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Posts posted by SusanW

  1. Hi Jack,

    I graduated from a Morse Ceili to a Carroll about 4 years ago. I chose the Noel Hill model....BUT I chose to have my button layout in the same pattern that my Ceili had. This is what Wally refers to as his standard configuration. Noel suggested a slightly different layout, but I liked (and was used to) what I had.


    I have taken Noel's summer classes for several years and I had a chance to sample a "Small", a "Standard", and several of the Noel Hill models. I pretty much exclusively play Irish Traditional music.


    The Standard was a tad bit heavier, and I think bigger than my Ceili. The Small was VERY nice and responsive, but I have fairly large hands for a woman (also 5' 10") and I have arthritis, so I was worried that my hands/fingers might cramp. Otherwise, I really liked the Small and I agree that the option to have different wood and design options is very nice. They are beautiful instruments.


    The NH model just "fit" better for me and it was a very smooth transition from the Ceili to the Carroll.


    I've been very pleased with my choice.


    I don't think you can go wrong with any of them!



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  2. Hi, If you're mostly interested in playing Irish music on your new Anglo, I'd highly recommend joining the Online Academy of Irish Music and taking the concertina classes. There are several courses taught be 4 different concertina teachers. https://www.oaim.ie/

    Have fun!


  3. I searched in the topics and couldn't find what I was looking for....so I hope I'm not duplicating a question. I am playing a 30 button C/G Anglo. I am using my "ring finger" to play the C# on button #19 AND I also use that finger to play the G and G# on button #18. I'm assuming this is "OK". Just for the heck of it, I tried to play # 19 with my "pinkie finger" and just just wasn't going to happen....an thoughts? TIA


    Hi Susan - Message send to you-- I live in Hopkinton, New Hampshire. I've been playing Anglo concertina since about 1990 and before that the English concertina. I also play fiddle and flute. I have taken a few classes with Noel and they're great. I wrote a small tutor based on his teaching. It's pretty dense and compact but several people have liked it. https://concertutor.wordpress.com/simple-and-more-advanced-cross-rowing/playing-across-the-rows-a-la-noel-hill/
    Noel approved it. If you'd ever like to get together for a tune give me a call (603 843 5543) or send me an email (davylevine@gmail.com). No charge, of course. Just for the fun of it.


    Thanks David, I just emailed you. When I first started playing I found your tutor and printed it out, it is very helpful. Thanks!

  5. Susan, based on one thing you mentioned, I think the following. Go to Feakle Festival and work with Mary MacNamara. It is only 3 days, but in a place that is peaceful and the tunes at a pace that are magical. Mary teaches an adult class. After or before consider ringing a few teachers around Clare for a private lesson or 2 or 3. By the time you add up accommodations and airfare plus the modest tuition at most Irish workshops, you would only spend the same or maybe 10 percent more than the Catskills. Once in the southwest of Ireland you could arrange lessons to be intensive as you mentioned you enjoy, take in the relaxed nature of the Feakle festival, and the way Mary teaches.

    That would be a dream trip for me, Lawrence. I'd love to take a class with Mary. Maybe someday. For now I have to stick with regional classes.

  6. I really appreciate all of your comments. As of now, I have decided to do another class with Noel. I got so much out of my first class and expect to do the same this time around. For me, it was money and time well spent. At some point in the future, if time and circumstances permit I will also attend a CIAW or something similar.

  7. I consider myself an intermediate concertina player and have taken a couple of classes at CIAW. A major problem for me is that all the advanced players take both the intermediate class and advanced class in order to have classes with a well known player (i.e. Edel Fox, Caitlin NicGabhann). That means there are > 20 people in the class which requires the instructor to basically lecture and play tunes to record for later practice. It does not allow for the instructor to give any individual feedback or spend time demonstrating ornaments,etc or other items that would be helpful for an intermediate player hoping to improve. I have given this feedback to CIAW but nothing changes.


    That's very helpful information, Beryl. Thank you.

  8. Ross,

    The thoughts expressed by Geoff and Peter are not personal 'pet peeves'. They have been repeated by many prominent musicians over at least the past twenty years, and for all instruments in ITM. You've been a member on these forums long enough to know this.



    You've said "My main goal is to become a better concertina player" but it's difficut to know what 'better' might mean exactly to you. Do you want to be able to play in 'faster' sessions, or do you want to be more confident in your playing, or do you want to gain more expression in your playing, or learn to get 'inside' the tunes and make them your own, or what?


    If you are tending towards the starting 'OR's in that sentence above, then Noel's workshop is probably your best bet, but if you are tending towards the later 'OR's then the Catskills is probably more in your line.


    Whatever you choose, good luck and enjoy yourself!

    Hi Wes, I do tend to be in the starting "Ors". I want to get faster and more confident. Once I can do that, then I can work on expressing them my own way. Thank you.

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