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robert stewart

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    west virginia

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  1. robert stewart

    Wheatstone English...signed by Percy Honri?

    Looks like my previous Ebay link, just posted, should work for everyone on the list. The instrument has certainly been played a lot, whoever may have played it. The inverted H looking like an N is distinctive. Are there any other comparative signatures?....the stage sig is certainly more florid, but with several similarities to the one in the auction. Variety Artistes often developed a florid signature for signing programs or autograph albums. My guess would be that the signature on the inside of the EC might be an owner's safety signature....proof of ownership? Presumably Honri did not repair instruments? RJ
  2. robert stewart

    Wheatstone English...signed by Percy Honri?

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/C-WHEATSTONE-Co-1852-53-CONCERTINA-ENGLISH-48-BUTTON-SN-4126-LONDON/254323888867?hash=item3b36e292e3:g:GMgAAOSwb91dSzxj I think this should work.....
  3. robert stewart

    Wheatstone English...signed by Percy Honri?

    The signature is one of last few in the photos.
  4. robert stewart

    Wheatstone English...signed by Percy Honri?

    eBay item number: 254323888867 is the Ebay number https://www.ebay.com/itm/C-WHEATSTONE-Co-1852-53-CONCERTINA-ENGLISH-48-BUTTON-SN-4126-LONDON/254323888867
  5. robert stewart

    Wheatstone English...signed by Percy Honri?

    yes, I am aware of the sizable historic content on Honri. there are some great old short films of him playing a huge Duet, and also some dramatic movies in which he acted and played. I was thinking more of any research or document evidence regarding his signature. Many of the great Duet players also played, or started with, the English. RJ
  6. On Ebay today is an antique EC, Wheatstone, that appears to have the name Percy Honri in pencil on the inside. If this is a genuine signature, wasn't he one of the great concertina players? Any thoughts on research and proof?
  7. How to play a Freudian Slip Jig (R J Stewart) Last night I heard the keenest Anglo German concertinist In an Irish session in an English bar; Then, to play a minuet, He took out a large Duet The biggest one I’d ever seen by far Then an Aussi, up from Bondi, Said “Let’s all play some Regondi…! ” And we put our squeezers down in dark despair, Until a Scotsman, named Jock Cameron, Played every darn Hexameron On his teeny weeny Wheatstone, With great flair. I have a tenor-treble Boyd That once was owned by Sigmund Freud, His bellows-envy theories are the best, Yes, he really was no slouch At playing hornpipes to the couch If the patient fell asleep or tried to rest. So don’t forget to flex those bellows Lovely ladies and stout fellows Let us praise our concertinas to the skies Don’t pause to take a breath Or be deterred by death, Keep on playing…… Umm…er…dammit, lost the fingering again… Can we rewind? RJ
  8. The great maestro of 19th century classical English concertina was Regondi, who also played (and started with) guitar, playing with great skill and creative verve on both instruments. Why is this relevant here? Because both the English concertina and the guitar share something else, which is that so many of the instruments out there are of shockingly low playability. A beginner has a difficult path to travel....many good and dedicated beginners are put off because so many (vintage) ECs in a somewhat lower price range, if you can find one, are discouraging to play. The early basic tutor models were mass produced for a craze that swept Britain in the 19th C...just like guitars from the 1960s onward. The tutor models (ECs) were intentionally inexpensive, and the enthusiastic amateur might soon move on to a better instrument in a culture riddled, blessed, with many concertinas. Today these old starter instruments are still, in effect, what they were made to be, cheap try-it-out instruments, but now become Expensive Vintage or Antique, with a hundred years or so of wear, and various restorations. They were intended for the beginner to learn scales and fingering, usually from read-the-dots tutor books, to decide if this complex and beautiful type of instrument was for them. Today vintage "starters" have a cachet which is, perhaps, somewhat inflated. The newcomer (to any instrument) should buy the best possible even it means stretching the budget. The better the instrument, the more chance the beginner has to value and respect his/her concertina, rather than struggle with its limitations. Then the concertina can be sold onward with no, or little loss of money, either to upgrade or give up(grade). I am sure that this advice, or variants thereof, will come flying in from all the directions in response to the questions. To hell with prudence...it's only money. Get the best concertina you can...sell the I-phone or the giant flat screen. A good concertina will be your friend... R J Stewart
  9. Any thoughts on the best levels of temperature and humidity for concertinas? For example, Ireland and Britain have (or used to have) cool humid climates, otherwise known as Chill & Damp. So period concertinas from the 19th and early 20th centuries were made and played in conditions where the average humidity was around 50% and average temperature in the 60s F. Until the mid-1970s a temperature over 70F was regarded as extremely hot in Britain ! Here on the east coast of the US the temperature today is 90+F and humidity over 60%, sometimes higher through the summer. There is air conditioning, of course. But it hardly needs to be said that concertinas were also played in high temperatures and high humidity with no Acs as soon as they left temperate Britain, Ireland, or Europe. (the reason for all this is probably because my AC has broken down and will not be fixed for a few days...but it prompted the thoughts....) And what about all those beautiful button accordions in France right now...over 100F this week? RJ (and I do not wish to change my Edeophone steel reeds for brass, thank you).
  10. robert stewart


    Well, there is fast playing that is beautiful and fast playing that is just....fast. But loudness? The great (late) jazz-swing guitarist Diz Disley was asked during an interview, what should a musician do when his guitar or other instrument is out of tune in a live performance? Disley said, without hesitation, "Play louder". RJS
  11. robert stewart

    Typical Dimensions of Lachenal treble Edeophone

    This reminds of the (true) story of an orchestral conductor (somebody famous whose name I have forgotten); when the orchestra arrived for rehearsals, the brass section began opening their cases to bring out their instruments. The conductor rapped his baton on the rostrum and shouted "Brass Section! Already too loud!". RJS
  12. robert stewart

    Typical Dimensions of Lachenal treble Edeophone

    My Edeophone 56 key extended treble has raised ebony ends, and was made in the early 1900s. That seems to be a good period...my instrument has a sweet sound, but will also drive the notes out if played harder. The only problem, which is well known for Lachenal instruments, is that the Lachenal action (hook and lever) can be noisy, so it is difficult for recording. A few years ago I had a Lachenal metal ended TT that had the action replaced with a riveted action (much quieter) by Concertina Connection...it was superb...however my family deemed it TOO LOUD, so against my own advice I sold it. RJ
  13. Greetings! Can anyone give the dimensions of a typical Lachenal extended treble Edeophone? I have one that is 6.5 inches across the face, with 56 keys. Would this be standard? many thanks, RJ
  14. robert stewart

    Parnassus Concertinas

    I accidentally posted this to Buy and Sell, being a new member of the forum. Have any members experience of the remarkable looking Parnassus concertinas made by Wim WaKker? I am especially interested in the acoustic qualities of tone wood in concertinas. Many of the early wooden baffles seemed to modify the partials (not just mute), and Mr Wakker has regenerated this concept with his development of high end acoustics for the concertina. I worked as a luthier for some years, and repaired 19th and early 20th century mandolins and period guitars and violins that used wooden "tone plates" (sometimes called Virzi plates), from the 19thc, the heyday of classical concertina. These were not baffles, but resonating subsidiary soundboards suspended inside. Does that sound familiar?
  15. robert stewart

    wheatstone tenor-treble ebony Aeola on Ebay this week

    I contacted "Michael of the Button Box" via their website, but so far have not received a reply.