The Music Teacher

I would like to preface from the outset that this is not about my psychological scars inflicted by a former music classroom teacher. To be fair he had finally engaged me in the subject after years of experiencing torture from a regimented, dry curriculum which offered no opportunity to display individual creativity. We were challenged … Continue reading The Music Teacher

My Boomerang Did Come Back

Many harmonica collectors around the globe have the Australian Boomerang De Luxe front and centre in their displays. All De Luxe models were boomerang shaped. This twelve double aperture mouth organ and its single aperture partner (The Miniature) were uniquely designed in the shape of the indigenous Australian's returning boomerang. There was another boomerang designed … Continue reading My Boomerang Did Come Back

Saving Wind

“Wherever you be let your wind be free” (Paddy Sheppard) One of Grandfather’s favourite sayings. He was a seaman, but I think he was referencing a gastro intestinal condition. The Hohner Auto Valve Harp was not in the business of letting it go, but rather in saving it by the use of leather valves. I … Continue reading Saving Wind

Moppetry Hogwash

A recent acquisition to my harmonica ephemera is Aussie (and American) Gene Jimae’s program handout displaying some great illustrations and information. I had to look up ‘moppetry’ a term not frequently used in today’s vernacular. Its reference is to childhood. I have no idea of the meaning of ‘sock results’ mentioned later in the pamphlet. … Continue reading Moppetry Hogwash

Fluted Harps

My recently acquired Crackajack Artist had me delving into the world of harps with fluted covers. The Crackajack Artist (1926) manufactured by F A Rauner is shaped like their fluted World Master mouth organ. ‘Down Under’ we also had the Rozella (1913) by F A Bohm and the Perla (1926) both with fluted cover plates. … Continue reading Fluted Harps

Deane’s Sticka

W J Deane in 1896 were selling both the Woolloomooloo Warbler and the Kangaroo Chalmer. In ‘97 they advertised the newly invented Native Waratah and Boomerang mouth organs and in ‘98 Deane And Son had their own model The Bugler for a Bob. I had initially thought The Bugler mouth organ may have been produced … Continue reading Deane’s Sticka

Aussie Models (Remastered)

1896–Woolloomooloo Warbler (Seydel/Alberts) originally had a patent bone lip protector. Kangaroo Chalmer (Seydel/Alberts)-Later that year King Billy (Seydel/Alberts)-two sided & another with bells maybe later at 3s 5d. Boomerang Large & Miniature (Seydel/Alberts)-also three sided models in both. The Federal Harp (Ernst Hess/J Hess & Co) perhaps as early as 1880, three models sold in … Continue reading Aussie Models (Remastered)

Schokolade & Adelaide

An early advertisement in the Colony for a Mundharmonika at R Clisby’s Musical Repository in Rundle Street Adelaide. It appears in the South Australian newspaper the Sud Australishe Zeiting in 1862. South Australia had a large intake of German settlers in the 19th Century, so much so that they represented 10% of all South Australians … Continue reading Schokolade & Adelaide

Known Unknowns

Act I. Back in 1973 at the Shep's household in the not so beachside side of Parkdale (east of Nepean Highway) we had an elderly guest at the table for Christmas lunch, someone we had never met and all the way from the United States of America. This would be the first time the condiment … Continue reading Known Unknowns

Tommy & the Gulliver

Some time ago I found a couple of early advertisements of a couple of cheaper Crackajack Mouth Organs that were offered in their product range, The Tommy Dodd (1903-06) and the Little Gulliver (1903-12). I cannot conclusively establish how the naming of these was contrived, but I would like to suggest it was of prominent … Continue reading Tommy & the Gulliver