Four-chords tuning for six-hole harp

Anything apart from the two mainstream default harmonicas (Solo-tuned fully-valved chromatic, and un-valved Richter 10-hole diatonic). Alternate tunings, different construction, new functionality, interesting old designs, wishful-thinking... whatever!
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IaNerd
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:42 pm
Location: Iowa, USA

Four-chords tuning for six-hole harp

Post by IaNerd » Thu Aug 10, 2017 7:27 pm

NAME: I call this my “Chord Buddy” tuning.

BASIC CONCEPT: A tuning principally for chordal accompaniment of the myriad songs based on I – IV – V – vi progressions and rearrangements and subsets thereof (e.g. LOTS, if not most, of pop, rock, blues).

WHEN/HOW: December 2015, using Seydel's Configurator.

LAYOUT:

Image

DETAILS:

I have used parentheses above to show that the twelve reeds are divided into four quadrants, each being a triad. This example of the "Chord Buddy" concept is for the progression Cmaj --- Fmaj --- Gmaj ---Amin.

I understand that, with circular tuning, these chords AND MORE could fit into a six-hole harp. The intention here however is to divide the harp very simply into quadrants, to make finding and playing those four critical chords as easy as possible. This harp can also serve as an eight-note, four-chord pitch pipe for singing groups.
Attachments
ChordBuddyKeyOfCMaj.png
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Last edited by IaNerd on Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Alan
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:17 pm

Re: Four-chords tuning for six-hole harp

Post by Alan » Fri Aug 11, 2017 1:40 pm

Over the years I've made a number of variations on this kind of harp both in real life and more often on paper.

For my ear, the thing that makes an individual chord sound better on a harmonica is having at least one duplicate note an octave apart.

For the overall chord progression, having chords in more or less the same octave sounds better to me. The problem with standard harmonicas with a circular tuning is that you have to continually climb higher as you move up the harp unless you are going to make your own comb. The small footprint of your chord buddy addresses the second issue nicely.

Other things I've looked at:

The Schaman-Medical harmonica from Seydel is a solid option, retune the D chord to Amin.

I've cut two harps in half and used both lower ends with a turbolid cover plate.

I've also used a standard seydel big six in Bb along with the folk big six in C which gives you the I-IV-V-vi in F. I made magnetic wedges to hold the harps together like a mini version of a double bass.

I've been pondering a power chord harmonica with just 1s and 5s.

Thanks for sharing.

IaNerd
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:42 pm
Location: Iowa, USA

Re: Four-chords tuning for six-hole harp

Post by IaNerd » Fri Aug 11, 2017 2:43 pm

Re: "a power chord harmonica with just 1s and 5s."

There could be a b3 to the left of the 1-5 pair, and a 3 to the right of the pair. Flanking those four tones could be 7s. A power dyad and four chords within six adjacent reeds!

Shoot, now I'll be daydreaming about this all day!

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