Re: My harmonica tastes like hell... how do I make it taste better?

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Posted by Patrick J. McKenna on August 30, 2001 at 19:31:48:

In Reply to: My harmonica tastes like hell... how do I make it taste better? posted by James on August 29, 2001 at 16:23:12:

: yeah my harmonicas are starting to taste bad from all the playing and stuff. Is there anything i can put on it(like flavored lip gloss or something?) to make it taste better? any ideas/hints please post or email me!

Hey James,
If you are, at this time, thinking about soaking your harmonicas, DON'T DO IT!!! Soaking a harmonica is a great way to shorten its life. It ruins a harmonica by causing the comb to swell (if it's a wooden comb) and will cause the metal parts, such as the reeds to rust.
You might try wiping the exterior of your harmonica with a cloth that has been moistened with your favorite mouthwash.
For future reference, make sure that you practice good oral hygiene prior to playing your harmonica and do it everytime you play. Don't eat immediately before playing. The food particles can get caught up in the reeds.
Good hygiene isn't only for harmonica. Before I play any of my electric basses or guitar, I wash my hands first. Grease, dust particles and miscellaneous dirt also will transform clean and bright sounding strings into dull and flat sounding strings. Although I've allowed other musicians to sit in (and play my bass), I refuse to permit those with dirty hands to handle my instrument. I would make an exception to this rule if our guest player (with the filthy mits) would provide me with a replacement set of new strings.
As for my harmonicas, nobody plays them but me. Share your music but don't share your harmonicas. It's not smart and it's not healthy.
Wishing you success in your endeavors,

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