Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About mdarnton

  • Rank
    Advanced Member

Contact Methods

  • Website URL

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Interests
    violin maker, photography, music, concertina, of course.
  • Location

Recent Profile Visitors

321 profile views
  1. mdarnton

    Hornpipe and polka rhythms?

    Maybe this will help: https://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=112167#2370924 And then.... can't resist:
  2. I used double-stick foam mounting tape, small pieces, only three or four per side, I think.
  3. mdarnton

    For Armistice Day

    Because you used a pdf document file format rather than a screen-sized and compressed jpg picture format, which would be more appropriate for the content, the file is approximately 100 times as large as it needs to be (literally). So for someone on a slow connection, it will take quite a while to download, which could be mistaken for never. But it's there.
  4. mdarnton

    Under Paris Skies (Sous le Ciel de Paris)

    Now two of my favorite players here play duets. It's making me reconsider whether I want to switch from English!
  5. In another thread he said it's one of these: http://www.concertinaconnection.com/jackie-jack.htm so it's probably not too rough. The biggest frustration is going to be getting the buttons to go back in their holes. 🙂
  6. Take it apart, look for that note's reed on the inside, and look on the other side for a stuck valve (a strip of leather that should be floating, not wedged in), or for something stuck in the reed, which you can gently clean out with a small slip of paper. When you take things apart, mark their orientation so you don't get things put back together turned 1/6. And be very gentle, both in loosening AND tightening! If you are all thumbs, just pay someone to fix it! Fixing someone else's mistakes is often much more expensive than fixing the original problem.
  7. mdarnton

    New to English Concertina

    I started here: http://www.alistairanderson.com/cds/2008-concertina-workshop.htm It's especially good if you read music, which I guess you probably do. I got part way through the book, then went to sight-reading starting at random points in O'Neills Music of Ireland: http://www.oldmusicproject.com/oneils1.html That's something I still do to keep up my sight-reading ability. There are similar books available for the music you want to learn, though inevitably smaller in number of tunes than O'Neill. 🙂 When you start to feel familiar with where things are on the instrument (and in spite of what you think now, there will come a time where you can dive for a button that's far away, and hit it) then playing by ear will have become more comfortable. The next step is to listen to what your favorite players do, and try to do that.
  8. I carry mine in a 6-pack cooler shoulder bag. It looks a lot like the tackle box, but isn't as long, and is adequately waterproof. I put it in corner-point down, and cut two foam wedges to fit underneath to cradle it and boost it up slightly from the bag bottom. The pockets are handy for notepad, pencil, metronome, etc.
  9. mdarnton

    my best audience

    When I lived in the country and was learning concertina decades ago, I was playing one day and heard a strange resonant hum. I stopped, it stopped; I started playing again, it started. Finally I discovered that the neighbor's St Bernard had walked a quarter mile (he had never come over to our house before that) and was under the open window next to me howling along. My own dog liked to climb up on the sofa and lie next to the concertina as a I played, also. I guess there's something about the sound that they like.
  10. mdarnton

    Paul Hardy's Session Tunebook

    Wow, thanks!
  11. When the subject of the EC keyboard quirk, I always mention alternating bass notes in guitar playing. At first it seems impossible to keep the thumb alternating while other things are going on, and then one day you realize you haven't thought about that in a while. It's the same with zig-zag-alternate-side concertina scales: impossible at first, then completely natural. As with learning every new and unfamiliar thing you ever learned, if your first response is "I can't do that" then you can't do it.
  12. mdarnton

    Setting up home studio

    You might get some push back on this so I will say that I think that SM57s are an excellent choice for concertina, as opposed to some more strident condenser mic, even more certainly if your concertina has accordion reeds. Placement depends a lot on the space you're in. Some distance is always good to provide ambiance, but if the room is too live you need to stay close. If you can get away from the instrument in a live room, one mic will do it, but closer or in too dead of a room you probably will need two. I would use both 57s, even at a distance, but as far as you can get without the room taking over. It really depends on what kind of sound you want. The key to good recording is to experiment a lot with mic placement---that's more important than what mics you use.
  13. My guess would be that you are right, and that it's because of the huge popularity of Irish music vs . . . . . whatever it is that English concertina naturally does. . . .
  14. I have two new sightings. One is in the movie Portrait of Jennie (1948). Unfortunately it doesn't really get played--they're trying to establish the main character as Irish (and one of his friends later briefly plays an Irish harp). Selection below starts at the concertina: The other is in this week's New Yorker magazine--an obviously-edited (laundering Lennie's image for the swells by removing the concertina) lead photo in an article about Leonard Bernstein. 🙂