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QUESTION: How to use Inverted Bebop in a double-diatonic system?

Posted: Fri Jan 31, 2020 4:57 pm
by IaNerd
At Brendan Power says: "The Slide Diatonic is another of my harmonica inventions. I first recorded with it on my 1994 album New Irish Harmonica, and I've used the Slide Diatonic for all my traditional Irish playing ever since."

The tunings for Brendan's offerings are shown in the lower diagram below.

Seydel also offers a "slide-diatonic" or "double-diatonic" model called the Sampler. Based on their Chromatic Deluxe Steel body (but with a lockable slider), these can come in three stock configurations: C/G, D/A and G/D. Virtually any such tuning can be concocted using their online Configurator.

On August 27, 2019, I introduced the idea of Inverted Bebop here: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=612#p2619 All twelve keys of this tuning are shown in the upper diagram below. It could be extended in either/both directions for 14- or 16-hole harps.

Each scale's tonics are shown in boldface and a slightly larger font size.

Each major diatonic scale is accompanied by a repeating "extra note" which is two semitones lower than the tonic and is located directly above each tonic. These "extra notes" are shown in parentheses ( ).

As a default, the slider would raise each note by one semitone. However, some users might prefer a "flat-slide" arrangement whereby the slider lowers each note by one semitone.

Brendan very kindly reviewed the first prototype here: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=612&start=10#p2812

HERE IS MY QUESTION: What are some potentially useful ways that Inverted Bebop could be used in a double-diatonic system? How would your proposed pairings be used in particular kinds of music? Which combinations of key/mode/position would be employed, and why?

I pose this question to the entire Forum because, frankly, the best answers and explanations could never come from me. "Above my pay grade", as they say.



Re: QUESTION: How to use Inverted Bebop in a double-diatonic system?

Posted: Wed Feb 12, 2020 12:46 pm
by EdvinW
I'm sure there are several useful ways to use Inverted Bebop in a double diatonic. One possibility would be to simply use a whole-note slide, i.e. combining IB's in G and A:

Code: Select all

      Slide in   G  B  D  F# G  B  D  F# G  B  D  F# 
Blow  Slide out  F  A  C  E  F  A  C  E  F  A  C  E
      Hole       1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10 11 12
Draw  Slide out  G  B  D  F# G  B  D  F# G  B  D  F# 
      Slide in   A  C# E  G# A  C# E  G# A  C# E  G#
This would let you play in Am, G, Em, D, Bm and A, among others, and thus covers the popular folk keys of many fiddle-centric traditions, including Irish. These keys could all be played with a locked slider.

If you don't lock the slider, you could use it for ornamentation: Using either the slide or a jawflick you would thus have diatonic trills on all but one note in the scale, with B<->C missing in the first three keys and C#<->D missing in the latter three.

There are complete chords, the most useful probably being Am, G, Bm and A, and double stops for partial major C, D and E chords.

If half valved, the tuning would share a property with many (not all!) slide diatonic setups: as all notes of an A or D major scale can be played as draw notes, and as each draw note can be bent one half step, all chromatic notes can be reached by draw bending.

You ask about modes, and as it turns out the major keys mentioned above could all also be played in the Mixolydian mode, and all the minor keys could be played as either pure minor or Dorian! We thus cover all the popular Irish key/mode combinations, and if we can bend to achieve the odd accidental now and then I'd say this is starting to look like a quite nice setup for Irish music and related traditions :)

Re: QUESTION: How to use Inverted Bebop in a double-diatonic system?

Posted: Wed Feb 12, 2020 1:27 pm
by IaNerd
Thanks, Edvin.

I am hoping to also hear from folks who are knowledgeable about jazz, blues, baroque, Latin, classical, South Asian, Slavic, East Asian ... you name it.

Ultimately, I would love to hear skilled performers playing those tunes.