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Harmonica Lessons: "The Tri-State Boogie" by Howard Levy

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[MUSIC]
So now I'm gonna explain a little
bit about the Tri-State Boogie.
Piece that Chris Seabald and I played.
It's basically a blues, except that
instead of going to the four chord,
it goes to the flat three chord.
So it's blues in G.
[MUSIC]
And then it goes.
[MUSIC]
Back to the to the one chord and
then it goes to the five chord.
And then to the flat five substitution,
[MUSIC]
and then to
the four
[MUSIC]
and the flat five substitution of
the four.
[MUSIC]
And then down to the F.
[MUSIC]
And
then back to G.
So it's not exactly 12 bars.
It's more like 24 bars or
it could even be 32 bars.
I haven't counted the bars lately,
but it's a blues form.
So
[MUSIC]
and that lick.
And the first lick that it starts with is
[MUSIC]
which are triads that are a flatted
fifth apart.
So they go.
[MUSIC]
It's D flat triad,
[MUSIC]
and a G triad.
[MUSIC]
And then that flat
third chord which would be where
the four chord would be.
[MUSIC]
And that's a B flat seven chord.
[MUSIC]
Playing a B flat.
[MUSIC]
That blues lick that works in every key.
[MUSIC]
And
then I have a weird little,
[MUSIC]
and then I'm at the five chord,
which is sort of like that same
blues like in D,
[MUSIC]
but it's only half of it.
[MUSIC]
And then the other half of it in A flat.
[MUSIC]
And then the same lick in C,
which is the four chord.
[MUSIC]
And the other half of it,
a flatted fifth the way in F sharp.
[MUSIC]
And then
we're in a
[MUSIC]
back up to G.
And the solos follow the form of the tune.
All those chord changes,
I have to play over them all.
So that when the turn around comes the D,
[MUSIC]
the A flat,
[MUSIC]
the C,
[MUSIC]
and the F sharp.
[MUSIC]
I have to really know where I'm gonna go
before those chords get there.
So I sing like a melody to myself in my
mind in those keys before I play each one,
believe it or not that's whats going on.
While I'm playing I'm
anticipating where I'm gonna go.
And then, the little
percussive break
section
[MUSIC].
That takes advantage of the fact that
you've got to draw and the three blow.
A guitar player would just be picking on.
[MUSIC]
So I'm kind of picking on the two draw and
the three blow,
using my breath going back and
forth simulating a guitar
pick going down and up.
[MUSIC]
And the rhythm
is a triplet rhythm.
[MUSIC]
But then, I start phrasing
those triplets in groups of four.
[MUSIC]
Because if you play three fours
it's the same as four threes.
So it's
[MUSIC]
one, two, three, four, one, two, three,
four, one, two, three, four, one, two,
three, four, one, two, three, four,
one, two, three, four.
See it comes out even, and you have to
really keep your brain and your body kind
of separated when you do this kind of
thing because you don't want to rush.
If you rush at all you're gonna be off.
So you have to be able to play
the rhythm the triplet rhythm,
but the triplets [SOUND]
the notes are in groups of
four even though the rhythm is
[MUSIC]
the notes are,
[MUSIC]
see?
[MUSIC]
I can't do it.
[LAUGH]
[MUSIC]
Second half of that
are groups of four.
And so the end of the tune is
the same thing as the break.
[MUSIC]
And then we're
off, that was it.
So that's the way that tune works.
It's a blues.
And I did write most of it
while I was driving in my car,
just repeating the ideas.
And I don't really recommend,
I don't want anybody to sue me saying,
I got into a car accident or
I killed somebody or I died while,
I was driving in the car, but many
harmonica players play while they drive.
It's just the way it is.
And I've written some of my best
tunes that way, including this one.
So enjoy, and
if any of you are able to play this,
I'm gonna put the chart
of the tune up online.
And if any of you work out a version
of it, I would love to hear it.
Okay.
Take care.
[MUSIC]