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Everything posted by ucyljad

  1. I have put a Maccann Duet on ebay http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Maccann-Duet-Concert...1QQcmdZViewItem There's no reserve and I understand it's worth maybe a couple of hundred more than the starting bid. Regards Andy
  2. Wheatstone aeola 67 button Maccann Duet, serial number 29221, made in 1922, professional quality instrument. Pictures and three videos (Moon River, Coleraine & Captain Pugwash – note that I’m two years out of practice) at http://www.myspace.com/thepianoenthusiast Andy Dawson
  3. Interesting what Chris Algar says in that e-bay blurb - that 46 key Maccanns "are very sought after". I always thought 57, 62 or 67 were the ideal sizes. I reckon 46 keys are way too few to play with. I even found 57 too few. I tentatively advertised my 67, got five queries, one definite offer, but still have it. When you consider that a new one would cost (?)up to £7,000(?), how much should a mint, best period aeola etc sell for? Not to mention having to wait goodness knows how long for a maker to build a new one. Andy
  4. For Sale: Wheatstone 67 button Maccann Duet, serial number 29221, 1922. Made as a professional instrument by Wheatstone in their prime and restored by Barleycorn about five years ago. Original 8-fold bellows, raised metal ends, metal buttons, steel reeds, concert pitch. Together with original leather cuboid case. Contact me by PM for photographs or more information. Make me an offer. It ought to go to a player. Andy
  5. ...lovely harpsichord... It's Friday, and they're probably older than me, but what the heck: What is wrong with 4 accordionists driving off a cliff in an MPV? You could easily fit 3 more in there. ------------------- Why is an accordian better than a melodian? Because it burns longer. ------------------- Whats Perfect Pitch? When you throw a melodian into the toilet without hitting the rim. ------------------- Andy
  6. Which 'The George' in London? The famous George Inn in Southwark? Or a local? Andy
  7. "I am sure one of our C.net members played concertina on Paul McCartney and the Frog Chorus - We all stand together." I heard/saw this song the other day on Magic on Cable TV. Think it was John Nixon playing. He can be heard clearly twice:- plays high (Tenor English?) at the beginning; and then about half way through plays again (very low bass English?) Andy
  8. Dunno, but I'd request 'Wake me up before you go go' by Wham Andy
  9. Nice points Jim, duets are designed to accompany their melodies. I had a lightish 57 button that went down to g-2, but only overlapped between middle c and f. It had the smallest overlap I've ever played and was not to my liking. Also about notation, this may be of interest, the oldest known: http://www.nb.no/baser/schoyen/5/5.3/index.html#5105 Should we practise our heptatonic scales now or later? Andy
  10. "but I'm betting even 200 players is a low estimate. I suspect there may be more hidden Maccanns out there than any other duet system, unless it's Cranes" Jim, Stephen, It's reassuring to hear you both agree my guesses at duet player numbers are low. I do wonder how many of the duets sold are effectively second instruments, bought by anglo/english/accordian players after hearing an inspiring duet performance. Having just listened to John Williams' cd Steam I quite fancy a Dipper anglo Andy
  11. There are at least 25 Maccann Duet players worldwide, and probably less than 50 in total. I'd guess you could count the Jeffries Duet players on your fingers. How about Crane players anyone? Andy
  12. From The Sloth by Flanders & Swan "The world is such a cheerful place when viewed from upside down" and "The door's not shut on my genius but I just don't have the time" see http://www.network54.com/Forum/thread?foru...2&lp=1115505395 The piano accompaniment written by Donald Swan is quite simple and can be adapted to concertina. Andy
  13. Performing after learning and then memorising is I suppose the last stage of truly learning a 'tune'. I've never really performed on concertina, only piano. Personally, I've only really performed in front of friends and family and have identified two extremes - the first when I'm attempting to sing a party song like 'I got it from Agnes' which needs lots of audience contact and especially at innuendo points; these actions need to be memorised as a comedian would. The other when I play something like a George Shearing version of A Certain Smile which is an 'internal' piece. People can listen if they want to. It's also a bit like Vanessa Mae compared to Sarah Chang (I've been watching Classic FM on Sky too much). What is irritating is that no matter how well I know these tunes, very occasionally I can still hit a blank where memory and recall seem to inexplicably fail. Is this a 'performing' thing? Andy
  14. Thanks all for your input, and especially Pauline for the 'movement enhancing memory' theory. I wonder if you have seen the video of the concertina get-together from last year? It is interesting to watch Iris Bishop who plays (large Maccann duet) the theme from the Godfather seated with eyes closed and virtually motionless apart from fingers and minimal bellows movement. Then compare this directly with the the chap (forget his name, apologies) playing a rousing version of the Dambusters (on Jeffries duet) which is performed standing, foot tapping etc. with much gusto. Both are expressive performances, given with energy and flair. It is interesting that the glazed-over look of the jeffries user is effectively the same as having one's eyes closed. Some of the style difference is directly attributable to the instrument weight and of course the style of music being played. I would say that stillness, shutting the eyes to help visualisation, and cutting out distractions are the greatest aid to memory (both Thelonius Monk and Cecil Taylor do this in their own way). but that learnt movement can help. Incidentally, my piano teacher taught me 'Do not leak' and was never impressed by Liberace. But this last weekend watching Donald Swan playing 'The Gnu' with flourishes of his left hand I could see how the movements reinforced his performance, although he kept the music to hand. Because lyrics generally go with the music, or the music is written for them, they usually have association and for me are easier to remember than just a peom or play. It is rare that one does not complement the other - Robin Ray commented that Tom Lehrer's song 'The Elements' was one of the hardest as each line had to be learnt parrot-fashion, and breathing is limited. Off to play now; the kids are singing 'I'm a Gnu', and I have to practice concertina out of earshot of the wife during lunch at work. Such is life Andy Dawson
