Author Topic: SPAH 2023  (Read 452 times)

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Offline Danny G

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SPAH 2023
« on: August 12, 2022, 05:50:51 PM »
Spah will be in St Louis next year
I was hoping for Charlotte

Offline brorat

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2022, 06:21:20 PM »
Spah will be in St Louis next year
I was hoping for Charlotte

Me, too, Danny!!
May be another long drive😱😱
“Just here to harp on chromatics!”

Offline Old Age

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2022, 08:05:48 PM »
I was hoping for Cleveland. ;D ;D ;D

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2022, 10:14:11 PM »
Yeah! I get to go again! We are really spoiled here. I almost feel guilty, even though I have nothing to do with the location. It would be my first SPAH as a chromatic player. I hope to meet and jam with some SlideMeisters, instead of just listening from the sidelines.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2022, 10:17:15 PM by beads »
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Offline smojoe

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2022, 10:47:21 PM »
St. Louis actually makes sense.
1... The geographical center of the country (excluding Alaska & Hawaii) is somewhere west of Kansas City Kan.
2... The population center is somewhere south of St. Louis.
3... The St. Louis club is a 'going' establishment.
4... The weather is usually pleasant.
5... They always choose a good venue.
6... There are always alternative places to eat which aren't expensive, have good food, and friendly service.
7... St Louis is (apparently) happy to have visitors as they don't drown you in ancillary county, city, township, entertainment, resort, bed, charges.

smojo

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #5 on: August 12, 2022, 11:30:13 PM »
Hey Joe, I've seen you in St Louis more than once. My first one was 2003, I think. I go every time it is in St Louis. Back then I just stood around and listened to players like you. I didn't have the chops to hang with your crowd, so I kept my harp case closed and my ears opened. Learned a lot every time.
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Offline Old Age

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #6 on: August 12, 2022, 11:32:44 PM »
Yeah, Joey's definitely one to watch. 8)

Offline brorat

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2022, 10:44:45 AM »
Question:  I've been looking at some of the streaming videos from SPAH 2022.  I'm wondering roughly what percentage of the content at SPAH is regarding chromatic vs diatonic?  I'm sure it may vary from year to year, but this year looks heavily weighted to diatonic.
“Just here to harp on chromatics!”

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2022, 11:00:49 AM »
Question:  I've been looking at some of the streaming videos from SPAH 2022.  I'm wondering roughly what percentage of the content at SPAH is regarding chromatic vs diatonic?  I'm sure it may vary from year to year, but this year looks heavily weighted to diatonic.
There are multiple seminars and small venue concerts going on simultaneously. All types of music. You literally can't attend everything. So it probably doesn't matter if there is a lot of blues players (there are), because us non blues folks can find something we like.
I'm not there this year, but that has been my experience. I have had to choose between two things that I wanted to attend.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2022, 11:03:29 AM by beads »
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Offline BeauKim

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2022, 11:17:56 AM »
Thanks for letting us know, Danny.  I can't really say which place I would've preferred more since they're both far from me.  Haha.  I haven't been to Charlotte, yet.  Hopefully I can make it next year. 

Offline smojoe

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #10 on: August 13, 2022, 05:17:29 PM »
Mr. Beads. Funny you should mention: "I didn't have the chops to hang with your crowd". Heck, 'I' didn't have the chops either. I just faked it. Something I tried to convince Lockjaw and Crazy Bob of. lolol

And Charlotte? It's only 666 miles from me. (A devil of a drive, lolol). But I can do it in one long day's drive. I'm sorry it folded.
Diatomaceous harp at spah? Yes, I have been going long enough to see it go from: 87% chromatic, 76%, 67%, 55%, 44.5%, and at the last Tulsa I attended roughly 33%. It could be the sign of the times or it could be the heirarchy? But I don't want to go and hear constant guitars.

