Author Topic: Low/deep sounding harmonica?  (Read 11730 times)

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katharp

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Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« on: August 26, 2013, 06:12:16 AM »
I'm looking for a low/deep sounding diatonic.

In my searching I have seen that the Hohner Big River and the Hohner 365 are recommend harps for a deep sound. Are there others that you fellows would recommend? Which keys would be good for that warm, low rich sound?

Oh, I just now noticed that the 365 is only available in keys C and G only.  :(

Would the 364 be a similar sounding harp? I see that it only features 12 holes, instead of 14 on the 365.

...

Guess I have some more research to do on this. Looking at wiki, I also noticed the Marine Band Thunderbird which features "low & super low" pitch.

So many choices...I welcome your comments/feedback/suggestions!  ;)

Offline Danny G

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2013, 08:24:06 AM »
Seydel offers 10 hole diatonics from Low Low F up to High A

Offline Gnarly He Man

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2013, 12:48:00 PM »
The Thunderbird is nice but pricy.
Suzuki makes a low F diatonic in several models, I like the Manji in low F.
G is the lowest "normal" key for most diatonic harmonica.

katharp

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2013, 01:17:26 PM »
Guys,

Thanks for the mention about the Suzuki & Seydel models. I've looked at so many brands lately, I had forgotten which ones I saw that offered the Low keys.

Thunderbird is a bit pricy, especially if you order one in every key!   ;)

Lo

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2013, 03:47:27 PM »
Hello, Kat. There's low and there's low.
Some harps are available in Low F, like the Suzuki Manji you mention, and the Lee Oskar.
But there's also Low Low F, or Superlow F, and that's a whole octave lower than Low F. The Hohner Thunderbird, and the lowest Seydels (Session and Favorite) go this low. I own a Seydel Favorite this low, and am fond of it. In fact I named myself after it.
(You also named the Big River. It 's lowest tuning is G which is just a bit less low than Low F.)
Lo

Offline Gnarly He Man

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2013, 04:23:46 PM »
I like to retune the Hohner 365, since it goes down to Low C (C3). I have probably half a dozen in different keys/tunings.

Sailboat Slim

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2013, 04:33:25 PM »
I have Seydels in low C, low D and low E and a Suzuki Promaster in low F. I use the E and F frequently when playing at church as the high end of the scale on the "regular" tuning is a little too high pitched for my tastes. The D,E and F also sound good when "chugging" on the first three holes. The low C was pretty much a waste of money. If I'm playing single notes, lately I've been using chromatics that are in the keys of C and D, which gives me all the notes from both the low and normal tuned harps. But if I'm playing chords it's back to the diatonics. I've been toying with the idea of getting a Tombo Pocket Chord harmonica for chords. By the way, all of the low tunings are difficult to bend notes on. 

Offline chro magnon

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2013, 06:22:02 PM »
The problem with a low Richter-tuned harp is while rhythms sound good,  bends are a stretch and melody lines hard to play

The Hohner 365 Steve Baker Special (SBS) tacks on a repeat of the "chugging" holes 1 -3 to the left side of the harp, but an octave lower. So you can get some good deep rhythms going while playing melody in the normal diatonic range. I find it a good solution.

Offline John Broecker

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2013, 06:28:24 PM »
He-Low, Low Low Lingerers.

I have the Seydel Blues Session harps in Low Low F and Low Low F#.

They're assembled like a bass harp, with hinges, sort of like a
bass harp, without the octave tuning of a double bass.

The paired Low low Sessions' range is F below the bass clef to
high F# in the treble clef, Richter system.

It's like playing a Richter system bass harp.

Best Regards

John Broecker
Bob Uecker, Catcher, Announcer, USA Baseball: "The best way to catch a knuckleball is to wait for it to stop rolling on the ground, then pick it up."

