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Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:53 am
by Brendan
Thanks all for your suggestions! 'Bite-size video lessons' seem to get the thumbs up from several of you, and indeed a series of them in different areas is something I've been planning to do for a while. As mentioned, if well planned it's a good way to build up a body of related lessons that could be compiled into a book later on.

The trouble is that I'm terrible at multi-tasking! I get obsessed with the current idea or project to the exclusion of everything else. In the past couple of years it's been R & D in the workshop that's totally taken me over. I keep getting more tech ideas I want to explore, and following them up is very time and brain hungry. I love it but it means that lots of other things I enjoy, like playing, recording, doing instructional stuff, get put on the back burner.

Ideally I should set one day a week at least for non-workshop stuff, but when I'm in the flow of a new design all scheduling goes out the window. Maybe I need a minder or enforcer, like the personal trainer Hollywood actors use to make sure they keep fit. But he/she'd need either very good persuasive skills, or a Taser...

Thanks anyway for the ideas, keep them coming. Hopefully they will come to fruition, sometime!

Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Thu Apr 13, 2017 4:47 pm
by ramblingpedro
hi, for my part I'm very much interested in the harmonica subculture of india, of which I'm aware through internet and youtube, of course.
for example i have learned or am learning these:

some things found on the musescore website as well:

do you know Ashok Bandari? he's a magician and harmonica player, he's great!

so well, it would be great to have more songs, playing tips and advice for indian ( and oriental ) music on the chromatic especially as I concentrate on it (it's already a lot of work) and exchanging with people with the same interest.

Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Thu Apr 13, 2017 5:56 pm
by CrawfordEs
Don't get a minder or trainer.
You seem to do well as is. Use your freedom to obsess and focus that's how innovation happens.
I had an old boss tell me that "multitasking meant Not getting more than one thing done at a time."
Maybe you could collaborate with a writer or organizer to put what you have already done into a publishable form.

Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 8:30 am
by Doug Chrysler
Would love to see traditional folk tunes. I'm a big fan of traditional Anglo-Saxon music.

Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 7:46 pm
by harooki2
I'm currently interested in American country music, so I'd like to see some stuff specifically focused on that. To save time, I would do mini video lessons rather than books. I'm also looking for the follow-up to your "Introduction to the PowerBender" book.

Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 1:13 am
by Paris
Hi Brendan,
I would be very excited to see videos that feature your own tunes! Maybe include info on the harp/tuning you used to record the track and any tips on learning the tune! I would be most interested in POWER-BENDER or POWER-CHROM tunes personally. Just to throw one out there, "The Dingle Angle", perhaps?!

I have taken hundreds of private music lessons and taught music as well, and if I'm being honest, there are times when it's difficult to keep up that drive to practice your instrument day in and day out......anyone?

Anyway, for me, one of the most effective and fun ways to learn an instrument is to play along with records! Hearing players(i.e. Brendan) really killing it on their instrument immediately inspires me to try to be THAT good, or to try to have a sound just like THAT! Seeing as how all of your tunes utilize your custom tunings and harmonicas, I can't think of a better source to learn from.

Just an idea,

Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Thu Jun 29, 2017 7:31 am
by Brendan
Thanks for the ideas everyone.

I'm currently in a phase of reorganising my workshop/production system to allow me to free up more time for videos etc. July/August will be busy with releasing a backlog of new harps etc but hopefully after that!

Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 6:27 am
by Simon
Hi Brendan.

Thanks for setting up this forum. It's great that you're sharing your skill and knowledge with others.

I get the impression that most members here have far more knowledge and experience than I have, so I hope I'm not in the wrong place. Anyway, you asked what I'd like to see. As something close to a complete neophyte when it comes to harmonica, I would really like to see something along the lines of "How do I Choose the Best Kind of Harmonica(s) for Me?" And I don't mean just a simple "correlate to genre" kind of table. I mean somewhere where, without judgement, anyone can talk about a particular musical application, their existing knowledge and experience etc and others might be able to point them in the right direction.

Maybe just having an "Absolute beginners" area on the site could cater for this?

All of which is really just saying that I need help in wading through all the myriad information and options when it comes to harmonicas and thought it might be a bit rude to ask your advice via email... if you can understand?



Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 5:13 am
by rishio
I'd like to see more Powerbender Videos. I got my first harmonica, a Powerbender, from Brenden a little more than a year ago and since then have been practicing everyday. I love this tuning, maybe for slightly different reasons than why it was designed. I hated that I couldn't draw bend notes 5 and 7 on Richter, it flipped breathing patterns in the last 3 holes, and you had to learn advanced bending techniques to play important notes. The Powerbender make so much more sense to my brain and it's just so much easier for me to have a mental map of this tuning. I guess the only annoying thing is that note 4 draw and 5 blow are the same, giving me more confusing options - but I'm sure there are reasons for this that I'll appreciate later.

So far I have adopted 100% tongue-block style and am able to bend all the notes pretty well (including holes 9 and 10 which I'm just starting to get the hang of without sqeaks). I've also been practicing the 1st position major and the three major/minor pentatonic scales closest to the home key. I've also just discovered the 2nd position blues scale though I don't know how to use it to actually play the blues yet!

I started with the Brendan Power Powerbender Harps but I wanted something higher quality that lasts longer and have been happy with the Seydel 1847 Classic in the Key of G and A. They are super durable harps that sound great! I view having fewer keys as an advantage to learning because it forces me to use other positions and do more bending while I jam. I actually only like the tone out of a G and A harp throughout its range, everything else seems to go either too high (shrill!) or to low (hard to bend) for me, so I don't ever plan to get other keys. I also am mostly interested in jamming with guitarists, and A and G seem to work really well for that. Most guitarists seem to be happy to play in the keys of CAGED and their relative minors, which are all covered nicely with the G and A harp.

Anyway, just wanted to say I'm commited to 100% Powerbender and am learning from various videos on YouTube - but it would be great to have some instructional material designed specifically for the Powerbender. I love this tuning and my only fear is that Seydel will stop making them because of lack of popularity. I really wish other Harmonica Makers (Hohner, Suzuki) made it without some expensive and reed damaging customization stuff. Customizers file the reeds which I believe would make them thinner and weaker, giving the harmonica a shorter life span. I like the way Seydel does it, they just switch the reeds instead of filing them down.

So just saying that I vote for more Powerbender stuff.

Re: What Would You Like to See?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 6:33 am
by Brendan
I do have an instructional book/CD for PowerBender already, in case you hadn't seen it: ... owerbender

But I will put more up on YouTube in due course, thanks for the enthusiasm and encouragement :-)