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The Origin of The Harmonica


The Origin of The Harmonica

Inspiration for creating harmonica

One morning in the early spring of 1821, a farmer girl in a German village played with her mother’s wooden comb at the door, playing and playing, playing out a new trick: she found two pieces of paper, one on the next and the other on the wooden Comb it, then put it on your mouth and blow it up, it was unbelievable that the comb can make sound. At this time, a musician named Buschmann passed through here and was attracted by the wonderful sound. He went up and asked the girl to show him the wooden comb.

After carefully reviewing this “masterpiece”, Buschmann developed the idea of developing a new instrument. Back home, he used the ivory to make the world’s first harmonica with reference to the little girl’s wooden comb, the ancient Chinese pipa and the Roman flute.

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“Sheng” – the ancient version of harmonica

Compared to other orthodox instruments, the history of harmonica is actually quite short, and the versions are different in different parts of the world. This is the main reason why individuals can only talk about it and can hardly study it.

After many editions have been referenced, some of the recorded views are consistent in the world: “Sheng” is one of the ancient musical instruments of China, a reed rhythm with a free rhythm, and the earliest musical instrument with harmony. So it is considered a pioneer of modern harmonica.

In the eighteenth century, it spread to Europe. After a period of not too short, people gradually studied and invented the harmonica, the Reed Organ and the Saxophone from its structure. Therefore, it is also recognized as Their originator.

Buschmann – the father of modern harmonica

There is a French watchmaker called Christian Fricdrich Ludwig Buschmann who takes a sample of the pipa and arranges 15 pitches (Pitch-Pipe) together, depending on their length. One voice, he called this simple and compact new invention for the harmonica (another term is named “aura”), which was in 1821 AD.

Buschmann described his invention as “a unique instrument”. The harmonica is only four inches long and has a length and length. Using 21 scales, the degree of performance may be as high as that of the piano, gradually increasing, but no the piano keys use six consonants, as long as the player can control the breathing.”

Christian Friedrich Ludwig Buschmann

Buschmann’s unique instrument was once popular in the Austrian capital of Vienna. They were not very funny at the time. They were used by the aristocratic women as accessories, and the gentlemen installed it on the top of the cane. Show beautiful. It is not an exaggeration for Bushman to be called the “father of the harmonica” by future generations.

Harmonica has been mass produced, the leading brand Hohner appears

In the early eighteenth century, the performance of musical instruments has not been taken seriously, and the harmonica can be accepted by the majority of people, showing that its advantages are unmatched by other instruments. Later, a weaver named Christian messer used the imitation of this instrument as a sideline.

At the time, another watchmaker named Matthias Hohner bought a plum, began to study how to transform it. This also laid the foundation for his own success in producing harmonica in 1857, from producing only 650 harmonica per year, to 1900, producing 40,000 per year.

With a harmonica, today and the factory have been able to produce more than 650 instruments (and other instruments) in one hour. Over 2.3 million pieces have been produced throughout the year. Its branches are spread all over the world. In hardware development, the German Hohner plant has a significantly important contribution.

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Diatonic Blue

In 1825, a musical instrument craftsman Richter, was born in Bohemia at the end of the 18th century. He noticed that the aura harmonica, which can only be played by air, was not easy to play the shortcomings of folk music at that time. So, he joined Inhaled reeds, the way the scales are arranged is called the Richter System, which is a very important invention and has an enlightenment for future generations.

This arrangement of the Richter scale is that the insufflation is the Tonic chord arrangement, and the inhalation is the Dominant 7th chord arrangement; in the case of the C adjustment, the insufflation is the C chord, and the inhalation becomes G7 chords. The two chords of the Richter System are suitable for playing the folk music of the time, and it was also a model for making harmonica at the time. Hohner uses the harmonica system’s harmonica, which is similar to today’s Blues Harp harmonica.

