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The Peacock


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#1 Ransom

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 08:30 AM

Peacocks have now been on sale for at least 3 days.


Ho! And here I expected the Peacock to by a hybrid English model!

Concertina Connection comes up from behind, beating the Button Box to the punch with a commercially-available Hayden duet!

#2 ceemonster

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 05:41 PM

the Peacock has been billed for over a year now as CC's hybrid EC....are you saying Wim has pulled some prestidigitation, legerdemain, and amazing majick on us?

#3 Ransom

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 10:06 PM

The current description of the upgrade program suggests that the English hybrid model will be called the Rose-- as proposed here by Boney nearly two years ago!

#4 Daniel Hersh

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 10:07 PM


Peacocks have now been on sale for at least 3 days.

And here I expected the Peacock to by a hybrid English model!

Concertina Connection comes up from behind, beating the Button Box to the punch with a commercially-available Hayden duet!

I would guess that Wim decided to bring out a mid-range Hayden/Wicki before an English and to use the Peacock name for it. I have ideas about why he might have done that but I'll let him speak for himself if he chooses to.

I hope to try a Peacock one day, but I have some initial thoughts based on the description on the Concertina Connection web site:

Overall, it looks great and it probably plays well, based on what's been posted here about the Clover which I imagine is built with about the same techniques, materials and design principles.

Size: it's big - 7 inches across the flats. Not quite as big as an Elise, which is 7 1/2 inches, but still big. (For comparison, my 48-button Lachenal Crane is about 6 5/8 inches across.)

Range and chromatic-ness: it's got 42 buttons, up from 34 on the Elise but not quite the 46 buttons on what I believe is considered a "standard" Hayden such as the $5875 Wakker W-H1. I would imagine that this is because it would be hard to fit any more accordion-type reeds in what's already a pretty big box. So what's missing? There are compromises on high-end range on both sides of the concertina. The high note on the Peacock right hand is the C two octaves above middle C, while the W-H1 goes up to high D. On the left hand, the Peacock goes up to G# above middle C while the W-H1 goes a little higher, to B. I'd say that these are relatively minor compromises. Within its range, the Peacock is as chromatic as the W-H1 - both instruments are missing the C# or D# below middle C, and in both cases the only C# and D# just above middle C are on the left-hand side.

Price: I'd say that the $2450 price for the standard Peacock is very reasonable for a well-made 42-button mid-range concertina. The Peacock could be a very good mid-priced option for a Hayden player. That said, one could make the case that restored vintage Cranes and Maccanns are better deals at current prices, but the Peacock is a welcome addition for those who strongly prefer the Hayden layout.

#5 Ransom

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 10:17 PM

Does anyone remember how many keys are on Judy's prototype Hayden for the Button Box? (The Peacock has 42).

I wonder whether we will see the Peacock as a kit!

#6 ceemonster

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 01:43 AM

it's all very intriguing and cool. a toast to mr. W. for his imagination and panache....

Edited by ceemonster, 09 May 2012 - 01:44 AM.


#7 SqueezeCat

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 04:37 PM

Hurrah!!

#8 highplainsman

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 05:26 PM

This is good news, and will help fill that important niche of an intermediate Hayden/Wicki box.

I am surprised, though, that the Wicki button arrangement was used for the Peacock. I expected that it would continue the Elise arrangement of buttons with the Hayden slant. My reading of an interview that Brian Hayden gave a while back is that he designed the slant to accommodate his hands better, especially the little finger. I like the slant, but then I haven't played anything else. Maybe Wim can share his thinking on this choice.

I have two questions. First, does the Hayden slant improve upon the straight Wicki arrangement? Second, if a person is comfortable with the Hayden slant, do you want to change to straight?

