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#1 Hyp

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 11:54 AM

First off. Hey to everyone out there. I found this Board really helpful in getting to know how much I don't know. I'm a student of music (jazzpiano) in Germany and had to do a Radio Show about any music ethnological Topic (I hope this is the right word...) and chose Ireland. When I started to search for Music to play I stumbled over a YouTube Video of Noel Hill playing two Reels. I was really amazed and wanted to do that. I was impressed that a single line melody could be so rhythmic and interesting. On further research I stumbled over some shops with cheap concertinas. So I decided that I would buy one.

What confused me was the different Types. I know now, that an Anglo Concertina has different tones on pull and push and that an english concertina has the same and is fully chromatic. What nobody really states clear (perhaps it isn't even clear) is, if the Anglo Concertina is fully Chromatic. Everybody seems to be playing anglos for ITM and as a beginner it seems reasonable to do what everybody does. But coming from Jazz Music I am quite interestet if the Anglo is capable of playing Single Line jazzimprovisations (on standards or whatever), or to what extend the english concertina is good for ITM. This would also interest me, because I'd perhaps like to go to a summerschool when I have improved. Are the Summerschools anglo only or do they Teachers teach both if needed?

If I decide on one, I will probably buy a Rochelle/Jack modell the moment I can afford that and start playing.

So. The questions in short: Is the 30key Anglo fully Chromatic and is the english concertina suited for ITM?

Greetings from Germany
Hyp

#2 Ransom

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 12:29 PM

So. The questions in short: Is the 30key Anglo fully Chromatic and is the english concertina suited for ITM?


The 30-key anglo is chromatic over two octaves, but not over its entire range.

Beautiful traditional Irish music can be played on the English concertina.

#3 Geoff Wooff

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 12:48 PM

Hello Hyp,
as most people play ITM on an Anglo the summer school classes will be focussed on that type of concertina.
The Anglo is Chromatic but playing in the "remote" keys might be more difficult than on an English . As to the old question of the suitability of the English Concertina for playing ITM, I feel that music is in your head, so if you understand a musical genre then it is possible to play it no matter what instrument you choose.
I have played ITM on the English Concertina for about 40 years (off and on) and eventually came to understand (or came to an understanding with myself) what I wanted in the way of style. After 40 years I am "at home" with this keyboard, like one's own language and so I would be happy to try any new genre of music that took my fancy. However, I now know that to play well I have to understand a type of music as completely as possible. This takes a very long time unless you have good teachers who can point you in good directions and "short cut" the process.

When I commence to study a "traditional music" I find an instrument that has been used to play or even 'form' that music. I then study how to play that "traditional instrument" and ,as it happens, I then end up going back to the English Concertina with ,hopefully, a better understanding of how I might approach a style of playing.
So, my style of playing ITM on the English Concertina should owe more to the 30+ years I have spent playing Uilleann Pipes than to my attempts to imitate the styles of Anglo players.

Many people play clasical music on the EC and I am sure Jazz also. But if you really want a smooth passage towards the music of Noel Hill then maybe you should opt for the Anglo and keep your Jazz improvisations seperate or in keys that suit well to the Anglo keyboard.

I should leave the "welcome to Concertina.net" to those who have been here a long time,
best of luck with your choice,
Geoff.

#4 fernando

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 04:57 PM

Hello Hyp!

My advise is for the English System. No doubt in your case.

I will always respect the Anglo System, you said Noel Hill? he is my teacher, and I can tell you it is amazing to see him playing.

But if you want to play different types of music and to play them in different keys, including not common ones, go for the English. Or buy an Anglo with a good few extra buttons.

The English has pure symmetry in the fingering: if you move the fingering along the keyboard, and after a couple of changes made, you have easily changed the key.

I advise you to listen Simon Thoumire playing, he plays ITM and he plays jazz as well.

I hope this is to you of some help, I didn't want to make this reply too long, if you ask me I will be pleased to answer you, if I know of course.

All the best,

Fernando

#5 m3838

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 11:47 PM

My advise is for the English System. No doubt in your case.