In 1865, Hohner’s harmonica appeared in the United States and was mass produced in 1888. But for some reason, when the diatonic Richter Harmonica was introduced to the United States, it would be called “French Harp” or “Harp” (Harp originally meant harp), so Harp also became a ten-hole harmonica (10 Holes Harmonica).American European music culture and African-American black music not only embodies the new life of the harmonica, but also slowly promotes the harmonica music.

Lee Oskar Harmonica With Guitar Tombo
Chromatic – the harmonica can play a tune in any key

There is a harmonica that can be used to convert semitone keys (we call it Chromatic Harmonica), which was probably developed after 1885. This seemingly simple but magical button makes the performance of the chromatic melody and tonality of the chromatic melody greatly improved, which is why it is no longer a good thing to play classical music with a harmonica.

Unreachable things after the 1950s, composers who discovered the rich musicality of the chromatic harmonica began to make a lot of important works for him, instead of staying at the point of playing light music or some folk songs and popular songs, many of them outstanding. Composers: Mi Fu, Fohan Williams, James Moody, Micheal Spivakowsky, Gordon Jacob, Weila Lobos, etc. The personal biographies and achievements of the three master performers, Larry Adler, Tommy Reilly and Huang Qingbai, were recognized by The New Grove Music Dictionary and were listed on the celebrity list.

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Harmonica in Asia

The development of harmonica in Asia is much slower than in Europe and America. It was introduced to Osaka, Japan in about 1898. At that time, it was more interested in a tremolo harmonica (tremolo Harmonica). After about 30 years of circulation, people discovered Ricky. The harmonica-arranged harmonica is not perfect for playing Japanese folk songs, and it has been improved to the polyphonic harmonica scale we now blow (La and Fa in the bass).

As the music level improved and the requirements became more and more rigorous, the polyphonic harmonica was improved by a number of harmonica masters, and a minor harmonica was developed. Finally, the local folk songs of Japan were fully played, and the two masters of Sato Hideo and Fukushima Changxi contributed. From 1924 to 1933, it was introduced to Southeast Asian countries such as mainland China, Singapore, Malaysia, etc. People who love harmonica began to organize various association groups, gathering the power of everyone, and constantly writing an immortal page for the spread of harmonica.

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Harmonica in Taiwan

The development of harmonica in Taiwan began in 1945 (the 34th year of the Republic of China) (maybe earlier, it is difficult to study), and many of the harmonica circles in Lin Zhihua, Li Chunxiang, Wang Qingxun, Wang Qingji and others have opened up in the Republic of China.

With a million students studying in the year, the harmonica has become an indispensable instrument; but with the improvement of living standards, many expensive instruments are no longer difficult to contact, and the faction is constantly disturbing. The learning atmosphere of the harmonica is very good. It was quickly tested. In the short period of 10 years, it fell to the bottom in the 80 years of the Republic of China. It almost became the ashes of history.

The crisis is a turning point. Thanks to a group of people with a heart to restore the harmonica and open a way to survive. A large number of foreign information was introduced to stimulate the devastating situation, and boldly went to the international arena to participate in various world-class harmonica competitions.

In 1993, it won the first prize. (The Taipei Huangshikou Qin Orchestra is Taiwan for 40 years. The first group to win the World Harmonica Competition), the CCA will also award a special commendation for this. Since then, the road to Rome has been opened, and there are many people who have the heart and soul to look at the harmonica of the world, and practice their dreams and ambitions.

Harmonica Gm514984738 88352833Nowadays, the rhythm of the harmonica is so difficult for individuals to estimate. With the diversification of music, the harmonics of the harmonica are added. However, under the normal development of the triangle, the top people are eager to come out. Unfortunately, the foundation of the bottom is still unstable compared to the development of other instruments. This is why the harmonica’s publications and teachers are still scarce. The score is still at the depth of twenty or thirty years ago, but no more outstanding works lead us to the top.

Source: easttopmusic.com



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