Tom has been a Harp Academy student for several years. In 2017 he drove to the National Harmonica Festival in Bristol and entered the music competition organised by the National Harmonica League (NHL). He won first place in the melodic section that year playing Solomon Linda’s The Lion Sleeps Tonight (Wimoweh).
During two years of Covid-19 lockdown 2020-21, the NHL rebranded and is now HarmonicaUK, the nation’s central charity for all things harmonica. This year their competition was by video entry online.
Five years on from his previous entry, Tom took part once again. On this occasion he played the jazz standard Misty by Errol Garner (in the blues style of Jerry Portnoy). This is a difficult piece played in third position, with intricate draw and blow bend, control, octave playing and other advanced skills. Once again Tom was successful and has been awarded UK Youth Harmonica Player of the Year. Well don Tom!
Further great news announced at this year’s festival is the arrival of graded harmonica exam courses later this Autumn, which have been set up by Rock School (RSL) in collaboration with HarmonicaUK. Harmonica students of all ages can now take graded exams if they wish, putting the harmonica on a par with conventional musical instruments.
When we have further information about next year’s HarmonicaUK music competition and the new RSL graded exams, we will send a bulletin to Harp Academy parents and carers.