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David Colpitts

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About David Colpitts

  • Rank
    Chatty concertinist
  • Birthday 01/05/1951

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Interests
    "Americana" and traditional folk music, Anglo concertina,
    harmonicas
  • Location
    Hartford, CT USA

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  1. Got it now! The “look from behind” and “mirror flip” ideas helped. Actually, it looks more to me like I am looking through a piece of glass or transparent plastic; probably has something to do with me looking for notes relative to the hand rests, or some such perceptual error on my part. For the uninitiated to the “educational” way, a chart such as the one for the Elise on the website would perhaps help. Anyway, it looks like I could play a full scale/tunes in an octave on the RHS, which is what I’d like for melodies. Can’t wait to try it. When will they ship? ButtonBox? The price won’t be too steep if I trade in my Elise. David
  2. I am very interested, as a happy Elise owner for some years, but wanting to play in A at sessions sometimes. BUT...I can’t make sense of the note charts. If they are as they should be, then I’l just stare at them longer. Maybe I’m just tired. EDIT: Just looked at the CC website at the Elise layout. Any chance there’s a similar pic for the Troubador? Thanks, and regards, David
  3. I’ll add to what Jody said, regarding a G/D Anglo. I listened to his (and others’) advice 6 years ago, and have always been glad. Unless you are bent on fast Irish with absolute minimum of wasted motion (albeit after years of practice) then the G/D is a great bet. I am up to session speeds on quite a few Irish tunes, even, and for all the rest the G/D is an absolute natural! And, the Stagi version is actually quite nice. I own one, and if anything happened to my Morse Ceili G/D, I’d use the Stagi until I could replace/repair the Morse. OTOH, the Rochelle at well under 400 bucks is a trustworthy entry drug. I have the Hayden sibling, the Elise, and it has never troubled me in 5 years or so. Sturdy, reliable, and surprisingly good sound. But, the G/D...... Have a ball! David
  4. As so often happens, I am again humbled by the wealth of information explaining so clearly why C/G rules for ITM. I must agree with all said, but take some gentle exception to the notion that it’s a straightforward process to learn how to play in that way. It really is daunting to some, including me, perhaps due to years of straight up and down 1st position harmonica. When I had to choose between some years of learning new scales and those same years getting some tunes I could play right away, I chose the quicker and easier (to me) route. I get positive feedback from my session cohorts, and while I may never be the “leader of the pack” I do have tunes in G, D, and sometimes A coming along nicely. But I can’t even sing along with my play, since every time I pull for the next higher note, I find myself inhaling, a la harmonica! FWIW, the same kind of neurological (or, yes, even ambition) differences comes into play when I try the box. I have two sweet semitone boxes, a D/C# and a B/C, and I am stuck in their home keys, too. What I may need to do is save for a better (than my Elise) Hayden duet, to allow play in all (or almost all) keys. Anyway, I always like the discussions here, and learn a ton. Regards to all, David
  5. Hello, Jack. As a 7 or so year “rookie” in ITM with Anglo concertina, I have asked myself-and this great forum- this sort of question in the past. In my case, I have taken the contrarian road, and play almost exclusively G/D. More in a minute. From my reading and talking to players (quite a lot in both cases) I believe it distills down to 2 major points. One, as you correctly surmise, is the relative surfeit of C/G instruments when the concertina was becoming increasingly popular for Irish trad music. So, many more to choose among, and much more tutorial information. And yes, much inertia. The second point, which no doubt adds to the inertia, is that serious (and, really, almost all, it seems) Irish music session players and aspirants find the C/G has significant playability advantages once mastered. Across the rows as the default; more continuous runs/arpeggios, more “on the pull” playing; “that” sound; etc. This forum and others should be full of reasons. I, on the other hand, started with harmonicas and Anglos were the logical extension from there. They represent two-plus harmonicas in my hands, and I play them almost exclusively on the rows. So, guess what? The G/D let me get tunes far more easily than the other, albeit at some cost in chromaticity, etc. Kind folk here have gently but consistently suggested I turn back before it’s too late, but, it’s too late. I am getting somewhere along the rows. As a matter of fact, I sat at a session with an English concertina player. They are known for full-tilt fast play, using both hands for all work. She looked over at me during a break and said, “I am so impressed by how you manage to get all those notes so well with all the pushing and pulling.” She didn’t care if I was playing C/G or G/D, but merely appreciated that I could “get all those notes.” That was one of the biggest compliments I have gotten about the concertina. So, the “smart money” says C/G. A small minority of us took the other path, for better and worse. Either way, great for the brain and soul! Regards, David
