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About Syncopepper

  • Rank
    Advanced Member

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  • Gender
  • Interests
    EC, guitar, banjo, dulcimer, bones
    English and American traditional folk, nautical
  • Location
    Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

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  1. After many years of playing an EC extended treble New Model I have recently developed arthritis in the second joint of my left thumb in addition to previous tendonitis on the other side of that hand that has curtailed playing stringed instruments. I'm not sure what factors contribute most to the thumb problem (other than age) but suspect it's partially the strain of playing mostly in the bottom of EC's range. This has also caused my right thumb strap to wear out and I am considering having wrist straps installed when I get the thumb straps replaced. The three options I have been considering are: wrist straps; neck strap or wrist splints like those David Coffin wears when playing. I would appreciate any advice as to these possible options. I switched from Anglo to EC a long time ago and would think that the constant bellows reversals on the Anglo would not be an advantage for thumbs over the EC.
  2. Some years ago I went to Philadelphia for the Mummer's Parade and while there, visited the historic Arch Street Quaker Meeting House. I had an interesting conversation with one of the meeting house Clerks who are administrators in leu of clergy. During our conversation I asked him if he was familiar with Sydney Carter? In answer he reached around me, pulled a hymnal out of the pew, and opened it to "Walk in The Light" which Sydney composed using, "a traditional folk tune" as is explained in Quaker literature. When I told him the tune Sydney used was "Moncks March" and the military record of General Monck for which it was named he was both beguiled and appalled.
  3. Instrument genealogy and history can be fascinating. I have an old tenor banjo with an interesting story.
  4. In addition to some social distancing jams I have been working on a song ( w\EC) for submission in a maritime music festival song competition.
  5. David Coffin is a popular performer on the Maritime Music Festival circuit. Check out his rendition of "Roll the Old Chariot Along".
  6. I have heard (probably here) that anglo bellows should be stiffer than english bellows. The reason I recall was that the stiffness made them more bouncy and able to change directions smoothly. The english system on the other hand did best with more flexible bellows for better timing. I wonder if that is true and if so, do the the two systems have different blocking requirements? While I keep my english in a blocked case when left out it does not appear to expand over time.
  7. Many thanks for several interesting avenues to pursue. To define my issue more precisely performing with a stage monitor isn’t a problem. My problem occurs in informal groups with no amplification. I have found it helpful to use the space around me to amplify but often can’t control that variable. I do find myself cupping my ears these days. (but not while playing) The earplug approach is one I can attempt. I have a pair of those for loud music environments. I will have to dig around for them and report back. Also the Amplug option seems to be close to what I was envisioning. I have a rosewood New Model but have been able to try several metal-ended Aeolas in one sitting recently. Generally their handling and reed quality were similar to the New Model but the usual differences of volume and brightness sets the new model off. For accompaniment it’s a better match for me. In a senor epiphany moment I just realized I have an accordion reeded instrument that is playable. I wonder if that would cut through the auditory fog?
  8. I have come to that time in life when I have trouble hearing through the background level. This is causing me problems when playing in sessions or jams (or in bars). I cannot hear myself which is fatal for me on my 56 key EC. I hoped that an Android app might allow me to clip my cell phone to my belt as a hearing aid but all those I have tried had significant sound delay. I wonder if there might be any dedicated devices that are alternative options? Perhaps some sort of amplifier (hearing aid) that I could plug earbuds into with a volume control. Clipped to the shirt or the belt it would be near to the reeds whether standing and sitting. As most earbuds don't have a lot of sound isolation perhaps I could hear the other musicians and adjust the volume of my own instrument. I'm afraid that scheme that would have to be attempted to predict how all those variables shake out. Any advice on a more sane solution, or general comment, would be appreciated. ?
  9. I have played the EC for many years and use it strictly for accompaniment. Starting out with an Anglo many many years ago, I then had dinner with Alistair Anderson before a performance at my local folk club. I was smitten and bought a good learner EC. Recently I had an opportunity to play about eight metal-ended Aeolas. My own current New Model has solid rosewood ends and I thought the difference between the brightness and volume was very noticeable. I seems to me that both attributes make the metal-ended Aeola shine in instrumental or vocal grouping but for personal accompaniment I will stick with the more mellow New Model.
  10. I thought the player was holding a lighted cigarette in his hand while playing until I saw the stogie in his mouth! Maybe a joystick?
  11. Great Pictures! I noticed that in both of the Tottington Band pictures most players have their instruments held mid to upper chest level. I would guess that most players today might find that high for comfortable playing. If so was this just posing for cameras? It appears the band is dressed for marching in the second photo. Did they march with their concertinas at this height for band Esprit De Corps? Widening the scope is it very common to find instruments displayed like this in other historic band photos?
  12. My focus is English and nautical folk music. I switched from AC to EC years ago and have been happy. I think the EC is more versatile for this purpose.
  13. I have done a lot of gigs this month doing Victorian-era Christmas music. Otherwise American and English and Nautical Folk music. I built a sound-proof room with a humidifier. My family is grateful!
  14. I am looking forward to a trip to the UK in May/June (unfortunately without my EC or other instruments). Having been a regular at a UK style folk club in Northern Virginia for many years, I have plotted my upcoming travels against folk club listings and plan to stop at a few when events sync with my itinerary. As I'm likely missing many and have not plotted any concertina happenings I thought I would list my itinerary here in hopes others can recommend events I might like to attend, music or otherwise. 5/20-21: Glasgow 5/22-23: Oban 5/24: Inverness 5/25-26: Edinburgh 5/27-28: Keswick (Lake District) 5/29-30: Askrigg (Yorkshire Dales) 5/31- 6\1: York 6/2: Llandudno (North Wales) 6\3-4: Pembrokeshire 6/5: Gloucester 6/6: Chipping Norton (Cotswalds) 6/7-10: Plymouth When driving around Ireland a few years ago I was able to get to many musical events and hope to do the same this year in UK. Thanks for any suggestions you can give me.
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