Does anyone play the melodica for reasons other than the sound?

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    Does anyone play the melodica for reasons other than the sound?
    I for one am not a great fan of the free reed sound. In particular the accordion or concertina. I don’t care for the melodica models that sound accordion like or some of the two-handed techniques that sound accordion-ish.

    Why do I play the melodica then?

    I’m old enough to remember when the small portable electronic keyboards were not around. It was handy to have a small keyboard that didn’t require batteries or be a piece of furniture.
    Also the expression!!! the ability to combine those breath-flow techniques combined with keyboard precision is wonderful!
    Just curious about the rest of you and your attraction to the instrument?

    AvatarDavid Colpitts

    I am new to the instrument, and am interested mainly because it offers the free-reed sound with the full chromaticity of the piano keyboard. All my other instruments are diatonic, and this will open other keys to me. However, I am obsessed with the Janko conversions I have done; I will try to find a way to send sound links for all to hear, once I have another month or so under my belt.


    Daren BanarsëDaren Banarsë

    I was drawn to the melodica for a few reasons. I trained as a classical pianist before working as a composer, and dreamed of playing a wind instrument, where you could swell notes and play with expression. I also wanted to play an instrument I could travel with, put in my pocket and take anywhere.

    I tried several instruments for around a year each. My first was a wooden recorder, then a chromatic harmonica, then an accordina. I loved the accordina, but it just wasn’t loud enough. After that I tried the melodica, which I’ve stuck with ever since. Of course the advantage is that I already play the piano, though as melodica/piano players know, although the key layout is the same, the technique is entirely different.

    I’ve always loved the sound of the concertina, so I’m quite happy to be able to achieve a very similar sound.


    More than the sound I’d be very interested to see the construction of your Janko conversion. I’ve considered that myself in the past.


    Melodicas Hohner Soprano and Alto are narrow enough to be played left-handed, and they actually play where your attention is.

    • This reply was modified 2 months, 2 weeks ago by AvatarMysha.
    AvatarAlan Brinton

    The sound is a big factor, but another is that it encourages improvisation.

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