  15. I've been pondering and attempting some analysis of the difficulties I find in memorising music, ie not just a one line tune that you know or have learnt and can play by ear, but an arrangement which includes accompaniment of the tune in both right and left hands of various numbers of notes in arpeggios or chords. Also, my thoughts have not been limited to concertina playing, but include for example the piano, or indeed any instrument that can stand alone & can therefore imitate to some extent an orchestra (note, although concertina accompaniments are usually less complicated they are often just as difficult to play as more complex ones on piano). There have been a couple of interesting posts about playing and learning by ear, that touched on the subject. I think they were more about playing one-line tunes, which is comparatively easy. Incidentally, although I find it difficult to define the musical process, learning for me is more about being able to play from the written notes, while memorising is the next stage. At both stages one may be able to play the piece fully. I wondered how difficult other people find memorisation of full pieces? As an example of timescale, taking one of David Cornell's arrangements from www.maccan-duet.com, I reckon I can learn most arrangements from written music quite well within a week if I put my mind to it; but they can take up to a couple of months to memorise & play well, depending on the difficulty of the arrangement. This means I have to be highly selective about what I initially learn and then take time to memorise. So it takes a couple of months for a piece to become 'solid' and I am confident in playing it. Memorisation for me has never become perceptively easier once facility with an instrument has been reached, presumably partly because I am attempting to memorise more difficult works as my technique improves. Also if I don't run through things I have previoulsy memorised, over the years I gradually forget them and fill in/improvise the bits that have 'gone'. Put the music in front of me and I can play them well, but not as before. I am currently re-learning and memorising an Art Tatum piano arrangement of Sweet Lorraine which, at the age twenty, I could play through at speed. The harmonically complex (not fast) bits are the parts I forget. Only sheer repetition and daily practice seems to help my memory. I find listening to music pieces aids learning and memorisation of a tune and words, but not of playing accompaniments. Was it Beethoven who went to a concert, then proceeded to write out the full score later that night? Well, there are my jumbled up thoughts. I'd be interested in any comments on memorisation and how you approach it. Andy Dawson
  16. Having bought a couple of battered old anglos which among other things needed new straps. I rang Colin to buy new straps and asked about the springs, buttons etc. Talking to him, I realised I would have to open the instruments up to investigate exactly what I needed so said I would ring back in a few days for the internals. Through his vast knowledge and experience, be must have intuitively known what I was likely to need as, along with the straps I bought, he very thoughtfully sent me various bits for the internal workings including two different sizes of two missing buttons. He would not accept any payment for these extras, but what I valued most was the advice. I would say we are lucky to have him around. Andy
  17. Folks, Jim Lucas wrote: "I think it was reported previously that this can happen if the temperature gets really low" ...I might have said that when visiting my parents in Co. Durham for Christmas I left my concertina in the unheated Sitting Room overnight. It was frosty outside, and I was a bit worried when I could get only a very few notes to sound. However after an hour in the Living Room with the gentle heat of a coal fire it was back to normal. My father just laughed as, having played in an orchestras for decades, he has seen the problems brass & woodwind instruments experience with varying temperatures. I've also noticed that at work where the temperature is a pleasant 80ish+ the instrument definitely plays louder and feels more responsive. No real science to these observations. Andy
  18. Could anyone tell me if there are any daytime workshops? I'll be in the area (Hull during the first weekend and Durham over the next week) so would be interested, especially if Iris Bishop is playing. Thanks Andy
  19. Bashful plays the concertina. I was amused to see this when reading Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs to my younger daughter the other night. He is in the foreground of the picture while Happy is in the background on piano. Dopey gets to dance with Snow. Also last night while watching Miss Marple, The Mirror Cracked (on Sky channetl 146) they showed the village fete with Morris Dancers and concertina player. Is it mentioned in the original book? Who were the Morris Dancers & player or were they just extras? Andy
  20. Searching rather vaguely for a starter type duet instrument for my kids,and remembering that a new Hayden is available I happened to look in on these two well known websites: http://www.buttonbox.com/newtina.html http://www.hobgoblin.com/local/contfram.htm Hobgoblin have it at £599 or $1105 on the US Site Buttonbox have it at $795 or £432.81 when converted That's a substantial difference in price. Are they the same instrument? Andy
  21. Regarding playing a tune for an hour to really know it, I understand what is meant though have never managed a full hour on one piece alone. I've tried to adopt some advice (I think it was related to juggling initially) which goes: "If you want to get really good at something, practice until you're bored, and then practice an extra 10 minutes" Andy
  22. One tutor I read recommended Lemon Oil for both wood and leather bellows. I asked a concertina maker in the Uk about this and he said he used leather cream. Whatever you use, apply as little as possible as (I think I understand rightly here) any moisture will soak in and weaken the glue used to keep the bellows together. Apply with a soft toothbrush or paintbrush having got rid of any excess dust first. I often clean dust from the valley folds (where does it all come from?), but have never applied anything to the black leather. Andy
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