You wouldn't play a cast zinc violin, would you? A steel piano? A pewter guitar? Of course not.
a harmonica microphone is part of your "instrument." Why play through a metal microphone? Experience the
warmth of wood! My rare wood mics have a slightly smaller diameter than a JT30, with none of those uncomfortable
bumps and ridges on the grill. And these mics are considerably lighter than their metal counterparts. A JT30
between 8 and 10 ounces depending on configuration. A Shure 520D weighs a whopping 13 ounces! My wood mics weigh
little as 4.5 ounces including element and connector.
The result is a mic that is comfortable to hold, easy to play, beautiful to look at and, best of all, sounds
GREAT. Guaranteed, or your money back. Here are a few I've made.
Custom "MG" grill
Colored pencils in clear resin
Mexican Mystery Burl
Each mic is a one-of-a-kind work of art. Although I occasionally have wood mics ready for sale, my preference is
work with each customer individually. I will help you choose woods and options and discuss any ideas you have.
build your mic I will email you photos of the entire process, from raw wood preparation through finished
to keep you informed every step of the way. I price all the options in direct proportion to the labor involved
building them into your mic. David Barrett of BluesHarmonica.com
recently produced a series of videos touring the BlowsMeAway Shop. Here's a "How It's Made" segment about
wood mic being made:
Scroll down to the Design Your Own Mic
section to learn more about these beautiful
options, prices and photos. But first - meet a few of my customers.....
Internationally acclaimed stars Kim Wilson, Charlie Musselwhite, Rod Piazza, Mark Hummel and Mickey Raphael love
their BlowsMeAway Wood Mics. To see them and hear what they have to say about my work, please visit the home page.
Now - here are a few other pros who use BlowsMeAway mics.
To me, this is the only mic worth owning. A lot
of people praise vintage gear and swear
by it. Greg
has not only captured the soulfulness and air that vintage microphones have, buthis new "Heumann element" has
brought out something fully rounded and satisfying to amplified harmonica. My beautiful wooden mic from
BlowsMeAway Productions gives me plenty of space and tones to create the perfect warm/creamy sound that I
love. Most microphones give you just one thing to work with (Volume, Crunch, etc.) But I have found that
Greg's products tend to give you a little of everything, and all in the right places. Anyone who buys a mic
from Greg will be more then happy with their purchase. I am!
Nic Clark - April 2015
Listen to Nic's amazing tone using his BlowsMeAway wood mic through a
Memphis Mini amplifier.
Nic's mic is made from California Oak Burl. It has a stealth volume control, a personalized grill and The
Shellist is a Hohner endorsee out of Denver,
CO. Ronnie is a
great player and teacher. He is also an early adopter of the new "The Heumann Element." Here's what
Ronnie says about his new BlowsMeAway Wood Mic:
Greg took the time to listen carefully to my needs, kept me posted all along the way
progress, and delivered the most beautiful bullet mic that I've ever played. It sounds every bit as good as it
looks which is saying a lot! The stealth volume control is also amazing. There is no substitute out there for
the work that he is doing. The tone of his new "The Heumann Element is fantastic. Just what I was looking
for. It reminds me of a really warm ceramic element with tons of bass, warm tone and nice break up.
Ronnie Shellist - August 2014
You can hear Ronnie test-blowing The Heumann Element in this mic through a Memphis Mini amp here.
Ronnie chose Malaysian Blackwood with a Piano
finish for his mic, along with a
personalized grill and the
Stealth Volume Control option.
Mark Ford is one of the most creative and musical modern blues harp players, with
many CD's on the Blue Rock'it Records label. He was (and
remains) a big
influence on my playing. Unfortunately for us, he nearly stopped playing publicly about 10 years ago. Now - he
is back! Mark has retired from his day job, is writing songs and touring again with the Ford Blues Band. Here's
what Mark says:
As a long time Harp player, I've had the chance to play through just about every mic
there is out
there, and I mean it when I say this is the best mic I've ever had. Not only does it sound great, but it's
absolutely beautiful. It's light weight compared to the pair of Green Bullets I'm used to working with, and
fits in the palm of my hand like it was made for it. Greg makes each of these mics individually out of
beautiful hardwoods and metals, machining and turning each piece, creating what is not just another harp mic,
but a true and unique work of art. A harp players dream mic!
Mark Ford - June 2014
Rising star Aki Kumar has made waves across the
around the world with his virtuouso blues harp playing. Here's what Aki has to say:
A+ to Greg Heumann for hand-crafting an absolute beauty of a harmonica mic for me!
Built out of
Burmese Rosewood, this eye-catching microphone is easy to grip and incredibly light to hold; lighter than any
of my other bullet mics. This has reduced strain on my hands during club shows where I end up playing through
a bullet mic for up to 4 hours a night.
