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Myrtle's cook

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About Myrtle's cook

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    Chatty concertinist

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    English concertina, Maccan duetm folk music
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  1. Myrtle's cook

    Rock Chidley

    In addition to Geoff's suggestion, you might also want to check out the Concertina Museum Collection (part of Neil Wayne's collection acquired by the Horniman Museum), the title page for the Rock Chidley instruments should be found at this link: http://concertinamuseum.com/SiteS4d.htm and contains a helpful overview of Chidley and his concertinas, the pages that follow detail individual Chidley concertinas in the collection.
  2. Myrtle's cook

    Injurous session

    Hi Christine I managed to look out my treatment notes over the weekend and located the following 'introductory' form of PMR, developed by a physiotherpist. it's one I often come back to (although I'd managed to foget it's name!) www.csp.org.uk/sites/files/csp/secure/pogp-mitchell-2_0.pdf Hope this is helpful.
  3. Myrtle's cook

    Injurous session

    Hi Christine I expect there are those who will say practice and confidence - and I' sure that's a large part of it. As a sufferer of chronic pain for some years I stumbled upon Progressive Muscular Relaxation as means of managing tension/stress when playing/performing, as well as condition management. There are various manefestations of this in on line resources, and as every person is different I suspect different methods suit different people. It is based on systematically working down the body, tensing then releasing different areas, and can be used in conjunction with breath control (i.e. slow breath whilst drawing left hand into clenched position, slow out breath whilst releasing the hand, and repeating for each area to be tensed and released). WHen initially doing this I found spoken instructions useful - there are some on Youtube and also on the Insight Timer app. Some of the approaches have their origins in physiotherapy, others seem to have been adapted and developed in mindfulness techniques. I try to find a quiet space in which to sit (car or toilet(!)) before playing, and if a long session, having a similar break halfway. There's quite a good check list within this arcticle: https://positivepsychologyprogram.com/progressive-muscle-relaxation-pmr/ One advantage may be that tension in one area of the body can sometimes manefest in another muscle group/limb during exertion. This method goes some way to minimising overall tension in the first place, making this less likely. By combining with slowed breathing it might also help control the cocktail of chemicals our bodies sometimes delivering whilst playing that promote stress/tension (cortisol, adrenalin etc). I was very cynical of this technique when it was first suggested to me, but after a little practice found it was genuinely useful for both pain control and [getting on the first step to] a Zen like state whilst playing. Hope this is helpful.
  4. Myrtle's cook

    Injurous session

    What system are you playing Christine? I am asuming Anglo (quite possibly wrongly). The stresses and strains of playing English concertina are well documented on this site, but less so Anglo and Duet. If it's a system with lower notes largely on the left hand side is there an element of trying to emphasise/underplay these which is adding to the tension and consequent pain. Glad to hear it passed easily at any rate.
  5. Myrtle's cook

    Jones? concertina on eBay

    The shot of the mechanism (photo 8 in the listing's sequence) showing a lever arm supports does look like those on my own EC/Duet Lachenals. That said, I understand Jones to have used a number of different mechanism solutions. The serial number also seems to read as 162021 - I may be wrong, but do Jones instruments go much beyond the 20,000s?? The adjustable handrails definitely look 'custom' and unusual - as if the use of metal which seem to be more associated with Jeffries/Crabb than Lachenal or Jones. INteresting to hear form an Anglo player as to the practicality/utility of such adjustable rests (short/long fingers enable to reach upper/lower registers??).
  6. Returning to ridges/flanges etc.... Following on from Jim Lucas's survey of instruments, I took a look at the little finger rests on my concertinas. I noticed that on my Aeola 'pinhole' treble EC (no. 21477), the rests are a further variant where the metal is thinnned towards the outer edge or chamfered. This appears to have been done at the time of manufacture. Until I noticed it I had not been aware of any particular difference it makes to my playing. On reflection it does enable rather freer movement of my little finger as the remaining fingers wander across the keys - particularly when compared to another rest with the flange/ridge. I wonder if this form, the plain form and the flanged/ridged form are little more than examples of the areas of choice manufacturers offered for their better instruments in the late C19th-earlier C20th?
  7. Perhaps the leather sheafing of the rests was more prevalent in the earlier period of concertina manaufacture and use (when primarily a parlour instrument), i.e. up to c.1870/80s. On later instruments, less common, perhaps reflecting the developing uses and users of concertinas. A quick peruse of the instruments in the 'Concertina Museum Collection' supports this hypothesis.
  8. Myrtle's cook

