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malcolm clapp

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    Concertina, melodeon & accordion enthusiast and repairer. Retired from repairing recently after 30 odd years, but still do the odd fix for friends.
    I play anglo and English, but not at the same time!
    My style on both is akin to a frustrated duet player. (Also have a Crane aeola).
    Happy to assist with concertina problems and give, hopefully, helpful advice.
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    Woolgoolga, NSW Australia

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  1. Still available at reduced price; now asking $8k Australian, which is roughly US$5.5 / GBP4.5. Too expensive? Make me an offer.....😎 I won't be insulted.....well, maybe just a wee bit....😢
  2. The occupation and short life of Mr Peat reminds me of this song. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPZwRF7yRAQ Written by Ron Angel from Teeside back in the 1960s, but this version from David Coffin has concertina accompaniment, just to keep this thread somewhat on topic....
  3. So it would appear that the Astleys (Cecil and Jennie) returned to England sometime after 1925 and then came back to Australia once more in the late 1940s. Might be worth a further search on the Trove site for later references to their concertina activities, though I suspect that public interest in concertinas had waned somewhat in those post war years. Maybe not so the saxophone, their other instrument of expertise, so that's another avenue worth researching....
  4. I could be mistaken, but I'm fairly certain that the photos posted by Chris were of an earlier date than the 1940s. The Astleys would have to have been in their 50s by then, but they appear to be somewhat younger than that. And although I'm no expert, a lady friend of mine to whom I showed the photos, suggested that they may have been "expecting a happy event" at the time the photos were taken. Yes, I know that it sometimes happens at a later than average age, but statistically it seems to point to an earlier date if it was indeed the case. (Sorry if this post offends feminist sensibilities)
  5. I realise that this is a serious question, for which I have no answer, but the image presented is going to stay in my mind all day...or at least until I clean the spilled coffee from my keyboard 🙂
  6. Chris, quite a bit about Cecil and Jennie Astley from newspapers on Trove. It would appear that they arrived in Australia around 1924. From the Adelaide Daily Herald 15th April 1924: "At the Majestic Theatre this week Cecil and Jennie Astley make their first appearance before an Australian audience and created much enthusiasm in the manner in which they manipulated their various instruments." And also of interest, from The News (Adelaide) 5th November 1925: "Mr. Cecil Astley, who is appearing in a musical partnership with Miss Jennie Astley at West's Olympia this week, is an Englishman by birth. He comes of a musical family, both his mother and father being clever instrumentalists. He left school to join a vaudeville company in which he appeared as a concertina and piano soloist. Before receiving an offer from the Fuller management to come to Australia, Mr. Astley was a member of Jack Hilton's famous Piccadilly Hotel Band. When the engagement of the Astleys had been completed with the Fuller Circuit these talented musicians decided to see more of Australia than just the beaten round traveled by most visiting artists, so they joined a touring company. "It was some company," as Mr. Astley remarked. "Miss Astley and I were-responsible for the taking of the tickets, and providing our double turn, and I was engaged as accompanist, general stage manager and chauffeur. for the whole party touring the country in a 'Tin Lizzie.' The northerly parts of Queensland and New South Wales were visited. The townships usually consisted of a general store, a hotel, and a small hall. For miles we would travel across wild plains and never see a sign of habitation, and when we arrived at the hotel there still seemed to be about 10 people in the township. Yet when the curtain went up the hall was crowded. It amazes me to this day to know were these people came from. Some of them had traveled miles to see the show. Saxophones and concertinas are used in the act. The one that Miss Jennie Astley plays was won at the Crystal Palace Theatre by Mr. Astley in a brass band contest at which there were more than 3,000 competitors."
  7. B natural is pretty superfluous here as you already have one on the middle row. The standard Bb would be of more use I agree, but also consider other options for this button. My own preference is for an Ab, allowing an interesting bass run down to G which I make use of quite a bit. Worth considering maybe...
  8. Frontalini, though whether that factory made it or just distributed it I don't know. Some one else posted an inquiry just recently about a similar concertina..... https://www.concertina.net/forums/index.php?/topic/24963-returning-after-16-years/
  9. Great tune, as are so many of the Copper family's repertoire. May I suggest "Come Write Me Down" as another tune with great harmony potential for anglo.... Not being at all critical, Alan, but the three low note run on the left hand at the very beginning is magic imho. But sadly missing at the start of the second and fourth line where they would also fit rather nicely, and totally unused on the second time through. I keep playing the video, humming those notes, somehow believing they will magically appear on the recording..... Hope you soon recover from your finger injury, however caused. I am not playing at present as I have an infected wart on my right hand middle finger tip that won't heal properly. Feels like an electric shock when I touch a concertina key with it. I try to avoid using that finger, but "old dogs, new tricks" syndrome soon kicks in.
  10. Any one else mis-read the thread title and expected to hear Yakkity Sax played as a hornpipe? Now there's a challenge..... (No disrespect intended, James. Great tune, and well played).
  11. At least you can now see what the reed might have been originally tuned to 🙂
  12. Tried one of these once. Right hand keyboard was a continental chromatic accordion fingering; can't remember if it was a B or C system. The left hand keyboard wouldn't work because the bellows folds were all stuck together (think it had got wet at some point). I declined the owner's kind offer to sell it to me for some ridiculous price ending in lots of noughts IIRC :-)
  13. An antiquated unit of British currency called a "guinea", each worth 21 shillings. Although the actual coin fell out of use well before the date of the price list in question, the guinea value was still used well into the C20th by sellers of luxury items and by professional bodies such as doctors and lawyers. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guinea_(coin) No idea why it wasn't applied to the 32 key model on the price list. Maybe there was legislation enacted to limit its use only to prices above a certain level, but could equally have been just a printing error 🙂 Dunno.
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