Offline Gary Richardson

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #9 on: August 27, 2013, 11:07:08 AM »
Hello Katharp, if you pursue the Hohner 365, make sure you get the Steve Baker Special (SBS) version.
The extra holes on the regular 365 are on the high end of the scale.  On the Steve Baker Special
the extra holes are on the low end of the scale.
Check ebay and you can find a Huang low F for about $10 to $12.

Gary
Gary Richardson

hallelujahal

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #10 on: August 27, 2013, 11:30:36 AM »
Check out the Special 20 range - I play a low Eb SP20 and love it!
AL

katharp

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #11 on: August 27, 2013, 03:25:11 PM »
I'm unable to locate a Huang low F or a Hohner Special 20 in any low keys... Am I looking in the wrong place?  ??? Is Hohner still producing the low key harps?

hallelujahal

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Lo

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« Last Edit: August 27, 2013, 05:17:04 PM by Lo »

Online Lockjaw Larry

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #14 on: August 27, 2013, 09:32:58 PM »
I love my several low and low low Seydels.  The Low (gulp) Big River leaks through the reeds a lot, but sounds OK otherwise.  My all time favorites are 364 and 365's, especially after I do my work on them. Lovely music to my ears.  The 364 C is lower than the 364 G.  I have two SBS and do not like them for first position.  Lows leak more through their reeds and are hard, if possible, to bend in the lower end but are sweeeet on the upper range.  BIG hint:  HALF VALVE for double the enjoyment with half the effort.
Be fair, be square and obey the rules of the pack.

Offline beads

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #15 on: August 27, 2013, 10:27:40 PM »
Don't know if you are after melody playing or blues playing but I think the Steve Baker Special is more of a blues harp with an extra pair of chords for chugging. The 364 does have an extended scale at the high end but it is a low harp. Here are some note layouts that might help:
http://www.rockinronsmusic4less.com/content/harps/hohner/HohnerMarineBand12hole.php
http://www.rockinronsmusic4less.com/content/harps/hohner/Steve_Baker.php      by the way, at the bottom of that page is the other 365 also
And just for comparision here is the standard 10 hole:
http://www.rockinronsmusic4less.com/content/harps/hohner/special_20.php
I have no connection to that company, they just have nice charts for those harps. There is also a 364 S which is set up like a chromatic without a slide, solo tuned.
Low harps are fun solo but I tend to find they get lost in the mix with other acoustic instruments.
The 364 and 365 are wood harps held together with small nails. I don't care for that design.
You were experimenting with a zirk. Those harps allow you to move the melody down to the low end of the harp where the Richter is set up for chords.
Onze-Lieve-Vrouw van Troost Bid voor ons.

MakaInOz

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #16 on: August 27, 2013, 11:28:06 PM »
I've got a bass, but find it easier to use technology!   An octaver can shift you down two whole octaves (I use a Digitech RP350 with Richard Hunter patches)  and you just play your 'usual' harmonica.  The bass is too quiet to play unamplifed in anything but the smallest and quietest of rooms, so there's already a mic/amp in the equation if I'm 'going low'.  I can get lower with the pedal and don't have to buy any new harmonicas or learn a different layout (like the bass)

YMMV
Cheers
Maka

katharp

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2013, 09:07:24 PM »
I've picked up a Lee Oscar in LF. It sounds very nice & is a dream to play.

A couple of notes:  ;)

I notice that the cover plates are more "bulged out" towards the mouth as compared to my other harps. It is playable, but a bit odd to me. Has anyone else noticed this with their Lee Oscars? Seems an odd way to build them.

More importantly, the lower (3) holes require a ton of air through them to move the reeds. Is this normal on a deep harp with longer reeds? It feels like a lot of air escaping, more than I would think is required, but then again, I'm a noob at this. Probably is how it's supposed to be.

Sailboat Slim

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #18 on: September 02, 2013, 09:47:29 PM »
Lee Oskar have more of a traditional shape and yes, they are thicker at the mouth end than what you might be used to. To play a low note on any wind instrument is going to take more air than a high note, just a matter of physics.

