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Halifax

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Everything posted by Halifax

  1. Thanks, All: I am running out of air with my 6-fold Anglo on some tunes, but perhaps it's manageable by working with alternate fingerings and practicing quick sips with the air button. Might become more of a problem as I introduce more chords, but from what I'm hearing, if the technique isn't there, a 7-fold bellows ain't gonna help much.
  2. Hi, All: Just curious. What is the benefit of a 7-fold bellows? My current concertina has 6 and I'm wondering what I'm missing out on. Thanks, cdm
  3. Slightly off topic...Here's an interesting history of the tune and it's Irish origin story: "The haunting hymn “Amazing Grace” was penned by the anti-slavery advocate John Newton when he landed in Donegal, safe, having survived a shipwreck. His arrival on Irish shores marked the beginning of his conversion to Christianity and the start of a life of good work. He wrote the first verse in Buncrana, County Donegal." http://www.irishcentral.com/news/lough-swilly-tribute-commemorates-amazing-grace-author-226728601-237781741
  4. If you had someone make a hex case, couldn't you simply line the edges of the bottom in such a way that the buttons wouldn't be depressed? (poor buttons)
  5. Could you clarify what you mean by 'reversals'? I think I know what you mean, and I'm working out such alternative fingering possibilities right now, but just to be sure... On the (often misnamed) accidental row on the left hand end of a 3 row C/G , there is a button that plays the same notes as the middle button of the G row, but A push/G pull instead of G push/A pull, hence the term "reversal". A similar, but higher pitched G/A reversal also appears on the right hand side, but the position of the G and the A on the accidental row can vary according to whether your concertina has Wheatstone/Lachenal or Jeffries fingering. And of course, on the right, the G and the A notes on the G row are on different buttons too. However, they should be easy enough to find.... Why use reversals? Firstly, playing a note in the opposite bellows direction can often help greatly in achieving a smoothness to a phrase. And secondly, if you play in a harmonic style, it will often assist in achieving a chordal accompaniment that may not be available in the bellows direction usually needed for the melody line. Hope that makes sense and help, Roger. As an aside, I have heard two well known and respected teachers, one Irish and the other English, use the words "magic buttons" rather than "reversals"; both claim to have invented the term, which I just managed to avoid using in my previous post....but I think that their importance is indicative by the use of the "m" word.... Using reversals when planning fingerings is a good tip indeed! This gem has already made itself useful when I planned fingerings for "The Old Favourite". Thank you.
  6. Thank you, MJ. #1 would not have occurred to me at all. But I can see how it could be helpful, too, in overly loud sessions at the pub. #2 is certainly something to work toward. And (yeah), #3. It's good to have a magic bullet for chords.
  7. I'll take all the magic I can get. Thanks, Malcom! Christine
  8. Regarding the EC, Bullethead said: "Just remember that in the treble clef, the lines of the staff are the left buttons and the spaces are the right buttons, and you're golden." Beautiful stuff, that. T Regarding the Anglo, does anyone have any "magic bullet" gems to share with us beginners? I've got one: When figuring out fingering, make sure you don't have sequential notes that make you have to jump a finger from one button to the next. I look forward to your gems! Thanks! Christine
  9. Happy Birthday, Angie! And Many happy returns. Christine
  10. Hi, Angie: I don't know if you're in the stage of driving kids around, but I've started bringing my concertina along on my chauffeuring. So, while the wee girl dances, I sit in the car in the parking lot and play. And when the middling boy plays soccer, I practice (sometimes parking the car around the corner so as not to embarrass him). 15 minutes here and there, it adds up. Best, Christine
  11. Hi, TimTim: I'm a beginner myself and have had my concertina since June. The bellows just softened up noticeably in the last few weeks (likewise, I'm playing about 15 mins per day) and what a game changer it was! Before, I could only work the bellows in a stiff in-and-out motion, but now I can bend them for a little breath of a draw note and it's not as big a deal to change direction. Sometimes doing so---even within a phrase---means you can access better, more comfortable fingerings, thus keeping the flow that you want. It's so fun, isn't it? Christine
  12. The "do nothing" solution it is. Thanks, all!
  13. I suppose Steve Dickinson should know. But I think I'll follow Patrick's very convenient advice. Less messy, anyway! Thanks for your reply, Squeezyjohn.
  14. Nothing at all sounds good to me. Thanks for the good advice. I wish I could apply the same action to house maintenance!
  15. Hello, All: I've had my Ceili for a few months, and it seems that suddenly the bellows have loosened up nicely. What should I be doing to maintain them? Saddle soap? Chamois cloth? As always, thanks for your input. Christine
  16. Suduko is so dumb. Alternative fingerings can be the difference between Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and beautiful music.
  17. We used to have a cat that would come meowing into the room where i was blowing my pipes or practice chanter. I was never sure whether she was coming to protest or to sing along. So, what does the cat think of the concertina?
  18. Call the Button Box today! Canine harmony is as good a reason as any.
  19. Perhaps stringing them with catgut might be the reason Nice one! Ha!
  20. Even though my teens sometimes roll their eyes when I practice the concertina, I never thought my faithful dog would mind. But lately when I start to play, he comes over and shoves his nose between my palm and the instrument, effectively interrupting my flow. He stops when I tell him to. Still. I do feel judged.
  21. If you're in Newfoundland, here is a link to a Scholer for sale in Nova Scotia for $90 CAD: http://www.kijiji.ca/v-buy-sell-other/city-of-halifax/for-sale-concertina-and-original-box-vintage/1171889914?enableSearchNavigationFlag=true But if you're in the Netherlands, the shipping to Europe from Canada may make this potential solution too expensive. Good luck. Christine
  22. My old music teacher used to say: "In order to learn a piece fast, play it slow." He was a proponent of the metronome. You start playing at the metronome tempo you can, usually pretty slow, and move up notch by notch until you are playing at tempo.
  23. Thank you all for your thoughtful responses! Doug: I took your advice to heart and took my concertina to a hooley---even though I thought I wasn't ready. It was great! So much more fun (for me) to snuggle up in the corner with the band than to be sweating it out on the dance floor. And playing next to another concertina made me realize that my mistakes weren't unforgivable and that I could catch up. So thanks! Bill N: Good advice regarding muscle plasticity vs muscle memory. The other concertinist at the hooley made fingering suggestions that make good sense and I'll have to work against muscle memory to incorporate. So, I'll work on plasticity. Mr. Jones: You bring up a good point. Ya gotta be able to see the big picture in order to best map out the fingerings for phrasing. It's good that so much of the Irish music has a loose pattern to it, so I usually have a pretty good idea of where things are going note-wise. Just got to get my fingers to figure things out. Jim: I did not know about using the stronger finger, and that concept has greatly changed the way I look at the buttons. Makes great sense. I will try out your suggested fingerings, they sound like they make a whole lot of sense. Again, thank you all. Sorry for the delay in my reply, I've been taking a few days to let your advice soak in. Now, back to playing, everyone!
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