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Everything posted by Jim2010

  1. That was my obviously failed attempt at humor.
  2. Geoff, If you can afford it, and you think it would bring you ease or pleasure, I say get a Bb EC. As you mention, Anglo players do this. So do harmonica, recorder, viol, lute, guitar, and other players. Sometimes it is for sonority, sometimes (as you mentioned) it is for quick transposition without having to learn new fingering. My favorite example of transposing in this way is the "transposing piano." For those who have never heard of it, a transposing piano is essentially a regular piano with keyboard and hammers attached to a contraption that can be cranked from side to side. In standard position, when you press a C key the hammer hits the C string(s) inside the piano. If you crank the contraption a little bit to the right, when you press that C key, the hammer hits the C# string(s). Crank it a little farther to the right and when you press the C key the hammer will now hit the D string(s). The same thing happens when you crank to the left. With a transposing piano you could learn everything in your favorite key, and just crank right or left whenever you wanted or needed to have the music in a different key. The only downside is that, unlike a regular piano, a transposing piano is too heavy to throw in a bag and take with you to gigs.
  3. It might be on useful to think about the relative importance of musical notation for a beginner. Playing a musical instrument involves a wide range of capabilities. Reading music (in whatever form) is just one of them, and an optional one for many people. When we are just getting started, it can be frustrating trying to decide what aspect of music to work on first. I have long and extensive experience as a musical performer. I can read many different forms of musical notation. But when I started to learn to play a new instrument—a free reed instrument, musical notation was the last thing on my mind. To learn to play well, I would have to master the techniques that produce the sounds that attracted me to the instrument. I would need to play long even notes, and long notes that gradually got louder or softer. I would need to be able to play legato (making a smooth, connected transition from one note to the other), and staccato (short, unconnected notes). I would need to learn to manage the flow of air, and so on. To do those things, I needed to teach my fingers and hands (and brain) new, unfamiliar movements. Some fingers were better at it than others. What could I do to make them as equal/capable as possible? What the names of the notes were or how to write or read the melody of a song were and would be irrelevant until and unless I could make the necessary sounds. Notation was a concern (and there are a couple of concerns) for a later time. It is commonly said that you need to spend 10,000 hours to master something as complex as playing a musical instrument. Let's say that you don't want to master the concertina, but just play at the level of the lowest 10 percent of players. You will have about 1,000 hours of practice ahead of you. How should you use that time? It is very common for beginners to attempt to play simple songs. I didn't do that. It was months before I worked on any actual music. Even now, seven years later, very little of my practicing involves playing thought entire pieces. I practice the hard parts of things I am working. I also practice the ongoing skills I need as I get better. Performers at the highest level emphasize the importance of learning to play without any tension. They emphasize the importance of practicing slowly (since playing fast is nothing more than playing slowly fast). They emphasize the importance of listening carefully to the sounds you are making. The emphasize the importance of isolating and practicing the things you find difficult slowly and relaxed enough that your muscles can learn how to do whatever it is. Too often, people play/practice too fast, making the same mistakes over and over, essentially practicing and getting very good at making the mistake. We all have big hopes for making wonderful music. Fortunately, even on day number one you can begin to practice some little aspects of that. Figure out a couple of the notes. Play them slowly and relaxed. Listen carefully to make sure you like the way it sounds. If you can't make it sound the way you want it too, figure out what you need to solve that. That is what practicing is. You don't need any musical notation to do that. I hope some part of is helpful.
  4. Very informative, clear, and well written. Thank you.
  5. To answer Geoff's question from the standpoint of do any of us have a musical joke [ourselves, rather than knowing about one on youtube], here is one that was used by a musical group I performed with many years ago. While you are playing one piece, you slip into another piece, ideally one that is more lighthearted than the first. Depending on one's personality (you have to be willing to look foolish), you can act as if you are just absent minded, or that the instrument has mind of its own, the sheet music is wrong, or something else that is not your fault. Since most popular music begins and ends on the tonic cord, you can switch from song to song endlessly. Switching from a somewhat serious song to a Christmas carol is a good way to start. You can then catch yourself and go back to the serious one, and soon enough drift off into a different Christmas carol. Victor Borge is a good role model for this sort of thing.
  6. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dKeqaDSjy98 Such as this... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dKeqaDSjy98
  7. Does this count? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3-diqR41yo
  8. Very, very nice. Great tune, great playing.
  9. Here is a photo essay that shows Bob making a concertina step by step. http://hmi.homewood.net/twitterzephyr/
  10. We had "Fun." When first learning to read music, it can be useful to keep in mind that all the notes (on all clefs) are simply in alphabetical order. The lines and spaces can be thought of as visual aids to quickly see how far away (alphabetically) one note is from another. They also quickly show what the interval is between one note and another.
  11. Maybe the method used to recreate the Lachenal English, number 60325 (1930s) [link below] could be used to produce other labels and the corresponding numbers 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0, which could be digitally manipulated (cut and paste) to create any necessary number. https://www.concertina.net/forums/index.php?/topic/19025-items-from-the-concertina-museum-page/&tab=comments#comment-179611
  12. Adrian, Thank you for the beautiful performance, the beautiful music, and the link to the scores. Much admiration and appreciation.
  13. There is a lot of good information about playing Crane Duet (and good concertina playing in general) by Kurt Braun here on concertina.net.
  14. Thanks, David. I hadn't gone that far back.
  15. Just out of curiosity, why is this tread titled JulietteDaum.com?
  16. Thanks for the link, David. Great stuff. Imagine if Chico could play the concertina the way he played the piano.
  17. Great one, Randy. Especially with NINA in Chico's bellows.
  18. Could you please describe the keyboard/notes. Thank you.
  19. Wonderful, Randy. Great performance. Thanks for posting.
  20. I suggest checking with the Concertina Connection about this. When I enquired about this possibility last April, the Troubadour was not eligible to trade in for the Peacock, only for a Wakker. The reason was that instruments can be traded in for instruments of a higher class: i.e. entry level to intermediate to traditional. The Troubadour and Peacock are/were both classed as intermediate class instruments. Whether this is the current policy I do not know.
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