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Relative price for duets


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#37 ceemonster

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 07:23 PM

[How would you play a PA or CBA or even a melodeon?]

well, on a PA or a CBA, you can do either/both of these:

a) play melody on the right side simultaneously with bass and/or vamping and/or rhythm and/or harmony and/or counterpoint on the left.

Bee) play the box as a pure melody instrument. in the case of PA or CBA, you do this simply by leaving off the left side and just playing melody on the right.


to play a duet concertina as a pure melody instrument, if you don't have a high reach on the left, you are going to have a heavy burden on your right-hand side. this issue is augmented by the fact that on PA or CBA you can use your thumb (on CBA some don't, but the modern five-finger CBA style, and PA's thumb involvement, relieve the strain of playing right-side only at speed for long periods). see?

so there's the rub. for one's investment, one ("one" here being Yours Truly) wants a unisonoric concertina tat will do both a) and Bee). EC will do the melody-only one, and does it brilliantly. it will do SOME simultaneous bass-ish stuff, but is not optimal for continuous rhythmic vamping. Duet will do melody-left/bass-right....but which, if any, duet will do BOTH?

to get a hayden that will do both, you really need a lot of keys. the 46 is not high enough on the left side to relieve the strain on the right hand of playing, say, irish reels for a few hours straight. but a big one with a bunch of buttons means you're gonna slow the response down just from the sheer mass and span of the thing. it's also gonna be as expensive as hell, particularly in contrast to a single-voice 9-pound CBA, which can be had for oh, say, about $1,000 That's right: $1,000 to do everything and more, that a 57 or 60 button duet will do. it is a sobering thought.

which makes the maccann look like a great deal, as has been sagely pointed out by a number of folks on these various "which duet?" threads. but i just don't know if i want to take on an irregular layout at this point. my "irregular layout" slot is currently reserved for bandoneon. actually, the fact is that as an undertaking, learning an irregular 58-button duet approaches the task of learning bandoneon, minus the super-high bando octave that nobody uses anyway. see?


what i am fantasizing about doing is, selling a bunch of stuff and acquiring a 46-button accordion-reeded Peacock Hayden for what you are calling "piano-style" playing, and also acquiring an accordion-reeded tenor EC for melody playing. that would satisfy the yearning for groovy small unisonorics to play world dance music on while leaving my Reserved "irregular layout" slot open for bando.

i only prefer the concertina-reed sound for irish, and it's for emotional reasons not "objective" reasons. for all other music, i like both concertina and accordion reeds equally. so....

Edited by ceemonster, 23 August 2012 - 07:23 PM.


#38 ceemonster

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 08:03 PM

more on the "playing it like a piano" question:

take the one, the only, the ravishing bal musette waltz, the "Flambee Montalbanaise." it was composed by a unisonoric CBA virtuoso (Gus Viseur), though you can play it wonderfully on everything from guitar to horn. as a dance waltz, the Flambee cries out for continuous or near-continuous rhythmic bass to swing it along, though you wouldn't need huge chords to do the job. sketchy little fillips would do fine.

the 'Tube offers two thought-provoking examples of two different types of concertina rendering the Flambee purely melodically, with no bass. (so, not "playing like a piano"). one is on Anglo, and one is on EC--(a Stagi yet, and one must say, isn't the Stagi doing nicely)? these examples certainly have their respective charms (the bisonoric character of Anglo gives that version a kind of jazzy feel, no?),

Flambee Anglo:
http://www.youtube.c...h?v=V3Lw_eih7-0

Flambee English:
http://www.youtube.c...h?v=4po3MVpxee4


but sometimes you really want/need that bass vamping to swing a musette for dancers....which duet?
the "Flambee" is sometimes found in a-minor, but more often in flat keys such as C-minor...i think, say, a 46-button hayden could probly handle the a-minor "Flambee" setting fine. but could it handle the C-minor setting fluidly and at musette speed? what about c# minor? could Crane? could Maccanm? or could you arrange the "Flambee" on EC to give an approximation of waltz vamping not present in the Stagi clip? it's all very intriguing....

here is one of my unisonoric heroes, jazz maestro Richard Galliano, doing a cba "Flambee" with no bass, but it's an arty jazz solo rather than a musette dance waltz....EC would certainly do this very well:

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=bHGxEDy4IgM

here is gus viseur himself:
http://www.youtube.c...h?v=6NLITZx3IYI



how big a duet would you need to do this with bass "like a piano", and would it be agile enough to do the job at speed?

