I've just recently begun playing harmonica and have been gathering notes from various online sources. I gathered a few things that I found of interest along the way and will be bringing it together here for my reference. If anyone found this site by mistake, then welcome! I am babbling for my own benefit mostly, but you are more than welcome to follow along. I will give credit when the source is known. Unfortunately I do not know where I got all my information, so if you know where some of this comes from please e-mail me and I will add the source credit. Or, if some of the info is yours, and you do not want it here, please e-mail me and I will remove it. I do not mean to take credit for any of the information here but I will take the blame if any of it is wrong.
I started out with what would really be considered a toy harmonica. Very quickly I realized that I enjoyed playing the harp but this one was terrible! The reeds began wearing out after about a week. (practicing an hour per day). So I decided to buy a more 'respectable' harp. I shopped around online and found what seems to a good site. http://www.musiciansfriend.com/ So I ordered myself a new harmonica (ok a set of 7 actually). Anyway I'm having much more fun now. I've only learned a couple songs but I'm having a ball. Life is more about the journey than the destination anyway, right?
I used to play piano and clarinet...long, long, long ago. Since Junior High school, 1977, I have completely forgotten how to read music. Most music for the harmonica is in 'tab' so reading music is not really required. However my daughter was wanting me to take the tab for Molly Malone and convert it to the keyboard for her to play. I could probably have gone online and found the sheet music for Molly Malone, but that would not have been near as much fun as doing it myself. So I had to re-learn how to read music. Luckily I was very sick the night before and called in sick from work. So I had all day to browse the entirenet. (I stole that word from my son) I found an awesome site: Ricci Adams Music Theory. It has very easy to follow lessons on reading notes and the grand staff. It also has some really neat trainers for note and keyboard recognition. I spent a few hours on it and it all made sense. Surprisingly I remembered quite easily.
You all remember the cute little remembrance device for the Grand Staff right? The Treble Cleft lines are E,G,B,D,F (Every Good Boy Does Fine), and the spaces are F,A,C,E (FACE). The Bass Cleft lines are G,B,D,F,A (Good Boys Do Fine Always), and the spaces are A,C,E,G (All Cows Eat Grass). I guess reading music is like falling off a bike (you never forget how to fall off a bike).
So now that I remember how to read sheet music and know the keys of the keyboard, I translated Molly Malone to the keyboard for my daughter. Then we worked out the notes by sound and tabbed one of our Hindu mantras. Fun was had by all!
The first thing I wanted to know was the relation between the keyboard, grand staff, and harmonica.
First we have the Grand Staff. This shows the keyboard and sheet music.
I don't know where I found the above picture, sorry.
Now we have the harmonica notes on the Grand Staff.
Above picture taken from The Diatonic Harmonica Reference. http://www.angelfire.com/tx/myquill/
And for good measure I also got these pictures showing the major scale on the harmonica and all the notes on the C harmonica. I am now armed with just enough knowledge to become really dangerous!
Unfortunately I have no idea where I found either of these pictures.