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #19 on: September 02, 2013, 11:11:05 PM »
The bottom cover on the lower Oskars are deeper because the heavier reeds in those harps swing farther and can hit the covers used on the higher pitched harps. The bottom reeds are on the outside of the plate. The top reeds are on the inside and can't swing through the slots far enough to hit the covers. Richter Low F, G, A, and Melody Maker in C or D will have the deeper cover. (The Melody Maker in C is a Low F with three reeds retuned to give a C scale. The Melody Maker in D is a G harp with three reeds retuned to play in D. Sometimes I find my C Melody Maker is too low so I retuned a standard F to make a high C Melody Maker.) Low notes can be tricky for a beginner. Experiment with your jaw and tongue position and an open airway. I find I have to drop my jaw a bit and jut it out just a bit to get the lowest notes on the low harps to sound their best. Everybody has a unique anatomy so you have to find what works for you. Hohner recently came out with a low harp called the Thunderbird which also uses a deeper bottom cover.
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Harmonicatunes

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #20 on: September 03, 2013, 09:55:55 PM »
I'd go for a Hohner Thunderbird, despite the price. Unlike the others, it's actually designed to be a low harmonica, rather than a regular one with low reed inserted. I have a Low Low G. An awesome instrument.

katharp

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #21 on: September 03, 2013, 11:21:11 PM »
I'd go for a Hohner Thunderbird, despite the price. Unlike the others, it's actually designed to be a low harmonica, rather than a regular one with low reed inserted. I have a Low Low G. An awesome instrument.

I'll probably spring for one - the price is a bit much, but the way I've been purchasing harps already, there seems to be no end in sight!   ;D

We should have a "pics" thread where we can show off our instruments.  Most other forums have one.

Would it be okay to start such a thread? Must it be cleared with the higher ups first?

Offline wolfman

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #22 on: September 04, 2013, 05:19:24 PM »



     WE all ready do.

Lo

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #23 on: September 04, 2013, 08:05:09 PM »
Here it is:
https://forums.SlideMeister.com/index.php?topic=8995.0
It's for chroms. Go ahead! Start one for diatonics.
Lo

UPDATE- that was no normal thread, but a contest. It is over now.
So the thread you mean is yet to be started.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2013, 04:17:35 AM by Lo »

Offline Danny G

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #24 on: January 02, 2023, 09:42:36 AM »
Seydel Solist Pro 12 available solo tuned starting on C4 $109
You can configure it as Richter etc for $139

Offline Gnarly He Man

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #25 on: January 02, 2023, 11:23:35 AM »
I have several Hohner marine band 365 harmonicas that I will let go at a very reasonable price.
They have all been refurbished, they are not new, but I will sell them for $20 apiece.
They are all in C, sorry about that.
I am using them to experiment with low tunings, but I have more than I need.

Offline Age

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #26 on: January 02, 2023, 02:47:22 PM »
Without going to a tenor, just play a 12 hole 270 in D. ;D They really get "down there."

Offline Gnarly He Man

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #27 on: January 03, 2023, 12:59:29 AM »
Without going to a tenor, just play a 12 hole 270 in D. ;D They really get "down there."
With all due respect, this is the diatonic section.
Rules is rules.

Offline Keith

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #28 on: January 03, 2023, 04:57:03 AM »
If you want low diatonics, take a look at the Seydel range. :)

Offline Danny G

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Re: Low/deep sounding harmonica?
« Reply #29 on: January 03, 2023, 09:48:02 AM »
Without a doubt this is the best deal you're going to find

Quote
I have several Hohner marine band 365 harmonicas that I will let go at a very reasonable price.
They have all been refurbished, they are not new, but I will sell them for $20 apiece.
They are all in C, sorry about that.
I am using them to experiment with low tunings, but I have more than I need.