Edited by ceemonster, 23 August 2012 - 08:15 PM.


#39 danersen

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 08:29 PM

RE: previous post

There is also a C). Free bass left hand which will accommodate the proposed very nicely and effectively with great capacity for improvisation and adaptation

RE: this post

How big a duet would you need to do this with bass "like a piano", and would it still do it at speed?

Precisely why I commissioned Wim to build my Stark Chromatiphone layout W-C2 Duet.
8-1/4" with 62 keys
Here: Wakker-concertinas.com/C-2.htm

And don't forget CBA masters Ludovic Beier and Julien Labro - both of whom play extraordinary Jazz and Classical arrangements with minimal left hand involvement.

#40 ceemonster

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 09:18 PM

[There is also a C). Free bass left hand which will accommodate the proposed very nicely and effectively with great capacity for improvisation and adaptation]

certainly. the small 9.5-pound one-voice CBA i mentioned above is as light as it is because the left side is two octaves of freebass, more than enough for folk or rhythmic bass vamping. i have a modestly-priced one which is currently at the tech having Binci reeds put into the right side. but that's accordion...question remains how to get this at four pounds on a duet...


[And don't forget CBA masters Ludovic Beier and Julien Labro - both of whom play extraordinary Jazz and Classical arrangements with minimal left hand involvement.] sure. that's like the Galliano clip i posted. question remains--when you want/need the bass for dance--which duet does it and how big does it have to be?

your Stark sounds luscious--but that is an investment i don't think i could make.....again...it sounds delicious indeed....i have been eyeing Wim's 60-something Hayden, but it is almost nine grand.

it always circles me back to the 57-button Maccann. a great deal for the price. just not sure i can face learning the irregular layout....

#41 blue eyed sailor

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 03:12 AM

Many do though.

Yes indeed...

How would you play a PA or CBA or even a melodeon?

Apart from the CBA (which I haven't dealt with as yet), I always do as much harmonizing as accessible and well-sounding on the right side of the box (i.e. a second note on the melodeon and possibly a third one on the PA) in order that any left-hand chording will fade into the background,

#42 Geoff Wooff

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 03:31 AM



it always circles me back to the 57-button Maccann. a great deal for the price. just not sure i can face learning the irregular layout....




Any 'new' keyboard is going to feel strange at the begining but will become progressively more intuitive. Changing Typing keyboard, as we did when we moved to France, only took a few days. Granted the Maccann does have its awkward corners, with the Eb's tucked into an almost blind spot underneath the D's, but the other irregularities are less problematic when you get into it.

Having said that, listening to your CBA links, above, makes me realise why the interest in playing Concertinas went into decline during the 1930's with such impressive performances as these.Thanks for posting those, I really enjoyed them.

Why anyone would want to take up such rare and out dated keyboards as those of the Maccann and Crane in the face of your overwhelming arguments for CBA I cannot fathom but ,there we are, although we are very few in number!

Edited by Geoff Wooff, 24 August 2012 - 04:57 AM.


#43 ceemonster

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 02:37 PM

[Why anyone would want to take up such rare and out dated keyboards as those of the Maccann and Crane in the face of your overwhelming arguments for CBA....ha, i'm not really arguing for cba], though i do love it now....but in my case, the duet is now shimmering on the horizon because one starts yearning for something approximating a cba in a smaller package, not to replace cba, but to complement....i still love anglo for itm. but after a couple years at cba i now want a unisonoric concertina for other things....:)

interesting point about any layout seeming strange but getting easier....i have gone through the process with cba, and last year spent a few months with an asian 48-button ec. even with the regular layout on both, there is still a learning curve before you get fluid with it. first there is the learning-the-note-locations part, which is shorter with a fixed layout. followed by the getting-it-fluid part. didn't go to the fluid point with the ec because the reeds and action were so resistant it was getting painful. but have gotten over the hill on cba. it took a good year. now in year two i'm working on getting fluid with the alternate fingerings offered by the dummy row (i'm playing 4-row).

i have been assuming based on my experience with Anglo, which is kind of irregular, that the time to fluidity with an irregular layout such as bandoneon or maccann would be double that of the fixed systems because the initial, learning-the-note-locations part would be longer. of course, maccann has a kinda-sorta regularity to it. perhaps you could make up mnemonics....

