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Harmonica Lessons: Rhythmic Breathing: 4 Stroke Roll and 3 Stroke Roll

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Until now, I've been teaching
you things about the harmonica that
relate to what notes we're playing.
Sometimes, there's rhythmic
patterns that I've played.
There's been some vamps.
Now I'd like to change the focus
away from the notes and
just toward the rhythm of the breath.
At a certain point I realized that
underlining everything that we play on
the harmonica,
there's a separate rhythm of the breath.
For example, if you play
you can play that just simple lick
we're inhaling three notes
exhaling one
in one then out
and then three out so it's like
[NOISE] there's a separate rhythm.
[NOISE] In, out, in, out, in.
And it really helped me when I was trying
to play certain passages,
I remember one on
a Trio Globo CD I had to play.
And this is in a key that uses over
blows and I mean a bunch of bends.
And I kept thinking of the notes and
I couldn't play it fast.
Until i took a step back and
I realized that the pattern
of my breath was, in,out,in,out,in,out
[NOISE] so once I realized that,
I have the mouth position the embouchure,
for the bends and
I knew what notes I was playing but
I stopped thinking about the notes
specifically and I went [SOUND].
And then
I can play it really fast.
I went wow,
this is something really different.
And then my son was studying drums, and he
has played drums with me many times live,
and on my instructional video,
out of the box Volume One.
In taking him to his drum lessons,
his drum teacher stressed rudiments.
Rudiments are a thing on
the drums where you are trying to
play all the possible combinations of
sticking, of the left and right hand.
Strokes and bounces, because the drumhead
gives a nice bounce to the stick.
And I realized at a certain
point after watching him
that there was an analogy to
harmonica breathing patterns.
So if you think of the harmonica as
a bunch of drums and when you breath out
it's like your right hand hitting a drum.
And when you draw in it's like
your left hand hitting a drum.
And when you slide from
one hole to the other,
it's like letting your right
hand bounce three times.
And when you draw sliding [SOUND],
it would be like letting your
left hand bounce three times.
So for example, on drums if you're
playing a triple stroke roll,
it's [SOUND] You have to have a nice
snare that has a nice bounce to it.
[SOUND] On the harmonica we can just go.
[SOUND] I mean, that's pretty fast.
And I only am breathing once for
every three notes.
So the harmonica in a certain way is
opposite from the drums in that the drums,
if you let the stick bounce too many times
it gets harder to keep the bounce going.
On the harmonica,
the more times you let, quote,
the stick bounce, the more holes
you sweep past in one breath.
The easier it is.
So a four stroke roll on drums is hard.
[SOUND] On harmonica it's even easier.
And you can see that when I'm doing this,
sometimes if you watch my jaw
The lower jaw is moving because the upper
jaw can't move.
So, I'm not always moving my entire
head over the harmonica when I'm doing
these things.
And I'm trying to keep
that embouchure firm,
like I talked about in the very
beginning of this video.
About having a firm embouchure.
Sounds like I'm blazing away
[NOISE] just two breathes,
that's the outbreathe
And I'm moving up and
down the harmonica.
I'm not thinking about anything.
I'm just trying to get the rhythm
correct and the breathing even.
So, I don't care what notes I'm playing.
Those are quadruple stroke rolls.
I could do a triple stroke
roll like I started with.
you can do it
coming down.
It's just
letting those
reeds just pop.
They're just going to pop
when you go over them.
You don't need to put much energy into
this or effort, and
the reeds will just respond to you.
The same way that a good snare drum
that has a nice, live bounce to it,
the sticks will just bounce.
You don't have to make them
bounce, they just