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David's Tip of the Day: Gapping

David Barrett Admin's picture

What's the right gap for you?

1 - Low enough that it responds at very low volume.

2 - Not so low that reeds stall when articulation or played with relatively high pressure (when it's time to kick butt!).

3 - Set evenly across the range of the harmonica (keep mind that it's higher for low reeds and lower for high reeds)... nothing's worse than playing a beautifully-soft passage and a reed in that passage doesn't respond similarly to the other reeds... this is a case of the instrument getting in the way of the music.

4 - Bends activate smoothly and are not airy across their pitch range. Remember that the blow reed is part of the bending process... so the gap of the blow reed is paramount.