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Hohner Supports National Jazz Museum in Harlem’s Melodica Parade

Jazzed Magazine • News • January 17, 2013

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Hohner’s “Love Riot: Harmonabord Parade” was a part of Make Music New York’s Winter Series and was sponsored by Hohner Inc. who donated 25 of their trademark Melodicas to the lucky first participants of the parade. A recent graduate of The Juilliard School, jazz musician Jonathan Batiste considers the Melodica a key component to his musical identity. “You can give [the audience] a taste of what is on the stage, and it’s very intimate that way. I love that quality of being able to move,” said Batiste. “I’m a pianist, but piano players are usual sitting during the show. And if you can jump off the stage and move around, you have a way to really connect with people in a way that you can’t while sitting at a piano.”

The Melodica was invented by Hohner in the 1950s and is a free-reed instrument similar to the Melodion and Harmonica. It usually has a two or three octave keyboard on top that is played by blowing air through a mouthpiece that fits into a hole in the side of the instrument. Pressing a key opens a hole, allowing air to flow through a reed. Hohner Melodicas are small, light, and portable and range in price from $39 to $70.

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