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Everything posted by Gail_Smith

  1. Hm, it turns out that I already try to play a set with that great Paddy Faheys tune in it - its the other tunes i the same set that give me headaches ! Working on it tho...
  2. interesting- thanks. That's a different Paddy Fahey's reel from the one I usually trip over at full speed (and no, I'm not getting confued with Paddy Fahey's jig). So I will give it a go. Thanks. I like Northumberland tunes and I have a lot of those long thin booklets with very small dots in them that are slightly too difficult for me to read without photo-enlarging. But the tunes do tend to bounce around a lot rather than have easy-to-play-on-an-EC runs. Interesting idea on the Bee's wing ! I see its often played in G as well. Confounding fiddlers isn't my primary aim btw, but it's nice not to be the only one that has trouble with certain note progressions occasionally. The Road to Errogie by Adam Sutherland is a fine tune but difficult - for me - to play at speed, but is also a good one for discomforting some fiddlers, if you can play it in the original key of B. Mallys. Hm, really ? I should check again, rather than following my prejudices brought about by a few friends learning melodeon. good ideas thanks.
  3. Hi I'm looking for a reel or two that fall naturally under the fingers on an english concertina. The plan would be to get them up to speed to play in a public session (or post on the net in these strange times) . So, lots of nice runs, easy keys, and no repeat-note triplets please ! I seem to choose to practice interesting (often far too difficult) tunes rather than those i could get to a respectable standard. So it would be good to work on something that is naturally easier for a change. It would be even better if the tunes were hard to play on the fiddle. Thank you Gail
  4. OK- I DID say "aide-memoire". My point wasn't to sight-read at speed (although i do try to do that with the 2-box-files-of-paper the longstanding group in the Irish Centre in Liverpool have as their repertoire - in the hope that eventually i will be able to play many more of the sets without referring to the notation) There are tunes i can happily play at home, but cant necessarily remember how to start the second tune in the set when I am in public. I like to use dots to get over that awful panic when you feel the B music approaching and you are so nervous that you cant be sure how it starts i.e. to use "dots as a comfort blanket" So, if i am travelling around- as i do - It seems from the responses so far (thanks everyone) that the only solution is my current one of sitting in on the session hiding the box and tablet in a shopping bag until I can see what the lie of the land is - thank goodness a concertina is easier to hide than a guitar! This sort of works - if you need to be so on-the-ball that dots are anathema, then the evening is probably worth just listening to , But it is nice you feel a "part" of the process and not just an audience. Interesting that dots are seen as evidence of not belonging to the local tradition [bad thing]. But its obvious if you are a visitor that you are not from the local tradition. It seems to me that the "local tradition" for a lot of sessions is composed of the regulars' favourite tunes, which may be quite different to those played 10 miles down the road. So unless you play tunes from a genuine local tradition (e.g. Northumberland in Newcastle) or the very familiar tunes that everyone loves/loves-to-hate such as Salmon Tails and the Blackthorn Stick (in most of the UK) the chances of joining in are low if you are just visiting.
  5. I am wondering if its getting to be more socially acceptable to have the dots in front of you as an aide-memoire in sessions ? This used to be a definite no-no. The Kingston Irish Tunebook implies that you need to sit at the feet of the gurus for months, and get a nod from the guys in charge, before even daring to get an instrument out. However, I have "dropped in " on a small number of sessions in the last few years and found that people were happily reading off paper and tablets. Particularly people reading lyrics and strumming on guitars. The friendliest was in Ulverstone, where I was told "we mostly play the Furness Tradition here - if you can read these dots you can join in". So - are dots more acceptable in some geographies than others, or is it all to do with the individual session involved ? Gail
  6. Well, that was easy, when i finally had the time and courage to follow up your advice. Both D#s were loose in their reed shoes, as were a couple of the very high notes [I don't play these very often either]. They are now not loose and are essentially in tune. By the way - i was not intending ever to tune a reed higher just to please the fiddler, but i could see that she had a valid complaint when it was flat. The "swap the D# for the Eb" idea was a great bit of lateral thinking that would have been my next step. Thank you to everyone, particularly Dave and "Oberon" Gail.
  7. Thank you everyone for PMs as well as this thread. I have been away for a few days and will get round to checking the reed bed tomorrow (which is now sounding to be the most likely explanation) and go through the tunings with an electronic tuner to see what i actually have. Particular thanks to David for reminding me how he tuned the concertina (its the Ediophone) and when he did it ! I have now looked up various different ways of tuning (I also have a hurdy-gurdy that has been set up using "just" tuning) and its clearly a really important issue for some people and can make a significant difference to how a group of instruments sound together a I am now better educated.
  8. Thanks for the hint about the reed shoe. i will try that.
  9. I don't often play D# and i don't have a particularly good sense of pitch anyway. so I'm not sure - Until last month, i only really used it for some 18th century stuff and Adam Sutherland's "Road to Errogie" which he wrote in B, because he could. I'm now trying to get another Adam Sutherland tune - Inspector John Duff of Braemar Mountain Rescue - up to performance standard, but this time playing along with others. I think it probably been gradually going out of tune since it was last tuned as part of a general overhaul by the Concertina Tinker about years ago.
