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David Barrett Video

PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 5:39 pm
by abhinav
Hi, as I've mentioned in another post, I have decided to take up harp, and have ordered for a Hohner Big River harp, in the key of C.
Since I am an absolute beginner, I will need to look up instruction books/videos. I have a couple of instruction videos in mind:
(1) David Barret's Basic Blues Harmonica Method Video
Regarding this video, I wish to ask the following: Barrett's Harmonica Masterclass website says that this DVD is meant to be a
companion for the book/CD by the same name. However, I wonder if this DVD alone would be sufficient? Does anyone know if thisDVDwould suffice by
itself, or do I need to spend on the book/CD as well?
(2) David Barrett's First Lessons Harmonica BK/CD/DVD
This book/CD/DVD combo is interestingly priced the same as the DVD alone, in (1). What is the catch?

Which would be better for me??
Thanks!

Re: David Barrett Video

PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 11:15 pm
by jeffl
I have no personal experience with that tutorial. I used Jerry Portnoy's Harmonica masterclass as a "refresher" course for myself, after playin' for about 35 years. It was a great refresher, but it also showed me how to do some things I hadn't learned before. I paid about $70, U.S., for it.

Re: David Barrett Video

PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 4:26 am
by A10K
Barrett's Basic Blues Harmonica Method was one of the first harp books I got and definitely worth it. Its a little thin on theory, so you'll need to supplement it with a little reading (http://www.jt30.com/jt30page/theory/index.html is a good place to start), but the exercises in it (with I few bends I threw in) are still my warmup routine. I don't know anything about the video.

I don't have any experience with the other book but by comparing the contents (yay Amazon) it looks to me like the First Lessons includes more information about phrasing/solo construction but doesn't have anything on Third Position playing, and is overall shorter. Based on my experience Barrett's books, they'll both provide solid riffs and exercises, but probably won't be your sole reference.

Re: David Barrett Video

PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 4:32 am
by abhinav
A10K wrote:Barrett's Basic Blues Harmonica Method was one of the first harp books I got and definitely worth it. Its a little thin on theory, so you'll need to supplement it with a little reading (http://www.jt30.com/jt30page/theory/index.html is a good place to start), but the exercises in it (with I few bends I threw in) are still my warmup routine. I don't know anything about the video.

I don't have any experience with the other book but by comparing the contents (yay Amazon) it looks to me like the First Lessons includes more information about phrasing/solo construction but doesn't have anything on Third Position playing, and is overall shorter. Based on my experience Barrett's books, they'll both provide solid riffs and exercises, but probably won't be your sole reference.


Thanks for your input! I am now actually thinking of going for a book and a DVD as well, both by Barrett:
Book: First Lessons Blues Harminica (this comes with a CD and DVD as well)
DVD: Basic Blues Harmonica Method
For someone who has never held a harmonica, do you think this would be a good and solid start?

Re: David Barrett Video

PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2009 12:01 am
by harmonicatunes
David Barrett's stuff is great. In particular, the introductory DVD is good.

Re: David Barrett Video

PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2009 1:45 am
by abhinav
Thanks, harmonicatunes! You have a great website, by the way!

Re: David Barrett Video

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 3:33 am
by MakaInOz
Dave Barrett's stuff is very good, as is Jerry Portnoy's. There's also tons of lessons from all sorts of experts (Gussow, Ricci, etc) on YouTube if you like practicing in front of the computer.

If you want some good background information and exercises, I'd recommend Winslow Yerxa's 'Harmonica For Dummies' too - it comes with a CD.

I find having a little variety helps.

Re: David Barrett Video

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 3:49 am
by abhinav
MakaInOz wrote:.....I find having a little variety helps.


Quite right! I am planning to download Gussow's lessons for Youtube, too.