I have spent some time reading through various threads on these forum pages as well as other resources online. I apologise if I ask questions that have already be asked in the past.
I have decided that I would like to learn to play the concertina for the following reasons:
1) I like the sound
2) The ability to play an accompaniment at the same time as the melody
3) The size - it's really portable
And besides, I reckon they're pretty cool. I already play a couple of instruments (tenor banjo and tin whistle), but I'm no great talent on either.
I am interested in playing the following types of music:
1) Morris tunes and English Folk songs (Jenny Lind, As I was going to Banbury, etc)
2) Sea Shanties and sea songs (Bully in the alley, Old Maui, etc). I would like to sing these songs and play an accompaniment on the concertina.
3) Scottish folk songs (Macpherson's Rant, The Bonnie Lass o Fyvie, etc)
4) The odd Irish tune (Banish Misfortune, Julia Delaney's, etc.)
My online research suggests that a 30 button Anglo concertina would be the way to go. But which key should I be considering? C/G or G/D? A lot of the Morris tunes for the side that I dance with are in G with only a couple in D or Bm. I've been told that playing accompanying chords on a C/G when playing in G means that the melody is played on really high notes and this can make the melody sound squeaky/unpleasant? A D/G was recommended if I wanted to play accompanying chords. What are your experiences and advice regarding this?
Would an English concertina be suitable at all for the type of music I want to play? Can accompanying chords be played with the melody on an English Concertina?
I am looking the following tutor books:
1) The Anglo Concertina Absolute Beginners https://www.hobgoblin.com/local/sales/products/GM47011/the-cg-anglo-concertina-book/
2) Anglo Concertina in the Harmonic Style https://www.amazon.com/Anglo-Concertina-Harmonic-Style-Coover/dp/0615747353
Has anyone used either of these books before? Are they any good? Do you have any other suggestions for books or DVDs?
Do all Anglo Concertina tutor books teach to play melody on the right hand and accompanying chords on the left?
I also note that most tutor books are aimed at C/G concertinas as opposed to G/D concertinas. I'm assuming for a beginner it would be confusing to use a C/G tutor book on a G/D instrument?
What a peoples experiences in swapping to a from a C/G to a G/D?
And finally, advice on the concertina itself. One thing that struck me when looking into playing the concertina was the price of the instruments. The standard advice for buying a student model seems to be for a Rochelle. I've watched a few youtube videos. Am I right in thinking that the Rochelle is fairly bulky concertina? I must admit that the size really puts me off, as one of the things that draws me to the concertina is the portability of the instrument. In some videos the Rochelle looks almost as big as a melodeon.
For roughly the same price I can get a Wren 2 Concertina from McNeela Music, which seems to be a normal size instrument http://www.mcneelamusic.com/the-wren-anglo-concertina-2/
Does anyone have any experience with these instruments? The sound seems pretty good from the videos. With the huge jump in price from a starter concertina to an intermediate concertina, I don't foresee myself upgrading for a number of years, so I need to make the right decision from the start as the first concertina I buy will more than likely be with me for a quite some time. Any advice would be appreciated.
Sorry for the long post, but I have a lot of questions and not many people to ask them to. I appreciate any time you take in providing some advice and guidance.