

Welcome to ‘Harmonica Riff’

Harmonica RiffThis site explores the possibilities and pleasures of jamming on the diatonic harmonica. I have been playing the diatonic harmonica since I was 14 years of age. My father first taught me the basics, by showing me how to get the basic notes of do re mi fa so la ti do in order to play South African folk songs like SARIE MARAIS. I discovered that once the basic technique was mastered of producing whole notes or chords under control you had at your disposal a compact and extremely portable instrument which you could use with the same dexterity as the human voice.

Once I had discovered how to play harmonies in first or second position I was on a roll. I soon was playing in bands and ultimately formed my own band ‘Blue And Beyond‘. Even though I play guitar the harmonica is definitely my first instrument. What ‘Harmonica Riff’ aims to do is reel in the wealth of material out on the internet and organise it into logical steps, so that anyone can enjoy jamming for pleasure to their favourite bands while improving their playing. There is a wealth of material already out there on explicit technique, but since the harmonica sounds different from player to player, I believe it is more important to show and develop your own style rather than desparately trying to carbon copy the great players.

John Tribe

Your Shopping Cart
Your cart is empty
Latest
CD Of The Month
Tags
  • Big Road Blues Show 7/23/17: Rockin' the House – Chicago Small Labels Pt. 4
    Show Notes: Today's show continues our look at some small Chicago labels that operated from the 1940's through the 1960's. On this installment we spotlight some remaining sides from the Club 51 label which we spotlighted a few months back, as well as the Miracle label. Club 51 existed from 1955 to 1957 and was […]
  • Big Road Blues Show 7/16/17: Wind Howlin' Blues – Library of Congress Recordings 1941-1942 Pt. 2
    Show Notes: Son Sims and Muddy Waters, 1943. Photo by John Work III.   Over the course of two shows we'll be spotlighting some remarkable recordings made by John Work III and Alan Lomax between 1941 and 1942. Work was an African-American professor in the music department of Fisk University in Nashville. In April of 1940 […]
  • Big Road Blues Show 7/9/17: Walking Blues – Library of Congress Recordings 1941-1942 Pt. 1
    Show Notes: Son Sims and Muddy Waters, 1943.  Photo by John Work III.   Over the course of two shows we'll be spotlighting some remarkable recordings made by John Work III and Alan Lomax between 1941 and 1942. Work was an African-American professor in the music department of Fisk University in Nashville. In April of 1940 […]
  • On The Road Again: Program Note
    Just a couple of quick program notes; First, I'll will be on the road for the next two weeks so there will be no new shows posted. I believe there will be reruns of older shows on those dates. Secondly, a couple of listeners have alerted me that they were unable to play some of […]
  • Big Road Blues Show 6/18/17: Still I'm Travelling On – Blues & Travel
    Show Notes: As the great blues scholar Paul Oliver wrote in Meaning of the Blues: "The last quarter of the nineteenth century saw an ever increasing movement of Negro workers from state to state. By 1910 nearly one and three-quarter million Negroes had left their home states for others and of these some had moved […]