Jump to content


Photo

Peacock Duet


  • Please log in to reply
14 replies to this topic

#1 jbrent

jbrent

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 2 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Ontario Canada on the U.S. border

Posted 26 January 2018 - 01:53 PM

I am brand new to learning to play the concertina.  I played honkey tonk / sing along piano in bars and at parties for many years and typically played a swing base style.  I just ordered a Peacock Duet Concertina.  There is very limited information about it and I could sure use some help in learning how to play it and what to expect.

 

 



#2 W3DW

W3DW

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 26 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Georgia, USA

Posted 26 January 2018 - 06:40 PM

I believe your choice of Hayden duet concertina is an excellent choice given your musical preferences and piano background. And know I'm very biased, happily playing a Button Box Hayden Beaumont!
On piano, you'd probably start a tune with a bit of right hand melody with a bit of close harmony added while providing some left hand boom-chuck-boom-chuck bass note and chord accompaniment. As you start the lyrics the left hand might play more bass notes and less chord pattern since the right hand can take up more counter-melody and assist with chord duties. An instrumental break would see the right hand provide melody with full-force harmony all around. Good news! This strategy will work the very same way on your Peacock!
You'll find you might play fewer notes at one time both for clarity and to manage the air needs placed on the bellows. And, unlike the piano-Forte, you cannot play some notes louder and others softer. You'll learn to shorting the duration of the notes you want in the background to create the same effect. And you now have an advantage over the piano - there are about two octaves on each side, and you can reach these notes at one time!
Welcome, and enjoy.
Daniel

#3 ceemonster

ceemonster

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1351 posts

Posted 26 January 2018 - 09:48 PM

RE how to play it:  The Hayden is one of two duet concertina systems with a consistent, repeating layout pattern, so this should give you little trouble.  There's a "Rosetta Stone," and all you have to do is memorize it and practice it until it becomes second nature.  I've spent the last few years doing the same thing with a different concertina system that also has a fixed, repeating pattern, as well as an accordion system (Chromatic Button Accordion) that's the same situation, and it's totally doable, particularly for someone who has some piano.

 

As with all consistent layout patterns, there will be certain note combinations, or note phrases, that present challenges or awkwardness given the idiosyncrasies of that particular pattern.  You just arrange around it or "cheat" some way.  Hayden people will be able to alert you to what they are. 

 

RE arranging pieces of music on your Hayden:  Just vamp the left hand the way you do on piano, possibly with fewer voices per chord until you, One, get the hang of  the Hayden layout, and, Two, decide how many voices you want in your concertina bass arrangements.  I like to keep them light rather than heavy because I like concertina to have a more prominent melody side and less bass noise, but with a duet, the sky's the limit and you get to choose how you like.

 

As a practical matter, on the "balance" question--i.e., not letting bass/harmony overpower the melody side, your one way of really controlling that on a free-reed instrument , is to play your bass/harmony effects SHORTER, more staccato and less legato, and release them faster.  You'll see what I mean. 

 

Congratulations on your new concertina and your new adventure.  You and the Hayden seem like a wonderful fit given your piano background.


Edited by ceemonster, 26 January 2018 - 09:55 PM.


#4 Anglo-Irishman

Anglo-Irishman

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1499 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Near Stuttgart, Germany

Posted 27 January 2018 - 05:03 AM

Hi, jbrent, and welcome to the forum!

 

One thing is quite clear: the way you describe your piano experience, I'd say you've got the mental equipment that will enable you to learn the duet concertina. That is, a feeling for melody and harmony, rhythm, timing and tempo, and probably for transposing to different keys. Physically, you've probably got the capability to move your fingers independently to where they need to go to make the music happen. All you have to learn is where the notes are on the concertina, and how to finger the scales and the chord shapes. And, of course, how to work the bellows! This gives you the capability of shaping each note (e.g. sfrozando), which the piano doesn't have.

 

I don't play the Hayden duet myself, but I believe that the same chord shapes can be used in any key by moving them around the keyboard, and that the run of the diatonic scale is always spatially the same - though admittedly not in all 12 keys of chromatic music. In fact, smaller Haydens don't even have all the sharps and flats, so some keys are not playable. That's something that a pianist might find limiting.

