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Tuning Question

Anglo 20 button

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#1 Jude

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 12:34 PM

I recently purchased a 20 button, anglo concertina Musicians Friend from the Guitar Center.
All buttons are on tuned properly according to websites I've found EXCEPT the bottom row, left side,4th finger(little finger) According to sites, it should be A/ B and instead it is D/G (D being the note above middle c and the G being the first G below middle C) I play the piano so I compared.
Is this tuned properly? I don't know since I am a beginner.
I realize the concertina I purchased isn't a name brand,nor expensive, but I had to start someplace to learn and didn't want to spend a lot on my first concertina.later I will upgrade.
Please help me!
I appreciate any help and thanks in advance,

#2 malcolmbebb

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 04:59 PM

Hi,

 

Assuming your box is C/G:

 

My Lachenal has D and F# on that button, so maybe you have a slightly sharp F.  According to my crib sheet, the 5th button may be either B/A or B/D according to the layout, but both the "standard" Jeffries and Wheatstone/Lachenal have the D/F# on the fourth button. 

 

Also my melodeon has D/F# on the corresponding button. 

 

So I reckon you're OK. I don't think I've ever used the 5th button, but the fourth one gets used a lot in English folky stuff. 

 

 

PS Is that "Musicians's Gear"...?


Edited by malcolmbebb, 17 January 2014 - 05:03 PM.


#3 JimLucas

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 05:32 PM

I recently purchased a 20 button, anglo concertina Musicians Friend from the Guitar Center.
All buttons are on tuned properly according to websites I've found EXCEPT the bottom row, left side,4th finger(little finger) According to sites, it should be A/ B and instead it is D/G (D being the note above middle c and the G being the first G below middle C) I play the piano so I compared.
Is this tuned properly?

 

Since that row has 5 buttons and you only have four fingers available for pressing them, saying "4th finger" seems ambiguous.  Nevertheless, your saying that it "should be A/B" leads me to suspect that you mean the button at the end of the row, which is most often a B on the push and either the D above or the A below that B on the pull.  However, other note pairs on that button aren't uncommon on "anglos" of non-English make, and the D/G combination you report (I'm guessing you've put the pull note first, though in these forums we generally do it the reverse) is a reasonable choice.  In fact, it makes the intervals of the G row match those of the C row all the way to the end, making it slightly more "consistent", if marginally less versatile.

 

If you move on to an instrument that has a different pair of notes on that button, you'll have some relearning to do, but if that button's the only difference, the relearning won't be much.



#4 Jude

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 06:20 PM

Hello Jim and Malcom,
Jim, the button I am referring to is the last button, bottom row. Mine has D(on the pull) and G( on the push) so you assumed correct,so you believe it is ok and I don't need to return it to the store and not worry about it? This is basically my question also,will I even use that button? I guess it seemed strange to have two D's side by side (Because the button to the right of it being the F#(pulling out)and a D(pulling) ...the d's are next to each other.no other notes are side by side on the Concertina.
I am learning to play on You Tube from the Irish Academy of Music on the first video lesson the instructor said my little fingers will be used to not only play the button but also the fifth button on both rows. This is why I said..my little finger :)
I am definitely a beginner. But I love Celtic music. I saw the Musicians Gear on sale and figured I'd start on an inexpensive Concertina.
Do you both think I should keep this Concertina or return it and get another?
One more question...one button sticks. Will it loosen up or is this a bad sign?
Hey, thanks so much for your advice in advance.

#5 JimLucas

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 06:31 PM

I guess it seemed strange to have two D's side by side (Because the button to the right of it being the F#(pulling out)and a D(pulling) ...the d's are next to each other.no other notes are side by side on the Concertina.


If not, then your concertina is indeed strange. But I'm pretty sure you'll find that on the equivalent buttons in the C row are two G's, a pull G on the button at the end of the row and a push G on the button next to it, just like those two D's.



#6 Jude

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 06:40 PM

Hi again I forgot,to,mention, the button that sticks is the top,left side F /E button.(the second button)F being pulling out, E being pushing in)Thought I'd better let you know it IS one of the main buttons I use.
This wasn't my main question in the first letter I wrote but thought I'd bother you with it,since,you are so willing to help me lol
My main question is still about the tuning,but any advice is really great!

#7 Jude

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 06:45 PM

Hey,you're correct Jim I didn't even realize that .

#8 malcolmbebb

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 06:59 PM

Hi again,

OK, understand a little better. You should have a push D and pull F# on button 4, that I think is standard. If you have a D and G on button 5, assuming they are close (i.e. same octave), I would be rather suspicious and suspect that someone has put the wrong reed there. I looked on the website, but it didn't say much. 