    Wheatstone Tenor Treble Aeola For Sale On Ebay

    That does appear something of a bargain. The bellows looked to have had a hard life (both patching and visible wear), but even allowing for the cost of their replacement this would still be a reasonable price asuming not too much else needed doing.
  9. Myrtle's cook

    New Model Anglo

    Returning to the concertina, what do people make of the EK/CK engraved within the fretwork. The commissioner of this instrument?
  10. Myrtle's cook

    Wanted: Mid/high End 32-40B Anglo

    In addition to Chris Algar, you might also like to check out Theo Gibb's website (he is a regular contriubtor of knowledge to this site). He has a Jeffries 45 key CG anglo in his 'Box Shop' at present as well as a 40 key Lachenal CG which looks nice - although as an EC player I wouldn't know whether the latter is better than your present box. Check them out at www.theboxplace.co.uk (apologies for not pasting actual link, something doesn't seem to be working - probably the requsitie part of my brain).
  11. Myrtle's cook

    Frank Butler, Concertina Mini-Tunes

    Many thanks for the hard work involved in this - this is an excellent resource
  12. Just to add/support Greg's wise words... If you intend to use the concertina to accompany singing then a decent brass reeded box will serve you particularly well (unless it's with a shanty choir!) as the natural volume and softer tone is well suited to the human voice. As Greg says, the better brass reeds can be very good and not lacking in volume or dynamic range (I have an 1860s Wheatstone baritone with brass reeds which is one of my most responsive concertinas and just about - well nearly - stands comparison to a 'golden period' Aeola). This might all be slightly in the ear of the beholder, but if you can, try out the boxes in question or get to hear them played. There are also concertinas with 'silver nickel' reeds from the mid 19th century. I understand these are harder to tune from a reparaers point of view, but the better ones also have a very nice mellow tone and good response. Worth bearing in mind that the mellow tone of many of the 'mid-Victorian' brass reeded instruments is as much due to their wider construction. Steel reeded instruments of the period tend (sweeping generalisation) to have a more mellow tone than their C20th descendants.
  13. Myrtle's cook

    Mozart & Co?

    By some coincidence Chris Algar recently sold a similar Crane, although in this instance a 48 button instrument (it is still on his concertina.co.uk website, I'd post the link but for some reason my computer isn't allowing this today). This too was marked T S Mozart. Were these two were part of a batch for a Mozart retailer, or perhaps was Shakespear using 'Mozart' as a name for his range of Crane system instruments, similar to 'Aeola' and 'Edeophone', 'Linota' etc
  14. Myrtle's cook

    New To Concertinas

    You most certainly have a right to learn - and to learn the concertina! The real problem is price - and this does rather favour those of us who are either well paid, managed to buy in the 60s/70s, found a mircaculous bargain or who no longer have to support growing children. The amount of practice time you mention does not necessarily millitate against learning. Many of us who are working probably manage this much, plus a little more at weekends/holidays if life permits. At the budget end there are some servicable instruments. The Concertina Connection Jack and Jackie are decent enough instruments to get started on. I am lucky enough to own a wheatstone aeola as my main instrument, but for some time have had a Jack baritone that gives me a lot of pleasure and whilst it isn't as pleasant to play and listen to, the fact it was 1/15th the price and probably c.40-50% as playable so means its probably pound for pound excellent vfm. I can't speak for Concertina Connections other instruments, but their English system instruments are worth your consideration - they pop up on Ebay (and with some dealers) second hand and are probably just about within your budget. I have to say the various other 'cheaper' modern concertinas I have tried have not been experiences I would wish to repeat! Good luck. Don't give up - concertinas are immensley rewarding - if at times equally frustrating for all sorts of reasons including availability and price
  15. Myrtle's cook

    Ringo Starr With Ec

    If the photo was taken in Liverpool then the instruments may well have been borrowed from Rushworths. Rushworths were one of the city's principle musical instrument dealers until they closed around 2000. In addition to their extensive stock they also held an extensive collection of musical instruments (many now in the collection of National Museums Liverpool). They also supplied the Beatles with many of their instruments.