The volume control works like a dream and blends seamlessly into the mic body. I use the volume control knob a
fair bit to vary my dynamics during a song. Having the knob conveniently integrated into the
microphone allows me to make quick and accurate adjustments without losing my grip on it. One of the visual
highlights of the mic is the aluminum grill, polished to a mirror shine and customized with my name.
Finally, the MOST important aspect of any harmonica microphone: TONE! Greg provided me with a very hot and
responsive CR element for this microphone, one that he personally selected and tested. Being an accomplished
harpist himself, Greg's judgement was spot-on about this. I have tested this microphone on a variety of harp
amps, large and small, and the results have been more than satisfactory. It has now become my primary mic for
all my live shows.
Thank you Greg and BlowsMeAway Productions for hitting this one out of the park!
Aki Kumar - June 2013
Noted by his peers as one of the most soulful and powerful blues singers in the business today, Mitch Kashmar is one of my
performers. He has it all - tone, swing, great material - diatonic and chromatic mastery - everything. Here's
what Mitch has to say:
I'm loving my Blows Me Away custom mic...on the
functional side, it's so light it
in your hand, and, partly due to the slightly smaller diameter, I'm getting a real vocal sound when I use my
hands, similar to when I play acoustic...you can make that thang TALK...the stealth volume control is just
that, my friends can't even locate it for a few seconds, and easy to reach with just your pinkie if you
prefer....on the cosmetic side, it's the tip of the top, mine is made of ebony with a classic piano finish,
and my own initials on the grill...it's so sexy, I wanna take it out for
drinks and dinner!
Mitch Kashmar - March 2013
Mischo, "Best Harmonica
Player" award winner
in 1996, with 10 CD's under his own name and apppearances on countless others. RJ Mischo endorses BlowsMeAway's
Custom Wood Mics
I just plugged in my new beautiful curly maple mic from BlowsMeAway Productions. It has a 1950 Shure black
CR element with Killer Tone. I played the mic with my Bassman, Super Reverb & Concert amp sounds great
all of them. This outfit makes the highest quality harp mics, volume controls & cables, I highly recommend
RJ Mischo - November 2010
These Mics are a work of art ... And man the wood makes the tone just drip out ...Warm
Sunflower River in Clarksdale Ms .. in July ..... And the Piano Finish is so smooth you can see yourself in it
Like many other people, whether for harmonica or guitar, I have tried for a long time to get a good
tone wireless. It took Greg Heumann’s knowledge and experience with elements, impedance matching, volume
pots and more to accomplish the task. My new custom wood body harmonica mic is not only wireless, it has the
best tone, is comfortably light weight and looks like a piece of art work. It is now part of my regular
gigging set up. I’ve been spoiled and really don’t want a heavy bodied mic anymore, except maybe
as a back up, but today I asked Greg to make me another one that isn’t wireless for a back up. I find
myself prone to tell players about Greg's wood mics above all others. The wireless has become my hands down
mic of choice.
Jimi's mic is set up low impedance with an XLR
connector so he can use it with his
wireless rig. You
can see him use it in this
I play with a BlowsMeAway Productions wood mic
and it is my favorite mic! Super light,
and it fits in your hand WAY better than the stock mics. The coolest looks! And I love the volume control now.
I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this mic to anyone that is serious about playing
electric harp... I'm sold on Greg's mics!
-- Andy Just
Listen while you look.... Hear blues veteran, recording artist and pro performer Andy Justblowin' his BlowsMeAway wood mic and volume control
through a Sonny Jr amp, recorded live at The Little Fox Theatre in Redwood City, CA:
The first time I picked up this mic at the SPAH convention in Virginia Beach I knew I had to have it. It was
lightweight, had great sound and looked really cool. I have since put all my "antiques" away
including my beloved green bullet and custom JT-30 aka "Shrek" that I used to adore.
Nothing can touch the mic Greg made; there is artistry involved in creating this mic. The fact that this
made from a single piece of wood “blows me away”. The volume control has changed my
playing; I love the ease and control it gives me on stage.
The mic is extremely light and easy to use especially for longer shows. Because I play it
the time the color has deepened and gotten richer.
I can't wait to get my next one with a custom grill! I mention the microphone every show and I
always take the time to show it to anyone who asks and refer them to the website.
— Jake Friel
This video opens with RJ Mischo playing acoustic. At about 2:48 in the vid, he came over to me to try one of my
wood mics - hooked up to my Sonny Jr Avenger. We ended up trading licks for quite a while - it was a hoot! RJ
decided then and there he had to have his own BlowsMeAway wood mic. And now he does!
Design your own mic!
