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How To Play the Harmonica - chromatic harmonica

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Ten Hole Chromatic Harmonica

ten hol chromatic harmonica

The Chromatic Harmonica

A chromatic harmonica may best be described by saying
that it consists of two separate ten-hole harmonicas placed one
directly above the other. The lower instrument is tuned one
half-note higher than the upper one. Thus, if an upper hole
produces the tone C, the hole beneath it produces C#, one
half-note higher.

Inside the harmonica there is a metal slide with rectangular
holes in it, which is pushed in by a knob operated by the right
hand. When the slide is out, in its normal position, the upper
ten holes are open and the lower holes are closed. When you
push in the slide, it covers the upper holes and opens the lower

With a ten-hole chromatic harmonica you can make all the
notes of the chromatic scale except the F#, A and A# in the
lower octave and B in the top octave. (Fig. 100.) The lower
notes are rarely played singly. The first three holes are used
only for chord accompaniments. With a twelve-hole chromatic,
you can make all the notes. (Fig. 101.) In these figures the
higher letter in each tone hole indicates to blow, the lower
letter tells you to draw in. Only sharped notes are shown, but
each of these is also a flat. A#, for example, is the same as


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