What key am I in?

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by tiltrite, Dec 27, 2005.

  1. tiltrite

    tiltrite Member

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    I'm playing blues in dropped d tuning (DADGBe) while using the open DAD as a "root" chord, and playing lots of "F" and "G" notes on the low and hi d Strings and lots of "c" and "d" notes on the "a" string. What key does that put me in?

    What would be a 4th above that key? I'm looking to get a blues harp and was told that you get one a 4th above the key I'm playing in.

    sorry about my ignorance here, I guess it's time to start learning the basics of notes and keys etc... what's the best place to start there? Every time I open a theory book I am immediately lost.:(
     
  2. Kappy

    Kappy Member

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    Just think of the same fret on the next string up on all the strings tuned to 4ths if you want to figure out what's a 4th up from some note. (In this case, G is the answer). Sounds like you're playing D minor b/c of the "F".
     
  3. tiltrite

    tiltrite Member

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    thanks for the info. So if I'm in Dminor, what key blues harp should I get (a 4th above Dminor is...?) or is that the 'G' you mentioned?
     
  4. Kappy

    Kappy Member

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    Why not just get a chromatic harp? ;) Anyway, dmin is the rel. min. of fmaj. I gave you the formula for figuring out a 4th above that.

    You should ask someone who knows about harps to be sure though, I know some music theory, I don't know jack about harps (or which key harp you should buy to play in which key, etc.).

    Good luck!
     
  5. tiltrite

    tiltrite Member

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    ummmm... is it B flat? (I'm thinking of the 'E' string 1st fret is 'F', and then jump down to the 'A' string 1st fret which is 'B' flat.)
    :confused:


    BTW, those I asked have told me to get a harp that's a 4th above the key of the guitar.
     
  6. tiltrite

    tiltrite Member

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  7. Kappy

    Kappy Member

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    Bingo! It's also called A# (because they are enharmonic equivalents, which is a fancy way of saying that it's the same as A#).

    You might want to find a forum of harmonica players who can answer your question about which one to get for that tuning. I don't know what's good, but here's a google search to get you started.
     
  8. tiltrite

    tiltrite Member

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    whew.

    thanks much, dkaplowitz. My 1st guitar lesson. not too painful (well, my brain did start to hurt just a little.) so much more to learn.
    ;)
     
  9. nashvillesteve

    nashvillesteve Member

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    For blues harp, you need a harp that is a fifth above the key signature. So, if you're playing blues in "E," you'll need an "A" harp. For blues in "G," you'll need a "C" harp, blues in "B," you'll need an "E" harp, etc.

    I'm not sure about a regular diatonic harp working well for minor keys at all, but Lee Oskar makes minor key harps that are diatonic, those should be an easy switch. I'd like to get a chromatic harp someday, but it'd be completely different, so I think I'm going to get a Melodica (like a 3-octave reed keyboard with a breath tube- I'll run it through the POG and Leslie cabinet, too!)...
     

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