Edited by ceemonster, 24 August 2012 - 02:45 PM.


#44 ceemonster

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 02:43 PM

i guess in paris there are CBA virtuosos falling out of the trees in l'automne....

#45 Geoff Wooff

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 04:36 PM

i guess in paris there are CBA virtuosos falling out of the trees in l'automne....




Yes , perhaps there are, but not that many in the Folk music's scene, at least around here, it is mainly Diatonic accordions. At one of the Irish music festivals we were treated to a couple of CBA players in the sessions and so well did they play that with eyes shut one could not tell what sort of Box was being played.

Intuitivness on the EC is reversed when changing octaves in either direction, so even when the patern is standard and repeated ,in mirrow image, some practice and brain power (control) is needed.

At the moment, after one year on the Maccann I feel that it is taking me 10 times longer to learn a tune than it would do on the EC, or put it this way, whereas I can pick up a tune, by ear, as it is being played or sight read off a score directly on the EC, I have to work out what I want to do on the Maccann... which might be because I am wanting to do something more complex from the outset... trying to run before I can walk perhaps. But it is coming.... slowly !

#46 danersen

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 11:24 PM

RE: i guess in paris there are CBA virtuosos falling out of the trees in l'automne....

Doubtful. Most can only aspire to the mastery of Richard Galliano, Ludovic Beier, or Julien Labro, and while the prevalence of accordions in France are like guitars in America relatively few will ever possess the extraordinary instruments which they play.

RE: Why anyone would want to take up such rare and out dated keyboards as those of the Maccann and Crane in the face of your overwhelming arguments for CBA I cannot fathom but ,there we are, although we are very few in number!

I won't attempt an explanation about the Maccann and Crane layouts I've played them both and found them unsatisfactory; but with respect to concertinas whatever system one adopts perhaps some reasons are ...

  • Because its sound is unique and it's allure is captivating.
  • Because it is light and versatile.
  • Because there's something about wood that feels more authentic perhaps, more genuinely acoustic than pearloid.
  • Because it's just a cute little bugger.
  • For comparison: My smallest and lightest CBA a Pigini MIII weighs three times my C2, requires a set of straps, occupies more than four times the cubic space, and can't take the heat literally.
  • Because some things just aren't fungible.


#47 Geoff Wooff

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Posted 25 August 2012 - 07:29 AM

[quote name='danersen' timestamp='1345868678' post='139056']
RE: i guess in paris there are CBA virtuosos falling out of the trees in l'automne....

Doubtful. Most can only aspire to the mastery of Richard Galliano, Ludovic Beier, or Julien Labro, and while the prevalence of accordions in France are like guitars in America relatively few will ever possess the extraordinary instruments which they play.



Whilst admittedly you are correct of course, there is a generally very high level of competance by players of the CBA in France due perhaps for the most part because lessons are very available for this instrument.


Danersen,
I have no doubt it would be interesting to many here to read a report from you on your progress with the Chromatiphone.

#48 danersen

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Posted 25 August 2012 - 11:55 PM

Hello Geoff,

I listed, below, the criteria which I developed when contemplating an ideal concertina layout for me.

It seems that Stark had thought in similar ways long before I did and developed the Chromatiphone layout for unisonoric bandonion application.

Harry Geuns first introduced me to the Chromatiphone layout along with the Praktikal layout by Meisel which is a CBA layout also applied to a unisonoric bandonion.

So, thanks to Stark, there was no need for a new layout; however, there were huge design and engineering considerations to successfully incorporate it into a concertina - and that, Wim was able to solve.

The progress report is all favorable. All of the criteria are successfully met. The concertina is phenomenal, and I am thrilled that I am able to play as intended and desired. Bob Tedrow is currently building a hybrid one for me which is probably the best indication of the success of the layout for me.

Thanks for asking.

Dan.


- fully chromatic and isomorphic (meaning an identical and uniform structure) keyboard consistent throughout the compass of both hands

- fully capable of playing polyphonic music in all keys – major and minors – multi-modal and accidentals friendly

- fully and easily transposable – accidentals in-line with the naturals – not placed at the outside edges

- octaves in horizontal orientation like a CBA rather than vertical like an EC, Maccann, or Crane layout

- highly economical, i.e., relatively condensed/compact in shape and size for the scope of the notes provided

- highly accessible, i.e., the travel/transit is both efficient and versatile in moving among melodic sequences with semitones and accidentals and chord sequences/progressions in all of their intervals/positions/forms, e.g., 9th to maj to 7th to 6th to aug to dim

- congruent with the c-griff CBA layout with half-steps ascending in the same relative position and angling in the same direction even though four rows are utilized rather than three which allows for more compactness and more notes in a smaller "squarer" concertina-like space than the more linear/horizontal shape of the CBA

- genre-diverse

Edited by danersen, 26 August 2012 - 09:17 AM.


