It’s an instrument that has been played by artists including John Lennon, Sammy Davis Jr, Bob Dylan and Mick Jagger; Taylor Swift’s new album boasts a number infused by it; and those formerly owned and signed by Stevie Wonder and Johnny Cash are currently being auctioned off by an American Auction House.
The harmonica boasts appeal and charm for wannabe music makers due to its simplicity and affordability.
Town Hall Symphony Hall will be sharing short bursts of song and the stories of the musicians behind the mouth organ on IG:TV in the coming weeks. Hear the harmonica lines from Culture Club’s Karma Chameleon, the signature-tune for the TV programme Ready, Steady, Go! and music from the debut solo album of Haircut 100’s Nick Heyward.
Born in Liverpool, Judd Lander was an intricate part of the late Mersey scene, playing with local band ‘The Hideaways’ who to this day hold the world record for over 500 Cavern Club performances. His reputation as a session musician took him to London performing with various artists & labels including Apple Records’ in-house bands such as Bad Finger and helping John Lennon with his ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll’ album. Judd Lander created the now famous harmonica lines for Culture Club’s ‘Karma Chameleon’ and his solo contribution on the single ‘Say You’ll Be There’ by The Spice Girls can still be heard pounding over the airwaves today.
Paul Jones was the original front-man with the group Manfred Mann, and co-composer of the signature tune for Ready, Steady, Go! He was at the forefront of the 60s pop revolution, with million-selling records alongside the likes of The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and The Animals. Nowadays he shares the lead with Mike D'Abo in The Manfreds - along with most of the original members of Manfred Mann. Paul is the President of the The National Harmonica League and he has recorded with a range of artists including Tina Turner, Percy Sledge, Memphis Slim, Katie Melua and The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
Nick Heyward's music career began when he formed Haircut 100 in 1981. The band had four UK Top 10 singles and turned Nick into a major pop pin up. Their debut album,Pelican West, reached Number One in the UK charts. Nick’s solo career began in 1983 with his debut albumNorth of a Miraclewhich reached no. 10 in the UK charts and included three UK Top 14 singles – ‘Whistle Down the Wind", "Take That Situation" and "Blue Hat for a Blue Day". It also featured the the harmonica driven B-side, "Don’t Get Me Wrong". In 1993 his single “Kite”, taken from the album,From Monday to Sunday, made no. 3 on the Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart.
Anyone with an Instagram account will be able to watch these short videos, recorded by musicians’ during the coronavirus pandemic, by following @thsh_birmingham. The stories and songs are free to watch and support the mission of the music charity responsible for Town Hall and Symphony Hall to inspire as many people possible with a lifelong love of music.
Plus, at the end of each video, find out how you could win your very own simple metal harmonica.
Terms and conditions for Town Hall Symphony Hall's Instagram #HOMEonica competition. To participate in this competition, users must like and comment on Instagram using the hashtag #HOMEonica.
This competition will run until 23:59 on Monday 31 August. Entries made by direct reply to this T&C page will not be accepted.There will be 1 winner per post who will be selected at random, after the competition deadline of 11.59pm on Monday 31 August, who has fulfilled the criteria in 1) above. Entries made after this point will not be counted.The contest is open to residents of the United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland).The prize consists of a £6.95 metal Harmonica. No cash alternative. If you are the lucky winner, you will need to provide your email address, contact phone number and home address as instructed at the time of being announced as our winner. Further details will then be provided by Town Hall Symphony Hall as to how you claim your prize.Only one entry per person will be accepted. In the event of multiple entries being received from the same Instagram account, the first entry only will be accepted.No purchase is necessary, however you will need an internet connection and access to Instagram. No refund may be claimed for expenses incurred in participating in the promotion, including in relation to the use of the internet.We reserve the right to exclude any entries which we believe to be inappropriate, fraudulent or based on misconduct.The prize is non-transferable, non-refundable and cannot be exchanged for any cash alternatives in whole or in part.The winner will have 48 hours to claim their prize from the date that they are announced as a winner. After this time we reserve the right to select a new winner.The decisions of the promoter are final and no correspondence will be entered into.By taking part in this promotion, all participants consent to us collecting, storing and using their personal data submitted with their entry for the purposes of this promotion.Any personal data relating to participants will be used solely in accordance with current UK data protection legislation and will not be used for marketing purposes without the individual's prior consent.This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Instagram. You are providing your information to Town Hall Symphony Hall and not to Instagram. By participating in this promotion you agree to a complete release of Instagram from any claims.The promoter does not accept responsibility for entries that are lost, damaged or delayed. For example, as a result of network, system development, computer or telecommunications failures or fault of any kind - including any hardware, programming code, databases or software used in the promotion.The promoter reserves the right to withdraw or amend without notice this promotion in the event of any unforeseen circumstances outside of its reasonable control.This promotion and these terms and conditions are governed by English law and subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts.This promotion is subject to Instagram’s terms of services which can be found at: https://instagram.com/about/legal/terms/