Tulsa is too long a drive for me so I would have to fly. But mama Cass (the live one) is loosing her memory and with Kelly gone I have no one to watch over her.

smo-joe (Btw, why didn't you introduce yourself..I'm not a  meaney pants and after watching your posts these past years, you seem to be 'Da Man')

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #11 on: August 13, 2022, 06:10:54 PM »
Yes, Joe, I should have introduced myself. I also should have bought a chromatic back then. Would of, should of, could of. Oh well. I'll shake your hand if we both make it to St. Louis.
I was focused on the short harps back then. Was trying to sound like Buddy Greene. That didn't happen!  ;D
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Online Gnarly He Man

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2022, 10:27:36 AM »
non blues folks
Not really hijacking the thread here.
I prefer chromatic for most things, blues tends to be too harmonically limited for me, but the SPAH organization is now in the business of promoting ANY form of harmonica.
That, of course, was not the reason it was created.
Blues permeates our culture, and second position diatonic seems to have been created for the blues.
I am super bummed that I was not able to attend this year, hopefully next year will be something I can do.
I promote the harmonica to a ridiculous degree, and the blues is an international ambassador for America.
Buy a diatonic if you don’t already have one, the blues is worth your time and money.

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2022, 10:53:53 AM »
SPAH has diversified. When I started attending it was mostly cats. Blues cats and Harmonicats. And some in those groups didn't exactly appreciate the other bunch. Over the years there has been more folk, Gospel, Irish, country, bluegrass, and classical. More alternate tunings promoted. It truly is a big tent now. All are welcome.
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Offline brorat

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2022, 11:10:50 AM »
I appreciate the perspectives on SPAH. When I attended DannyG’s party last month, there were a good number of diatonic players there, and I was impressed by their prowess. During jams, I was somewhat surprised at how well we could all compliment each other.
Though I have no (current) desire to get heavily into diatonic, I greatly appreciate the talents of those who play them well.
“Just here to harp on chromatics!”

Online Scotty

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #15 on: August 14, 2022, 08:03:00 PM »
non blues folks
Not really hijacking the thread here.
I prefer chromatic for most things, blues tends to be too harmonically limited for me, but the SPAH organization is now in the business of promoting ANY form of harmonica.
That, of course, was not the reason it was created.
Blues permeates our culture, and second position diatonic seems to have been created for the blues.
I am super bummed that I was not able to attend this year, hopefully next year will be something I can do.
I promote the harmonica to a ridiculous degree, and the blues is an international ambassador for America.
Buy a diatonic if you don’t already have one, the blues is worth your time and money.

Not really - as far as playing blues goes. Now LISTENING to Blues is an entirely other kettle of fish. I LOVE listening to those
who play Blues well on harmonica and other instruments (and I have a lot of great friends in the Blues harmonica world to listen to). But I simply can't do justice to blues except for a basic chugging along on a chromatic when others are playing. I own a LOT of diatonics, some customs- even one set customized for me by Jimmy Gordon, and another set by Chris Michalek (besides my two B-Rads), but I still can't play Blues. One has to know one's limitations - and leave certain genres to those who are drawn to them and who can express the Blues well. :) Fwiw, I've also heard some really bad blues players - as well as great ones. It isn't for everyone.

scotty

Offline Old Age

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #16 on: August 14, 2022, 08:10:32 PM »
Blues is easy (heck, even I can do it :P) Just pick up a ten holer, suck on it real hard and violently shake your head, like you're saying "NOOOOO!" You can hear that in any local beer joint on a Friday night. Now, GOOD Blues? THAT'S a whole 'nother story. 8) 8)

Offline smojoe

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #17 on: August 14, 2022, 11:21:53 PM »
I hear a lot of blues these days as really hard rock. After listening to delta bluse, I could really get into that stuff. But cha-doan hear much of that any more. Like for instance I don't really play jazz. I consider myself a swing player. Basically pop or dance tunes jassed up a bit. A sort of jassified-swing/pop. And I do it on diatomaceous as much as I do chromagnon. I even use both on the same tunes. To break the monotony of sameness timbre.

