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Steve Schulteis

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About Steve Schulteis

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    Iowa, USA

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Chatty concertinist

Chatty concertinist (4/6)

  1. I managed to track down the correct link. Very nice.
  2. Alan, it looks like you accidentally posted the link to edit the video instead of view it. In any case, I'm not able to watch it.
  3. These videos show most of the process and demonstrate that it's possible to build a working instrument with relatively crude equipment. Be warned, the materials and construction shown are quite rough compared to a quality instrument from an experienced builder. So take them as a sort of outline, and search elsewhere for more details about the individual pieces. This forum's old posts and YouTube are good sources of information, and Bob Tedrow has some great stuff on his website as well.
  4. I like to stay pretty close to "home position", and I make extensive use of my pinky fingers (especially the left hand). But I do move around a bit. On the left hand I find that frequently used chord shapes function as reference positions just as well as if I had all fingers on the middle row. I can move between those pretty freely, otherwise I like to have at least one finger act as an anchor while I switch positions. The anchor finger can be part of the previous position, or it can be a free finger that gets ready in the new position before the others move. The right hand is a little more static, but I do move between the main two rows, at least in how I think about my playing. The key of the music usually influences where I end up. I have on occasion shifted my right hand to the side to avoid chopping, but I think that's mostly been when following someone else's tablature. I'm more likely to move down to the next row unless harmony bellows direction forces it. Recently I've been playing more C and F tunes on my 30 button G/D, and I've found that those keys can have a different sort of home position. For example, playing just melody across both hands, the left hand ends up spending a lot of time on buttons 4a and 5a, so I mostly let my fingers rest there. So after all that rambling, getting back to the title of the thread: I do have a preferred finger for each button, but I'll sometimes abandon that to avoid chopping or awkward chord shapes/transitions, and the preference may change between keys or tunes.
  5. Funny thing, I finally ordered the custom PCBs for my next iteration of MIDI concertina this week.
  6. I showed this to my kids. Shortly after, I heard the sound of a violin being practiced. 😂
  7. Wow, fantastic work! I can see why you're proud of this one. But the real question is, who's your main? 😉
  8. Welcome! If you're not playing with others, you'll be fine following instructions for C/G. You can find a fingering chart here: https://anglopiano.com/?da-20
  9. The recording setup will also affect this. Mics set closer to the ends will pick up more action noise than a single mic a few feet back from the center of the bellows.
  10. I wouldn't expect to save a lot of money unless you already have a lot of materials and components on hand. Reeds alone will cost a few hundred dollars. Mix in leather, card, levers, springs, pads, buttons, specialized tooling, etc, and the dollars add up real quick. Not to discourage you - I think there's a lot of merit in making things. But cost savings will probably be meager, especially on the first instrument. To get an idea of what's involved in reed production (and many other parts of concertina building), check out Alex Holden's blog and Instagram. There's also some interesting stuff on the Kensington concertinas website. There's not one central thread documenting building methods, but there is a lot of good info on this forum. Many makers and repairers have generously shared their expertise over the years. Searching for info about specific components will yield good results.
  11. A lot of harmonica players use effects pedals. They're usually aiming for a relatively specific sound, so a lot of what you'll hear is overdrive/distortion, but I've also seen organ emulation. It's not diatonic, but Musik Böhmer uses a duet concertina with effects. If you want to play with effects, Garage Band has a bunch of stuff built in, including a pedal board. There's piles of free plugins out there too. All you really need is a Mac with a microphone connected to it.
  12. Wild. It looks well executed. It's not to my taste, but if it was anodized (black being the obvious safe color) it might look very nice.
  13. Great music, as usual. I did have a chuckle at the typo in the in-video title. 😛
  14. Doing things by and for yourself isn't always selfish. I sometimes need time alone, and it equips me to better serve others and enjoy their company. As I mentioned in my last post, I play with a local folk band. I'm still one of the least musically accomplished members. And I'm the only concertina player. But having other people to play with and having goals (gigs) to work toward has helped my playing a lot. It's been a ton of work, but I've been really glad for it. Maybe finding another musician (on any instrument) to work on tunes with would reinvigorate your enjoyment of the instrument.
  15. When I started out, I made an effort to memorize most of the music I played. After a while, I ended up with a local folk band, and I realized that I wouldn't be able to keep up that way - there were just too many tunes to learn, and which ones we were actively playing seemed to change constantly. So now I play from sheet music most of the time, and it's honestly changed my experience for the better. I still want to get back to more memorization and learning by ear (those have benefits too), but for this season I'm a sheet music player, and there's nothing wrong with that.
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