17 Mar Lee Oskar Interview with Liam Ward
Liam Alexander Ward Interviews Lee Oskar in London
While in London in October 2019, Lee Oskar was requested by National Harmonica League Player and harmonica teacher, Liam Alexander Ward, for a video interview. In their engaging conversation, Lee Oskar talks about musical genres, cultures and the history of the Lee Oskar Harmonicas System, as well as the core elements of the Lee Oskar harmonica. Liam was a great interviewer who asked some very interesting questions. This two-part interview is rich in classic Lee Oskar wisdom and insights.
As part of the first half of their conversation, Lee explains how the Lee Oskar Harmonicas system is comprised of interchangeable and replaceable parts, which can be mixed and matched to create different tunings, such as the Paddy Richter and Dorian tunings. As Lee explains, he thinks that “it’s important to understand the inner workings of the harmonica, including how to change reed plates, how to tune and how to care for your harmonicas.” He says that the Lee Oskar Harmonicas system was designed “to take the mystery out of the harmonica, and make this wonderful instrument accessible and understandable for all.”
When Liam asked Lee about what runs through his mind or what he is visualizing when he’s playing harmonica, Lee says that he’s completely in the zone, and rather than “watching a movie in his mind,” he’s actually in the movie, in the moment itself, expressing his feelings and motions through his music. Lee shares that the greatest compliment that he can hear from someone is that they were touched by Lee’s music, rather than dazzled by his technical abilities. For Lee, it’s not about “how” he does it but rather, “did I touch someone, and trigger emotions or memories in someone else?”
In this interview, Lee speaks about Playing for Change, the global organization that he proudly supports as a collaborative partner. He describes two special new Lee Oskar Harmonicas products: the Grandpa Elliott—Limited Edition Lee Oskar Harmonica, which was designed in honor of the iconic New Orleans street musician (who is also a treasured Playing for Change musical partner), and the Lee Oskar Harmonicas Hawaiian Harmonica (a tremolo), a beautiful instrument visually and sonically, that will be coming to the market soon.