Harmonica Almanac – October 2
Canadian harmonica legend Bernie Bray was born on this day in 1921. Bray began playing professionally as a teen in a harmonica band. He was the harmonica soloist for the Royal Canadian Air Force Band for several years. SPAH’s man of the year award is named in his honor.
Patrick Sky was a part of the Folk music scene of the 1960’s, playing guitar and the harmonica on a neckbrace. He’s still quite active in music. Sky was born on this day in 1940.
Cajun accordion and harmonica player Jo-El Sonnier was born on this day in 1946. Sonnier began playing music at the age of six and recorded his first album at the age of thirteen. While he mostly is known for his accordion playing, he sometimes doubles up on the harmonica.
Country singer, guitar and harmonica player Chris LeDoux not only had a successful career as a musician, but was also a champion Rodeo star as well. LeDoux was born on this day in 1948.
Blues harmonica legend George “Harmonica” Smith died on this day in 1983. In the 1950’s he played with Muddy Waters and many others, but after settling in the San Francisco Bay area he became a mentor to a generation of young harmonica players, including Kim Wilson, James Harman, William Clarke and Rod Piazza.
Dutch Pop and Jazz harmonica player Max Geldray began playing the harmonica when he was sixteen years old. In the 1930’s he played in a harmonica band and later as a soloist, remaining active well into the 1990’s. Geldray died on this day in 2004.
That’s it for today. Have fun and practice!