The base price for a BlowsMeAway custom wood mic is $289. That includes a shell turned from a single block of
your choice of wood, a billet aluminum grill with straight slots, screw-on connector, natural finish, black foam
windscreen, custom gasket - and your choice of the awesome new "The Heumann Element" or a wonderful
vintage Shure single impedance controlled magnetic element - 99A86 or 99B86. (These elements are considered to
among the best available for harp - and have been out of production now for about 40 years. They are far
to the elements that come in the current Shure 520DX Green Bullet or any other mass-produced harp mic. I buy
used from a variety of sources.) I also have other elements, or will make a shell for your element if you like.
See "Elements Available" below.
SO - start at $289, choose your wood(s) and consider the following pro options.
New! I have many more photos in the
Wood Mics photo album on Facebook. Start here to understand the options and their prices - but look
for a broader selection of woods.
This mic is made from Kingwood
Typical Wood Inventory
This is a typical list but I just can't seem to keep it updated. I buy pretty wood when I see it - and sometimes
I can't get any more of something for a while. I will help you through the wood choice process! When we create a spec for your mic, ew can leave the wood choice "TBD" until it is time to build the mic, and then I will know exactly what I have available!
Solid Block Woods Available
Rosewood, E. Indian
Board stock available (for laminated mics)
dark, dark brown, dark brown grain
(square stock - requires 4-way (2x2) lamination
The following board woods are good for the center section in laminations - contrasting color, but not much
grain - which can conflict with side wood grain
I have many more photos of mics in a wide variety of woods on my facebook page. Go here and head for the "Customer Mics" photo album. If that doesn't do it, I
recommend that you Google these woods to learn more about them.
Lamination: Some woods aren't available in blocks thick enough for me to start with so I
laminate multiple boards together. This results in some beautiful color and grain combinations as you can see
the pictures here. Lamination takes lots of prep and time - add $39 for a standard 3-piece lamination, $49 for
Zebrawood and Macassar Ebony.
Cocobolo and Purpleheart, maze grill
Multilam woods: I have some
prelaminated woods- these are thin layers of
birch that have been
dyed, then pressed together in large sheets under huge pressure, bonded with a special resin. Add $10 for
BluesBerry (SOLD OUT)
Blue Bayou (SOLD OUT)
Black and Blues
I have others! You never know! Ask!
Stealth Volume Control
With the stealth volume control, the end of the shell IS the volume knob.
I set it up so that the wood grain lines
perfectly when the control is at full volume. Add $89.
This mic is made from a 4-part laminate of Kingwood. You can just barely see the line between
rotating rear and the main part of the mic.
This mic is made from Zebrawood, with a Tripoly grill.
Curved/Radial Slot Patterns:
Curved or radial slot patterns require a lot more setup time and machining work, but they are beautiful and
unique. Add $39.
I have other new designs too. Like the "Globe" and the "Peace Sign" - the images are on
Facebook but I've been too busy to update this web site. You might too. Dont see what you want? Contact me!
Personalized Grills - add $89
Now you can have your grill personalized like Kim Wilson's and Charlie Musselwhite's. I recommend you use
own initials, however :) I have a couple different designs and will work with you to help you decide.
I love working with customers to come up with new grill designs. Before you get too excited, though, no, you
have your face in there. The slots are 1/8" wide and must leave about 1/8" between them. The circle in
which they live is 1.85" in diameter.
And like the stencils they use to paint signs in the street, there has to be connective tissue to hold the
bits of the letters in or they will fall out. That means you don't have much resolution to work with. So get
"Right Initials." Kim Wilson's mic.
"Upper Initials." Jay Sawyer's Mic.
"Centered initials." Bill Noteman's Mic.
"Single initial center". This one was made for country sensation Heidi Newfield.
Arcs w/ 3 Initials, Vertical
Arcs w/ 3 Initials, Horizontal
Horizontal slots, 2 vertical initials
Horizontal slots, 3 vertical initials
All grills can be anodized - black, blue, red, purple, gold - other colors too. Add 2 weeks and $99 (the
is high because the anodizer has a minimum charge - no way around it. )
and yes, that IS Steven Tyler's mic.
Brass is a little heavier but gives a warmer look. Standard aluminum shown on left for comparison. A brass
grill adds 2 ounces to total mic weight.
All grills are provided with a black foam wind screen. A metal grill screen, shown on the right, adds a nice
look. Add $10.
My standard finish is a natural looking hand-rubbed finish with a satin sheen. Your skin oils
react with these mics and they will get richer/darker/duller over time. They can be restored with furniture
and/or furniture wax.
A more durable finish uses nitrocellulose lacquer. This is the same material used to finish fine guitars and
Here there are two levels:
Violin (L) is glossy - however the wood grain is not completely "leveled". The wood is completely
and protected. Add $39 for this option - the most popular choice.