I would agree. It's case to case, and in your case English will give you what you want.
But your question may have been asked in haste.
You seem to associate concertina playing with single line melody, made interesting and rhythmic. If this IS your desire, then advice to go with English System is correct. If you weren't aware of chordal concertina playing, then research some more. You may opt for Duet of any style. It gives you chromaticity of an English, plus possibility for an accompaniment. You may consider Duet to be Melody instrument with wider range, or you may use it as self-accompanying instrument, where left and right hands may play separate lines.
Considering that you are professional musician you probably will benefit from Macann system. It's the most compact and gives more range in smaller size. Smaller size of the keyboard is a big deal for Concertina, where your wrist is strapped and higher buttons can be difficult to reach in larger keyboards.
If you really don't care about the key and impressed with Noel's playing, go with Anglo. Can you play Jazz on Anglo? Absolutely!!!!! Research this guy's youtube videos. He's jazzifying everying he's playing.
http://www.youtube.c...h?v=ACT5ZWsFiEw

#6 Hyp

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 02:27 AM

It seems that some of my assupmtions were right. I was aware of the possibility of playing chords, but single lines rule supreme in Jazz Improvisations and they seem to be not to important in ITM. They are not really important for me anyway.
Are there any known English Concertina Summerschools in Europa, because I won't find a teacher here, and I know, that there are limits to Self-Teaching. I also know from other Workshops, that Summerschools give a huge motivation boost, which sometimes is needed if one is stuck at a certain point and still needs some time to make the next step.

Two octaves of chromatic playing are quite a bit. The saxophone doesn't have that much more. Though I guess utilising those 2 octaves freely will be very difficult. I'm still wondering about the ranges from both english and anglo concertinas. I know there are different versions vor english, but I don't know which is commonly used.

Greetings
Hyp

#7 michael sam wild

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 08:11 AM

First off , welcome herePosted Image Isn't it strange what gets people hooked. Would you be on this net without YouTube and your project, in afew years who knows what and how you'll be playing ?

I think you would be best with EC for what you want. However, I don't think you'll get that 'Irish Traditional Music' concertina sound and feel on EC as readily or as well as you would on AC.


All the best
Mike

Edited by michael sam wild, 01 July 2010 - 12:08 PM.


#8 Graham Collicutt

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 08:35 AM

It seems that some of my assupmtions were right. I was aware of the possibility of playing chords, but single lines rule supreme in Jazz Improvisations and they seem to be not to important in ITM. They are not really important for me anyway.
Are there any known English Concertina Summerschools in Europa, because I won't find a teacher here, and I know, that there are limits to Self-Teaching. I also know from other Workshops, that Summerschools give a huge motivation boost, which sometimes is needed if one is stuck at a certain point and still needs some time to make the next step.

Two octaves of chromatic playing are quite a bit. The saxophone doesn't have that much more. Though I guess utilising those 2 octaves freely will be very difficult. I'm still wondering about the ranges from both english and anglo concertinas. I know there are different versions vor english, but I don't know which is commonly used.

Greetings
Hyp

Hi


See this thread: http://www.concertin...showtopic=11306 for skype lessons.

Graham

#9 fernando

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 09:10 AM

...I don't think you'll get that 'Irish Traditional Music' concertina sound and feel


Hello Mike,

Well, most of the people think this. And some people think like me, that is:


- It is very possible to play the English Concertina with the same feeling as the Anglo. Even when playing Irish Traditional Music.


The thing is that most of English Concertina players don't use the bellows to get that bouncing feeling that the Anglos get.

Which doesn't mean that it cannot be done, it is perfectly possible to do it. I will say even more, with an English Concertina it is possible to do it even more than with an Anglo, because there is no restriction in the movements of the bellows.

All of this is about tradition, but I think things will change someday.

Cheers,

Fernando

#10 David Barnert

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 10:42 AM

My usual advice is to find out what kind of concertina was being played by the person who inspired you to get one. In your case, that would be Noel Hill and his Anglo. But with your jazz background, I agree with the later posts that the chromaticity of the English will be much less limiting.

I'm a duet concertina player, myself, and I'd suggest you have a look at the duet options as well before committing yourself. Melody (chromatic) on the right hand, an octave lower on the left for countermelodies, chords, walking bass, etc.

#11 m3838

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 10:46 AM

- It is very possible to play the English Concertina with the same feeling as the Anglo. Even when playing Irish Traditional Music.



If it's the bouncing natural for push/pull, it's only relevant for amateurs. For a future professional it's passing gimmick. Noel and Nial both use alternate fingering to overcome natural bounce. In fact, they use Anglo in EC way, alternating from left to right.
However, EC's ergonomics don't allow for aggressive push/pull.
It is fixable, if one is adventurous enough and wants to experiment.
Look here: http://www.youtube.c...h?v=wIpE38VoY08
You can contact this person for personal exchange and advice.



#12 Hyp

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 10:52 AM

I just checked the Chromatic Range for both english and anglo concertinas and was suprised, that the anglo has from a to g3 with 30 keys. That is more than a normal Saxophone has. Are those Keys that hard to reach and the scales that harder to master than on the english. It seems to have nearly the same range. Even slightly less. (g to d3, at least that is what is said on buttonbox)

#13 fernando

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 11:11 AM

...Noel and Nial both use alternate fingering to overcome natural bounce. In fact, they use Anglo in EC way, alternating from left to right...


