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About LateToTheGame

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    Chatty concertinist

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    Concertina, wooden flute, whistle et al
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  1. Have you looked into the pelican camera boxes and their look a likes in other brands? I know some sizes fit anglos. I am not sure how much bigger an English is. Good Luck!
  2. True. And Clare has an out sized influence in the Chicago scene. You are right about the folk revival being different than the ITM folks, but I thought I'd just add a bunch of info. In the eighties I thought I was more interested in the folk revival style as I had an interest and backgound in 5 string and guitar, but ITM just sort of grabbed me at one point. I think, here, it is the lively community of superb musicians that are willing to sit down and play with us mere mortals. LOL
  3. If you are trying to accompany your own singing you may want to find the keys setup that works best for your voice. Though I suppose that your could play in any key on any anglo the button combinations and octave you play in may be off. Check out Barleycorn concertinas for examples of some of the less than common keys available. If you know the key your voice prefers you could ask them what they have in stock that fits you. The Button Box in the US also occasionally has odder keys in their used stock if your voice is not a good fit with the C/G or D/G instruments that are most available. If you can spend some money you can get an instrument that will last you for the rest of your life. I remember going to a Roberts and Barrand concert years ago and at least 2 concertinas were used. It was before I learned to play so I didn't ask what keys or what type.
  4. Chicago has a mighty concertina session tradition with John Williams as one of the central figures in both performance and session music. While I have seen lots of concertinas in sessions I have only ever seen one English in my 30 years of sessioning in this neck of the woods. And that player years ago borrowed my anglo to advance his Irish Traditional music playing. As for banjos, while there is one fellow that plays the 5 string in town, the tenor is the go to banjo for session or performance. I know at least one player that plays 5 string and tenor as well as mandolin and guitar as a professional musician. He always plays tenor at Irish sessions when he plays banjo. While there are some great performers playing 5 string banjo currently as well as the players mentioned above, they are still the exception for session playing or singing accompaniment at least around here. I think I saw a video of Winnie Horan playing a 5 string a couple of years ago, but I don't actually remember. I was researching 5 string banjo in Ireland for my 5 string playing session mate some years ago and discovered that the 5 string as well as the 8 string were played widely in Ireland in the 1800s and the turn of the century but the tenor gradually took over. This may have been an availability trend since tenor banjos were used in English and music hall music so they may have just been around. Mick Maloney wrote a bit of a history of the banjo in Irish music I read some time ago. Most modern Irish session playing centers around a particular flat picking style that plays the melody as well as provides a foundational rhythm. While most 5 string player use finger picks or a clawhammer style that other session players sometime find disconcerting. Those styles sort of flow rather than rat-ta-ta-tat or da dee da dum as it were. If you are trying to accompany yourself singing you could play banjo or guitar or concertina. We have a great bohran player here in town that accompanies himself on bohran for that matter. LOL There are a couple of questions you might consider as you think about an instrument. Will you be playing mostly alone or try to play with others in a session scene? If you are playing on your own, the instrument you pick will just need to be the one you are most attracted to. The next question is how many dollars will you ultimately have to spend on an instrument. You can get an excellent banjo for less half the price of an excellent concertina. Concertinas are amazing. But they are also mechanical marvels that take a lot of time and skill to produce. Even the cheapest anglos that you will grow out of in a couple of years will cost $500. While good antique english concertinas may cost less because there is a smaller market for them. So there is that. Have I confused you enough? I toss out all that info since I as a newbie flailed around quite a bit trying to find out what I wanted to play and how. More information back in the day would have been welcome. I really am not trying to drive you insane.
  5. Do you know what type of music you want to play. It it is traditional Irish you will want to go anglo C/G. But for other types of music English could be best. Good Luck.
  6. Chicago has yet to go to dots on phones for tunes in most ITM sessions I've been to, but I see more singers using them for lyrics. I guess it seems less intrusive than pulling a folded piece of paper out of a pocket. So people who wouldn't have considered it a few years ago are doing it now. We are sort of carrying our brains in our pockets these days.
  7. John William's is leading a sight seeing, sessioning tour in Ireland sometime in 2020. I lost track of when. It is unlikely there will be boats involved, but it could be a very good time. I think it's through Wild Atlantic.
  8. It will need a good evaluation to set a fair price. You could try an auction or contact an expert. Even selling it online will take the courage to take it apart to photograph the insides. If you've not done that before it can be a bit daunting. There are two or three people in the States that spring to mind if you are in the US. I don't know who are the best bets elsewhere. But I bet someone here does.
  9. My 4 year old Labrador now just gives a couple of good, "Oh, we're doing that now," howls, then goes and lies down in disinterest. Sometimes, if I'm playing in the kitchen she will stare at the door so I let her out. When she was a pup it was a constant sing along. I basically didn't reinforce her at all negatively or positively. I just ignored her. Your mileage may vary.
  10. I read this as not A/E but A something or other symbol I don't understand and E something or other symbol I don't understand LOL. What that does that mean? I am interested. I was told he was playing a Bb/F, which would correspond with an A#/E# if that is what those symbols mean.
  11. LateToTheGame