  6. I am excited, and will see you all in a couple of days! Regards, David
  7. And I say, hooray for the G/D Anglo, no matter what the initial experience. Although I started with the Anglo, I found the combination of the two no trouble at all. But as others have said, less trouble for the simpler along-the-rows style, which is why I got the G/D anyway. I have “harmonica brain” and usually play “the keys stamped on the instrument.” And, for Irish, Quebecois, Old Timey, and probably (but I don’t really know) English session tunes, it’s a natural. Plus, the more-or-less can’t miss simple harmonies with the left hand make it a real winner. Weighs less than a kilogram, too! Have a great time! David
  8. As a very happy Morse G/D owner, I support that choice. I have had mine for about three years, and it gets better and faster all the time! It weighs less than any others, keeps its tune, and plays like a dream. And, apparently, it can be loud, too! I also have a Stagi 40 button G/D, which I will keep as a spare. It got me going. Good luck. David
  9. Someone very wise on this site suggested spending a very few dollars on a cheap harmonica to see if you will be able to fathom the in and out of an Anglo. Sorry I can’t remember who it was (or maybe on the melodeon site) but brilliant advice, IMHO. If you can, the longer (12 holes at least) Chinese tremolo models are probably more accessible to a real rookie than the ten hole “blues” harps, but either will give you the idea: inhaling and exhaling give you adjacent scale notes, two per spot, as do expanding the bellows and compressing them. The “trick” is that the pattern of blow/draw reverses at the top end of a scale, so doh-re-mi etc. is: out in out in out in in out. Voila. Ten dollars or less, to help decide. My guess is that if you ever got that far (under an hour for most people, I bet) you will take to an Anglo. If not, and the harmonica takes more than a few days of casual noodling without “getting” that much, then it wouldn’t make a huge difference which you started on; by that I mean any of the systems will be a possibility, but the Anglo won’t already have a real head start, as it did for me and many others who previously played harmonica. Because of harmonica background, it took minutes to pick out simple tunes with the right hand, and simultaneous harmony notes with left. Mind you, I don’t read music, or know the names of chords, but can make reasonably pleasant noise with the Anglo intuitively, and better every month. Another wise one said, “the first thirty years are the hardest!” Mostly, try whatever you can, and something will grab you. Have fun, and make a joyful noise! Regards, David
  10. Thanks, Mikefule! What a great bunch of new to do. I will try in the morning, as soon as herself is off to work. Regards, David
  11. Thanks, lumanohnz. Feels like coming full circle; this is exactly what I’ve been resisting in my hardheaded way (or, maybe just so stuck in my “harmonica along the rows” mindset) for years. I am going to try “baby steps” as in this discussion, before I brave the “deep end.” Thank, Mikefule. That seems to sum up the answer to my original question! And, thanks, too, Wunks. Something to add to the mix. Regards to all, David
  12. Thanks again. I have my work cut out for me. Thankfully, it’s fun, and I am retired, so have time. Regards, David
  13. Thanks, Bill. That about says what I will try: I’ll learn to play “A” on my G/D, as if I were playing “D” on my C/G. Come to think of it, then I’d be able to play “D” on my C/G, like everybody else! If I can get fluent in the one more key, then I may not need to go get an accordion in ADG so I can play all three at the Irish, Quebecois and Old-Time sessions I frequent. So far “A” has made me reach for the harmonica with that stamped into the comb! As a true non-sophisticate, I don’t even know the names of the buttons, but just find the tune when I know what key it’s in. More work I better try to do.... And, Graham, thanks. Nice playing (and a great instrument) What key? Thanks for the offer of a slower version, but my task now is clear to me: Mary Had a Little Lamb, etc., in A until I can reliably “sing A with my fingers” in that key. What a great resource this site is. I appreciate the thoughtful responses very much. Regards, David
  14. Thank you, Mory. I suspected as much, but didn’t really know it, nor want to believe it. But, the option you suggest is enough to move me off square one, I think. I bet if the available instructions talk about “playing the key of A on the GC, then I can learn it and I’ll be actually playing in the Key of X on my G/D. That it? I’ll give it a try. Thanks again, and regards, David
  15. Thanks, Wolf. I suspect you’re correct, and I guess I would settle for more fluency to add to my “along the rows,” but adding keys (A and?) on my D/G would be a boon. And, perhaps ornamentation help, too. Really, I wonder how Tim does what he does, I guess, and if anybody “stuck” to G/D can play Anglo like he plays accordion. I know it’s apples and oranges, but.... Regards, David
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