 
I've looked at a few variants and a B on the push seems pretty standard. But I can find A, C or D on the pull.   I don't know whether this button is used in Irish music and how useful it is, BUT I'm not familiar with the variation that Jim describes. 
 
I would be dubious about the sticking button. If this is the box I think it is, you are at the bottom of entry level so quality isn't going to be brilliant. If you send it back, if it's mail order, there's no guarantee that its replacement won't also have similar minor issues. It rather depends which button it is, and how much use it's likely to get. 
If you can try another one, then it's worth considering _taking_ it back. However, it's not usually that difficult to take one apart apart and maybe have a look at why it's sticking. My feeling is that it won't go away. That one is your call. 
 
However - welcome to CNET, I guess I should have said that earlier, and don't let issues with this box put you off. When the time comes to upgrade, it will seem like a different planet. I bought one of my kids a similar box, and it nearly killed the interest. Then I got interested myself, and realised just how big a difference there is, once you can step up a level or two. So stick with it.  :) there is a lot of pleasure to be had. 


#9 Jude

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 07:44 PM

"once you can step up a level or two. So stick with it. there is a lot of pleasure to be had. "
Malcolm, do you mean by "step up a level or two" by buying a more expensive Concertina" or improving my skills? Or buying. A better brand? .
What kind do you have, and can you suggest a less expensive and yet better quality? Living in a small Cal town, I am extremely limited on stores so I depend on the internet.

#10 gcoover

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 08:15 PM

 

 

  In fact, it makes the intervals of the G row match those of the C row all the way to the end, making it slightly more "consistent", if marginally less versatile.

 

 

 

For what it's worth, this is the same configuration found for what is also called button #6 (in the 1a-10 numbering system) in the very first German Concertina tutor by Hoselbarth in 1840.  But it seems that shortly after that it became more standardized as B-push and A-pull instead.

 

Gary



#11 malcolmbebb

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 08:28 PM

:mellow:

Good concertinas are, unfortunately, fairly expensive on both sides of the pond. This is common to many sorts of instrument. It's a lot easier to learn with a better instrument, but nobody wants to buy a better (=more expensive) instrument until they know whether they will get on with it. It's a well known catch. 

 

I would suggest that, for now,  you stick with what you have, provided the issues that you described don't put you off too much, if you're happy with it.

 

The most often recommended beginner's instrument is a Rochelle, from Concertina Connection in the US, and they are around $400 in the US, maybe half that used. They are definitely a beginner's box, most people seem to move up from them fairly quickly (a year or so), me too, but they are generally well made and easy to play and get started on. But a good many people get started on other boxes. 

 

That isn't cheaper, I know... or at least, I guess... 

 

I started with a Rochelle, after some research, and sold it after a year or so. I now have an English made 20 button Lachenal C/G tutor model, c 1895, and a Marcus G/D, made in Wales. The Lachenal is maybe not much easier to play than the Rochelle, the Marcus is streets better but cost four times as much. 

 

If you can get a second hand Rochelle from e.g. Ebay for maybe $200-$250 (guessing on UK prices), or ask here maybe, you will be able to sell it for around the same price. But I don't know your budget. 

 

I do know that small issues quickly become big issues when you're learning, and can easily end up putting people off completely, which is a shame. When you are just getting things flowing, a slow reed or a sticking button can stop you in your tracks - that's my experience. But if you are understand the limitations of entry level boxes, maybe that will help. 

So a long winded and rambling answer. And past my bed time. I'm sure you will get other other opinions. But stick with it. It's too much fun not to. 



#12 Jude

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 08:35 PM

Aloha Gary,
Oh, my gosh, of course it helps! According to all of you guys, I won't worry about it.
Thanks again to all of you

Liz(Jude)

#13 Jude

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 08:44 PM

Thanks Malcolm for taking your time to help.
So...I just,ordered two more,Concertinas. One is a Hohner,20 button and another Musicians Gear. There are 30 day warranties on both,I can take the ones I don't want to a,local store('they are the dealers,for the two new ones) and they will honor my warranties. So out of three, I should find one I want lol

I don't feel so bad after talking to you guys. I thought it was a problem before coming to this forum. Now, to just
Deal with the sticking button lol

Liz

#14 asdormire

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 11:59 PM

Liz, my first box was similar to yours, and I played it until I wore it out. I went back to playing my dobro, fooled around with the banjo, and then picked up an old German style 20 button with a wooden action that I played until buying the Tedrow pictured in my avitar. I still play the old box occasionally. You will be able to pick up the basics until you are able to move up to a better box.

Alan

#15 Jude

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Posted 18 January 2014 - 02:06 AM

Thanks for your reply Alan. Hopefully one out of the three will be ok? Thanks to all of you ,now I won't be concerned about the last button . Hmm, now to overcome sticking buttons lol
I am so excited about playing The Concertina.
Again, many thanks for your time guys!




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