Piano (R) finish takes at least 8-10 coats of lacquer, lots of sanding, a couple extra weeks, and fills all
grain for a mirror like finish. (Compare the overhead fluorescent light reflected in the shell.) Add
This mic is a lamination of Cocobolo and Zebrawood, Mercedes grill and has a turquoise granule
This mic is made of Redheart. When the wood was turned it revealed "checks" that had to
filled with something. I chose turquoise granules. I can add inlay material to engraving (see below) as well.
Ask for price quote.
Add $39 for an inlay ring. Add another $29 for a second one.
Inlay colors/materials, L to R (stripes shown are 1/8" wide, mic inlay stripes are .080"):
Aluminum powder, Brass powder (not shown) (these are a byproduct of my grill manufacturing process)
Blue, gold, red metal flake - note the finished inlay is a combination of the core color and some silver
Black (not shown), red, gold, blue and turquoise "granules"
Genuine Opal Flakes - New! Opal is expensive material and very labor intensive, so is $89 per ring
Laser engraving adds a personalized touch - good for your initials or .... Also see the "anodized
option below - that's Steven Tyler's mic and has some nice engraving on the side. Subcontracted - Add $129.
Engraving can be inlaid, depending on the design. I do the inlay work after I get the shell back from the
engraver. This is a $49 option.
This mic is made from rosewood and marblewood
This mic is made from Zebrawood.
Mickey Raphael and Jimi Lee wanted low impedance mics with XLR connectors
for different reasons. Mickey wants to unplug his acoustic mic and plug this in for a few blues numbers during
Willie Nelson's shows. Jimi Lee wanted to use the mic with his low-Z wireless mic rig. I can also set your mic
for high impedance/XLR like a Blues Blaster (Pin 3 hot) or ready for the wireless transmitter (Pin 2 hot) if you
like. I have to fabricate several parts to make it work. Add $59.
Wet wood process
Hardwoods are frequently sold with fairly high moisture content - particularly when in the 3x3x12" format I
use to make a mic from a solid block of wood. It is very difficult for vendors to dry it without cracking
it is so much thicker than typical kiln-dried board stock, the outside dries and the inside doesn't and so the
unevenness causes tension and ultimately cracks. These woods are stored covered in wax specifically to KEEP them
from drying until they can be turned because they would dry unevenly and crack. I like to get the moisture level
down to 15% or less to make a mic. If I don't do this, the mic will shrink considerably after turning - enough
that the element/gasket can be nearly impossible to remove for service, and more importantly, after a few months
the grill will be a larger diameter than the shell, not only causing it to be a loose fit, but also making it
and uncomfortable. There is also danger of cracking once you've taken posession. My process is mostly secret,
involves pre-turning the mic, boring out the inside and turning the outside but leaving it oversize. That will
leave me room to get it nice and true once it has dried, because it will both shrink and warp in the process.
it is dried in a controlled environment. That can take 2-3 weeks. Once it is dry I go back to work. Every inside
and outside surface has to be turned to the correct depth and diameter - so in effect I've turned the entire mic
With some exceptions, I can't predict when the time comes to build your mic what wood I will have and whether
it will be dry or not. I recently received two pieces of East Indian Rosewood, for example - one was 12%
moisture (8-10% is considered natural "resting" moisture level) and one was 24%. But if it is wet -
you will have the opportunity to choose something else or have me proceed.
The Heumann Element is included in the $289 standard price mic. The Heumann Element is a high impedance
element made from a modern vocal mic element to which I have made both mechanical and electrical
It has big, fat tone with plenty of bass and is most reminiscent of a vintage ceramic element, but with
A Shure single impedance Controlled Magnetic 99A86 or 99B86 element can be substituted for The Heumann
at no additional charge. This element was in the original Shure 520 Green Bullet and is an outstanding value.
If you need to save some dough, consider a 99S556 Dual Impedance Controlled Magnetic element and Deduct $29.
This element was in the Shure 520D and is a great choice if you're on a tight budget. A little brighter than
single-impedance elements but still has great tone and break-up - and way better than anything you can buy in
commercial bullet today.
Premium Shure Controlled Magnetic - like 99H86 white label CM
Shure Controlled Reluctance 99(H,G)86 white label
Shure Controlled Reluctance 99(A,G,H)86 black label
Supply your own element
deduct $79 from basic mic price
Where do you put your mic when you're not playing it?
This is the BulletProofer™
The only clamp-on mic holder that truely protects your mic. Many other stand mounts aren't secure - trip over your
cable and the mic goes flying. Not with BulletProofer! The secret is the
slot that lets the cable fall to the
of the holder, so the mic truly sits in, not on the stand.
Fits any stand from 3/8" (9.5mm) to 1" (25mm) diameter. Padded clamp and nylon screw won't damage your