When I first attended spah, I thought there were too many harmonicats clones. Then over the years, this has faded. Last time I attended I heard too many bands. Lots of blaring guitar. Not my baliwick. Then if you hear a group in concert or go on a cruise, we're back to the harmonicats stuff.

smo-j
 

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #18 on: August 15, 2022, 12:49:07 AM »
Warning--I am getting off topic.
As some of you know (hi Scotty!), I am really more of a guitar player than harmonica guy, although I am enjoying my hobby.
Most of my onstage experience is as a singing guitarist.
As such, I had an opportunity to listen to a lot of music and learn a number of different styles (SmoJoe once asked me, "How do you know all these different kinds of tunes?", to which I replied, "Gig tunes.")
So I can't really tell the Sonny Boys apart, or Big Walter from Little Walter. I don't know if I can get a gig (in my hometown in OK to which I have returned) as a harmonica player. Only really maybe.
But AJ is right, it ain't so hard. And it gets easier the more you do it.
That big draw bend on 4 is loads of fun, not to mention holes 2 and 3.
Just don't try to bend 5, there is a half step difference (just like on hole 2, 6 and 10 of the chrom, after all, holes 4-7 on a diatonic are solo tuning, just like our pal the "Real Harmonica").
I have to stop, as I have already bent the rules.

Offline BeauKim

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2022, 02:32:27 AM »
For what it’s worth, a lot of blues diatonic players also play chromatic to some various degree.  Some people hardly use the slide to play more harmonically complex music or in other keys on one chromatic harmonica, but you’ll see a similar thing with the chromatic players in the folk/American songbook group that is usually in the lobby.

I’ve had a lot of fun at the two SPAH conventions that I went to playing in a many of the many jam sessions of different genres.  I even lead a few, one where I played chord harmonica and had about 15 players a circle around and jam out at 12am, and another time with me on bass with a core group of other players at 12-2am.  Both of the jams weren’t based on a 12 bar blues and everyone had fun.  :)

Online Scotty

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #20 on: August 15, 2022, 04:43:22 AM »
Actually, I agree with quite a few of you--Boaz is right- there IS a lot of chromatic-geared Blues. Val Redler was the first
one to encourage even little ol' ME to play my chromatic along with the few diatonic/blues players who wanted their turn
at the mic during the weekly GSHC meetings I attended for a while. It was fun, here and there, but I can't say I was really
any good at it. It wasn't 'good' Blues (as Age points out). I really enjoy GOOD Blues playing - and have heard my share of
really fantastic top-notch Blues players, so it makes those who nearly blow their brains out thinking 'the louder the better'
and that they don't really have to be 'tuneful', because to their ears they're playing exactly like their heroes painful to hear,
no matter the instrument. I know I certainly don't wish to contribute to the 'noise' if I can't play Blues well. It's a matter of
respect, as I see it. 8)

scotty

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #21 on: August 15, 2022, 05:04:41 AM »
Spah will be in St Louis next year
I was hoping for Charlotte

Charlotte would have been LOVELY! - a really nice change AND somewhere we might have been able to drive to - finally.
St. Louis - of course has a thriving club - and is the birthplace of SPAH so it gets to host the Convention again, but isn't
at all my favourite City to fly to - lot of my bad flight experiences took place heading there or back (and not at all a place
we could drive to). :(

We East Coasters never seem to catch a break, although I recognize it is because of what SPAH needs to have, and it just
isn't there anywhere except Charlotte.

Perhaps someday the Long Island Club will be big enough (and have young enough people to do the work) to host a SPAH?
We now have a fully functioning airport out here ON Long Island so one bypasses the two main NYC airports (LaGuardia and
JFK - Newark also, but that's in New Jersey). Still, avoiding those would be great - with the exception of International visitors
who would still have to fly into JFK. They would be heading East, though - so avoiding the worst of the traffic heading West
into NYC. Those who don't mind could still get into the City for a day-trip, but driving here from surrounding States is pretty
prohibitive with the tolls. I see that as a huge problem for a SPAH. Hotels out on Long Island are far more affordable than those in the City, though.  Maybe 'somewhere down the road'.....

scotty


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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #22 on: August 15, 2022, 08:31:34 AM »
East Coast spots for future SPAH could easily include:

Richmond, VA  (nice airport; fun eating venues, lots of historical sites nearby)
Virginia Beach/Norfolk, VA
Raleigh, NC (triad area)
Charleston, SC
Savannah, GA
Atlanta, GA

Of course, these options don't include all those in the northeast part of the country from DC to Maine.
“Just here to harp on chromatics!”

