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Author Topic: Hello From Granada Hills --- San Fernando Valley/Los Angeles  (Read 759 times)

Big Daddy James

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Hello From Granada Hills --- San Fernando Valley/Los Angeles
« on: December 09, 2017, 03:07:39 AM »
Hello there,

I haven't started a video yet so I know I'm coming a bit late to the party this being December and the Jam ending in February. My name is James....

How long have you been playing harmonica?
Roughly about 5 years....roughly being the keyword. As in, playing the instrument roughly and doing it for approximately 5 years give or take a few months.

Do you consider yourself a beginner, amateur, or pro?
I think I'm a beginateur --- Advanced beginner maybe --- If this is the first time you've picked up a harmonica you might mistake me for a beginning/intermediate

Do you play any other instruments?
a million years ago I dabbled with a guitar

Have you been in any bands?
Not once, ever

Of all instruments, why play harmonica?
There's no way to say this without sounding cliché or cheesy or both but.....it sings to me. It calls to me in a way no other instrument does. It's an incredibly unique instrument. It is the only wind instrument in the world where you can make sounds/tones breathing in as well as breathing out; all other (wind) instruments require you to exhale in order to make sounds. No other instrument has as much expression in such a compact form (fits in your pocket). Hopefully this doesn't sound too jingoistic (look it up....I had to....it's a great word) but I love art forms that are inherently American. Blues and Jazz would fall into this category. All other art forms (painting, sculpture, ballet...it can all be traced back to Europe or the far east) modern day tap dancing would fall into this category as well...of which I am also a practitioner of. Albeit, in a body 100 LBS. smaller 15 years ago. But blues and jazz did not exist before Americans invented them. African-Americans I might add.

How do you approach playing harmonica?  Do you know music theory?
I sneak up on it carefully and pounce with all my might. I play mostly by ear/tab/youtube. I know just enough theory to be extremely dangerous. Meaning, I can talk about it in a way that makes me sound very well informed while simultaneously having absolutely no clue as to what I'm actually talking about. All joking aside, I feel like I'm on the cusp of having a real breakthrough in understanding music theory in general but several key things which I can't quite identify are still eluding me.

What part of the world are you from? What do you do for a living?
See subject heading. Several years ago I was laid off from the aerospace industry. At mid-life, finding a job in that field has proven all but impossible to re-enter. I am currently a ride-share driver for Lyft and Uber.

Who are your favorite musicians and harmonica players?
This is another impossible question as I can quite sincerely say there are probably too many to list. Again with the clichés but of course Little Walter, both Sonny Boy Williamsons, Big Walter Horton, George "harmonica" Smith, Paul Butterfield, etc, etc... But also there's a ton of more current players: the late, great Paul Delay, Dennis Gruenling, Mitch Kashmar, Jason Ricci, Mark Hummel, Kim Wilson, the late Norton Buffalo, Greg "Fingers" Taylor (no longer with Jimmy Buffet), along with quite literally a metric TON of guys I'm leaving out. So, so many great players out there. That's me in very large nut-shell.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2017, 03:11:34 AM by Big Daddy James »

Beelzebob

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Re: Hello From Granada Hills --- San Fernando Valley/Los Angeles
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2017, 01:26:34 PM »
Welcome James!

You sound like every one of us here, we all made some powerful connection with the harp and had to pursue it.  So you found the right place.  Jam participation has been low for a while, but I'm always optimistic it will pick back up.  It took me six months back in 2006 to get the gear I needed and post to the jam, but what a rush when I finally did.  With your tech background, it shouldn't be the hurdle that it was for me.  I haven't been jamming myself lately, but I hope to change that in 2018.

Beelzebob (Bob)

Ringer

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Re: Hello From Granada Hills --- San Fernando Valley/Los Angeles
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2017, 02:22:06 PM »
Welcome aboard James!!  You're in for a great ride.

Matt

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Re: Hello From Granada Hills --- San Fernando Valley/Los Angeles
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2017, 11:34:10 PM »
Welcome!

Lips Angelo

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Re: Hello From Granada Hills --- San Fernando Valley/Los Angeles
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2017, 10:07:23 AM »
Hey James .... welcome to the site.  Would love to hear you post a song.

Mike

Big Daddy James

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Re: Hello From Granada Hills --- San Fernando Valley/Los Angeles
« Reply #5 on: December 24, 2017, 01:09:53 AM »
Thanks for all the welcomes guys....I will definitely try to post something after the 1st of the new year. Merry Christmas -- Happy Hanukkah -- Happy Kwanzaa....whatever everyone celebrates...I hope it's a good one!!! ;D

 

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