Easttop Blues Harps (with minor update)

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I don’t normally do product endorsements, but this recent find is worth sharing. I play Lee Oskar and Special 20 harmonicas pretty exclusively, but at $60 a pop, I have to be a bit careful with them, so I’ve been on a lengthy, heartbreaking quest for a cheap alternative that I can beat up without going broke. Most of my cheap-experiments have been out of tune, losing air like crazy, or just plain miserable to play. Unsurprisingly, most of the cheapies are made in China, and every China-made harp has been utterly miserable…. until now.

The Easttop 008K Blues Harmonica is not only cheap, but it’s well made. My only concern was that the reed-plate isn’t recessed into the comb (which affect air-tightness), but they’ve compensated with additional reed-plate screws so it’s still remarkably air-tight. I thought the reed plate would be rough on the lips, but turns out it’s not too bad.  Moreover, this cheap China harp came out of the box in tune, the reeds bend nicely, and it includes little a nice belt holster and cleaning cloth.

If you’re new to harmonica, and just want something cheap to try and play along with Bob, please don’t buy that low-end Hohner or Swan crap. They’re going to give you the wrong impression of how it’s supposed to play & sound. This Easttop harp sound great, it’s a pleasure to honk on, and if you’re a seasoned harp player, it makes a great pocket-beater, or just a cheap alternative for a key you don’t regularly use in your spread.

Easttop isn’t paying me to say this – I have no idea who they are anyway – but when I find a harp of this quality for $12, it’s my civic duty to share that info. I haven’t found it available at any of my usual online music-store haunts, but it’s available on Amazon and it shipped to me from China to Canada pretty darn fast.  Here’s a link to their listing on Amazon.com: http://amzn.to/2r1dmOd

Minor Update: After picking up a couple more of these harps in different keys and doing my darnedest to try blowing them out, etc, I’ve gotta say, these are rock-solid harps.  In fact, I find myself reaching for then more & more frequently than my Lee Oskars.  If PayPal is your preferred online payment method, I’ve found a seller on eBay who carries the complete key-range with very fast shipping.  However, if you’re an Amazon shopper, my previous link is still your best bet.

Further, if you buy one and fall in love with it, like Easttop harmonicas on Facebook and join our little Easttop Fan Club group.  Again, they’re not paying me for this endorsement, but these are are the best cheap harps I’ve ever found.  Do yourself a favour and pick up one in the key of C and honk along with the organ part on Like a Rolling Stone 😀

  1. And you’ll want a Bb to play Corrina, Corrina.
    Those Easttop look absolutely great — best design ever on a diatonic ten-holes — but they seem pretty hard to find in Europe yet.

  2. You simply will not find a better harmonica at that price. I love Special 20s & Lee Oskars, but at $60 Canadian, that gets very expensive, and these Easttops are cheap yet rock-solid. After researching a bit more, it looks like they import the reed-plates from Europe and assemble in China – which explains the reed-quality and low price. They can only be ordered direct from China so far as I know, but I’ve had great experiences with both Amazon and the eBay links I posted.

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