Regular Scottish Tuning

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
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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by IaNerd » Wed Dec 25, 2019 11:27 am

Here is a re-tuning scheme to transition any key of Solo/Orchestra to Inverted Bebop in a key which is two semitones higher: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=612&start=10#p2813

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Brendan
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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by Brendan » Thu Dec 26, 2019 12:00 am

Thanks for chiming in Ron. A few queries if you don't mind:

What inspired your Scottish Tuning?
When did you devise it?
Have you used it already, or will this be the first time it actually made in a harmonica?

Bp

CrawfordEs
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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by CrawfordEs » Fri Dec 27, 2019 7:12 pm

I guess I’m still seeing them as something different.
From my point of view (maybe I’m wrong)
With inverted bebop every blow is higher than the preceding draw, and every draw is higher than the corresponding blow note in the same hole.

The regular Scottish seems to break that pattern with one draw note being a higher pitch than the next blow.

Either way they (it) seem like a nice tuning that I may be tempted to try on a spare harmonica.
In some ways similar to melody maker, but better.

Malarz
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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by Malarz » Sun Jan 19, 2020 9:35 pm

I can see how the Scottish tuning could be used to play Quebecois tunes. Is there a harmonica easily available with this tuning or is it a custom order? I play tremolo and to get a single reed sound I bring my upper lip down over the top holes and tip the holes up to olet myu focus the breathing into the bottom row.

Ken

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IaNerd
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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by IaNerd » Mon Jan 20, 2020 2:22 pm

Ken: Is my post of Wed Dec 25, 2019 6:27 am (above) a solution to your need?

The Tombo #3624 School/Solo-tuned Tremolo could be re-tuned to three full octaves of Inverted Bebop. I have a 3624 but have not re-tuned it (yet). It's a nice tremolo harp and a good choice for someone who is already accustomed to Solo.

See also the Hohner Tremolo Soloist. This C/G solo double-tremolo harp could be re-tuned to D/A Inverted Bebop.

Malarz
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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by Malarz » Mon Jan 20, 2020 3:20 pm

Thanks for that suggestion and link to the schematics. I’m new to harmonicas and am learning slowly about all the different tunings and variables possible. I started to play tremolo because it seemed so intuitive to me since I come from a background of single row button accordion.

I see the advantages of the Inverted Bebop/Regular Scottish tuning are the ability to play in more keys on the one harmonica. I might be misunderstanding so correct me if I’m wrong but if I also had a harmonica with the Inverted Bebop tuning in C then I think that would cover almost all the keys in the Quebecois repertoire. There are a few tunes in F and Bb just for variety and the challenge to the fiddlers. :)

I’d like to try the Tombo #3624 in the Inverted BeBop. I don’t have any experience tuning or retuning harmonicas and I don’t think I should jump into this project as a complete novice. If you’d be willing to retune the Tombo for me I could buy one and have it shipped to you. I assume there is someway we can communicate with each other privately off this forum to talk about the details. If not, I do know that there a woman in Ohio, I think, who works on harmonicas. I forget her name but it is Sissi...?

Thanks for this discussion and thanks to you all for your knowledge and expertise and willingness to share. Five or so years ago I had the pleasure of sitting in a workshop with Brendan Powers during a weekend festival in Montreal. At that time he recommended one of his harmonicas as a good one for playing Quebecois tunes but he did not have any for sale at that time. Of course, I’ve forgotten which one he recommended but I’m guessing it waz one of his with the Paddy Richter tuning.

Ken

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IaNerd
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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by IaNerd » Mon Jan 20, 2020 3:35 pm

Ken: I re-tune my own harps with varied success but lack the mastery to customize for others. Tell us your general location and Brendan or others could recommend capable customers in your area.

Also be aware that Brendan's own Lucky 13 model is available in Solo tuning, and is therefore another good candidate for re-tuning to Inverted Bebop. Also the Hohner 364S.

As for your Quebecois repertoire, I have no idea. If you specify the key and mode combinations, others and I could steer you to the best re-tuning strategies to try.

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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by Malarz » Mon Jan 20, 2020 4:18 pm

Thanks for your advice. I’m in Connecticut, USA.

Quebecois tunes follow the general modes and keys of both Irish and Scottish, and Cape Breton, music. Most tunes are in fiddle-friendly/single-row accordion friendly keys: D, G, A, C (in order of tunes per key) and their relative minors. A mixolydian for sure. Sometimes F and very seldom Bb. A few of the younger, contemporary composers are stretching those barriers but generally those 4 keys cover the repertoire. I play a set of two tunes which begins in A mix and modulates to F#m. A challenge on the single-row button accordion in D and an even bigger challenge on the D tremolo harmonica.

I understand there is no one harp which will cover all the possibilities. Any advice on harps and tunings is appreciated.

Ken

Malarz
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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by Malarz » Mon Jan 20, 2020 4:32 pm

Of course, Gary Lehman is a harmonica customizer. I couldn’t remember his name a few minutes ago.

Brendan, if you have ideas I’d appreciate your input.

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IaNerd
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Re: Regular Scottish Tuning

Post by IaNerd » Mon Jan 20, 2020 4:41 pm

On the harp forums you read a lot from Gary L. under his anagrammic handle, Gnarly He Man. His work is well regarded.

The basic re-tuning formula: A solo-tuned instrument changed to Inverted Bebop raises its "base" key by two semitones. Therefore:
Solo G becomes Inverted Bebop A
Solo A becomes Inverted Bebop B
Solo Bb becomes Inverted Bebop C
Solo C becomes Inverted Bebop D (this one was tried and reviewed by Brendan Power)
Solo D becomes Inverted Bebop E
etc.

Also remember that any Inverted Bebop "base" key" can also be played without bends or the slider in another major key which is five semitones higher than the base. The breath pattern, however, is different. Therefore:
Base C and also F
Base D and also G
Base E and also A
etc.

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