For the players by ear, try this free website
for harmonica players. It's a play-along site,
with harmonica tablature included.
You may download and print the tablatures freely:
The Hohner Steve Baker Special was a 14-hole, single reed per note,
diatonic harp, using the Hohner Marine Band #365 comb. The SBS
was made circa 1990-2015(?). It may have been made earlier, by
a year or two. Available in keys C,D,F,G,A.
The SBS was a Richter system harp, with the first 3 holes a duplication
of the standard Marine Band #1896, holes 1-3, but added an octave lower.
It added an extra hole on the high end, with the scale's "mi" note exhale, and
"ti" note inhale.
Your Brendan Power Lucky 13 seems to be about the same as the Hohner
SBS, but with one less hole at the high end.
Is that a Lucky 13, designed by Brendan Powers?
Is it set up (reed placement) like a Hohner Steve Baker Special model,
with one less chamber than the SBS?
Nice Work, Ricksilverfish.
Do you have a sound file?
If yes, please post it here. We'd like
to hear your microphones, even if the
sound is from our lowly computer speakers.
Sussex, Wisconsin, USA
Is this SPAM?
Here are a few solutions to sticky valves on valved harmonicas.
Single reed per note diatonic harps don't need valves, because
there is only one exhale and one inhale reed in each chamber.
With slide chromatics, there are 2 exhale and 2 inhale reeds in
a chamber. One of the two exhale or inhale reeds in a chamber
must be closed off while the other is being played, so valves are
Double reed per note diatonic harps don't need valves, because
each reed has it's own chamber.
Some solutions for pesky Mylar valves sticking and popping.The best
solution is warming the chromatic harmonica for 2-5 minutes, before
using it. Try any, all or none of the se temporary fixes:
1. On a single layer valve, take a pin, and stick the pointed tip, from
the valve top, through the open end of the valve. This will set up a "pimple"
on the bottom of the valve, allowing the condensation to be evaporated.
2. On 2-layer mylar valves, slide a small piece of news print (newspaper)
between the lower valve part and the reed plate, then slowly and carefully,
pull the newsprint off the reed plate. Do the same thing between the 1st
and 2nd mylar layers.
3. On a 2-layer valve, halfway from the open end to the closed end of the valve.
use a paper clip between the two mylar layers. Open the paper clip to a straight
wire, and slide it between the layers, perpendicular to the ends of the valves.
Press down lightly on the top layer, creating a "kink" between the two layers.
4. Use a hair dryer, about 1 foot (12 inches) away from the valve, to dry the
5. Use a "car wax" on the reed plate. Just a very small amount on the index finger
will be wiped across the reed slot. The car wax will melt under heat, and will
prevent a moisture build-up. Do the entire outer valved reed plates before playing.
This is a long-lasting solution. You will not ingest any car wax.
Only the valves that are outside the chambers will need this treatment. They are
exhale valves. When we inhale, our breath direction is not into the harmonica, but
from the harmonica. The inhale breath is a room temperature breath, so no
condensation will occur, in most cases.
Welcome to the Harmonica Club. You have many new friends here.
Try this free website for listings of harmonica players near you.
It's the site of the National Harmonica League, UK:
Sussex, Wisconsin, USA
Hello, Reed Smith.
For outdoor playing, I use a Seydel Chromatic Standard,
12-hole slide chromatic. In an experiment, I played it in
a snow blizzard, and it worked fine. It's a solo system harp,
like the valved slide chromatics, sold in the key of C only.
Valveless slide chromatics use a "discreet" comb, where
each reed has it's own chamber (like a tremolo harp).
No valves are needed, but the slider mechanism's holes
are much smaller than the traditional valved slide chromatics.
The Seydel Chromatic Standard is a valveless harp, and
produces a weaker, thinner tone per reed than the valved
chromatics. Valved harps won't work in a snow blizzard.
Try a hand warmer (used by hunters). Wrap the harmonica
in the hand warmer for 3-5 minutes.
The best performance temperature range for any valved
harmonica is 98-108 degrees Fahrenheit (37-42 degrees Celsius).
The valved harmonicas need to be on or near the human body
temperature of 98.6 Fahrenheit (38 C), for optimal performance.
When we play a valved harmonica without warming it first, our
breath of 98.6 F is transferred to a harp's room temperature
of an average 72 F. Condensation forms on the valves, slowing
or stopping their movement.
Valves are, in my opinion, absolutely needed on a slide chromatic
harmonica. Unvalved slide harps such as the Hohner Koch Chromatic,
or other brands' 10-hole slide harps, leak air, making it more difficult to
produce a full tone.
Warming the harp to our breath temperature helps to avoid condensation.
Another alternative is to cool down the breath, by drinking ice water before
playing. Some performers claim that they have a gag reflex to ice water,
and prefer to warm the harmonica.
The Ab13 chord has 3 varieties, using the
1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th, 11th, and 13th scale
Ab-C-Eb-Gb-Bb-Db-F = Ab dominant 13th;
Ab-C-Eb-Gb-B-Db-F = Ab13 with natural 9th;
Ab-C-Eb-Gb-Bbb-Db-F = Ab13 with flatted 9th.
Everything that you'll need to know about jazz music theory
is in this FREE book by Jamey Aebersold:
"Jazz Handbook", by Jamey Aerbersold, published by:
Jamey Aebersold Jazz;
"Surgical tubing" is available at most hardware stores. It's sold by the yard,
and it's relatively inexpensive. One yard of the tubing will last almost forever.
Take a piece of your current tubing, and a mouthpiece screw, with you,
when going to the hardware store. Use your current parts to measure
for the correct hardware store tubing's inner and outer diameters.
The tubing's length is also important. measure the tubing length with your
current factory-provided tubing, then mark cut the hardware tubing with a
scissors or utility knife.
Surgical tubing is used in hospitals for intravenous feedings, and in
model airplanes for a fuel line.
Sultan of Sussex
Hello, Larrymac. Welcome to the Harmonica Club.
Try this free download for harmonica repairs/maintenance,
from the Hohner company. There are more subjects on
repair/maintenance/tuning from Hohner, at the right side
of the page:
Sussex, Wisconsin, USA