Harmonica Brand

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What do you think is the best Blues Harmonica (Brand, model, links are welcome!)?

I'm a musician looking to just lay down a few recordings for fun and I'm looking to get into harmonica parts and expanding my musical experience. They have cheap crap all over the market for harmonicas. my question is, "what is the best brand for a blues harmonica" and what price range am I looking at? preferably something I can use for a long time and for a wide variety of songs. I realize that each harmonica is in a certain key, so that will have a bearing on what I'm limited to.

Links are welcome so long as they're for quality products! thanks :)

There's probably a good reason that most musicians who've done any recording work on harmonica have historically used a Hohner harmonica. It may well be that the Hohner was simply what was available to them the most but the company has survived so long as the leader for a good reason.

There's probably also a good reason that they all tend to play either the Hohner Marine Band 1896 or the Hohner Super Chromonica 270. They're just really good harmonicas even though they do have their cons too (such as nails in wood or the tendency of the 270 to crack on the back-side over time) - these have stood the real test of time and pro use.

Some others:
* Hohner - Marine Band, Special 20, Blue Harp (not Blues Band) http://www.hohnerusa.com/index.php?2
* Lee Oskar - any model http://www.leeoskar.com/ [Lee Oskar is made by Tombo, interestingly, many people call Tombo marked instruments "cheap crap" - scratches head.]
* Suzuki - Harpmaster, Bluesmaster, Promaster, Manji, http://www.suzukimusic.com/harmonicas/
* Seydel - 1847, Session http://www.seydel1847.de/epages/Seydel1847.sf/en_GB/
* Hering - Hering Blues, Master Blues, Vintage 1923 http://keith.oscarsmac.com:8000/a-hering/index.html

Price range? Something over about $30 but probably under $100. You can get more expensive than that (such as the Hohner Meisterklasse or a nice Chromatic) but don't really need to. If you go much under $30 then you're probably looking at something you won't like for long.

A good chromatic such as the Hohner Super Chromonica 270 takes care of that "in a different key" problem and some players do blues really well on a chromatic. They aren't the same layout though so you'll want to be sure that's the way you want to go. You'll probably find that most of the music you play isn't in all 12 keys too so you probably only need 3 or 4 different keys (possibly less) to cover what you're wanting to do.

For $165 you can have a nice cased set of Hohner Marine Band in C G A D and E that will cover a huge amount of what most people play. http://www.musiciansfriend.com/folk-traditional-instruments/hohner-case-of-marine-bands-harmonica-5-pack/500326000000000

A 3-pack (G C A) of Hohner Special 20 is only $86 http://www.musiciansfriend.com/folk-traditional-instruments/hohner-560-special-20-harmonica-pro-pack/712992000000000

A 5-pack of Lee Oskar (C D A D F) with a REALLY nice case is only $175 http://www.musiciansfriend.com/folk-traditional-instruments/lee-oskar-harmonica-5-pack-with-case/423605000000000

Those sets of 7-to-12 or so (such as the Hohner Piedmont Blues) are ok for kids to learn on or to have some extra keys if you don't want to invest real money but they won't make you very happy if you're a serious musician and don't expect this level to last long at all. However, the case the Piedmont Blues comes with is worth the price of the set. http://www.musiciansfriend.com/folk-traditional-instruments/hohner-piedmont-blues-7-harmonica-pack-with-case

A really nice set - in C G F D A and Bb is the Suzuki Promaster but it's $300 or roughly $50 per harp. http://www.musiciansfriend.com/folk-traditional-instruments/suzuki-promaster-harmonica-boxed-set-cgadfbb/583579000177000 same keys in the Bluesmaster is nearly half the price.

Discover Harmonica Brand On eBay Below:

Brand New HOHNER MARINE BAND F HARMONICA HARP 10 HOLE DELUXE 2005 20
Brand New HOHNER MARINE BAND F HARMONICA HARP 10 HOLE DELUXE 2005 20
$53.77
HOHNER MARINE BAND G HARMONICA HARP 14 HOLE 28 REED 365 28 BRAND NEW
HOHNER MARINE BAND G HARMONICA HARP 14 HOLE 28 REED 365 28 BRAND NEW
$53.77
HARMONICA KEY OF F BRAND NEW IN CARRY CASE CLEARANCE PRICE
HARMONICA KEY OF F BRAND NEW IN CARRY CASE CLEARANCE PRICE
$14.27
HOHNER MARINE BAND D CROSSOVER HARP HARMONICA MB2009 BRAND NEW CROSS OVER
HOHNER MARINE BAND D CROSSOVER HARP HARMONICA MB2009 BRAND NEW CROSS OVER
$67.42
BRAND NEW HOHNER MEISTERKLASSE D HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 580 20 HARP
BRAND NEW HOHNER MEISTERKLASSE D HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 580 20 HARP
$96.81
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP F HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP F HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
$35.60
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP B HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP B HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
$35.83
BRAND NEW HOHNER PRO 20 G PRO HARP 562 20 HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED
BRAND NEW HOHNER PRO 20 G PRO HARP 562 20 HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED
$39.06
BRAND NEW LEE OSKAR 1910F DIATONIC HARMONICA w CASE BLUES FOLK HARP KEY OF F
BRAND NEW LEE OSKAR 1910F DIATONIC HARMONICA w CASE BLUES FOLK HARP KEY OF F
$32.17
BRAND NEW HOHNER A CROSS HARP HARMONICA 565 20 10 HOLE 20 REED CROSSHARP
BRAND NEW HOHNER A CROSS HARP HARMONICA 565 20 10 HOLE 20 REED CROSSHARP
$64.53
BRAND NEW HOHNER CHROMETTA 12 255 48 KEY OF C HARMONICA BLUES FOLK HARP
BRAND NEW HOHNER CHROMETTA 12 255 48 KEY OF C HARMONICA BLUES FOLK HARP
$103.98
Brand New HOHNER 214 20 PICCOLO HARMONICA HARP KEY OF C
Brand New HOHNER 214 20 PICCOLO HARMONICA HARP KEY OF C
$35.14
BRAND NEW LEE OSKAR 1910D DIATONIC HARMONICA w CASE BLUES FOLK HARP KEY OF D
BRAND NEW LEE OSKAR 1910D DIATONIC HARMONICA w CASE BLUES FOLK HARP KEY OF D
$32.17
HOHNER 34BBXF U OLD STANDBY HARMONICA F HARP BRAND NEW IN PACK SALE
HOHNER 34BBXF U OLD STANDBY HARMONICA F HARP BRAND NEW IN PACK SALE
$11.49
BRAND NEW HOHNER D LOW CROSS HARP HARMONICA 565 20 10 HOLE 20 REED w WARRANTY
BRAND NEW HOHNER D LOW CROSS HARP HARMONICA 565 20 10 HOLE 20 REED w WARRANTY
$67.36
HOHNER Super Chromonica 270 Deluxe Harp Chromatic Harmonica Key of C Brand New
HOHNER Super Chromonica 270 Deluxe Harp Chromatic Harmonica Key of C Brand New
$243.18
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP D HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP D HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
$35.29
BRAND NEW SUZUKI PIPE HUMMING HARMONICA C HARP 10 HOLE DIATONIC PH 20
BRAND NEW SUZUKI PIPE HUMMING HARMONICA C HARP 10 HOLE DIATONIC PH 20
$78.87
Lot of 2 Brand New Schylling 5 inch HARMONICAs wrapped in boxes Silver color
Lot of 2 Brand New Schylling 5 inch HARMONICAs wrapped in boxes Silver color
$0.99
BRAND NEW HOHNER F CROSS HARP HARMONICA 565 20 10 HOLE 20 REED CROSSHARP
BRAND NEW HOHNER F CROSS HARP HARMONICA 565 20 10 HOLE 20 REED CROSSHARP
$63.83
Hohner Blues Harp C Harmonica 10 Hole 20 Reed 532 20 M533017 Brand New
Hohner Blues Harp C Harmonica 10 Hole 20 Reed 532 20 M533017 Brand New
$35.29
BRAND NEW HOHNER F LOW CROSS HARP HARMONICA 565 20 10 HOLE 20 REED
BRAND NEW HOHNER F LOW CROSS HARP HARMONICA 565 20 10 HOLE 20 REED
$70.98
HOHNER MARINE BAND G HARMONICA HARP 14 HOLE 28 REED 365 28 BRAND NEW
HOHNER MARINE BAND G HARMONICA HARP 14 HOLE 28 REED 365 28 BRAND NEW
$64.53
BRAND NEW LEE OSKAR MELODY MAKER DIATONIC HARP A HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 1910
BRAND NEW LEE OSKAR MELODY MAKER DIATONIC HARP A HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 1910
$35.68
BRAND NEW HOHNER ECHO C HARMONICA HARP 2409 40 20 DOUBLE HOLE 40 REED
BRAND NEW HOHNER ECHO C HARMONICA HARP 2409 40 20 DOUBLE HOLE 40 REED
$86.05
X GEAR RED HARMONICA BRAND NEW NEVER USED 41XG3065
X GEAR RED HARMONICA BRAND NEW NEVER USED 41XG3065
$6.00
Hohner Zippered Harmonica Case Original Brand New
Hohner Zippered Harmonica Case Original Brand New
$10.17
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP B FLAT HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP B FLAT HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
$35.83
BRAND NEW HOHNER PRO 20 A PRO HARP 562 20 HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED
BRAND NEW HOHNER PRO 20 A PRO HARP 562 20 HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED
$39.06
HOHNER HARPONETTE REISSUE 1930S HARMONICA HARP BRAND NEW COLLECTORS ITEM
HOHNER HARPONETTE REISSUE 1930S HARMONICA HARP BRAND NEW COLLECTORS ITEM
$142.75
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP E HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
BRAND NEW HOHNER BLUES HARP E HARMONICA 10 HOLE 20 REED 532 20
$35.28
HOHNER SBS STEVE BAKER SMITH C HARMONICA 14 HOLE 28 REED HARP BRAND NEW
HOHNER SBS STEVE BAKER SMITH C HARMONICA 14 HOLE 28 REED HARP BRAND NEW
$85.40


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