#9 ceemonster

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 07:17 PM

i'd speculate that the choice of wicki ergonomics over hayden might be aimed at shoppers coming in fresh, who would take a look at that slant and not purchase at all. such as myself. however it might or might not lend itself to chordal song accompaniment, which i have no interest in spending $2500 on a musical instrument for, it is plainly not a setup for genres where you are using your duet for light vamping on the left, and rapid, fluid melody playing on the right.

i would be very much in the market for a concertina i can do this on in any key, with light bass vamping, and it would not be one with a slanted layout:
http://www.youtube.c...h?v=EHsvQ41TNGs

the hayden ergonomics are also not right for genres where you are not using the left even for light vamping, but instead are using and swapping between both sides for one single rapid, fluid melody line, like an irish reel or a jazz line, which you should have the option of doing on a duet regardless of what the herd mentality stereotypes the duet as being "for."

and the ergonomic that works for those things is the wicki setup. the duet is going to turn out to be the best thing going once people start to design, produce, explore, and exploit them for all the things you ought to be able to do with them. WW has possibly thrown the switch on this by producing one that costs about the same as a hybrid anglo. i would also bet that perhaps the maker has heard input from a number of folks who have tried the slant and do not care for it regardless of what you are using it for....

Edited by ceemonster, 11 May 2012 - 07:40 PM.


#10 Boney

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 07:29 PM

it is plainly not a setup for genres where you are using your duet for light vamping on the left, and rapid, fluid melody playing on the right.

I got lost and could use a roadmap here...do you mean the Hayden/Wicki layout in general, or the layout with the Hayden slant, or without it?

I feel with either the slant or without, it's fine for that style, but I don't play any other duet layout, so I can't compare.

Recently I swapped back and forth playing tunes on both slanted and non-slanted Hayden/Wicki concertinas from Wakker. Even though I'm used to the slant, getting used to the non-slanted version was pretty quick. There were several advantages of the non-slanted layout, I felt, and only one tune where I felt the straight rows were awkward for something straightforward on the slanted layout. But I probably would have arranged that passage differently if my own instrument had the straight rows.

Overall, after a good hour's messing about (and having played the Hayden layout for almost six years), I prefer the straight rows. But, it's not a huge difference, really.

#11 ceemonster

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 07:45 PM

sorry, i meant the slant. not optimal for the type of playing i was spotlighting. i wouldn't go there. well, if the elise was available with full chromaticism for a few hundred bucks, or the stagi was upgradable to hand reeds, i would have purchased one to try the hayden at a discount price. but in this price range, i would not go for the slant....very interesting to hear it works nearly as well for you.

i am actually very interested in the PK.... :ph34r:

Edited by ceemonster, 11 May 2012 - 07:49 PM.


#12 JimLucas

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 11:25 PM

...it might or might not lend itself to chordal song accompaniment ... it is plainly not a setup for genres where you are using your duet for light vamping on the left, and rapid, fluid melody playing on the right...

Others, who actually play Hayden (or Wicki) will certainly chime in, but I would question whether the relevant factor is the genre of music or arrangement. I would think that a more relevant factor would be the size and shape of one's hands. In that respect, individuals differ considerably, yet all too often I see posts making pronouncements about what is "good" or "better" which completely ignore that factor. Maybe Brian Hayden's hands aren't shaped quite the same as yours?

A case in point is the special 42-button anglo layout by George Jones. I tried one for a while, but my fingers weren't long enough to handle the spread of the buttons without serious contortion. It wound up in the hands (literally) of someone who had complained about the contortions his large hands required when playing standard anglos.

#13 malcolmbebb

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Posted 12 May 2012 - 07:48 AM

Others, who actually play Hayden (or Wicki) will certainly chime in, but I would question whether the relevant factor is the genre of music or arrangement. I would think that a more relevant factor would be the size and shape of one's hands. In that respect, individuals differ considerably, yet all too often I see posts making pronouncements about what is "good" or "better" which completely ignore that factor.


With apologies to the OP for continuing thread drift, I have what are sometimes called "Engineer's hands" - relatively long palm and short fingers. This means that I have to move my hand to play the outside keys on the second row of an Anglo (even though at rest it seems perfectly feasible to use the pinky).




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