Overview of Harmonica Band
A uncommon yet unique CCA to find in JCs, Harmonica Band is a performing arts CCA where anyone can pick up and appreciate an unconventional instrument: the Harmonica.
VJC’s Harmonica Band creates a fun-loving environment where anyone, with or without musical experience, who is keen on learning and expressing themselves through music is welcomed to play different types of harmonica and put up memorable performances!
Is there something about your CCA you and your fellow members think most people are unaware of that you feel needs to be shared to them? :
Only three JCs offer Harmonica as a CCA, and VJC is one of them!
We welcome people with or without musical experience! We use numbered musical notation for our scores, thus making it easier to read and interpret especially for those with no musical background. Everything will be taught from scratch, so everyone will start off at the same footing and will be given equal opportunities to learn!
Apart from learning the chromatic harmonica, opportunities are also given to learn to play other types of harmonica, such as the bass harmonica and the chord harmonica, or even other types of interesting instruments like the cajon.
Apart from that, members are also given the liberty to choose the songs they would like to perform and to transcribe their own scores for our very own concert.
If you are apprehensive about learning to play a musical instrument without any prior experience, we assure you that the harmonica is a fun and easy instrument to learn, and the Harmonica Band truly acts as a good opportunity to develop your musical abilities! Hopefully, you may transform into a really talented and confident musician!
How often do you have your trainings?
Practice sessions are on Mondays, 5pm-7pm, and another day for sectionals, which will be decided by the students to suit their availability.
Would you like to give us a glimpse of what trainings are usually like?
During practice sessions, we prepare for the different events that we are taking part in, such as concerts or carolling events. We practice songs from different types of genres, ranging from pop songs to classics.
Any additional information to take note of?
You would be required to purchase a chromatic harmonica (which can be purchased from our teacher/conductor) if you do not already have one.
More about Harmonica Band
Why did you choose to join this CCA?
The previous president of the CCA approached me during the CCA trials at the beginning of the year. She talked to my friends and I about Harmonica and I could see that she was really passionate about it. She encouraged us to try something new and also mentioned that the camaraderie between members in the CCA is strong.
Given that harmonica is an uncommon instrument, I was attracted to the idea of trying out something new and different. Hence, I decided to give it a go and have never looked back since. Certainly, the Harmonica Band has given me a unique experience in learning this instrument while building strong bonds with my fellow CCA members.
What would you consider to be the highlight of your CCA journey thus far?
I think the highlight for us this year would undoubtedly be the successful harmonica concert held in May 2017. Each section managed to master trendy pop songs that captivated the audience and kept them glued to their seats. My batch and I, as J1s, were able to somewhat perfect our pieces and be on par with our seniors despite only being given less than 2 months to practise for it. We were pleased to hear that many schoolmates who went to the concert enjoyed it tremendously.
In addition, another event that should not be forgotten is the Christmas caroling, where we caroled at Katong I12. Prior to this, the band had practiced tirelessly for countless hours in order to perfect it. Hence, when we saw a huge crowd of audience gathering to give us a listen, we felt that all our effort and practice sessions were definitely not gone to waste.
In 2017, we were specially invited by the Singapore Poly Harmonica Ensemble to perform as guest performers at their concert. This not only was an honour but also a truly memorable experience as we got to rehearse along experienced harmonica players and also learn slightly more difficult but fun mashups! This event was thoroughly worthwhile and enriching!
Noteworthy CCA milestones in the past year
Certificate of Accomplishment in SYF 2017
What about the CCA culture? What’s it like?
The Harmonica Band is filled with friendly and outgoing people, who are always willing to help one another. The members are a great source of entertainment, joy and support for each other. We are an inclusive family, appreciative of each members’ presence and contribution. We are also a fun CCA, where we have many activities in store for the members. One such activity that we had in 2017 include a March camp, where we supported and encouraged one another through many quests in an Amazing Race and other games. We also got to know one another better and forge new friendships!
In a Nutshell
To the incoming batch of juniors who will be busy pondering over the issue of CCA selection, what words would you give to those who may be keen on entering your CCA family?
We assure you that the harmonica is definitely an instrument that can be easily learned so don’t be afraid if you do not have any musical background and don’t think that you may not have the talent to play this instrument well because we are all here to learn and there’s always time to improve!
Come join us and we promise it will definitely be an enjoyable and enriching experience that will be worth your time in VJC!
Nadia Abas, 17S33