How to play a Minor song (Summertime) on a Major harmonica
What you'll learn
- How to play a song in three minor keys on a major key - D minor, E minor, A minor
- It's best if you can play single notes
How to play a Minor song (Summertime) on a Major harmonica
Many people think it's impossible to play in minor keys on a major key harmonica - I'm here to reveal the truth to you!
Ever wanted to play a groovy minor-key tune on your harmonica?
Do you need a minor key harmonica? No - although they are excellent instruments.
I'll show you how to play one tune in 3 minor keys on one normal harmonica.
I'll also show you 7 positions, 7 modes, and 7 pentatonic scales to help you improvise.
"Summertime" is an aria composed in 1934 by George Gershwin for the 1935 opera Porgy and Bess. The lyrics are by DuBose Heyward, the author of the novel Porgy on which the opera was based, although the song is also co-credited to Ira Gershwin.
The song soon became a popular and much-recorded jazz standard, described as "without a doubt ... one of the finest songs the composer ever wrote ... Gershwin's highly evocative writing brilliantly mixes elements of jazz and the song styles of blacks in the southeast United States from the early twentieth century". Composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim has characterized Heyward's lyrics for "Summertime" and "My Man's Gone Now" as "the best lyrics in the musical theater"
All seven modes in the middle register
These can be played all across the harmonica using bent notes.
C Ionian major mode 4 -4 5 -5 6 -6 -7 7 (1st position)
D Dorian minor mode (show you inside)
E Phrygian minor mode (show you inside)
F Lydian major mode (show you inside)
G Mixoydian major mode (show you inside)
A Aeolian minor mode (show you inside)
B Locrian minor mode (show you inside)
By the way, ‘Modes’ is a concept used by all instruments not just the harmonica. It’s in standard music theory.
‘Positions’ is a concept used by many instruments but has different meanings so Harmonica Positions is exclusive to the harmonica.
Who this course is for:
- This is for all levels
Wow, I can't quite believe this - over 48,000 students, and 67,000 courses purchased - come and join us...they can't all be wrong!
I am your HARMONICA SPECIALIST. I make one brand new short course every month.
Please see my copyright policy at the bottom of this page.
If you are new to harmonica please take the '30-day challenge' or the big 'Learn Harmonica - the easiest instrument to pick up' course to get you started.
If you are into Blues look for any course with the word 'Blues' in the title.
I also have three percussion courses for you on Bodhran and Washboard.
*Ben is the Vice-President of HarmonicaUK - formerly known as NHL - The National Harmonica League in the UK
*Professional Harmonica Instructor since 1996
*Ben qualified as CTABRSM in 2002 (Certificate of Teaching - Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music)
*Certificate of Music Workshop Skills (Goldsmiths University of London) in 1995
*Accredited Diatonic Harmonica Teacher 1993 - HTAB (Harmonica Teachers Accreditation Board, supported by Lee Oskar Harmonicas, the National Harmonica League of UK and the International Harmonica Organisation).
*Ben's teaching business 'HarpsCool' is proud to be
'IN PARTNERSHIP WITH HOHNER'
'Ben Hewlett is one of the UK's most respected harmonica teachers and the UK's most prolific author on harmonica tuition. He will lead you through the ins and outs of harmonica playing through a series of short video lessons. His teaching style is confident, practiced, humorous, skilful, knowledgeable and packed with information in bite sized chunks. Ben is used to teaching all over the world at prestigious harmonica festivals and is delighted to offer his services to you.'
'You'll know Ben better as a harmonica teacher but he also studied Irish Drum - Bodhran - and tin whistle in the 1990's with the now very famous Steafan Hannigan and Marc Moggy from Renegade Rhythms. He got so into Bodhran playing he bought an expensive tuneable drum from Marc and it works better than ever to this day. Ben has played Bodhran in bands and sessions for years and even has a Senheiser bass drum microphone embedded into his drum. Check out his Bodhran teaching on Udemy'
I would recommend using 'Transcribe!' for slowing down and changing the key on my backing tracks - it's free as a trial and well worth a look in my opinion. I also heard Capo is worth a look.
I have been teaching people to play the harmonica since 1996 as a full-time job. I have started tens of thousands on their way to play the harmonica and I can tell you - it sure beats working
I believe I was the first person to be a full-time harmonica teacher in the UK, there are still very few of us - so there's plenty of room if you want to come and join me.
For the last few years, I have been the Chairman of HarmonicaUK - formerly known as the National Harmonica League (NHL) which supports the UK harmonica players community.
Much of my time is spent writing books with Paul Lennon on how to play the harmonica, there are 20 or so with loads more in the pipeline - we have so many ideas it never stops.
I teach children near home, and with my team at HarpsCool where the team and I give 300 children weekly harmonica lessons.
My YT videos, and their success and feedback, are the reason I am teaching on Udemy; there are millions of hits on the youtube sites and thousands of subscribers. People are kind enough to say how clear the teaching is, and how it's helped them to understand aspects of harmonica playing - at last
I run workshops at major harmonica festivals including SPAH in the US, the Bristol International Harmonica Festival in the UK, the World Harmonica Festival in Trossingen, Germany - home of Hohner, and the Harmonica Masters Workshops also in Germany.
I even use the harmonica in team building events for many international companies.
Cruise Ships have been part of my teaching life since 2002 and the combination of teaching, performing and travelling is quite a blast. Who knew teaching the harmonica would take me to the Caribbean three times, Africa, Russia, Scandinavia, and Atlantic Europe.
You will often find me performing in various venues and going to jam sessions, and I love playing with interesting groups or sitting on a number when the opportunity arises - that's one of the wonderful things about the harmonica, you can have it in your back pocket and join in with people wherever you are.
So you are in extremely competent and safe hands, so do yourself a favour and try one of my courses - in fact, have a free lecture or two to suck it and see - that's a harmonica joke by the way.
Firstly I need to make it clear I'm not doing this commercially - I'm not selling widgets; I'm a professional teacher trying to make a living teaching harmonica. This is not something you would do if you wanted to make a lot of money but I love doing it so I'll carry on.
If you think any copyright has been infringed please contact me immediately and I will take action.
Respect and thanks to all the artists for writing and performing these amazing songs that you want to learn.
The Copyright and Rights in Performances (Research, Education, Libraries and Archives) Regulations 2014 (extracts)
"Not more than 5% of a work may be copied under this section by or on behalf of an educational establishment in any period of 12 months, and for these purposes a work, which incorporates another work is to be treated as a single work.
Fair dealing with a work for the purposes of private study does not infringe any copyright in the work.”
Any recordings used in my courses represent less than 5% of the entire work and are already in the public domain on YouTube.
Any written transcriptions are written by me or my team to promote the work and the artist and to facilitate students who want to learn more about their music.
Any audio backing tracks are written and recorded by me or my team to promote the work and the artist and to facilitate students who want to learn more about their music.
If there was a fee for pointing students to an artist's original music (e.g. on Youtube) I would not bother teaching that music so it would not get taught and promoted by me.
If you are a copyright holder and feel I have used too much of your work please contact me and I will remove whatever you feel is inappropriate without question.
You will find my contact details of most of my websites or just google if you want to talk to me.