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Richard Mellish

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About Richard Mellish

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    Chatty concertinist

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    London, UK

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  1. It seems to me that Kathryn is being far far more ambitious than anyone would expect on a 20 key box. I'd love to hear what she will do when she gets a 40 key one.
  2. The Hobgoblin page says "will fit Stagi and Scarlatti concertinas". What size are those? And do these cases have blocks to keep the bellows closed?
  3. What? Just a few months! You don't know when you're well off.
  4. OK, convention explained sufficiently. Thank you for your thoughts. Back to the virtues and vices of many-fold bellows.
  5. It would do no harm to enquire how many of the present membership would wish to enter competitions if those were offered. If they do seem viable, prospective members can be reassured that competitions are just one facet of the ICA for those who wish to have their skills assessed, probably nowadays a minority. Finding appropriate adjudicators could be tricky, given the range of styles as well as the variety of systems. It is also of course possible for a tutor to assess someone's skills and offer advice about what they are already doing well and how to improve, outside t
  6. That was the point of my enquiry: why is the logical way of counting not the custom?
  7. Usually yes -- but not always. I have more than once been presumed to be playing a Duet when in fact it's an Anglo, and I'm not the only one.
  8. I'll echo the request for PDFs. I've been taking the newsletter of one society in that form for several years and I've just taken that option when renewing my membership of another society.
  9. Please excuse a bit of thread drift, but this thread seems a reasonable place to enquire about how the folds are conventionally counted. Starting from one end, if the folds go in and out N times, they are called (N-1)fold. Why is that? Back a bit closer to the topic, I have a Koot Brits Anglo which quickly runs out of air, despite being C-G (so having no very large reeds), 12-sided, with just over 7 inches across the flats, and 8-fold (as conventionally counted) bellows. I don't think there's anything wrong with the bellows, so I think the fault is inefficient reeds.
  10. I don't entirely agree with that. Many kinds of music can be played on any kind of concertina. Duets are certainly the most versatile, providing possibilities for complex arrangements that the others don't, but Duets may not be easiest for simpler music, depending how your brain works. What you can play is more a function of your skill and experience than which kind you play. So I stick with the advice to have a brief go on as many different kinds as possible, even if you already have an idea which kind you are likely to want.
  11. Early in my school career a competition nearly put me off playing music for life. They are OK for those who genuinely wish to compete, but should be no more than a small part of the business of the ICA. (BTW I renewed my membership on Monday, just before Daniel started this thread.)
  12. I agree with the excellent advice already given. I would add that, having got to somewhere with a selection of instruments, you should spend a little while picking out a simple tune or two on an Anglo, an English and at least one sort of Duet. You will probably then find that one kind makes more sense to you than the others, in which case that is the kind to stick with. One important consideration is the extent to which you wish or need to play in a variety of keys. On an Anglo, it gets substantially harder as soon as you move even one key away from the two basic keys; for example to F or D on
  13. This discussion raises a question I had never thought about. Why is it that melodeons and accordeons generally have straps to hold the bellows closed but concertinas generally don't? (There may be exceptions in both cases.) Is it just that melodeons and accordeons are more unwieldy, and would become even more so if they weren't kept closed?
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