 

BTW, my duet is a Crane, which is more piano-like in that it is fully chromatic within its range. The smaller Cranes just don't have the high notes that the bigger ones have, like a piano keyboard with the top end taken off. And the Crane is built around the diatonic scale of C major, with the sharps and flats close to the naturals of the same name, a concept that is also more pianistic.

 

Have fun with your portable new instrument!

 

Cheers,

John



#5 jbrent

jbrent

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 2 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Ontario Canada on the U.S. border

Posted 27 January 2018 - 08:44 AM

What great responses and advice!  I retired a year ago and have been seeking a new hobby.  The concertina came to me like a lightbulb being switched on out of nowhere.  It took a long time for me to decide which type of concertina was going to be a good fit; then which model; and did I really want to invest that kind of money!  Your vote of confidence has made me feel a whole lot better about my choice and now I can't stand the 6 week waiting period for my Peacock to arrive.  I just ordered the Elise Heydon Tutor to help me out.  Apparently there is nothing yet for the Peacock and Concertina Connection suggested that most people use that one.  



#6 Geoff Wooff

Geoff Wooff

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2125 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:France

Posted 27 January 2018 - 01:23 PM

Have you been to  www.concertina.com    yet  Jbrent ?

 

There you will find  quite a bit  of  information  and an 'all systems '  duet  tutor  by  Brian  Hayden  himself.

 

I am in agreement with what  has been written so far  , the Hayden duet is very enjoyable... have fun!



#7 Patrick Scannell

Patrick Scannell

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 101 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Schodack Landing, NY, USA

Posted 27 January 2018 - 01:42 PM

I have found old threads here be educational.

For example:

http://www.concertin...?showtopic=7264



#8 W3DW

W3DW

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 26 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Georgia, USA

Posted 27 January 2018 - 07:15 PM

Mr. Brent, you've found the only Hayden-specific tutor I know of.  It's worthwhile but basic, and spends a lot of time teaching you to read music.  Will you be mostly learning from music or by ear?

 

You'll see that the repeating pattern of the scale goes, in visual terms:

 

DO...

FA SO LA TI

DO RE ME

 

as you ascend  up the scale and up the illustration above,  in the primary keys.  The tutor suggests you finger this pattern as follows, index is 1 and little finger is 4

 

1 ....                                                                 3....

1 2 3 4               on the right and                     4 3 2 1             on the right hand

1 2 3                                                                3 2 1

 

Every one, including Brian Hayden himself, will tell you this is NOT an inflexible rule, but I recommend it to you for starting out, because it will make things simpler, and starting this way will help you incorporate your little finger into your playing which will serve you well in the future.  
Some folks never use their smallest finger and play wonderfully, but give it a whirl because, rather logically, it increases your possibilities by 33.3%!  Your little finger already is used to the work of the piano, especially on the left, and I feel that it is more important that you use the little finger for FA on the left side than using it for TI on the right.  Practice with it as you start, and I guarantee you it will do things in two months that seemed impossible when you start.

Daniel



#9 Don Taylor

Don Taylor

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1161 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Ontario, Canada

Posted 27 January 2018 - 07:18 PM

Following Patrick's lead - here is another old thread that I think is important:

 

http://www.concertin...?showtopic=2755

 

Just like piano, you have to figure out a fingering scheme that will work for you and then learn its ins and out.  It is probably worth giving some significant thought to this early on.  This thread details several different schemes used by top players - and they really are different!

 

Are you going to use your little finger at all?

 

What role do you want your index finger to play?

 

Is your left hand going to be a mirror of your right hand, or will you drop the use of the little finger on the left hand?

 

When you find that you will have a finger on one button and then need it for the next note - what will you do?  Will you twist an alternate finger into play after the current note?  Will you try to anticipate needing the proper finger later and use an alternate before the first button?  Maybe you will press the first button with the correct finger and then slide an alternate finger on to that button before moving the correct finger to its new button.