#49 ceemonster

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 11:23 PM

ooh-la-la, le Stark, what a prospect! i want to see them in action!

on the abundance of cba virtuosos in paris, i'm now recalling some intel from a friend whose report concurred with mr. w's input....they might not all be gallianos, but cba virtuosi abound all over the country, apparently...

on the french diato front, the general concertina thread's reference to an interview with sylvain piron doesn't mention that the link also covers a very charming and touching account by a student of french folk accordion from Maine who went to Alsace to experience the music in its home setting under the wing of his teacher, who is Sylvain Piron. the account is really a sweet gem, just a lovely read for anyone who has fallen in love with a traditional instrument and folk genre....

http://accordeonaire...-to-alsace.html

Edited by ceemonster, 27 August 2012 - 11:56 PM.


#50 Irene S.

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 04:01 PM

I've been reading the above, and find myself totally lost. What does CBA stand for ? And does it actually relate to duet concertinas? Mystified here :(

#51 Daniel Hersh

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 06:00 PM

I've been reading the above, and find myself totally lost. What does CBA stand for ? And does it actually relate to duet concertinas? Mystified here :(

CBA is chromatic button accordion, of interest to those of us who have been on a long-term quest for our preferred solo free-reed instrument. I myself have tried C/G Anglo concertina, G/D Anglo concertina, conventional piano accordion, free-bass quint/Stradella piano accordion, Chemnitzer concertina, Hayden duet concertina. and am currently focusing on Crane duet concertina. Never tried CBA though, or Maccann or Jeffries duet concertina - the learning curve for all of those seemed too steep (though in retrospect if I had picked one of those and stuck with it I would probably be doing fine on it by now).

#52 Irene S.

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 07:26 PM

I've been reading the above, and find myself totally lost. What does CBA stand for ? And does it actually relate to duet concertinas? Mystified here :(

CBA is chromatic button accordion, of interest to those of us who have been on a long-term quest for our preferred solo free-reed instrument. I myself have tried C/G Anglo concertina, G/D Anglo concertina, conventional piano accordion, free-bass quint/Stradella piano accordion, Chemnitzer concertina, Hayden duet concertina. and am currently focusing on Crane duet concertina. Never tried CBA though, or Maccann or Jeffries duet concertina - the learning curve for all of those seemed too steep (though in retrospect if I had picked one of those and stuck with it I would probably be doing fine on it by now).


Thanks Daniel - I was veering to that solution to my own query but not certain!

#53 cjmiller

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 07:44 PM

Since a good portion of the Duet Concertina world seems to be involved with this thread, would anyone care to comment on the 62 key Jeffries Duet Chris Algar has on ebay at the moment?

http://www.ebay.co.u...=item3a792b331e

Does it make sense to anyone? I have no interest in owning it, but it fascinates me, because I can sort of wrap my head around the Crane and Maccann systems, but even with the fingering chart in front of me that beast defies all logic. If I played Anglo would the puzzle pieces start fitting together?

#54 David Barnert

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 09:56 PM

Since a good portion of the Duet Concertina world seems to be involved with this thread, ...

I've managed to avoid posting to it until now.

...would anyone care to comment on the 62 key Jeffries Duet Chris Algar has on ebay at the moment?

http://www.ebay.co.u...=item3a792b331e

Does it make sense to anyone? I have no interest in owning it, but it fascinates me, because I can sort of wrap my head around the Crane and Maccann systems, but even with the fingering chart in front of me that beast defies all logic. If I played Anglo would the puzzle pieces start fitting together?

I know very little about Jeffries Duets (or Anglos, for that matter), but my understanding is that the JD is based on the Anglo, but with separate rows for the two different notes that each button in a row on the Anglo plays. That is, rows that sound like what an Anglo sounds like on the push interlaced with rows that sound like what an Anglo sounds like on the draw, but all unisonoric.

Does that make what you're looking at make more sense?




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