SPAH Diversity At it's Best  

How many types of Harmonicas are there? I say as many as needed for the many types of music it is used for. Harmonicas come in all shapes and sizes, it is mind boggling.  At SPAH each year all types are showcased.
A Diverse group of players from around the world come to perform, share, learn, teach and just hang out with other players - like a pilgrimage of epic harmonica proportions!

1:Diatonic:The standard 10-hole major diatonic harmonicas come in all 12 keys of music and allow you to play a complete 7-note…Read more

Big Walter Horton  

 Walter Horton was born in Horn Lake, MS (April 6, 1917), but his mother soon moved to Memphis where Walter taught himself how to play the harmonica at five years of age. He later learned more about his instrument by working with harp players Will Shade and Hammie Nixon.Walter was the master of the single note and his characteristic walking bass line (usually with a deep tone and selection of notes that is unsurpassed) is instantly recognizable. As an accompanist, he had few equals. His backup harp was…Read more

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Kennedy mine head spirits of the miners on there way out from the argonaut "Spirits over Jackson"
 The photos I used to create this work are of the miners and the firefighters that tried to save them.
The Argonaut produced 1.13 million ounces of gold valued at $25.7 million . The Kennedy reaped $34.3 million in gold elevated through three main shafts and lesser ones during its 90 plus years of operation.

Argonaut Gold Mine, On the anniversary of the  Argonaut Gold Mine Disaster, That took place in 1922 I was…Read more

Meet Mike Caldwell 

1: As this is your first trip Tell us how it all began for you how you came to love and play the Harmonica?       I began plinking out melodies on the piano at the age of 4, so by the time I first encountered the harmonica at age 10 my passion for music had already been ignited. I remember the exact moment I was bitten by the harmonica bug. I was on a Boy Scout camp-out in the Las Padres National Forest. As we sat around the campfire, my Scoutmaster pulled out his Marine Band in the key of C andRead more

Hohner Harmonica the way West  

Shortly after Hohner began manufacturing harmonicas in 1857, he shipped some to relatives who had emigrated to the United States. Its music rapidly became popular, and the country became an enormous market for Hohner's goods. 

Winslow Yerxa  President of SPAH:
added this info mation for us all  great stuff Hi, Nedra. That's probably me. Available production figures for Hohner, the biggest producer, indicate that it is very unlikely that more than a tiny handful of harmonicas could have tricked into North…

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Joe Filisko Teach In. 

  Hell-o Joe 


#1: When and how did you get involved with SPAH


My first  SPAH was Detroit 1990.  I believe that the first year I volunteered was Memphis 1994 and have tried to be as involved as I could in every successive year.

#2: When was your first teach in?

I honestly don't remember.  Probably about 12 years ago or so.  It really was something that evolved.

#3: What is your favorite thing about SPAH?

Easy one.  The broad variety of people and astonishing array of talent shared almost always…

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Part 1 Manfred Wewers Convention Seminar Coordinator 


#1: I got to meet you last year when I took your seminar and learned that you know allot about the history of the harmonica.

      I would say you are a great historian of the instrument, I enjoyed your talk very much. 

      How did you first become interested in the Harmonica


My father Josef played the harmonica, his brothers did and so did my maternal grandfather.  When family got together, there was always music. I cannot remember not having or playing a harmonica. This was in the…

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This years entertainer of the year Brendan Powers 

 Each year there are Awards at SPAH they are the grand finally of the event and given out at the Closing dinner and show, for me it is very emotional as it is the end so lots of crying, hugging, and packing up to go back to life as we know it!
Last year Brendan Powers won entertainer of the year. I wonder who will win this year?

From Brendans site

In 1995 a new dance show called Riverdance broke all records at the Point Theatre in Dublin. Along with the flamboyance of Michael Flatly and the massed troupes…

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Tom Stryker Meet the President  

 Hi Tom, thanks you for the time here at Nedra's Blog.    






1: Tom when and how did you start playing harmonic?


My three cousins and I received a  280 Chromatic for Christmas when I was 15 living in San Francisco.  Fortunately, former Borah Minevitch Ray Tankersley lived nearby and we engaged him to teach us.  He moved shortly thereafter.   I moved to San Jose in 1963 and came across Ray again in 1965 at Foothill College in Los Altos, California, where he was a music teacher.  Ray…

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