You are right in there, I agree with that. Noel told me that once.

What I say about the English Concertina playing Irish Music has to be proved, it is the only way people is going to believe in what I'm trying to see. I'm going to try to do it myself. But if it's not me, I'm sure there will be someone someday.

Thanks for the ergonomics tip. At the moment I have no problems with mine.

But it is true that the volume of the Anglo is a way more powerful than with the English. I usually have problems to listen myself when I'm playing in Noel Hill class. All the other concertinas in the class are Anglos, and they are so loud! And I bought the loudest English Concertina that Chris Algar had!

That's something to take note of as well, English concertinas are not very good for playing in sessions where there are a few other musicians

Cheers,

Fernando

#14 Hyp

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 11:19 AM

...Noel and Nial both use alternate fingering to overcome natural bounce. In fact, they use Anglo in EC way, alternating from left to right...


You are right in there, I agree with that. Noel told me that once.

What I say about the English Concertina playing Irish Music has to be proved, it is the only way people is going to believe in what I'm trying to see. I'm going to try to do it myself. But if it's not me, I'm sure there will be someone someday.

Thanks for the ergonomics tip. At the moment I have no problems with mine.

But it is true that the volume of the Anglo is a way more powerful than with the English. I usually have problems to listen myself when I'm playing in Noel Hill class. All the other concertinas in the class are Anglos, and they are so loud! And I bought the loudest English Concertina that Chris Algar had!

That's something to take note of as well, English concertinas are not very good for playing in sessions where there are a few other musicians

Cheers,

Fernando


I didn't know that. That's really quite interesting, because if I would play jazz, I would do this at a session.

#15 Ransom

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 12:01 PM

I just checked the Chromatic Range for both english and anglo concertinas and was suprised, that the anglo has from a to g3 with 30 keys. That is more than a normal Saxophone has. Are those Keys that hard to reach and the scales that harder to master than on the english. It seems to have nearly the same range. Even slightly less. (g to d3, at least that is what is said on buttonbox)


You may have been looking at a 30 or 36-key English. Many cheaper models have an abbreviated range, but the most standard range it 48 keys, which should take you up to the next C. 56-key models are also not uncommon-- mostly extending up to the next highest G, though "tenor-trebles" extend downward to tenor C instead.

...Noel and Nial both use alternate fingering to overcome natural bounce. In fact, they use Anglo in EC way, alternating from left to right...


But it is true that the volume of the Anglo is a way more powerful than with the English. I usually have problems to listen myself when I'm playing in Noel Hill class. All the other concertinas in the class are Anglos, and they are so loud! And I bought the loudest English Concertina that Chris Algar had!

That's something to take note of as well, English concertinas are not very good for playing in sessions where there are a few other musicians

Cheers,

Fernando


I didn't know that. That's really quite interesting, because if I would play jazz, I would do this at a session.


Volume depends on the instrument, but you could compensate in the amplification if you mic it.

#16 fernando

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 12:22 PM

[/quote] I didn't know that. That's really quite interesting, because if I would play jazz, I would do this at a session.
[/quote]

But one thing Hyp, when I say this, I'm talking about the sessions that you normally find in Ireland. They usually are without any means of amplification, no mics. But from the little I know from jam sessions in jazz, they are usually with mics. Then there wouldn't be any problem for you.

#17 David Barnert

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 12:55 PM

Look here: http://www.youtube.c...h?v=wIpE38VoY08
You can contact this person for personal exchange and advice.

But you won't find him on concertina.net! :o

That's something to take note of as well, English concertinas are not very good for playing in sessions where there are a few other musicians

I didn't know that. That's really quite interesting, because if I would play jazz, I would do this at a session.

I wouldn't be too concerned about that. An English may not be as loud as an Anglo, but it's at least as loud as a fiddle and louder than a flute. They have no trouble being heard.

#18 m3838

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 04:17 PM

English concertinas are not very good for playing in sessions where there are a few other musicians



I didn't know that. That's really quite interesting, because if I would play jazz, I would do this at a session.


It's case by case. In general I'd be concerned with concertina been squeaky up there. All usual "jazz" instruments have lush tones, with rich overtones and ability to bend, or have natural decay. Concertina may appear out of place. I once heard country swing EC solo on stage. It was done well, but felt weak and unconvincing. All instruments were miked. May be it is true that you need to differentiate between genres and pick the best instrument for each. Anglo is folk instrument, it can't be universal. English was designed as erzatz violin to play classical pieces. It too, is not completely universal.




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