Offline Gary Richardson

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #23 on: August 15, 2022, 12:12:05 PM »
We just got back from SPAH last night after a 12 hour drive of 755 miles.  It was worth it.  This was my fourth live SPAH.  I regret being a late starter in attending these conventions.  My wife who does not play has more fun than I do.  Two years ago I was ready for Charlotte and had paid for the convention.  We were looking forward to a short drive of 9 hours and 580 miles.  However I did have apprehension of the convention utilizing two separate hotels.  I overheard someone say in the Annual General Meeting that SPAH has been held in St. Louis 7 times before.  To my experience the Tulsa hotel is by far more suited to me rather than the St. Louis hotel.  But the price of food is cheaper in St. Louis.  The room rate for the Hyatt in Tulsa was $110 before taxes.  Michael D'Eath commented in the Annual General Meeting about the driving criteria for the convention location.  A large enough hotel with meeting rooms to accommodate our crowd, room price and a club of volunteers for man power support.  Today hotels are charging $200 to $300 a night.  I doubt many harmonica players would step up and pay those rates.  I would not.  If you go to the SPAH web site you can see the schedule for seminars.  Wednesday there were three Chromatic classes vs the six for diatonic.  Oh and on a plus side I got to meet this year Harmonica John Frazer (Gnarly He Man's friend) who taught two classes of which I did not attend.  No offence to John but other seminars called.
Gary Richardson

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #24 on: August 15, 2022, 12:17:36 PM »
East Coast spots for future SPAH could easily include:

Richmond, VA  (nice airport; fun eating venues, lots of historical sites nearby)
Virginia Beach/Norfolk, VA
Raleigh, NC (triad area)
Charleston, SC
Savannah, GA
Atlanta, GA

Of course, these options don't include all those in the northeast part of the country from DC to Maine.
We were in Asheville, NC, last year. Nice hotel, good restaurants, toured the Biltmore and the grounds around it, shopping, golf, and nice drives on the Blue Ridge Parkway.  I don't know if they have a suitable venue for the convention.
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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #25 on: August 15, 2022, 01:43:17 PM »
Harmonica John Frazer (Gnarly He Man's friend)
The man who started me off!
We had a gig in El Centro California, five nights a week, with hotel rooms included, in the early 80s..
A great experience which lasted for a couple of months, and John managed to get me to begin my Harmonica journey.

Offline Buzadero

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #26 on: August 15, 2022, 03:49:15 PM »
Personally, I was hoping for another Western location, like Sacramento in 2009.
That Harmonica John connection was me and a couple of others in HJF's room one afternoon, conducting our own "seminar".
Fun times.

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #27 on: August 16, 2022, 04:30:20 PM »
St. Louis  8) An interesting and fun place to visit.  Hopefully, The Hill neighborhood is still well maintained and interesting to visit as it was about 15 years ago, with lots of good Italian Restaurants  8) Looking forward to possibly heading to SPAH in 2023

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #28 on: August 16, 2022, 04:33:47 PM »
SPAH has diversified. When I started attending it was mostly cats. Blues cats and Harmonicats. And some in those groups didn't exactly appreciate the other bunch. Over the years there has been more folk, Gospel, Irish, country, bluegrass, and classical. More alternate tunings promoted. It truly is a big tent now. All are welcome.

It sounds like a whole lot of fun!! When you live in Ohio, St. Louis is a decent day's drive and an interesting place to visit.

Offline Lockjaw Larry

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Re: SPAH 2023
« Reply #29 on: August 16, 2022, 04:37:35 PM »
In 1976 I tried out a good job in Fenton, just outside St Louis.  After three weeks I declined the offer and didn’t look back.  Hope I can go next year to revisit several places I had enjoyed back in the day. 

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