#1
I figured this might be the right place to ask this.

I recently got a G scale harmonica. I'm wanting to play it along with my guitar. From what I've read, I may need to play in a different key to match up. Is this right? Would I need to play guitar in C with the G harmonica? Or would I play the G scale chords on guitar along with my G scale harmonica?

I also have a C scale, which has been laying around for awhile. What Scale should I play along with it?

Any help is appreciated. Thanks.
#2
You can play any note on any harmonica, but a G harmonica is set up for songs in the key of G major. If you use your G harmonica, the backing should also be in G.
#3
Quote by bangoodcharlote
You can play any note on any harmonica, but a G harmonica is set up for songs in the key of G major. If you use your G harmonica, the backing should also be in G.


Alright, thanks a lot, man.
#4
It'll work fine in G major or e minor and the harmonica in c will work in C major or a minor
#5
Quote by bangoodcharlote
You can play any note on any harmonica, but a G harmonica is set up for songs in the key of G major. If you use your G harmonica, the backing should also be in G.
Lol depends on his skill

For a beginner, yes.

For someone that knows how to bend, I would suggest playing a D progression for a G harp. This is because alot of the more essential notes in D are easier to play (on a G harp) than the essential notes of G, like the leading tone and flat fifth in the lowest octave.

If you learn to overblow, you can effectively play any harp with any key.
#6
Uh, hang on a sec, people. Yes, if you want to play something in G Major, then a G Major harmonica is what you want.

But if you want to play BLUES (or a lot of rock) in G, you're not going to want to play in G Major... you're going to want to play in G Mixolydian, which can be (and usually is) played on a C harmonica in second position.

It all depends on the style of music you're trying to play. Country or folk will usually be in a straight major key, so use the matching harmonica and play it in first position ("straight" harp). Mixolydian, being the fifth mode of the major scale, will use the fifth of the listed key (for a C harp, that would be G) as the root of the scale.

Straight harp (any key) looks like this (top row is blow, bottom row is draw (inhale)):

I   iii   V   I   iii   V   I   iii   V   I
ii   V   vii  ii   IV  vi  vii  ii   IV  vi

Notice that blowing over any group of holes will give you a major chord in that key. Useful, but you won't be playing the blues like that.

Playing in second position (essentially treating the fifth as the new root and offsetting everything else accordingly), you get this:

IV   vi   I   IV   vi    I   IV   vi   I    IV
V    I   iii   V  bvii  ii   iii  V   bvii  ii

The blow notes aren't so useful in blues, except on the IV chord, but the draw notes are essentially the blues scale (give or take). Especially when combined with the bends - bending 2 draw from bvii to I, bending 3 draw down 1/4 step to the blue third, bending 4 draw between the fourth, blue note, and fifth, and so on.

THAT's where the sound of blues harp comes from, and you won't sound even remotely bluesy trying to do it in first position. The bends are in all the wrong places (not all holes bend to the same degree - some won't bend at all - and without advanced techniques you're only going to be bending draw notes).