 

I don't think that there is a 'right' answer to any of these questions, but I do think that you have to pick an answer.

Don.

 

Re-reading this thread makes me feel so sad that Rich Morse is no longer with us



#10 gcoover

gcoover

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 542 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Land of Aloha

Posted 27 January 2018 - 10:01 PM

Anyone know how many existing (or potential) beginner Hayden duet players are out there, and whether or not it would warrant putting out a tutor?

 

I'd be interested in helping get it published if someone's got a good system for learning, and I can work with anything from a barroom napkin sketch to a final formatted pdf. Happy to work out how to split the meager proceeds too.

 

 

Gary



#11 W3DW

W3DW

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 26 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Georgia, USA

Posted 28 January 2018 - 07:42 AM

I'm really pleased by the fingering discussion here, and especially by the existing threads referenced by our forum colleagues. Don Taylor's comment "It is probably worth giving some significant thought to this early on." is exactly correct - I cannot imagine that wandering into the fingering wilderness without a plan would bring satisfactory results.
The fingering advice you will find in your tutor is entirely suitable to a beginner, especially one unfamiliar with the language of music, but it seems that you may progress quickly beyond this book. I used this book since it came with my Elise starter concertina, and it introduce the notes - with recommended fingerings - a few at a time. I summerized these recommendations as follows:
Elise fingering grid.jpg grid.jpg]
It generally suggests finger use by zone, and that's good as far as it goes, but considering finger use within the context of the scales and music you're playing is important. The posts above will take you in that direction.
May the upcoming 6 weeks pass quickly.
Daniel

#12 Don Taylor

Don Taylor

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1161 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Ontario, Canada

Posted 28 January 2018 - 09:08 AM

Anyone know how many existing (or potential) beginner Hayden duet players are out there, and whether or not it would warrant putting out a tutor?

 

I'd be interested in helping get it published if someone's got a good system for learning, and I can work with anything from a barroom napkin sketch to a final formatted pdf. Happy to work out how to split the meager proceeds too.

 

 

Gary

Gary

 

Maybe you could contact Brian Hayden and work with him to publish a revised second edition of his tutor?

 

Right now, it is only generally available as a download scan of an ancient copy:

 

http://www.concertina.com/hayden-duet/ - scroll down until you get to 'All Systems Duet Workshop Tutor'.

 

Brian wrote this tutor before the days of readily available music typesetting software.  I think that he re-purposed a pre-PC word processor to write the text and the scores.  A quite amazing achievement, but I think that the scores could use a second look as some of the tunes sound a bit odd (to me anyway) as they are scored.

 

Anyway, I think that this would make a good starting point for a generally available tutor/method book and having the Hayden name on the cover would be great branding...

 

Don.



#13 wes williams

wes williams

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 790 posts
  • Location:Somerset,UK

Posted 28 January 2018 - 10:40 AM

And a few words from Brian himself http://www.concertin...-chat/index.htm



#14 JimLucas

JimLucas

    Ineluctable Opinionmaker

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 10211 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Denmark

Posted 29 January 2018 - 05:19 AM

I am in agreement with what  has been written so far  , the Hayden duet is very enjoyable... have fun!

 

I would say that all duets are enjoyable, as are both Englishes and anglos, though many folks find one kind or another personally "more enjoyable".

 

My own main squeeze is the English.  My current favorite among the duets is the Crane, but I have always claimed that none of the duets (or more broadly, none of the various kinds of concertina) is inherently "better" for all kinds of music or for all individuals.  My personal experience with the Hayden is very limited, but is in agreement with that assessment.  So...

 

I hope you find that your Peacock suits you, as I suspect it will.  But if not, I would suggest you try one or more of the other systems before abandoning duets -- or concertinas -- altogether.



#15 Daniel Hersh

Daniel Hersh

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2171 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:near Oakland, California

Posted 30 January 2018 - 02:36 AM

If you want to hear some nice examples of Hayden Duet playing, take a look at https://www.youtube....JeffLeff/videos and https://www.youtube....ANH9zzSw/videos .


Edited by Daniel Hersh, 30 January 2018 - 02:55 AM.





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users