    I had a conner for years. It was very very nice. Again, who has been playing it and where it has been will make a big difference. If you are buying used make sure you know your seller. And make sure you can return if it you don't like it. And best, play it in person. Sometimes Hobgoblin has a Connor. Conner's are not hybrids, but rather made on the Wheatstone model by John Connor, now retired. He was a maker at the Wheatstone Co. who struck out on on his own. Some of his concertinas used salvaged concertina reeds, others new I believe. He initially started out sourcing reeds with Chris Alger's Barleycorn Concertina company if I remember correctly. I may be wrong on that detail. I think the Wheatstone key layout is what you have on that Rochelle, But a lot of players moved towards the Jeffries. The differences are subtle, with 3 or 4 notes in different places on the upper right hand. The most relevant to a new player the C# placement. After 20 years of play my Connor appreciated a fresh tuning and adjustment by a pro (Greg J) here in the states. But the bellows and action were still fine and it certainly remained playable as it was. At your price you can also go down the hybrid/true concertina reed instrument rabbit hole. Many people with your budget and your son's experience are very happy with the hybrid concertinas out there. The plus side is they can be purchased new off the shelf with a warranty from someplace like the Irish Concertina Company or the Button Box in the US and often sound very good. I have heard Morse played very well. Hybirds can sometimes sound like small accordions rather than true concertinas. But not always. And the action can be a mite slower, but hybrid makers have been perfecting their craft for the last 20 years or so and some sound very nice. You might want to start another discussion looking for recommendations on hybrids as well.
  12. LateToTheGame


    With any antique instrument you would be best to shop through a dealer like Chris Algar at Barleycorn Concertinas, or have a trusted teacher look at the instrument in question. There is a huge variation in playability and sound from most of the recognized big name older instruments. Factors like the year it was made play into its quality. And how well or poorly it was maintained or stored will be huge factors as well. Barleycorn concertinas goes over every instrument they sell. There are other makers, restorers and shops out there. So continue to ask for recommendations on this forum. If you do buy from a private party I'd recommend you have a trusted teacher look at the instrument both inside and out, before you put that kind of money down. As for the definition of student instrument verses professional instruments--- It is unlikely you will find a "pro" instrument in that price range. But depending on your son's level of interest you will find something levels above his Rochelle that will either be a stepping stone or a lifetime instrument. Good luck. You will find the right instrument out their somewhere.
  13. About 29 minutes into the first episode of the third season of the Magnificent Mrs. Maisel. A red celluloid 20 button boxed carried offstage by a woman in a cowgirl outfit in a large group shot. But it was there on screen for a split second.
  14. I am trying to figure out how to PM you... I am interested.
  15. It could be useful to add if this is a hybrid or Heritage model, just to keep you from answering repeated email questions should they arise. Good luck on the sale.
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