  10. My D# [left hand, middle octave on a 48 key English system ] is about a quarter tone flat according to a fiddle player i play with who would ideally like it to be just a little bit sharp (just because of where the emphasis and drive are in the piece) on a piece we are playing together. I'm finding it really difficult to play the Eb instead. I don't want to send the instrument away .... is re-tuning it likely to be something i can do myself?I'm not proposing to tune it to anything other than a conventional D# - although it could be a D# in just temperament which is a teeny bit sharper than equal temperament D#.
  11. Thank you to everyone for your help on this. I now have a workable concertina again. I eventually used the 1" woodscrews kindly sent to me by a member of this forum. Thanks ! They are a little thicker than the originals, but that will help them stay put. They have gone in OK and don't seem to have damaged the posts, and I decided to live with the difference in length between the thumb and finger screws. If they had failed I would have used the machine screws, nuts and washers. what a helpful forum ! Hope you are well Dave. Gail
  12. thanks ! Not easy to figure out what the best search terms for an internet search are. I spent a lot of time on model-making and dolls house websites.
  13. I will try the machine screw option first, and the second (your suggestion of a post, screwing into both ends) if I split the wooden post while installing the machine screws. A nylon (rather than brass) post looks like an option. I hope to be replacing other smaller (rusted) screws at the same time - it looks like I will be having Pozidrive heads to everything eventually. I'm sure Mr. Lachenal - as an engineer - would approve of Pozidrive screws, and wish he had invented them. Thank you so much, both of you, for your really helpful suggestions. Gail
  14. goodness--- i didn't want to make people leave.... sorry
  15. I'm having trouble finding suitable woodscrews for replacing those that hold the plates on to my ediophone. They go through the plate or thumbstrap, down through a wooden post (post is about 13mm long) and then through - and out the other side even - the wooden plate through which all the valve holes are cut out.. Multiple repairs and over the years (all of which require these screws to be removed), and some rusting on the screws has resulted in damage to the heads. The "slot" at the top of the screws are now damaged and so its increasiungly difficult to remove and replace them. I suspect the use of the "wrong size" of screwdriver has also contributed (I have no idea what the "right size" would be... presumably the one Mr. Lachenal used in his workshop ). Anybody got any ideas where I can get x4 replacement screws? My internet searches have been unsuccessful - but maybe I am not using the right keywords. Approx 1 mm diameter 25 mm long thread on the bottom 12 mm countersunk I would also like to replace the shorter screws holding the thumbstrap and finger unit in place. thank you Gail
  16. why is it important for us to declare our gender before discussing concerinas on this forum ?
  17. think I have almost got the hang of this. Thanks
  18. Thank you so much. I'm sure mine was not orange ! Gail
  19. Hello, I have bought the paper version of the above tunebook twice, and have foolishly lent it to someone-unknown and the replacement was "lost in the post" (along with a lot of my other dots...), so I feel as if i have some sort of "moral right" to the book even though i don't currently own a copy! . I am now trying to go digital , and Googling identifies several places where I could download it - but none of them work for me. Does anyone know where it might be available as pdfs please ? than you Gail
  20. the classic tune that everyone (?) knows is the irish washerwoman. The type of thing I'm trying to explain is in bars 5 and 6 of the B music, where i would want to only "just touch the string" for the repeated g. Its easier to do when the "light touch" note is higher then the melody (as here) because the higher notes do not sound as loud as the lower ones with similar pressure. But other tunes (or indeed this one, if you use the G an octave lower) have the repeated note lower than the melody line - often requiring changes of which finger you have to use on the button to accommodate the rest of the tune. I do use the "drone" approach a bit when the repeated notes are higher than the melody (I like drone music- i play the hurdy-gurdy - badly- as well as the concertina) but i think they overpower the melody if used for lower notes. I can manage different volumes with the repeat notes, using bellows pressure, when playing slowly - but slowly isn't how these tunes are played in the Liverpool/UK part of the world. Too fast for me to exchange fingers for them, never mind getting different emphasis on the second and third notes. I will experiment with shortening notes/not opening the valve fully and see if i can get that to work. More practice needed (as always). Thank you for comments so far. Gail
  21. the classic tune that everyone (?) knows is the irish washerwoman. The type of thing I'm trying to explain is in bars 5 and 6 of the B music, where i would want to only "just touch the string" for the repeated g. Its easier to do when the "light touch" note is higher then the melody (as here) because the higher notes do not sound as loud as the lower ones with similar pressure. But other tunes (or indeed this one, if you use the G an octave lower) have the repeated note lower than the melody line - often requiring changes of which finger you have to use on the button to accommodate the rest of the tune.
  22. Daniel - how would you describe what you do please? And is it a different thing that you do on the anglo to the duet when trying to get this effect - or the same sort of thing?
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