Harmonica Almanac – October 21

Vaudeville harmonica player Joe Mullendore was born on this day in 1914. Mullendore began his career playing in Albert Hoxie’s harmonica band and in the mid-1930’s he joined the Harmonica Harlequins, playing fourth chromatic. He then joined the Cappy Barra Harmonica Ensemble. After World War Two he moved to California and did studio work.

Blues singer, guitar, drums and harmonica player Dr. Isiah Ross learned how to play the harmonica at the age of six from his father. He started playing in public when he was nine, and after serving in World War Two he played on the radio and recorded several albums. Ross was born on this day in 1925.

Blues singer and harmonica player Provine Hatch was born on this day in 1921. Hatch began playing the harmonica when he was a child and was working professionally when he was in his teens. He settled in Kansas City in 1946 and worked steadily until his death in 2003.

Classical composer Malcolm Arnold wrote “Harmonica Concerto, Op. 46” in 1954 for Larry Adler. Arnold was born on this day in 1921.

Blues harmonica player Mark Ford was born on this day in 1953. Ford plays with his brothers in the Charles Ford Blues Band. The group has backed Gary Smith, Charlie Musselwhite and other Blues greats as well as recording several albums of their own.

Blues drum, guitar and harmonica player JD Short began his musical career when he was seventeen years old, playing in bands and even doing some recording. After World War Two he worked mostly as a one-man band, playing harmonica on a neckbrace. Short died on this day in 1962.

Blues guitar and harmonica player Oscar Wills died on this day in 1969. Wills began playing harmonica while he was in his teens and worked professionally until the late 1930’s. After he moved to Louisiana in the 1950’s he revived his career and remained active until his death.

That’s it for today. Have fun and practice!

I am the author of "The Encyclopedia of the Harmonica", which is still available on the internet in limited edition.

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