This piece is a very impressive performance involving looped and live harmonica, beatboxing, singing, and percussion. The harmonica is a Natural Minor (haven’t checked the key) played in second position….


This piece is a very impressive performance involving looped and live harmonica, beatboxing, singing, and percussion. The harmonica is a Natural Minor (haven’t checked the key) played in second position. Bailey uses two vocal mics, both apparently direct to the PA, one for the vocals, one for the harp with a delay line on it. The delay is nice and fat, probably analog, and he makes it loud in the mix to reinforce the rhythm for the piece. I can’t tell from the video whether he’s triggering tap tempo for the delay with his feet, but whether or not he is, the delay is closely synced to the beat.

The song is great, the arrangement is great, the harps sound great, looped or live, the beatboxing sounds great, the singing sounds great. Like, it’s great. He’s obviously coming from some traditional roots, but there are no traditional roots that involve natural minor harmonicas and the chord voicings he’s using. (If he was using a bullet mic on the harp, those nice chord voicings would be totally smeared.) It’s a fully formed performance of some highly original high-quality stuff. The lead harp reminds me of early Jazz trumpet styles; it’s sophisticated in unexpected ways, always surprising. I found myself listening very carefully all the way through this piece. You will too.

2 Comments

  1. I’ve been a harp player for 8 years and do a lot of blues, but not defined by the genre. My influences include William Clarke, Charlie Musselwhite, Steve Baker and Kim Wilson (actually he’s my double; bald head and goatee  ). My current rig is a Line 6 Firehawk FX with and I user 3 mics. Primarily the Fireball Pro V but also use the Green Bullet and Shaker. My FX died after 6 months and I had to send it in for repair at Line 6. I’m going to pick up a RP360 today at Guitar Center and was wondering if you are running any specials on your patches (discount off the $50). One on my mentors (Scott Harper; How did he get a name like that. Yes, it’s real, not stage) and I have been trying different pedal boards and I’m not convinced on the DigiTech yet, but willing to try it. I don’t want to purchase patches in the event I don’t like the unit and return it. I have a couple of gigs coming up tonight and next weekend. Your thoughts.

  2. Hi Givovanni, I sent an email to the address associated with your message. Please contact me directly using the CONTACT page at this site if that email doesn’t show up in your inbox soon. Thanks, RH

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